Technical Education in India – An Introduction
Technical education of any country constitutes as one of its main ingredients of
its development by creating skilled manpower, enhancing industrial productivity
and refining the quality of life of its populace. The ambit of technical education
encompasses programmes in engineering, management, technology, architecture, pharmacy,
town planning, hotel management and catering technology and applied arts and crafts.
Technical schools existed in Kolkata and Mumbai as early as 1825. It is due to the
foresight of the great visionary Pt. Madan Mohan Malaviya in 1917 that the first
degree classes in mechanical engineering, electrical engineering and metallurgy
started at University of Banaras. Prior to this all existing institutions granted
Technical Education in India - Policies
The national level statutory body overlooking the technical education in India is
the All India Council for Technical Education constituted by Ministry of Human Resources
Development under the Department of Higher Education. It was established as an advisory
body in 1945 and given a statutory status by an Act of Parliament in 1987. The basic
role of the AICTE is the proper planning for coordinated development of technical
and management education in India. As per its charter, AICTE accords accreditation
to graduate and post graduate programmes to Indian institutions under specific categories.
The AICTE currently has ten Board of Studies; each Board constitutes of fifteen
members and is headed by subject experts of eminence. These Boards advise the Council’s
Executive Committee on academic matters within the purview of their norms, standards,
model curricula, model facilities and structure of course and on all other areas
of academic development in their domain. The Board of Studies are:-
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- All India Board of Vocational Education.
- All India Board of Technical Education.
- All India Board of Under Graduate Studies in Engineering and Technology.
- All India Board of Post Graduate Education and Research in Engineering and Technology.
- All India Board of Management Studies.
- All India Board of Pharmaceutical Education
- All India Board of Hotel Management and Catering Technology.
- All India Board of Information Technology.
- All India Board of Town Planning.
- All India Board of Architecture.
As per the data of the AICTE, in the aftermath of the subprime mortgage crisis of
US in 2007-08 there has been remarkable and pronounced regression of major indices
in the technical education in India. Growth of institutions and intake in the under
graduate and post graduate courses are on the decline. A notable fact is that the
MBA and MCA courses are losing their sheen. Their institutional growth has been
negative in 2013-2014. Research orientation and growth is also very dismal, which
usually is very vital for mentoring and development.
Technical Education in India - Future
The reasons for the current state of affairs are mainly a) lack of initiative for
the up gradation of the curriculum and introducing uniform course content, exam
code and benchmarking at the national basis, b) Absence of industry – institution
interaction, c) Studies are more exam oriented and less knowledge oriented, d) Lack
of multi disciplinary courses, e) Role of teachers are confined to teaching alone,
f) Learning is more job oriented, g) Mindset are that of stakeholders instead of
policy makers, h) Lack of accepting and implementing changes.
Technical education in India needs to be clinically analysed and administered the
direction so as to permit the beneficiaries to realise their potentials and unlock
their value as a vital economic resource.