Experts estimate that 32 percent of its current population is under the age of 15 (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 1) With 35 percent of the population under the age of 15… (Lall, 2005).
Emerging Middle class: 50 million per year.
http://www.worldbank.org.in/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/SOUTHASIAEXT/INDIAEXTN/0,,contentMDK:22339000~pagePK:141137~piPK:141127~theSitePK:295584,00.html Fifty four per cent of India’s population is below the age of 25. We will add 150 million people to the workforce in the next 15 years and have huge backlog to clear, with graduate unemployment running at nearly 20 per cent. The gross enrolment ratio for higher education, at present at 12 per cent, has to be raised to more than 40 per cent if the young population is to be converted into productive human capital. (Kumar, 2009).
Yashpal Committee National Knowledge Commission National Skills Development Council (March 2008)
June 26 2009 : Kapil Sibal, Union Minister for Ministry of Human Resource Development, announced a slew of measures, including optional Class 10 Board exams, accreditation agencies for schools, free education and private sector involvement in primary learning
The private education market in India is estimated to be worth $40 billion in 2008 and will increase to $68 billion by 2012 (Wikipedia)
* http://www.globalenvision.org/library/8/767 The overall national drop out rate from 1-10 standard is 62.69%, which is a matter of concern. The drop out rates at different levels of school education are primary 31.47%, middle 52.32% and secondary 62.69% … How are we going to achieve the target of 20% enrolment in higher educatioon by 2020? (Dongaonkar, p. 10). Sarva Siksha Abhiyan (SSA) The main goal of this program is that all children of 6-11 years of age should complete primary education by the year 2007 and all children of 6-14 years of age should complete eight years of schooling by 2010. This plan covers the whole country with special emphasis on girl education and education of Schedule Caste (SC) and Schedule Tribe (ST) children and children with special needs. The SSA centers are mainly opened in those areas, which do not have any school or where schools are very far off. (http://www.mapsofindia.com/india-education.html).
National Council of Education Research and Training (NCERT) In 1961, the Government of India established the National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) as an autonomous organization to assist and advise the governments at the Centre and in States in the implementation of their policies for education, especially to bring about qualitative changes in school education and teacher preparation. Over the years, he Council has evolved into a unique organization, with its increasing range of activities that has influenced school education in India. Central Board of Secondary Education Council of Indian Certificate of School Education
To achieve this, the country will need to reduce the significant bottlenecks in its secondary education system…. The Report, Secondary Education in India: Universalizing Opportunity puts forward several suggestions aimed at improving secondary education in India. These include increased investments in additional classrooms and teachers, improved curriculum and textbook development; more effective teacher education and training; introduction of new educational technologies; improved teacher management and accountability systems; and examination reforms that will improve access, quality and equity of secondary education. (www.worldbank.org.in) The share of the labor force which had completed secondary education in India in 2004 (16 percent) was just half of the percentage of workers in China who had completed secondary education in 1975 (31 percent), thirty years earlier. (www.worldbank.org.in)
Secondary Schoool Certificate schools (SSC) (70 children per class and little qualified teachers) vs. CBSE (40 students, and qualified teachers, compensated by 10 PD days) (also Higher Secondary Certificate (HSC) and Indian Certificate of Secondary Education (ICSE)
GovJobs – Postings Post Graduate Teachers and Trained Graduate Teachers: Rs. 10300-34800 Grade Pay Rs. 4200 ($228-773, plus $93).
It is estimated that 1.5 crore youth need initial vocational training every year. During XI FYP, capacity for about 0.5 crore persons should be created for providing initial training through strengthening of existing VET Institutions and by setting up new VET Institutions. The remaining 1.0 crore people should be trained through non-formal/informal mode. (Working Group, s.d., p. 31) In India, about 4.21 crore persons are working in the informal sector. Only 5 % of this population could receive skill training through the formal system. The remaining about 4.0 crore unskilled and semi-skilled persons, who are already in the world of work, should be given continuous or further training for upgradation of their skills through a variety of delivery systems, including part-time, sandwich system, day release system, block release system, open and distance learning system, etc. (Working Group, s.d., p. 31)
A large number of students are not able to pursue education due to socio-economic constraints. For example, out of 100 students enrolled in class I, hardly 20 complete their school education and the remaining drop out at different stages. The education they receive may not be useful for a sustainable livelihood with quality. They try to enter the world of work without required skills and competencies to face the labour market competition. As a result, they remain unemployed, marginalized and poor. (Working Group on Secondary and Vocational Education, s.d., 30)
The largest share of new jobs in India is supposed to come from the unorganised sector that employs up to 93 per cent of the national workforce and produces 60 per cent of GDP. Since small and micro enterprises are supposed to play a central role in the national employment creation strategy, they should be assisted in development of skills. The formal skill training system, because of its educational entry requirements and long duration of courses, is basically not designed to offer skills to the low-educated people.
