Wednesday, December 14, 2011

Tertiary Education

Tertiary education in New Zealand is often the final step for many young Kiwis before they launch themselves into a career in the real world. The courses of study which are undertaken at tertiary education providers are often extremely specified, giving students specific skills and knowledge bases to go out and successfully perform in a particular industry.
Teritary education can be undertaken from several different kinds of institutes, namely universities and polytechnics.
Universities in New Zealand offer courses which are normally theoretically based programmes. This means the base of your study will be listening, learning and researching. Many degrees, such as medical degrees have significant practical or "working" aspects to them, however more general degrees such as a Bachelor of Arts or Bachelor of Commerce are almost wholly book-based.
Study at a NZ polytech on the other hand, often offers courses which stress employment-related, practical skills. This means the course involves undertaking the same work tasks as those performed in the real world, not just learning about them. From degrees in Exercise and Sports Science to Hairdressing, polytechnic courses have a much larger slant towards practical application of skill than many university degrees.
The University Option:
University study in New Zealand is strongly grounded in research and academia, giving students an expansive background in self-directed investigative learning.
Most undergraduate degrees at university are not specific to one particular career, making university a good option for those who are not entirely sure of the path they want to go down. In first year students have the ability to explore several different subject avenues in order to find out where their interests lie. Throughout further years students need to specify their study to a particular department, but still have the luxury of taking additional unrelated papers on the side to complete their study requirements.
While there are many degrees which will teach students the specific skills they need to perform a particular job, such as a Bachelor of Dental Surgery, most undergraduate courses at university require postgraduate study to gain the employment-related nous needed to perform in a profession without actual working experience. This is the case for university degrees such as sciences and arts or social sciences.
Upon graduating with a university degree students will have an extremely sound knowledge of a particular field of work, and with some practical work experience (such as internships), will be able to slot into the working world in a junior professional position. University graduates will however, will often still spend the first year or longer of their working career learning many job-specific skills that their degree did not cover.
The Polytechnic Option:
Many prospective students think that polytechnic education only caters for mechanics and the hospitality industry. While that may have once been the case, polytechnic study is increasingly offering more and more courses similar to those offered at universities, but with a more practical element to them. From media to business, landscape design to interior design, software engineering to journalism, the education programmes offered by polytechnics generally offer a more applied form of education.
Socially, university education is still considered to be a higher level of education than polytechnic education. This stigma is increasingly been proven a myth, with practical skills, or a combination of practical and academic skills, far overriding pure academic skills in the workforce.
Polytechnics often have a more direct relationship with industry, and are more actively involved in placing students with work experience and in actual jobs than universities. For university students, post-study experience and employment largely rests on the motivation to succeed by the individual student.
Which to Choose?
By completing an undergraduate degree at university you can show employers that you have a good mind and you know how to learn, as it develops good communication skills and enables you to think critically. Conversely, a qualification from a polytechnic offers specific skills and knowledge which can be directly applied to the workforce.
Unless you intend to become a medical doctor, lawyer or academic, in which case university is the only option, it is best to choose your tertiary education based on what the specific course or degree you are interested in offers - and where the skills that degree teaches you will lead you.
Looking for more information about universities or polytechnics in New Zealand? Check out the directory.

Education in New Zealand

Education in New Zealand follows the three-tier model which includes primary schools, followed by secondary schools (high schools) and tertiary education at universities and/or polytechs.
The Programme for International Student Assessment ranks New Zealand's education as the 7th best in the world.[1] The Education Index, published with the UN's Human Development Index in 2008, based on data from 2006, lists New Zealand as 0.993, amongst the highest in the world, tied for first with Denmark, Finland and Australia.[2]
Education is free and compulsory between the ages of 6 and 16, although in very special cases an exemption can be gained after applying to the MOE. These may be granted to students who are close to 16, have been experiencing some ongoing difficulty at school and have a job already lined up. Families wishing to home educate their children can apply for exemption. To get an exemption from enrollment at a registered school, they must satisfy the Secretary of Education that their child will be taught "as regularly and as well as in a registered school".[3]
Children almost always start school on their 5th birthday, or the first School Day after it. Post-compulsory education is regulated within the New Zealand National Qualifications Framework, a unified system of national qualifications in schools, vocational education and training.
The academic year in New Zealand varies between institutions, but generally runs from late January until mid-December for primary and secondary schools and polytechnics, and from late February until mid-November for universities.

