Meaningful outcome-based teaching and learning:
The focus of guiding private engineering colleges to define outcomes in concurrence with national goals, has been a persistent failure over the last few decades. Most private players intentionally remain ignorant of the accountability of producing employable and responsible citizens. Even if government machineries are established with the best intent, if the representing officials monitoring bodies are weak, all efforts are in vain. Such cases are quite prominent in Tier II and III towns.
There is reluctance on the part of these institutions to spend money on faculty development. Only stringent regulations will place such private players on quality track. Faculty must have a deeper understanding of the expected programme and course outcomes and facilitate learning, keeping in mind learners’ profile. The outcomes have to be clearly defined. Orienting the faculty to the same will help them appropriately design the teaching-learning processes.
Emphasis on teaching competencies:
Due to unprecedented proliferation of institutions, the demand for teachers is significant across the county. The need for the establishment of professional faculty development in medical education was strongly felt in 1974 and National Teacher Training Institute Centre was established, though the need for the same was spelt out by the Bhore committee as early as 1946. UGC and other councils have taken a number of measures in this area.
Through Medical Education Units (MEUs), continuous education of doctors, most of the time is spent on developing clinical competencies rather than competencies for teaching. While the number of engineering college is 3,470, there are only four National Institute of Technical Teachers’ Training and Research (NITTTRs) and the functioning of their nodal centres is feeble and not clearly defined.
M.Phil and PhD degrees familiarise teachers on research. However, they don’t contribute to developing teaching competencies. In such a scenario, the government must evolve a definite policy for faculty development. Newly establishing institutes must fulfil the criteria of having full-fledged in-house faculty development centres and allocation in the annual budget must be made mandatory.
Platforms for intellectual capital:
The diversity in the type of institutions hampers effective pooling and use of resources to create strong intellectual capital. With regulations diverse for different types of institutions, they are caught up in their own compartments, forgetting the need of the overall-perspective and purpose.
Private institutions may not appreciate the same as they think that their USP is lost. Though one school of thought encourages complete commercialisation of education where only the fittest survive, the lesson from history is that in the race for profit-making, the purpose has gone astray. The recent sharing of knowledge through MOOCs by IITs and IISCs is a historic development in the country. The private players who encourage development of common platforms for education sector empowerment need to be identified and encouraged.
Though PhD is made mandatory at a certain level of teaching, the number and quality of PhDs are dwindling. The outcome of research is supposed to have some definite contribution to industries and society around. While there is fund shortage on one prong, there is complete lack of interest to siphon fund for research is at another prong.
Teaching tech-savvy and first generation graduates:
The interest of Indian youth for gadgets is high compared to their counterparts in the world. Learning inside a classroom where the teacher is ill- equipped with contemporary knowledge, trends, technology, teaching-learning methods and research and instead delivers lessons through highly teacher-centered lecture method, elicits least interest. There is a chasm between teachers and students in the knowledge of handling IT gadgets. Though many IT companies have ventured into academia and reached students in an impressive manner, leveraging the same inside classes for faculty members remains an unachieved agenda.
India is in the 120th position among 144 countries on tech-readiness as rated by World Economic Forum in 2015-2016. Even when internet users in India is the second largest in Asia (28percent), only six percent use the internet for learning management. Though digitalisation is at a nascent stage in education, its is significant with its current pace of adoption. Faculty development and empowerment will play a pivotal role in the Make in India, Digital India, Swachh Bharath and Smart cities projects.
Source | http://www.thehindu.com/todays-paper/tp-features/tp-educationplus/faculty-matters/article9148794.ece