Teaching Quality is poor in higher education institutions: Prof. Balagurusamy

Create: 10/21/2011 - 14:14

The students cannot be blamed for lack of employability because quality of teaching is poor in most of the higher education institutions said E. Balagurusamy, Member (Education), State Planning Commission, Tamil Nadu. He was addressing a one-day interface programme, ICTACT Bridge, organised by the ICT Academy of Tamil Nadu in association with NASSCOM to “focus on employability skills”. 

"Our findings show that majority of teachers in many engineering colleges are in mediocre category. When the teachers themselves are lacking employability skills, how can we expect their students to be employable? So, the correction has to start from the level of teachers. It is time to have a serious look at the quality of teachers employed in various engineering colleges and arts and science colleges as well,” he said.

Dr. Balagurusamy who had  had earlier served as Vice-Chancellor of Anna University, said that nearly 50 per cent of engineering colleges in Tamil Nadu came under “poor category” in teaching-learning process.

He also took a dig at the IT companies for focusing more on communication and soft skills and not giving more importance to technical skills among students when they recruit candidates through campus recruitment.“It is the IT sector that is destroying other sectors in India. Economic development cannot happen with IT field alone. The country needs ‘blue collar' jobs also along with “white collar” positions and we have to give priority to enhance the technical base of our students along with communication skill,” he said.

He emphasized that focus on students' employability must start from the school level itself, “Knowledge, skills and attitude are the three main pillars of education. Skill development initiatives are not meant for IT companies alone. Manufacturing sector also is pivotal for a nation's development,” he added that the “disconnect” between industry and education must be removed by all means.

[Source: The Hindu]

Comments

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Very true. Cofidence building in students is very very important. You do require well qualified confident teachers.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

It's quite fashionable to bemourn deterioration of standards in education at all levels. It is human to believe that during one's own time, things were so much better and so superior than some years later. Some of the comments by educationists and businessmen and women aired in recent times, based on "findings" or just "experience" need therefore to be read with respect and ignored with empathy.
Having said that, there is no doubt that there should be a constant endeavour to upgrade the quality of our education both in terms of student inputs and faculty contribution towards superior output. I sincerely wish equal attention is paid to correcting inadequacies and improve capacity building with appropriate measures most of which have already been discussed from time to time.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

True, the present generation students lack practical skills. Entrance coachings made them so. The curriculum too does not emphasise on practicals. Western universities have practicals along with the theory. We too need drastic changes with technological dvelopments.

Dear Sir,
your views strongly echo the views of majority of teachers who find their students' lack of interest in core curriculam. We are producing a large pool of unemployable graduates and post graduates who in turn become very restive and anti-social.The remedy is to put all these skills training to final semester and allow students to concentrate in studies.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Sir,
This comment on teachers surprises me. In India teachers has no academic freedom. They are considered only as hired labors. Then how can u blame teachers for the poor quality of education? The entire system has to be deconstructed. Then only a new uplift in quality can be expected. Ur concept on education itself is so obsolete and outdated. Academics r expected to dwell up on the newer demands of education.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

In my opinion communication skills and soft skills are like icing on a cake of core skills. If we have a product, those skills make it known to everyone and market it. But do we have a product? Majority of the colleges camouflage the deficiency in imparting core skills in product development and problem solving in the name of communication and soft skills.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

The problem is that most of the teachers in Private Colleges are underpaid. Appointments are based on either Caste or on recommendation or on Political considerations. Also in CSIR NET Exams which is the qualification to become a lecturer the cut off mark for some categories is very low. With the result India will be full of mediocre and less than mediocre faculty members in the next ten years.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

The problem lies not only with the teachers in higher education but right at the school level. I tried to focus all the time through this column upon the training needs of teachers of all sorts and at all levels. We simply can not blame the teachers all the times. -- Dr. S. M. Kulkarni

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

He said correct thing but he is not qualified for this talk. had he done something as V.C to check this level of inepthood among teachers. I say with certainnty that he could not do anything. Now he has acquired the Rishi status and got license to pass such remarks. Member state planning commision can not be appointed merely on qualification, it requires buttering and flattery. Thus he is like infamous Kalnemu Demon who was behaving like Muni but he was infact a demon.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Dr. Balaguru has well reiterated the obvious !
Nothing new in his hard talk.
Point is that, will he devote his time or energy to provide some corrective action ?
I am for initiating an action.
Will Balaguru come up with a workshop in his role as Member of State Planning Commission, to find out some useful approach to help solve the problem of employability ?
If need be I can and ready to contribute from my experience.

Dr. Sheel

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Dr. Balagurusamy's finding is exactly correct. To reduce this crisis, it is essential to introduce some periodic trainings and updations to the teachers and also insist all teachers to attend these things regularly. Another solution is to provide good pay packages to teachers so that the toppers or cream category will opt teaching as a profession

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Dear Sirs,
While agreeing with the observation made by Prof.Guruswamy and similar educators, I also feel that the main blame goes to students as well. It is nearly impossible to educate/transfer engineering type of knowledge to less interested students. The fact is we have several engg.colleges and polys to impart Engg. education. Most of these so called Engg.colleges require only the quantity and not the quality since the first one is beneficial to them. The days are gone when we had Thyagaraja, PSG, Viswswarayya type of visionaries. Such is the case, these institutions could recruit/can afford to recruit only such type of teachers. I am sure that will not be case in IITs, NITs, Guindy Engg. College etc ( in mojority cases). I am very careful, while recruiting for core jobs, about the institutions he/she has studied. I am sure such will be case with many industries in core field.

