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Criticism of Indian Education System (Education in India)

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Criticism of Indian Education System (Education in India)
« on: April 18, 2008, 12:22:07 AM »
:: Criticism of Indian Education System (Education in India)

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Modern education in India is often criticized for being based on rote learning. Emphasis is laid on passing examinations with high percentage. Very few institutes give importance to developing personality and creativity among students. Recently, the country has seen a rise in instances of student suicides due to low marks and failures, especially in metropolitan cities, even though such cases are very rare.

The presence of a number of education boards (SSLC, ICSE, CBSE, IB,IGCSE ) leads to non-uniformity. ICSE and CBSE boards, are sometimes favorably considered at the time of admission, although it cannot be said with certainty that their syllabuses are harder. A large number of SSLC (State board) students therefore complain that their ICSE and CBSE counterparts are given an advantage during college admissions, which are extremely competitive and sought for. Most colleges though account for these differences during admissions. The syllabi prescribed by the various boards are accused of being archaic and some textbooks (mostly ones written for the SSC) contain many errors.

The boards are recently trying to improve quality of education by increasing percentage of practical and project marks. However, critics say even this is memorized by students (or even plagiarized). This is attributed to pressure from parents who are eager to see high scores more than overall development.

Many people also criticize the caste, language and religion-based reservations in education system. Many allege that very few of the weaker castes get the benefit of reservations and that forged caste certificates abound. Educational institutions also can seek religious minority (non-Hindu) or linguistic minority status. In such institutions, 50% of the seats are reserved for students belonging to a particular religion or having particular mother-tongue(s). For example, many colleges run by the Jesuits and Salesians have 50% seats reserved for Roman Catholics. In case of languages, an institution can declare itself linguistic minority only in states in which the language is not official language. For example, an engineering college can declare itself as linguistic-minority (Hindi) institution in the state of Maharashtra (where official state language is Marathi), but not in Madhya Pradesh or Uttar Pradesh (where the official state language is Hindi). These reservations are said to be a cause of heartbreak among many. Many students with poor marks manage to get admissions, while meritorious students are left out. Critics say that such reservations may eventually create rifts in the society.

The general corruption prevalent in India is also an issue in the Education system. Engineering, medical and other lucrative seats are sometimes sold for high prices and ridden with nepotism and power-play.

Student politics is also a major issue, as many institutions are run by politicians.

Ragging is a major problem in colleges, many students die due to ragging every year. Some state governments have made ragging a criminal offense.

Expenditure on education is also an issue which comes under the scanner. According to the Kothari commission led by Dr Vijay Kothari in 1966, expenditure on education has to be minimum 6% of the GDP. Whereas in 2004 expenditure on education stood at 3.52% of the GDP and in the eleventh plan it is estimated to be around 4%. The "sarva shikshan abhyan" has to receive sufficient funds from the government to impart quality education.