Free Primary and Secondary education tuition is a right for all New Zealand children from age 5 until the end of the calendar year following the student's 19th birthday, and is compulsory for students between the ages of 6 and 16 (15 with parental and school permission). A recent proposal by the New Zealand Government, called Schools Plus, would see students required to remain in some form of education until age 18.[4] Disabled students with special educational needs can stay until the end of the calendar year they turn 21.
While state funded tuition is free, students must still pay for course materials and related costs. Also, almost all schools charge a tax deductible "donation" that most parents pay. Private or independent schools charge tuition fees while state integrated schools, which are often church funded, may charge an additional levy for the school buildings. International students with valid student visas can also be enrolled in state funded schools provided they pay the appropriate international student tuition fees. A number of schools use international student fees to supplement their state funding.
Most students start when they turn 5, and remain in school for the full 13 years. Students living more than 5 kilometres walking distance from the nearest school (or public transport to school) may be exempted from attending school but may be required to enrol in a correspondence school. Many schools contract public transport operators to provide school buses that deliver students to the school gate in the morning and home again at the end of the school day.
While there is overlap in some schools, primary school ends at Year 8 and secondary school at Year 13. The last two years of primary school are frequently taken at a separate intermediate school instead of at a primary school, leaving 'contributing' primary schools to end at Year 6. Some areas though have 'full' primary schools which go to year 8. Outside of the following categories, many private schools, state area schools and state integrated schools take students from Years 0 to 13, or Years 7 to 13.
There are three types of school: state, private (or registered or independent) and state integrated schools. State and state integrated schools are government funded. Private schools receive about 25% of their funding from the government,[5] and rely on tuition fees for the rest. State integrated schools are former private schools which are now "integrated" into the state system under the Private Schools Conditional Integration Act 1975[6] "on a basis which will preserve and safeguard the special character of the education provided by them". According to Independent Schools New Zealand, an advocacy group for private schools, about 86% of all school-aged children attend state schools, 10% attend state integrated schools and 4% attend private schools.[5] In addition, parents may home school their own children if they can prove that their child will be "...taught at least as regularly and as well as in a registered school...",[7] and are given an annual grant[7] to help with costs, including services from The Correspondence School. The percentage of children home schooled is well under 2% even in the Nelson region, the area where it is most popular,[8] but there are many local and national support groups.

Between 2000 and 2007 most New Zealand schools moved towards designating school class levels based on the years of schooling of the student cohort. The introduction of NCEA, computerised enrolment and school roll return guideline[11] changes, amongst others, have been drivers for this change. Before this, a system of Forms, Standards and Juniors or Primers was used.[12] Although those older terms are no longer used for most school administration they still appear in education legislation, at some (mainly independent) schools, and in talk with older generations, who often prefer to use the terms they are more familiar with. However, one should ask today's students "Which year are you in?" rather than "Which form are you in?", as many will confuse 'form' with form class.
There are 13 academic year levels, numbered 1 through to 13. Students turning five enter at Year 1 if they begin school at the beginning of the school year or before the cut-off date (31 March in legislation, later for most schools). Students who turn five late in the year might stay in Year 1 for the next school year depending on their academic progress. The Ministry of Education draws a distinction between academic and funding year levels, the latter being based on when a student first starts school – students first starting school after July, so do not appear on the July roll returns, so are classified as being in Funding Year 0 that year, so they are recorded as being in Year 1 on the next year's roll returns. Students in Years 7 and 8 may attend an Intermediate School which provides a transition from primary schooling to secondary schooling. The last year of primary schooling is Year 8, and students must vacate Year 8 by the end of the school year after their 14th birthday (although most students are 12–13 when they transition to secondary school). The first year of secondary education is Year 9. The Ministry of Education requires that a student's funding year and academic year are aligned in years 7, 8, and 9, irrespective of when they first started school. Students who do not achieve sufficient credits in NCEA may or may not repeat Year 11, 12 or 13, while attempting to attain credits not achieved in NCEA – repeating a year often depends on what credit have been attained and what NCEA levels the majority of study is at. Year 13 is seen as the traditional end of secondary school, with an extra funding year
Under the old system of Forms, Standards and Juniors, there were two Junior years followed by four Standard years in primary school, followed by seven Forms. Forms 1 and 2 were in intermediate school and the remaining five were in secondary school.

