Sunday, March 15, 2015
“Bridge the Gap in Engineering and Management Education in India” – Professor M.S.Rao
“First, have a definite, clear practical ideal; a goal, an objective. Second, have the necessary means to achieve your ends; wisdom, money, materials, and methods. Third, adjust all your means to that end.” - Aristotle
Currently there is a huge gap between the industry and academia in India resulting in unemployability in Indian students. Students of both engineering and management education encounter innumerable challenges to grab employment opportunities and to grow as entrepreneurs. There is a dearth of right mind set, tool set and skill set among the students who pass out of engineering and management educational institutions. There is often a mismatch between their qualifications and competencies. Hence, I would like to address this issue in this article.
The current curriculum in Indian educational institutions doesn’t meet the industry expectations. Industry is growing rapidly and the faculty still teaches the outdated syllabus. Some of the faculty doesn’t have adequate knowledge to teach their subjects. Most of them adopt old teaching pedagogy. As a result, students are unhappy with faculty.
Presently students are very bright as they are exposed to technology, and their expectations are very high. They have access to information through internet the way the faculty has. They don’t respect the faculty who collects the information from internet and shares with them. Students think that they can also do the same thing. They often question what value the faculty is adding to them? At times faculty is not in a position to handle the questions posed by the students. As a result, faculty loses credibility in the classroom. Hence, faculty must do research regularly to update themselves. They must also coin new concepts and share them in the classroom to win the confidence of students. When you look at modern management guru, Peter Drucker, he coined many concepts in management by researching, consulting and interacting with students. Similarly, faculty must do research regularly in their areas and share their knowledge with students. They must also contribute research papers to international journals. It helps students acquaint with the latest knowledge apart from building their CVs. It is futile for faculty to blame the educational institutions for not getting funds or grants. They must find out their own methods and means to get sponsors to fund their research. If they are strong in research, they get noticed and get funds.
Industry must take initiative to visit educational institutions regularly to explain the present trend and expectations. It helps educational institutions to create curriculum accordingly. Faculty must be encouraged to visit industry to understand the pulse of industry. They can share their experiences in the industry with students in the classroom. Faculty must also engage students actively in the classroom to make teaching more interesting and participative. Interactive teaching generates more ideas. They must encourage students to ask questions regularly. When students ask more questions faculty becomes more active and accountable. They must do research on the triggers arising from the questions of students to create new knowledge.
To summarize, an holistic approach from all stakeholders including educators, students, educational institutions, industry and non-government organizations(NGOs) is essential to revamp management and engineering education in India. It helps shell out employable and deployable students as per the industry expectations in India.
“More important than the curriculum is the question of the methods of teaching and the spirit in which the teaching is given” - Bertrand Russell
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Professor M.S.Rao, India
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