Technical Education in India

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 only diplomas.

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:-

  • 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.

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