Current scenario: India ought to attract students from SAARC countries towards broadbasing the Knowledge hub of South Asia
As Prime Minister Narendra Modi envisages information technology enabled quality education through the launch of Digital India, state governments and education practitioners have become increasingly interested in the potential of technology to address low learning levels in primary schools. In higher education also, India has the scope to become the Knowledge hub of South Asia. Looking at the flow of foreign students to India from the SAARC region, we see that there is room for greater engagement with most of our neighbouring countries. A miniscule portion of students from SAARC countries like Pakistan, Bangladesh and Sri Lanka made way to India for studies in 2011-12 , with the majority of them opting for countries like USA, UK, Australia and Canada.
Future trends: India’s education system needs to get online. The e-learning market in India is estimated to be around $3 billion and it is growing. The world of online learning is attractive not only because learning is no longer tethered to classroom and timetables, but also because software programmes can “seamlessly integrate social media, making it possible to create online communities that are course specific”.
Policy news: India, Australia ink MoU to deepen education ties. The MoU would intensify existing partnerships in higher education and research, including technical and professional education, schools, vocational education and training. The agreement, which will open up new and innovative areas of cooperation, was signed between HRD Minister Smriti Irani and the Australian Minister for Education and Training Christopher Pyne.