I remember the case of one of the students from a private Engg.college ( who approached us for a job). I wished to interview this guy since he scored 4/100 in our internal test . He plotted a nice exponential curve when he was finally requested to plot Y= mx+C. I am sure he would have got into Engg. after clearing +2 examination.

Regarding IT jobs, only 2 to 3 % personal in these organizations decide the logic part of the problem and the rest is only implementing, where they need some workers ( just as architects/engineers decide and masons build it). One does not require an Engg.graduate to execute many IT problems but persons with logical thoughts of +2 level and good communication skills. Every body knows that the Low class jobs( petrol pump operators/store keeper boys etc) in USA/Europe costs not less than USD 2000/- ( Rs.1 lakh). These IT companies again are smart enough to recruit meritorious Engg.students from good institutions and spoil their carrier, by attracting with high end initial salaries. Who is bothered about the future of the country as well the candidate?. I remember one story when i was a boy and living in my village. We were cautioned by elders that the beggars will come to our village and catch us by attracting us with chocolates and put us in their sacks and carry away etc. These IT companies offer attractive salary and trap these youngsters, not bothered about their future career growth. These guys will become useless for any core job later after 5 years. IT companies are getting payed in USD and a small portion is given as mentioned earlier ( Employment of a similar fresh person in US/Europe costs about USD 5000 and above).

We can only voice but can not implement practically.

N.Achuthan
achuthan@presevi.in

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Prof. E. Balagurusamy has rightly pointed out that the prosperity of any nation depends upon not only on IT related skills but also technical skills. The higher education system in India has become puerile because of politico-socio-economic factors. We can expect strong higher education system when school education system is built on sound teacher education system.Policy makers are well aware that the teacher is a kingpin in the process of socio-economic development.Till today , India is not realizing that the teacher education and training university is the need of the hour to meet the teacher-power requirements of the education system.
Prof.Gara Latchanna,Professor of Education,Department of Education,Andhra University,Visakhapatnam

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

It is essential in India that all tom- dic -harry are empowered to talk on any issue whether they are qualified for that position or not. There are more than 5000 Vcs who are either serving or retired and we know how are they appointed. Based on known practice it is unjust or their part to comments on an issue which they can not analyse in deep. Prof. Bala please have more knowledge about international standard and pl.dont feel higher education is no more than writing C programming book

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

What has he done during his tenure as VC to change this?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

Prof. Balagurusamy forgot to mention fraudulent engineering education IGNORING ATTEMPTS/BACKPAPERS DURING B.E.. Engineering degree alone is asked every engg jobs like engg. college lecturers, engineers in the engg. deptts.

Unfortunately, in india, till date, no effort have been made to examine number of backpapers/attempts during B.E. On the other hand, in medical education, attempts are marked on every marksheet and on completion of MBBS, attempt certificate is awarded which is integral part of MBBS. So every doctor have to submit attempt certificate with his MBBS degree in PrePG exam/jobs.

AICTE governing 10,000 engg colleges is totally silent over number of attempts during B.E. thus vitiating engg education environment in india.

Submitted by L.R.Rana on

Sir, you as planner at fault. No appropriate exercise is going on for improvment. Initially western models were hired for Education Departments now same are being purchased for Technical Education Departments, without consideration whether they fit for India or not?

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

I think the whole curriculum needs a fresh review, apart from " the connect" issue. Due to this burden, new talent and ideas never get nurtured at the beginning itself. IT sector is not alone responsible for that.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

The reason is very evident. Whereas school teachers are trained to teach in their B. Ed. courses, faculty in higher education is not trained to teach. They are hired based on their Ph. D. qualification. Also, whereas research work and published papers count towards advancement, teaching ability is not assessed at all. For improvement in teaching quality at colleges and universities, faculty must be trained in teaching skills and obtain certification by passing a rigorous examination. Also, there must be a system of regular evaluation of teaching performance by 360 degree assessment of teaching skills by all stakeholders every semester, especially students, and these assessments must be considered before a lecturer (Assistant Professor) is promoted to Associate Professor or full Professor.

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

A VERY GOOD AND TIMELY ARTICLE FROM FROM FORMER VC- PROF.BALAGURUSAMY.IT IS FRANK AND FORTHRIGHT. THE ENGINEERING COLLEGES AND B- SCHOOLS MUST AWAKEN TO THIS REALITY THAT ONLY 15% OF ENGINEERING AND MANAGEMENT GRADUATES ARE EMPLOYABLE SINCE THEY LACK APPLICATION AND LIFE SKILLS .CONGRATLATIONS

Submitted by Anonymous (not verified) on

The division of teachers in to different categories on the basis of salary/grant in aid in the state of orissa has adversely affected the moral of teaching community. The unjust and unequal treatment of the government among the equally qualified teachers has further worsen the situation. it is perhaps a unique character of higher education in the country.

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