India now has some very good universities such as Jawaharlal Nehru University (JNU), Delhi University and Pune University. These universities are centrally established and funded, and generally structured along Oxbridge lines i.e. affiliated 5 under-graduate colleges attached to a post-graduate teaching and research university – the exception being JNU which has a Faculty/Department structure. There are also specialised technical, scientific and management training institutes: the well known Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs), Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs), Indian Institute of Information Technology, and the Indian Institute of Science (IISc). In total India now has 369 top tier tertiary institutions graduating some 2 million students annually. 6 Of these, there is an elite grouping of 20 centrally funded Universities around the country, 7 IITs, 6 IIMs, the IIIT, the IISc, 221 State Universities and 109 other national institutes of importance 7 . Among the 20,000 others mentioned earlier are some mediocre to poor quality vocational training institutes, many in rural areas, which offer basic courses in subjects like animal husbandry, land care and crop cultivation plus handicraft skills, tailoring and so on. (Short, 2008a, 2.4)
The All-India Council of Technical Education (AICTE)… is responsible for planning and developing technical education (engineering and technology, architecture, management and pharmacy) (Cheney et al. 2005, p. 19). The National Council for Teachern Education (NCTE)… is responsible for planning and developing teacher education, including setting and maintaining standards (Cheney et al. 2005, p. 19). As in many other developing countries, moreover, higher education is extremely politicized. Local politicians use colleges for patronage, awarding student slots as well as staff positions—from janitor to professor—to supporters. Considerations of caste, region, and other factors are common in academic appointments and other hires. The institutions are riddled with petty politics and low-level corruption. (Altbach, 2006, p. 50).
… around 200,000 students take the IIT entrance exam for less than 3,000 seats (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 15).
The proportion of our population, in the age group 18-24, that enters the world of higher education is around 7 per cent, which is only one-half the average for Asia. The opportunities for higher education, in terms of the number of places in universities, are simply not enough in relation to our needs. What is more, the quality of higher education in most of our universities requires substantial improvement. (National Knowledge Commission, 2006, p. 1).
For example, four new Central Universities are being created by upgrading state Universities and other institutes of national importance which are already producing graduates with results equal to or better than the existing central Universities. The establishment of three new IITs has begun in the states of Andra Pradesh, Bihar and Rajastan. Another IISc has been mooted. A seventh IIM is being created in Shillong in the north-east (Short, 2008a, 2.11) IIM (B-Schools) (7 Indian Institutes of Management, 6 new will be set up this year alone) (collegium to appointment of board and director, IIM to produce more postdoctoral fellows and give more importance to research, enhances IT facility) India's government will create 12 new central universities, adding to the 18 that currently exist. This is a mammoth undertaking and the equivalent of US$73 million has been allocated from the central government budget to it. Earlier this year India announced it would create 30 'world class' universities, eight new Indian institutes of technology and seven Indian institutes of management in the coming five years. On the recommendation of the National Knowledge Commission, the central government is planning massive investment to upgrade and expand higher education. Other plans include enhancing the salaries of college and university academics - boosting salaries by as much as 70%. (Altbach and Jarayam, 2009)
Under the Indian Constitution, education is a joint activity between the central and state governments,…. In tertiary education, this means that universities, technical institutes and polytechnics can be established at either state or central level (Short, 2008, 2.2) The central higher education bureaucracy has laid down many regulations across a range of the universities’ activities which they are obliged to follow. For example, all academic remuneration is set, the number of staff a university can have is controlled, and guidelines are provided on programme and course curricula. Universities are also required to show students have learned compulsory content during the course of their study. (Short, 2008a, 2.2)
