We need to move away from the grade-based framework of education and implement changes that will benefit students and the whole system
The pandemic has forced a shift from the set norm in many areas through home working, e-learning, virtual exams, and more. For any educated Indian, the next biggest challenge should be implementing a grading system that focuses on the holistic development of all students rather than honoring a select few who manage to achieve inexplicably high marks. Not only does this demotivate the majority, but it also creates a one-sided and unbalanced approach. Implementing a few changes can help revamp the system and benefit all students.
Experiential Learning (EL): The main objective is to develop students’ problem-solving and decision-making skills from an early age. Designing a program with real-world experiences provides a hands-on learning experience. EL’s main strength is its ability to extract active participation from every student, which in turn triggers their emotional intelligence and sets them on the path to self-learning. This learning then becomes continuous. Business schools are increasingly encouraging group discussions and business role-playing supervised by experienced professionals to help students learn practical skills.
Learn a language: Recently, a high school counselor complained about how students avoid taking language classes because of their “inconsequential” effect on the board’s overall results. Although the benefits of language learning are not as obvious as those of math or science, from a long-term perspective, an additional language can provide an advantage. This is why students from regions that boast multiple languages have an edge within the global professional setup.
National education policy: Implementing the NEP can help shake the education system out of its slumber. It is about phasing out the affiliated college system and giving autonomous degree-granting colleges the freedom to design and deliver 21st century skills. Moving from the current 10+2 system to a 5+3+3+4 system will formally integrate the preschool age group into the education system. Restoring the importance of early learning through home language or mother tongue as the language of instruction can only influence critical thinking, develop a sense of cultural pride, bring local languages back into accounts and influence students’ openness to learning new languages. Inviting international universities to set up campuses in India is another step in accelerating the delivery of quality education. One of the most overlooked aspects of creating educational institutions is its positive impact on the region as a whole, including increasing job prospects.
The speed of implementation and the ability to constantly evolve will determine the success or failure of this decade.
The writer is Country Manager at EDHEC Business School, France