For state schools, the Education Amendment Act 2000 puts in place a new "system for determining enrolment of students in circumstances where a school has reached its roll capacity and needs to avoid overcrowding." Schools which operate enrolment schemes have a geographically defined "home zone". Residence in this zone, or in the school's boarding house, if it has one, gives right of entry to the School. Students who live outside the school's home zone can be admitted, if there are places available, in the following order of priority: special programmes; siblings of currently enrolled students; siblings of past students; children of board employees and staff; all other students. If there are more applications than available places then selection must be through a randomly-drawn ballot. The system is complicated by some state schools having boarding facilities for students living beyond the school's zone. Typically these students live in isolated farming regions in New Zealand, or their parents may live or work partly overseas. Many secondary schools offer limited scholarships to their boarding establishment to attract talented students, such as rugby players from Fiji, in imitation of private school practice.
Critics have suggested that the system is fundamentally unfair as it restricts the choice for parents to choose schools and schools to choose their students although it does allow all students living in the community to have entry, as of right, regardless of their academic or social profile. In addition, there is evidence that property values surrounding some more desirable schools become inflated, thus restricting the ability of lower socio-economic groups to purchase a house in the zone, though this is off set by the fact that students are accepted from rental accommodation or from homes where they are boarding with a bona fide relative or friend living in the zone.

Diplomas in Design

The world of design is an exciting and visually inspiring place but it is not just limited to traditional pen-to-paper artwork or simple logo design.
There are a large number of variations of design diploma that are readily available to study in New Zealand institutions.

Diplomas in Design available in New Zealand include:

  • Computer Graphic Design
  • Animation and Digital Video
  • Interactive Design
  • Digital Media

Diploma in Computer Graphic Design

Diplomas in Computer Graphic Design will help you to develop and combine your creative skills with technological skills in order to communicate ideas and information in a way that is visually appealing while efficiently promoting your message.
These design courses also give you skills and knowledge in print design theory so that you can competently create a wide range of printed promotional and informative materials at a commercial level.

Diploma in Animation and Digital Video

You only have to look at what's screening at your local cinema to see that 3D animation is becoming more and more popular and more and more advanced. If this is something that inspires you to flex your creative mind, a diploma in animation and digital video will give you the skills and recognition you need to start your career in digital animation.
Creative design skills combine with storytelling and audio to create stunning animations and 3D imagery.

Diploma in Interactive Design

The interactive design industry is thriving throughout the world with more and more people and businesses becoming regular users of the internet.
Diplomas in Interactive Design provide you with skills to create a wide variety of interactive digital media including web design and interactive advertising design as well as the popular fields of interactive game design and development.

Diploma in Digital Media

Digital media provides the optimal outlet for a desire to combine creative talent with skills in digital technology. If you were to take on a Diploma in Digital Media, you can expect to use digital still imagery and video cameras and computers to create a range of original art combining both traditional and digital media.
This diploma will advances your skills in digital illustration techniques as well as the ability to create images and pages suitable for web publication. Skills learnt in this diploma will benefit your career in print, motion graphics or interactive media.

To find an educational organisation that provides the diplomas listed here and more, visit the industry training organisations category in the directory.

NZ Student Loans

Furthering your education with tertiary study is a no-brainer for many New Zealanders, and while our course fees are generally affordable in comparison with the rest of the world, most students will have to take out a student loan to pay for some or all of their study costs.
Being burdened with a large loan is a huge commitment before you’ve even entered the professional workforce, and trying to understand all the ins and outs of your loan structure can be intimidating – especially if you’re not an accounting major.
Getting to grips with the basics of your student loan will help you make an informed decision when it comes to deciding what courses you’ll take, and how much of your expenses you’ll add to your overall loan total. It might also make you think twice before claiming extra money for ‘course related costs’ so you can spend your first week of orientation spending large at the uni bar.
For further financial information from other parties, there are a number of businesses offering financial advice that you can talk to.
What is a student loan?
Basically, a student loan can help to finance your study. In New Zealand it's made up of three parts: compulsory fees, course-related costs and living costs, and while it may seem like free money if you’re fresh out of high school, you will ultimately have to pay it back.
When you apply for a loan, you choose the parts you want to apply for, depending on what you need and qualify for. Remember that you should only borrow what you need. You’ll be signing a contract with the Government agreeing that you’ll pay back your student loan once you start earning money
Compulsory fees
The compulsory fees part of your student loan allows you to borrow the total amount of fees for your course, including the compulsory Student Association fees that are charged by your education provider.
Whether you already have some money saved for your education, or you’re starting with a blank slate and empty savings account, you can borrow either all or part of your compulsory fees. If you decide to pay part of your fees the amount you've paid will be deducted from the amount you can borrow. That means that if your fees for the year are $6000 and you’ve saved enough to pay $2000 towards them, you will be able to borrow $4000 for compulsory fees for your student loan.
Your compulsory fees are paid directly to your education provider, so you must be fully enrolled in your course for any part of your student loan to be paid.
Course related costs
If you do have genuine course related costs you need assistance with, such as stationery, books, computer equipment, travel, you can borrow up to $1000 a year for course-related costs. You don't have to claim all your costs at once, but you will need to provide evidence of your costs like a quote or receipt.
Course-related costs are paid directly to your bank account, with the earliest payment being 14 days before your course starts. You can apply for your course related costs online.
Living costs
The living costs part of your student loan can help with your weekly expenses if you don't qualify for a Student Allowance or don't qualify for the full amount of the Student Allowance.
You can borrow up to $163.38 each week for living costs while you're studying, but if you’re also working and don’t need to borrow that full amount it’s a good idea to reduce your living costs payments. Living costs payments are direct credited to your bank account, and your living costs payments start in the second week of your course (you are paid one week in arrears).
How do I get one?
To receive a student loan you need to be a New Zealand citizen, permanent resident or refugee, and you have to be enrolled in a Tertiary Education Commission approved course. You’ll need to be studying full time, or part time if your course goes for 32 weeks or longer.
You’ll need to take out a new loan every time you start a new course, but each new loan will be tacked on to your total to keep things relatively simple.
To get your student loan you’ll apply through Ministry of Social Development agent Studylink. Their job is to ensure that students get the finance and support they need so they can complete their study, and most tertiary campuses have a Studylink office on site. If you have any questions about your loan or the loan process, they should be your first port of call in getting things sorted.
How do I pay off my student loan?
Paying back your student loan is as simple as choosing the correct tax code once you start working, although you can also make voluntary repayments on top of your compulsory payments if you’d like to pay off your loan more quickly.
If you earn more than the repayment threshold of $19,084 – around $367 a week – you’ll be required to start making compulsory payments, which are deducted from your pay as you earn. While your student loan will accrue interest, this interest is wiped each year for student loan borrowers working in New Zealand. If you live outside of New Zealand the interest rate is 6.6 percent.
You’ll receive regular statements from Inland Revenue Department so you know the balance of your loan and how much you have left to pay back each year. You can also check the balance of your student loan online at
For more information about loans check out the loan providers in the directory.

Monday, August 6, 2007

Education in India

India has been a major seat of learning for thousands of years. While some of the country's universities (BITS, ISB, IITs, IIITs, NITs, IISc, TIFR, ISI, IIMs, AIIMS) are among the world's well-renowned, it is also dealing with challenges in its primary education and strives to reach 100% literacy. Universal Compulsory Primary Education, with its challenges of keeping poor children in school and maintaining quality of education in rural areas, has been difficult to achieve (Kerala is the only Indian state to reach this goal so far). All levels of education, from primary to higher education, are overseen by Department of Higher Education (India) and Department of School Education and Literacy, and heavily subsidized by the Indian government, though there is a move to make higher education partially self-financing. Indian Government is considering to allow 100% foreign direct investment in Higher Education.


Indian Education System comprises stages called Nursery,Primary,Secondary,Higher Secondary,Graduation & Post Graduation. Some students go in different stream after Secondary for 3 Years Technical education called Polytechnics

Indian Education System comprises stages called Nursery,Primary,Secondary,Higher Secondary,Graduation & Post Graduation. Some students go in different stream after Secondary for 3 Years Technical education called Polytechnics

The system is divided into preprimary, primary, middle, secondary (or high school), and higher levels. Preprimary is usually composed of Lower Kindergarten and Higher Kindergarten, where primary reading and writing skills are developed. Primary school includes children of ages six to eleven, organized into classes one through five. Secondary school pupils aged eleven through fifteen are organized into classes six through ten, and higher secondary school students ages sixteen through seventeen are enrolled in classes Eleven through twelve. In some places there is a concept called Middle schools for classes between six to eight. In such cases classes nine to twelve are classified under high school category. Higher Education in India provides an opportunity to specialize in a field and includes technical schools (such as the Indian Institutes of Technology), colleges, and universities.

In India, the main types of schools are those controlled by:

Preprimary Education

In India, kindergarten is divided into two stages- lower kindergarten (LKG) and upper kindergarten (UKG). Typically, an LKG class would comprise children 3 to 4 years of age, and the UKG class would comprise children 4 to 5 years of age. After finishing upper kindergarten, a child enters Class 1 (or, Standard 1) of primary school. Often kindergarten is an integral part of regular schools. In most cases the kindergarten is run as a private school. Younger Children are also put into a special Toddler/Nursery group at the age of 2–2½. It is run as part of the kindergarten. There are some organized players with standardized curriculums such as the Shemrock Preschools

Elementary Education

Primary school in the remote Kanji village of the Kargil district.

Primary school in the remote Kanji village of the Kargil district.

During the eighth five-year plan, the target of "universalizing" elementary education was divided into three broad parameters: Universal Access, Universal Retention and Universal Achievement i.e., making education accessible to children, making sure that they continue education and finally, achieving goals. As a result of education programs, by the end of 2000, 94% of India's rural population had primary schools within one km and 84% had upper primary schools within 3 km. Special efforts were made to enroll SC/ST and girls. The enrollment in primary and upper-primary schools has gone up considerably since the first five-year plan. So has the number of primary and upper-primary schools. In 1950-51, only 3.1 million students had enrolled for primary education. In 1997-98, this figure was 39.5 million. The number of primary and upper-primary schools was 0.223 million in 1950-51. This figure was 0.775 million in 1996-97.

In 2002/2003, an estimated 82% of children in the age group of 6-14 were enrolled in school. The Government of India aims to increase this to 100% by the end of the decade. To achieve this the Government launched Sarva Shiksha Abhiyan.

The strategies adopted by the Government to check drop-out rate are:

Non-graduation market

Each major Indian city and town has plenty of government-funded high schools catering to the working classes, who form the majority of the population. Government high schools are sometimes English medium schools (this is often true in large cities) but students are usually taught in the regional language. These institutions are heavily subsidised. Study materials (such as textbooks, notebooks and stationary) are sometime but not always subsidised. Government schools follow the state curriculum. There are also a number of private schools providing secondary education. These schools usually either follow the national curriculum or provide an international qualification. Many top secondary schools offer an alternative international qualification, such as the IB program or A Levels.

Higher Education

Higher education in India has evolved in distinct and divergent streams with each stream monitored by an apex body, indirectly controlled by the Ministry of Human Resource Development. and funded by the state governments. However, there are 18 important universities called Central Universities, which are maintained by the Union Government. The increased funding of the central universities give them an advantage over state competitors.

The private sector is strong in Indian higher education. The Indian Institutes of Technology were placed 50th in the world and 2nd in the field of Engineering (next only to MIT) by Times Higher World University Rankings although they did not appear in the Shanghai Jiao Tong University Academic Ranking of World Universities. The National Law School of India University is highly regarded, with some of its students being awarded Rhodes Scholarships to Oxford University, and the All India Institute of Medical Sciences is consistently rated the top medical school in the country. Indian School of Business, Hyderabad and the Indian Institutes of Management (IIMs) are the top management institutes in India.


Accreditation for universities in India are required by law unless it was created through an act of Parliament. Without accreditation, the government notes "these fake institutions have no legal entity to call themselves as University/Vishwvidyalaya and to award ‘degree’ which are not treated as valid for academic/employment purposes." The University Grants Commission Act 1956 explains,

"the right of conferring or granting degrees shall be exercised only by a University established or incorporated by or under a Central Act carlo bon tempo, or a State Act, or an Institution deemed to be University or an institution specially empowered by an Act of the Parliament to confer or grant degrees. Thus, any institution which has not been created by an enactment of Parliament or a State Legislature or has not been granted the status of a Deemed to be University, is not entitled to award a degree."

Accreditation for higher learning is overseen by autonomous institutions established by the University Grants Commission:

Graduation market

This is a chart of graduation market of India as per Census 2001.

Educational level Holders
Total 502,994,684
Unclassified 97,756
Non-technical diploma or certificate not equal to degree 386,146
Technical diploma or certificate not equal to degree 3,666,680
Higher Secondary, Intermediate, Pre-university or Senior Secondary 37,816,215
Matriculation or Secondary 79,229,721

Degree Holders
Total 37,670,147
Post-graduate degree other than technical degree 6,949,707
Graduate degree other than technical degree 25,666,044
Engineering and technology 2,588,405
Teaching 1,547,671
Medicine 768,964
Agriculture and dairying 100,126
Veterinary 99,999
Other 22,588


India has a long history of organized education. The Gurukul system of education is one of the oldest on earth but before that the guru shishya system was extant, in which students were taught orally and the data would be passed from one generation to the next. Gurukuls were traditional Hindu residential schools of learning; typically the teacher's house or a monastery. Education was free, but students from well-to-do families payed Gurudakshina, a voluntary contribution after the completion of their studies. At the Gurukuls, the teacher imparted knowledge of Religion, Scriptures, Philosophy, Literature, Warfare, Statecraft, Medicine Astrology and "History" ("Itihaas" — actually mythology). Only students belonging to Brahmin and Kshatriya communities were taught in these Gurukuls. However, the advent of Buddhism and Jainism brought fundamental changes in access to education with their democratic character. The first millennium and the few centuries preceding it saw the flourishing of higher education at Nalanda, Takshashila University, Ujjain, & Vikramshila Universities. Art, Architecture, Painting, Logic, Grammar, Philosophy, Astronomy, Literature, Buddhism, Hinduism, Arthashastra (Economics & Politics), Law, and Medicine were among the subjects taught and each university specialized in a particular field of study. Takshila specialized in the study of medicine, while Ujjain laid emphasis on astronomy. Nalanda, being the biggest centre, handled all branches of knowledge, and housed up to 10,000 students at its peak. British records show that education was widespread in the 18th century, with a school for every temple, mosque or village in most regions of the country. The subjects taught included Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Theology, Law, Astronomy, Metaphysics, Ethics, Medical Science and Religion. The schools were attended by students representative of all classes of society. Traditional structures were not recognized by the British government and have been on the decline since. Gandhi is said to have described the traditional educational system as a beautiful tree that was destroyed during the British rule.

But scholars have questioned the validity of such an argument. The village pathshalas were often housed in shabby dwellings and taught by ill-qualified teachers. Instruction was limited mainly to the three Rs and the native mahajanilzamindari accounts. Printed books were not used, and most writing was done on palm leaf, plantain leaf, or on sand. There was no fixed class routine, timetable, or school calendar. There was no annual examination, pupils being promoted whenever the guru was satisfied of the scholar's attainments. There were no desks, benches,blackboards, or fixed seating arrangements. The decline probably started in the mid- 1700s. By the 1820s neither the village schools nor the tols or madrasas were the vital centers of learning. In 1823, Raja Rammohan Roy wrote to the governor-general, Lord Amherst, requesting that he not spend government funds on starting a Sanskrit College in Calcutta but rather employ "European Gentlemen of talent and education to instruct the natives of India in Mathematics, Natural Philosophy, Chemistry, Anatomy and other useful sciences."The current system of education, with its western style and content, was introduced & founded by the British in the 20th century, following recommendations by Macaulay.

Up to the 17th century

The first millennium and the few centuries preceding it saw the flourishing of higher education at Nalanda, Takshila, Ujjain, & Vikramshila Universities. Art, Architecture, Painting, Logic, Grammar, Philosophy, Astronomy, Literature, Buddhism, Hinduism, Arthashastra (Economics & Politics), Law, and Medicine were among the subjects taught and each university specialized in a particular field of study. Takshila specialized in the study of medicine, while Ujjain laid emphasis on astronomy. Nalanda, being the biggest centre, handled all branches of knowledge, and housed up to 10,000 students at its peak.this is

Education under British Rule

British records show that indigenous education was widespread in the 18th century, with a school for every temple, mosque or village in most regions of the country. The subjects taught included Reading, Writing, Arithmetic, Theology, Law, Astronomy, Metaphysics, Ethics, Medical Science and Religion. The schools were attended by students representative of all classes of society. But scholars have questioned the validity of such an argument. They argue that proponents of indigenous education fail to recognize the importance of the widespread use of printed books in the West since the sixteenth century, which led to a remarkable advancement of knowledge. Printed books were not used in Indian schools till the 1820s or even later. There were institutions such as Gresham's college in London that encouraged scientific learning. In fact, there were a number of such academic and scientific societies in England, often supported by Puritan and non-Conformist merchants, the like of which probably did not exist in India. The entire claim of indigenous education proponents is based on the thesis advocated by Dharampal which says that there was a general decline in Indian society and economy with the coming of British rule. In the process, indigenous education suffered. This, however, is too broad a generalization, and the exact impact of British rule on different regions at different times has to be studied more carefully before we conclude that the curve everywhere steadily declined. He argues that pre-British schools and colleges were maintained by grants of revenue-free land. The East India Company, with its policy of maximizing land revenue, stopped this and thus starved the Indian education system of its financial resources. Again, we need more detailed evidence to show how far inam lands were taken over by the government. More often, military officers, zamindar.~,and talukdars were deprived of revenue-free land rather than temples, mosques, madrasas. Recent research has revealed that inam lands continued to exist well into the nineteenth century, much more than was previously suspected.

The current system of education, with its western style and content, was introduced & funded by the British in the 19th century, following recommendations by Macaulay. Traditional structures were not recognized by the British government and have been on the decline since. Gandhi is said to have described the traditional educational system as a beautiful tree that was destroyed during British rule.

The British established many colleges like St. Xavier's College, Sydenham College, Wilson College and Elphinstone College in India.

According to Prof. Emeritus M.G. