Themes and Issues for Policy Consultation on Higher Education [ Detailed Analysis (CA/GS) - ]

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Some of the major themes and questions for policy consultation on higher education are mentioned below which mainly include governance, ranking of institutes, technology enabling of institutes and more.

1. Governance reforms for quality

  • Quality is a multi-dimensional concept and several mechanisms for quality assurance and management at individual and institutional level are needed.
  • The unplanned expansion of the sector poses challenges for enhancing and maintaining quality.

2. Ranking of institutions and accreditations

  • The global ranking of universities is based on an assessment of the institutional performance in the areas of research and teaching, reputation of faculty members, reputation among employers, resource availability, share of international students and activities etc

3. Improving the quality of regulation

  • The main objective of regulation in higher education is to meet the three objectives of equity, expansion and excellence as stated in the Twelfth Five Year Plan
  • The issue of quality of governance is closely related to the issue of autonomy enjoyed by the institutions.
  • Universities were supposed to be self-regulating entities and to voluntarily adhere to standards determined by the UGC.

4. Pace setting roles of central institutions

  • Central institutions/universities are regarded as key institutions in the processes of social change and development. The most explicit role they need to play is in research and in the production of highly skilled personnel to meet requirements of the production sector.
  • These institutions have responsibility to transcend traditional disciplinary limitation in pursuit of the intellectual fusion and develop a culture of academic enterprise and knowledge entrepreneurship.

5. Improving State public universities

  • There have been debates and discussions on the state public higher education system within the country and recognition of the dire need to change, restructure and reform them.
  • There is severe shortage of teachers and teachers are appointed on ad hoc positions are ill equipped to manage teaching and research on paltry payments to them.

6. Integrating skill development in higher education

  • A key issue is to improve the effectiveness of the system in order to enhance the employability skills of the workforce and engender more employment opportunities.
  • In view of the policy priority and harnessing the 18 potential of young people, skill development assumes great importance in the domain of educational planning and management.

7. Promoting open and distance learning and online courses

  • Open and Distance Learning (ODL) is recognised and accepted as an important mode for achieving enhanced access, developing skills, capacity building, training, employability, life-long education and continuing education.
  • The MOOCs provide free access to cutting edge courses that could drive down the cost of university-level education and potentially disrupt the existing models of higher education.

8. Opportunities for technology enabled learning

  • Today technology is all pervasive and it influences all domains of our daily life.
  • Technology enables to take education and learning go far beyond the confines of institutionalized instructions, structured study programmes and teacher-cantered teaching learning process.
  • The World Summit on the Information Society (WSIS) and a series of international conferences in the early 2000s emphasised on e-learning as a priority area of priority.

9. Addressing regional disparity

  • Higher education expansion in India is also accompanied by disparities between regions and groups.
  • In fact regional disparities increased in the process of expansion of higher education in India.
  • The inter-state disparities in enrolment (GER) increased over a period of time. In 2002-03 the GER varied between 5.0 per cent in Jammu and Kashmir and 28.7 per cent in Chandigarh.

10. Bridging gender and social gaps

  • There exist wide disparities among social groups in terms of their participation in higher education.
  • These measures do not seem to be sufficient to attract students from disadvantaged groups in colleges and universities and more importantly to retain them.

11. Linking higher education to society

  • The growth, to a great extent, seems unplanned and exhibits a weak linkage with employment and the outside world.
  • On the one hand, the country does not have adequate manpower to carry out developmental work

12. Developing the best teachers

  • The quality of instruction depends on the quality of teachers.
  • One of the major constraints is to attract good students as teachers. Invariably teaching profession is not high in the priority list when the graduates look for jobs.

13. Sustaining student support systems

  • India is home to the world’s youngest population—with over 600 million below the age of 25.
  • Envisioning student support systems need to be a critical element of policy innovation.

14. Promote cultural integration through language

  • If language, on the one hand, structures our thought process, it liberates us and propels us into unexplored territories of knowledge and imagination, on the other.
  • The special features and contexts of the languages that fall under the rubric ‘other’ for a learner are kept in mind while devising pedagogy for teaching and learning.

15. Meaningful partnership with the private sector

  • Promoting cost-effectiveness through risk sharing and efficient use of resources leading to higher productivity and optimal risk allocation
  • Enhancing access to modern technology leading to better project design, implementation, operations and management

16. Financing higher education

  • Public funding cannot keep pace with rapidly rising costs of higher education.
  • In financial terms, this has become an unsustainable model.

17. Internationalization of higher education

  • The conventional one focused on core academic values, while the modern one tends to focus primarily on education in the framework of international trade, with export/import and economic gains as the operative parts.
  • The conventional one focused on core academic values, while the modern one tends to focus primarily on education in the framework of international trade, with export/import and economic gains as the operative parts.

18. Engagement with industry to link education to employability

  • India represents a typical case of over-supply of higher education graduates on the one hand and non-availability of prospective employees in the production sector.

19. Promoting research and innovation

  • The progress of the nation depends on its sustained growth of education and research in science and technology.

20. New knowledge

  • It is important is to understand the characteristics and the dynamics of knowledge economy and chart out a path of economic development of India in which knowledge management assumes a key role.

Expected Questions CBSE NET Jan 2017 Paper 1: Higher Education

Dr. Manishika Jain explains the what to expect for 2017 Paper 1 - higher education. Rashtriya Madhyamik Shiksha Abhiyan

- Published/Last Modified on: January 5, 2017