Salaries for academics in publicly funded institutions are set centrally and the maximum professorial salary is capped at NZD16,000 annually (i.e. CDN$12,000). (Short, 2008b, p. 3) Only 35% of the academic profession has doctorates (Unesco)
With a national illiteracy rate of 35% and a third of the just over 1 billion population living below the international poverty line of 1 US dollar a day, India needs its research community to be contributing solutions to these problems as well as engaging in world leading innovation in science and technology (Short, 2008b, p. 4) China has 708 researchers per million population compared with 19 in India. In 1990, publications by Indians in journals were 50 per cent higher but in 2008, Chinese publications outnumbered Indian ones by two to one. In 1985, the number of PhDs in science and engineering in India were 4,007 and 125 in China, but by 2004, China had 14,858 PhDs, while we had increased the number to only 6,318. In 2007, Indians filed 35,000 patents compared with 245,161 in China (Kumar, 2009). China is set to overtake Japan as the second largest research & development (R&D) spender after the US in the next two years. It allocated 1.34 per cent of its GDP in 2005 on R&D (which, incidentally, is well below 3.6 per cent in South Korea) while expenditure on R&D in India was barely 0.61 per cent in the same year (Kumar, 2009). Funding is not such an issue anymore as the economic reforms since the early nineties have provided the government with significant financial reserves. (Short, 2008b, p. 4)
Another difficulty is the dysfunction in the publicly funded education system. There are not enough primary and secondary schools to enable universal access. The physical infrastructure of these schools ranges from mediocre to extremely basic. Teacher quality is generally poor, teacher absenteeism is a serious problem and pedagogy is old fashioned. Public education is free in India but because of all the problems, families who can afford to do so send their children to private schools. (Short, 2008b, p. 9) We are the third largest higher education system in the world but only 7% of our youth are enrolled in higher education (age group of 17-24)… We have a target of enrolment in higher education i.e., 20% by 2020 but the school drop out rate (1st to 10th) is 62.69%... We have got 73% population risiding in rural areas but 90% (approximately) of educational institutes are in urban areas (particularly in higher education… (Dongaonkar, p. 13) The issues which need attention are, illiteracy rate, drop out rate in the schools (up to 10th std.), gender inequality, urban-rural divide, regional imbalance, poor-rich divide and social divide (Dongaonkar, p. 14). Modern education in India is often criticized for being based on rote learning rather than problem solving (Wikipedia). There is little to be achieved by tinkering at the edges, for example, by raising the bar for taking the IIT entrance examination or making the Xth standard exam voluntary. These are at best distractions. What is needed are bold and large-scale reforms that will shake up the sector and allow for new ideas, initiatives, and dynamic new organisations to take roots. We have to take the academic community along in implementing these reforms rather than have teachers at loggerheads with the government on issues of pay, autonomy or curriculum design (Kumar, 2009).
Normand labrie presentation2
Education in 2010 IndiaFacts and ChallengesNormand LabrieAssociate Dean, Research and Graduate StudiesOntario Institute for Studies in EducationUniversity of Torontonlabrie@oise.utoronto.caCIDE, October 14, 2010
Overview• 1. Introduction– 1.1 Demographic and economic trends– 1.2 Political landscape– 1.3 Overview of the education system• 2. Elementary Education• 3. Secondary Education• 4. Technical and Vocational Education• 5. Tertiary Education• 6. Research and Innovation• 7. Conclusion• 8. References
1. Introduction• ‘’…the current economic momentum is not going to be sustained withoutthe development of a much larger well educated and trained workforce ’’(Short, 2008a, 2.13).• “…the education sector in India today needs the kind of focused andurgent policy attention that trade and industry did in the late eighties,which led to their reforms in 1991” (Kumar, 2009).• “Education reforms and progress are the most important and criticalpolicy issue in the country today. Otherwise, we may soon discover thatour much-touted demographic dividend has remained an illusion andinstead morphed into a disaster as large groups of unemployable youth,unable to join the workforce, end up swelling the ranks of extremists andinsurgents. India will have to earn its demographic dividend and time isactually running out because the window is a relatively short one”(Kumar, 2009).
1.1 Demographic and EconomicTrends– Education:– School life expectancy from primary to tertiary level: 10 years (CIA vs. Canada: 17 years)– Literacy rate 15-years and over: 61% (2001 Census vs. Canada: 99%)• Economy:– Labour force: 523.5 million (2008 est.)– Unemployment Rate: 9.1% (est. 2008 vs. 7.2% in 2007)– GDP per capita: US$2,900 (CIA 2008 est. vs. Canada: $39,200)– GDP growth: 6.1% in 2009 (CIA est. vs. 9% in 2007)– National and Regional Budget by Sector (Education): 3.2% of GDP (CIA est. for 2005)• Languages:– Hindi 41%, Bengali 8.1%, Telugu 7.2%, Marathi 7%, Tamil 5.9%, Urdu 5%, Gujarati 4.5%, Kannada3.7%, Malayalam 3.2%, Oriya 3.2%, Punjabi 2.8%, Assamese 1.3%, Maithili 1.2%, other 5.9%• English:– Less than 5 per cent of the Indian population speaks English (Graddol, 2009)– Internet Users: 81 million (2008)
1.1 Demographic and EconomicTrendshttp://www.worldbank.org.in/WBSITE/EXTERNAL/COUNTRIES/SOUTHASIAEXT/INDIAEXTN/0,,contentMDK:22339000~pagePK:141137~piPK:141127~theSitePK:295584,00.html
1.2 Political Landscape• Under the Constitution, responsibility for education is shared betweencentral and state governments (28 States and 7 Union Territories). Thecentral government sets policy, stimulates innovation and planframeworks. The state governments are responsible for running theeducation system on the ground (Lall, 2005).• The central government drafts five-year plans that include educationpolicy and some funding for education. State-level ministries of educationcoordinate education programs at the local levels (Cheney et al., 2005, p.12).• The Department of Education (Ministry of Human Resource Development)« coordinates planning with the States, provides funding for experimentalprograms, and acts through the University Grants Commission (…) and theNational Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) to developstandards, instructional materials, and design textbooks. The NCERT’stextbooks serve as models since States are not legally obligated to followthe national syllabus » (Cheney, et. Al. 2005, p. 12).
1.2 Political Landscape• Congress-led United Progressive Alliance won 15th Lok Sabha elections (May2009)• 100 day plan (Minister Sibal, June 26, 2009)– Right to Free and Compulsory Education Act (August 2009)• children between the age of 6 years to 16 year olds– Enhancement of standards (major changes in examination system)• Replacing the current assessment procedure of giving marks with grades thus reducing stress (to makethe 10th standard board examinations optional for students who wish to continue in the same school;to form one national school board and conduction of a uniform examination for class 12)– Vocational Training for an Emerging Economy– Targets for postsecondary education– Restructuration of postsecondary governance• For an autonomous overarching authority for higher education and research based on the YashpalCommittee and the National Knowledge Commission to be established– International competition– Equity (backward classes)• Amendment to National Commission for Minority Educational Institutions Act (to reduce the numberof reserved seats)– Research and Innovation
1.3 Overview of the Education System• The educational structure in India is generally referred to as the Ten + Two + Three(10+2+3) pattern. The first ten years provide undifferentiated general educationfor all students. The +2 stage, also known as the higher secondary or seniorsecondary, provides for differentiation into academic and vocational streams andmarks the end of school education. In +3 stage, which involves college education,the student goes for higher studies in his chosen field of subject.(http://www.highereducationinindia.com/).• The World Bank estimates that 27 percent of all Indian children enrolled in schoolsare being privately educated. (http://www.globalenvision.org/library/8/767).• Drop-out Rate (2003/2004) (Dongaonkar, s.d., p. 7):– Primary (I-V): 31.47%– Middle (I-VIII): 52.32%– Secondary (I-X): 62.69%
2.1 Elementary Education• Today India has more than six hundred thousand primary schools serving 115million students (the average teacher to student ratio is 1:43) and more than twomillion upper primary schools serving 45 million students (the average teacher tostudent ratio is 1:38) (Cheney, 2005, p. 3).• 80% of all recognized schools at the Elementary Stage are government run orsupported (Wikipedia).• Total Teachers: 4.17 million (including 379,385 para-teachers) (Dongaonkar, p. 12).• …it is estimated that at least 35 million, and possibly as many as 60 million,children aged 6-14 are not in school (Lall, 2005).• Emphasis on reform has been compulsory school attendance, rather than on anymeasure of expected learning (Chenez, 2005, p. 4).• The issue today is not lack of demand, but rather quality of supply. Students oftendrop out because their public school experiences are often so poor that they learnvery little even after being enrolled for 4 to 5 years (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 6).
2.2 Elementary Education• Ninety percent of the estimated 112 million children who enroll in primary schoolannually have no choice but to attend ill-maintained government schools… thefast-increasing middle class prefers to send its children to the government-aided,privately run schools (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 9).– For most students in India, the learning environment is pretty abysmal. School consists of aone-room schoolhouse, one teacher covering multiple grades, and 40 students per teacher. Itshould be noted that many rural public schools barely have the most basic of facilities (aclosed-in building, drinking water, toilets, a blackboard) (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 10).– A study of 188 government-run primary schools found that 59% of the schools had nodrinking water and 89% had no toilets (Wikipedia).• A government-sponsored study (the PROBE Report published in 1999) in fourIndian states found that in half of the government schools no apparent teachingactivity was taking place and in a third that the headteacher was not present whenvisited. Kremer et al. (2004) made 3 unannounced visits to 3700 government-runprimary schools leading to 34,525 direct observations. They conclude that:– With one in four government primary school teachers absent on a given day, and only one intwo actually teaching, India is wasting a considerable share of its education budget, andmissing an opportunity to educate its children (p. 14).
2.3 Elementary Education• Pedagogical regime: from rote learning and memorization, to-the-point answers, rules and guidelines towards creative, interactive,hands-on experiments, intellectual curiosity.• Teaching is a well-paid profession in India and teachers are typicallyapppointed based on political affiliations, not on content orpedagogical knowledge. There is no system in place to motivateteachers to improve academic achievement, and very little trainingavailable to strenghten teaching practices (Cheney et al., 2005, p.10).• 6th Central Pay Commission (2008):– Primary School Teacher: Rs. 6500/month ($150)– Principal: Rs. 16500/month ($400)
3.1 Secondary Education• The Secondary Stage consists of grades 9-12 (ages 14-17) (Cheney et al., 2005, p.6).• India has more that one hundred thousand secondary and senior secondaryschools serving 30 million students (the average teacher to student ratio is 1:34)(Cheney et al., 2005, p. 6).• India needs to equip the 12 million young people who join its labor force everyyear with higher levels of education and skills to be able to access better-payingjobs, and to benefit from the demographic dividend… (www.worldbank.org.in).• Projections suggest an increase in absolute demand for secondary educationbetween 2007-08 and 2017-18 of around 17 million students, with a totalenrollment growing from 40 to 57 million students. However, an increasing shareof these students will come from rural and lower income quintile groups, who willbe less able to afford private unaided secondary education(www.worldbank.org.in).
3.2 Secondary Education• Public exams at the end of grades 10 and 12 drive instruction at theschool level (Chenez, 2005, p. 6).• The majority of students exit school after grade 10 (approximately age15). For those who stay, schooling becomes differentiated. Based onperformance on the 10th grade subject exams, student enter an upper-secondary stream for their last two years of schooling before university(grades 11-12)…• Secondary schools are affiliated with Central or State boards whichadminister examinations at the end of grade 10 resulting in the award ofthe Secondary School Certificate (SSC), the All-India Secondary SchoolCertificate or the Indian Certificate of Secondary Education…• There are three national examination boards: the Central Board ofSecondary Education (CBSE), the Council for the Indian School CertificateExaminations (CISCE) and the National Open School (NOS) for distanceeducation (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 7)
3.3 Secondary Education• The most prestigious stream (which has also the highest cut-off in terms of marksrequired in the grade 10 exams) is the science stream, the second is commerce,and the third is humanities (arts)… Upper secondary education is conducted inschools, or two-year junior colleges (some of which are also affiliated with degreeoffering colleges)… The curricula for upper secondary institutions are determinedby State or Central Boards of Secondary Education and students sit for exams atthe conclusion of grade 12 (Cheney, 2005, p. 8).• The rich and famous are typically enrolled in five-star English-medium schoolsaffiliated with the upscale CBSE (all India), CISCE (pan India), and IB examinationboards which offer globally accepted syllabuses and curriculums.• Next in the pecking order are English medium government aided schools affiliatedto State-level examination boards to which children of the middle grade are sent.The 28 State boards offer inferior infrastructure, sub-standard education and lessrigorous syllabuses and examination assessments.• And at the base of the education pyramid are shabby, poorly managedgovernment municipal schools which shove dubious quality language educationdown the children of the poor majority (Yasmeen, in Cheney et al. 2005, p. 10)
4.1 Technical and VocationalEducation• Vocational and technical education is also an option in higher secondaryschools. The aim of vocational education is to gain a broad knowledgeabout occupations, not training in specialized subjects… Only 10 percentof students are opting for the vocational stream, against a year 2000target of 25%. This is attributed to the lack of industry-school linkagesand the system hasn’t convinced students that this stream can preparethem for real jobs and careers (Cheney et al., p. 9).• Training is provided in 32 Engineering and 22 non-engineering tradesapproved by the National Council for Training in Vocational Trades topeople aged 15 to 25 years. 7,500 Industrial Training Institutes with anoverall capacity of 750,000 places have been established around thecountry. Periods of training vary from 1 to 2 years. The Industrial TrainingInstitutes are also used as Basic Training Centres for ApprenticeshipTraining Programmes… There are 1,400 polytechnics in India (Short,2008c, p. 8)
4.2 Technical and VocationalEducation• Facilities to impart skill development programmes forabout 3 million persons per annum exist in the countrywhereas the total labour force is about 400 million. Everyyear 7 to 8 million labour force enters the market. Majorityof it has not undergone skill development programmes(Working Group).• Today, less than 3% of rural youth and 6% of urban youthgo through any kind of TVET programmes. 6 Roughly 92%of India’s TVET workforce is employed in the informal orunorganised sector having dropped out of school onaverage at the end of Year 8 meaning it is difficult for theTVET system to capture young people and educate them(Short, 2008c p. 9).
4.3 Technical and VocationalEducation• India has one of the world’s most youthful population (53% ofpeople are aged below 25 years according to the 2006 Census) andthere are 310 million people aged 15 – 25 years but only 5% ofthem have any TVET qualifications… Over ninety percent of India’strades workforce is employed in the non-formal sector picking upskills and knowledge in the work place (Short, 2008c, p. 4).• Over 200 million students enroll for schools in Class I each year, butonly 20 million of these are able to finish Class XII i.e. 90 % of theschool students drop out at different stages. Only 2.5 to 3 millionvocational education and training places are available in thecountry. Out of these, very few places are for early schooldropouts. This signifies that a large number of school drop- out donot have the necessary education and skills to be productivelyemployed in the industry (idem).
4.4 Technical and VocationalEducation• Private sector delivery of TVET has increased markedly in recentyears, responding to both student demand and industry needs.Large companies like Tata, Reliance Industries and many of the ITfirms like Infosys and Wipro have developed inhouse trainingprogrammes. As well, a network of community outreachprogrammes have been established to offer slum and ruralcommunities training opportunities (Short, 2008c, p. 6).• Teachers in general are poorly paid in India with salaries rangingfrom NZD100 monthly in the private sector to NZD300 monthly inthe good senior secondary public schools. TVET teachers salarieshave been at the lower end of the public scale, and in many cases inrural polytechnics or technical institutes, the teachers have hadonly basic education themselves. Efforts are underway presently toimprove the quality of teacher training for all education sectors,including for TVET teachers (Short, 2008c, p. 9).
5.1 Tertiary Education• Higher education is provided by:– Universities– Deemed to be universities– Institution of National Importance– Open University– Industrial training institutes and polytechnics• India has about 350 universities… (National Knowledge Commission, 2006, p. 3)• There are a total of about 17,700 undergraduate colleges (idem, p. 6)• As of 2009, India has 20 central universities, 215 state universities, 100 deemeduniversities, 5 institutions established and functioning under the State Act, and 13institutes which are of national importance. Other institutions include 16000colleges… functioning under these universities and institutions (Wikipedia).• Instruction for almost 80 percent of students in undergraduate programs isdelivered by colleges which are affiliated with universities… Universities prescribethe courses and set the standards for the colleges, conducting the examinationsand awarding the degrees (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 21).
5.2 Tertiary Education• The University Grants Commission (UGC)… is responsible for thedevelopment of higher education, allocating and distributing grants fromthe Central Government to all eligible central, State and deemeduniversities based on an assessment of their needs (Cheney et al. 2005, p.18).• The UGC established an autonomous body, the National Accreditation andAssessment Council (NAAC), for carrying out periodic assessment andaccreditation of volunteering universities and colleges. NAAC’s process ofassessment and accreditation involves the preparation of a self-studyreport by the institution, validation of the report by peers, and finaldecision by the Council (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 18).• All universities are member of the Association of Indian Universities (AIU).The AIU has no executive powers but plays an important role as an agenceof dissemination of information and as an advisor to the government,UGC and the universities themselves (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 19).
5.3 Tertiary Education• At the pinnacle of the nation’s higher education establishment stand the sevenIndian Institutes of Technology (IITs), which have won fame around the world fortheir prowess in engineering, along with five institutes of management, the AllIndia Institute of Medical Sciences, and a handful of schools such as the TataInstitute of Fundamental Research, focused on the physical sciences, and the TataInstitute of Social Sciences. But all of these institutes are fairly specialized, lackinga university’s full panoply of research and teaching programs. And they are small.The seven IITs have a total of 30,000 students, about as many as a single stateuniversity campus in the United States…• Apart from the specialized institutes, there are some outstanding master’s- anddoctoral-level academic departments in India’s universities, and a few schoolshave fairly high standards—such as the Jawaharlal Nehru University in New Delhi,one of the few institutions sponsored directly by the central government…• The swollen middle tier of Indian higher education is full of universities andcolleges that provide a mediocre education at best (Altbach, 2006, p. 50).
5.4 Tertiary Education• While the students who graduate from secondary school numbersome 10 million annually, there are only places for 20% of them atthe tertiary level, and only a few percent of these are admitted tothe elite institutions (Short, 2008a, 2.10).• (O)nly ten percent of the age cohort is actually enrolled in highereducation… ten percent enrollment amounts to 9 million students,resulting in 2.5 million new college graduates a year (Cheney et al.,2005: p. 1).• Almost nine in ten students pursue bachelor’s degrees, one in tenpursue post-graduate degrees (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 17).• Estimates suggest that there are about 160,000 students from Indiastudying abroad. If their average expenditure on fees andmaintenance is US$ 25,000 per student per year, Indian studentsoverseas are spending US$ 4 billion (National KnowledgeCommission, 2006, p. 13).
5.5 Tertiary Education• Student enrollment has grown about five-percent annuallyover the past two decades (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 16).• The current Five-Year Plan has 5 educational objectiveswith one focusing on tertiary education: “increase thepercentage of each cohort going to higher education fromthe present 10% to 15% by the end of the plan.” (Short,2008a, 2.8)• The challenges that confront higher education in India areclear. It needs a massive expansion of opportunities forhigher education, to 1500 universities nationwide, thatwould enable India to attain a gross enrolment ratio of atleast 15 per cent by 2015 (Cheney et al., 2005, p. 16).
5.6 Tertiary Education• The nature of annual examinations at universities in Indiaoften stifles the teaching-learning process because theyreward selective and uncritical learning. There is an acuteneed to reform this examination system so that it testsunderstanding rather than memory. Analytical abilities andcreative thinking should be at a premium. Learning by roteshould be at a discount. Such reform would become morefeasible with decentralized examination and smalleruniversities. But assessment cannot and should not bebased on examinations alone (National KnowledgeCommission, 2006, p. 3).• It is estimated that about 63% of all tertiary education(including TVET) in India is now provided in the privatesector (Short, 2008a, p. 12).
5.7 Tertiary Education• … India’s higher education system, like its K-12 counterpart, is fraught with politicsand corruption and is considered to be highly inefficient in doing its job (Cheney etal. 2005, p. 19-20).• India’s current system of education is centralized and highly politicized, offeringrelatively limited access to higher education… Over the course of the 1970s and1980s, politicians acquired a vested interest in universities, seeing them as ways toexpand patronage. The result is that in many cases, universities are inextricablyintertwined with government officers who oversee and/or fund them. The hiringand promotion of teachers is also politicized, providing teachers with inconditionaljob security and no accountability in improving student achievement (Cheney etal., 2005, p. 15).• First, the appointments of Vice-Chancellors should be based on search processesand peer judgment alone. (National Knowledge Commission, 2006, p. 5).• Only about one-third of the nation’s 472,000 academics hold Ph.D.’s. It is taken forgranted that many professors will not show up for class; some supplement theirincomes by insisting that students take their private “coaching classes.” (Altbach,2006, p. 50).
5.8 Tertiary Education• Research weakness in the universities has been exacerbated by outdatedapproaches to Faculty career development. Once an academic isappointed a Professor, they can remain on tenure until age 65 with thepossibility of another 5 years without any performance assessment. Whilethere are many excellent Professors taking advantage of thegovernment’s new efforts to revitalise the universities, there are alsomany more that lack the motivation to do research, publish or provideappropriate support to graduate students to mould new researchers.(Short, 2008b, p. 4).• Average Monthly salary of Entry-level Faculty Positions (2005-2006)– India: $ 1,151 / Canada: $ 5,206• Average Monthly salary of Senior Faculty Positions (2005-2006)– India: $2,071 / Canada: $7,992• Ratio of Average Monthly Faculty salaries, in World Bank parity Dollars toGDP per capita (2005-2006):– India: 8.73 / Canada 2.24 (Altbach et al., in Jaschik, 2008)
6.1 Research and Innovation• Over the past 40 years, India has concentrated on developing excellencein five key research areas – space research, civil nuclear energy research,agricultural and water research, pharmaceutical research, and bio-technology. India has been a global leader in creating an endogenousspace industry developing satellites to provide telecommunicationsthroughout the country (Short, 2008b, p. 3).• China allocated 1.34 per cent of its GDP in 2005 on R&D (which,incidentally, is well below 3.6 per cent in South Korea) while expenditureon R&D in India was barely 0.61 per cent in the same year (Kumar, 2009).• China has 708 researchers per million population compared with 19 inIndia (idem).• Four percent of research expenditure is made through higher educationinstitutions (Agarwal, 2009).
6.2 Research and Innovation• The majority of India’s research is government funded (73%)providing both financial support and personnel, and takes placepresently within specialised autonomous Centres of Excellence…These Centres, however, are not firmly connected to theuniversities. One result of this is that the teaching and training ofyoung scientists and other researchers is not well integrated withactive research projects as these happen mainly in the Centres ofExcellence (Short, 2008b, p. 3).• It is fair to say that no Indian university today is, as an institution,research-intensive. (Altbach and Jayaram,2009).• Linkages between the specialised Centres, the universities andindustry have been forged using linear rather than tripartitepartnerships inhibiting the potential for existing and futureresearch results leading to patents and commercialised products(Short, 2008b, p. 4).
6.3 Research and Innovation• Despite, being widely recognized that teaching and research arecomplementary, there is growing dichotomy between them and the twosystems work in isolation in India. Merely four percent of researchexpenditure is made through higher education institutions in Indiacompared to 17 percent in the US and Germany and 23 percent in the UK.Even in China, more than 10 percent funds on research are spent throughthe universities… (Agarwal, 2009).• Interestingly the IITs themselves have not historically been strong centresfor research, focussing instead on teaching to produce world classtechnical graduates. With the IITs now recognising the important role theymust play in training more technical graduates up to doctoral level, theyare beginning to build bigger research programmes in engineering andother technical disciplines. Newer research disciplines such as micro-engineering and bio-medical sciences are being developed with supportfrom central government funding (Short, 2008b, p. 11).
6.4 Research and Innovation• The recommendation to change this situation, put forward both bythe NKC and the Prime Minister’s Science Advisory Council is thecreation of a new super public body, the National ScienceFoundation. NKC takes this one step further and suggests a bodywhich would also include the social sciences to build much strongerinter-disciplinary linkages. Thus the agency would be known as theNational Science and Social Science Foundation (Short, 2008b, p.13).• With a national illiteracy rate of 35% and a third of the just over 1billion population living below the international poverty line of 1 USdollar a day, India needs its research community to be contributingsolutions to these problems as well as engaging in world leadinginnovation in science and technology (Short, 2008b, p. 4).
7. Conclusions• Challenges– Growth of both population and participation– Drop-out rates– Confidence crisis in public institutions– Private Sector, NGO’s Initiatives, Internationalization– Economic Growth, Urbanization & Social Mobility– Linguistic Diversity & English– Curriculum and Pedagogy– Governance and Accountability– Educating Educators and Administrators– Balancing quality and excellence with social justice