Indian Education scene – 3 big changes in 2010

I had blogged earlier about the importance of the current “Deciding Decade” for India’s future. I’ve been looking into small ways that I can personally help in improving Education in India – been prototyping online virtual learning site with Moodle, etc.

Recently there have been 3 big education policy changes that could have far-reaching (+ve or -ve) impact going forward:
       1) Right to Education (RTE)
                  – I was initially sceptical that this is one more “right” that might not get fulfilled. But on closer look some of the provisions might have a huge impact – like 25% reservation of seats in ALL private schools, definition of standards for 1:30 teacher:student ratios and the massive sums allocated for states to implement RTE.
       2) Foreign Universities Bill
                  – This is another controversial bill that allows universities from around the world to setup campuses in India. Ex: Virginia tech setting up campus in Chennai.
       3) Common Syllabus (New in Tamil Nadu)
                  – While this is only in TN, there are rumblings about a common syllabus throughout India. This kind of change can make it easy for the country to develop a common infrastructure to train teachers, to provide online educational resources for children, etc.

While we cannot immediately tell whether these large changes will be positive or negative, one thing is clear. The education scene in India will be quite different in the coming decades.

Self made MBAs…

In this day & age, with wealth of knowledge & information freely available and fabulous communication tools, I wonder why we cannot be our own self-made Masters of Business Administration…

Granted a lot of the great business training info & knowledge comes from the top business school researchers (Harvard Business Review), etc. But given that such wisdom is shared freely (not free as in dollars but free as in publicly available for a small cost), can we not have groups of interested “students” gather together in small local (or online virtually local) groups and learn.

Do we still need the same University & Classroom settings of the 19th & 20th century to really learn and be Masters of Business Administration – from an “open university of the world”. Can we not go back to the ages where most learning happened out in the world and not within closed boundaries?

For that matter, this can be extended to other branches of learning… Arts, Literature, Media – and most of the so-called soft skills.

Though, I would still hesitate to go to a doctor who had only “studied” at an open university of the world. 😉