– Ramakrishna Rao
India is poised to become a global leader and super power as per the opinion and prediction of experts and analysts. At this critical juncture, Bharat has to put in its best possible efforts to become a global competitor in the field of education also. Without following and tracing the latest trends in global education arena, our nation cannot transform or metarnorphose into a global player maintaining world class standards which are very much essential for ensuring equity first, acceptance next and efficiency ultimate.
OUR SPECIALTY BY FOLLOWING TRENDS:
Leading countries with their specialties, priorities, nature, character and needs protected, have established institutions of global standards by mapping the latest trends in the world. Chinese concentration on vocational education, Japanese relaxed education with a big scope for learning in nature and outdoors, Australians problem based learning for real life experience, Finnish focus on quality education without believing in competition, grading, punitive measures but encouraging trust and equality, South Korean rigorous and fierceful competitive training by working for very long hours and Americans more flexible education with all varieties and experiments never came in the way of becoming global players with high quality.
OECD INCLUDES INDIA:
Organization for economic cooperation and development, in its latest edition on ‘Trends shaping education – 2016’ included India in its list of 35 countries, which is a crucial achievement. It provides direction for developed countries on major social, demographic, economic and technical trends affecting the future of education. Actually it covers all of education and intended for wide and broad spectrum encompassing policy makers, educators, teachers, parents and students. This inclusion of Bharat is a symbol of acceptance as a developed economy and can reach global standards in education.
“TECHNOLOGY DRIVEN GLOBAL COMPETITION:
Technology has hastened and strengthened the concept and process of global village and globalization. Of course, Bharat is magnanimous enough in declaring a total welfare concept of ‘Vasudhaiva Kutumbakam’ very long before. We should never forget that global trends have a telling effect on economy, polity, society and education etc. At every stage of development, the success of educational reforms is essential for sustainable growth to meet all regional national and global challenge.
GLOBAL TRENDS FOR RESCRIPTING FUTURE EDUCATION:
After going through different reports on global trends and tomorrow’s tool boxes by OECD for developed countries, world bank for developing economies, deliberations in global conferences and reading different articles, I list out few important and major trends leaving some in the order of preference thinking them to be minor. You can study further and can go into details.
- STUDENTS ARE TO BE CRITICAL CONSUMERS OF KNOWLEDGE AND CONTENT CREATORS:
Students are to be equipped with skills and competences to be critical knowledge consumers. That is possible when they follow know – why, know – how, know – who and know – that policy instead of simply
know – What attitude. They should develop analytical, critical, lateral, dialectical & reflective thinking skills along with being innovative, creative, experimental and active to become content creators or producers. Of course it requires a different approach to be followed by the teachers and educators.
- EXTENDED CLASSROOMS:
Children are attracted by other interests and influences outside the formal school. Flexible classrooms, learning anywhere, anytime learning and waiting for learning spaces is the new concept. Hence activity is to be expanded past classrooms by planning field studies, mobile education, teaching under the sky, community outreach programmes, more interactions, and real world experiences etc. Now classroom teaching is to be blended with more practical experience. Learning with nature and outdoor is increasingly relevant in childhood education.
- REDESIGNED LEARNING SPACES INTEGRATED WITH TECHNOLOGY:
21st Century classroom must create a medium to learn with all the technology around. We should never forget that technology helps teachers to deliver multisensory learning experiences. It definitely fosters innovation, communication and collaboration skills. Moreover, digital technologies are not simply to distribute knowledge but also a privileged tool for acquiring competencies and efficiency. Now that we should be accepting digital transformation trends in education. Recent World Bank report advises all the upcoming and developing economies to be tech-savvy with ICT and digital learning techniques.
- RISE IN INFORMAL AND DISTANT LEARNING:
Learning has become more individualistic and personal which are redefined. People are engaging in collaborative learning throughout lifespan. In this global knowledge economy citizens are trying to acquire new, specific and problem solving skills by lifelong training as part time learners. Hence there is big leap in distant learning programmes and mechanism.
- PERSONALIZED PROFESSIONAL DEVELOPMENT OF TEACHER:
In this student or learner centred environment teacher’s role is highly professional and different. First teacher should improve his quality of course by old model of attending seminars, workshops, periodical training and orientation camps. Because of knowledge revolution and explosion, teacher should never be outdated for which he should pursue next – generation learning models where he himself designs by ‘MICRO-CREDENTIALING’ that is acquiring skills every day for his professional development. We can be very sure that in future all learning models would be very much personalized and teacher must be ready for this paradigm shift.
- ARTIFICIAL INTELLIGENCE TAKING A PRIME PLACE:
Use of Artificial intelligence in higher education has definitely proved useful. IBM WATSON has created a virtual student advisory service (24 × 7) answering thousands of questions. For improving natural language progression also, it is becoming useful. It also provided intelligent tutoring system facilitating one-to-one tutoring and personalized learning. But we should be very careful to see that technology should not replace teachers but to complement. Only by close monitoring the natural or native intelligence can be nourished by the teacher. Artificial intelligence by creating, doctored Videos, Unsubstantiated inflammatory fake news etc. leading to catastrophe, confusion and division in the society. Sometimes I feel artificial intelligence is fuelling natural stupidity. Hence let us be very careful about the ill and negative effects.
- PARENTS AS PARTNERS:
The involvement of parents in the success of a student is undeniable fact. Recent trend in the school is to work ways to engage all families through supportive and personalized technologies and practices. School should concentrate on building home school connections for learning, for conducting surveys, for parent interviews and inviting them to join as valued contributors in the process of education.
- INSTANT ASSESSMENT:
Instant assessment tools allow teachers to evaluate pupil comprehension at the moment of learning in real time by immediately identifying and handling the gaps in knowledge. Teachers can then tailor their lessons to the actual needs of each student depending upon their ability and learning style. Instant assessment is to maximize students learning and performance.
- VOCATIONAL TRAINING:
Irrespective of people seeking specialized new professional higher education, vocational training has become more popular avenue or view of education in general. Skilling, training and vocationalisation for the country’s needs has become a necessity to make youth more employable.
- COMPETENCY BASED EDUCATION:
Competency based education declares that regardless of the length of time it takes for a student to complete a course, the student completes it based on what he knows already. The only factor in determining how and when the student completes is the mastery of knowledge in the subject.
- COLLECTIVE EDUCATION:
Collective, collaborative, group and participatory learning is being encouraged, because an individual will learn better when exposed to a group of learners with similar interests. This does not push a learner to back seat but keeps him active in the process. Here the role of the teacher is more catalytic and make students learn by application.
After observing different trends across the world, we feel that powerful drive is towards knowledge based society. The shift is in the direction of education to build students strengths and give them a format where their talents flourish and take a shape. This is all possible by having a quality teacher base supported and blended by advanced technology and ICT.
OUR APPROACH WITH MORE PRODUCTIVE POPULATION:
India as a global player, basing on global view and trends, should evolve a strategy keeping our requirements and national interest supreme. Entire world is driving itself to knowledge based society. Hence we should also match without ignoring the important of value based society. Necessary learning, teaching, technological, institutional, organizational and infrastructural changes are to be initiated. Of course high priority is to be for improving teachers’ quality and taking the benefits of technology to the entire educational spectrum.
India is all set to become the world’s youngest country by 2020 with 64% of it’s in the working age group. Because of this youth quake or youth explosion much care is to be taken to nourish it as dependent population is very much less than be productive age group. We are to observe the global trends and changes and equip our youth with necessary skills by bringing changes in the education system to match requirements and needs of our country and world.
(Author has Retired Principal and National President of Vidya Bharati)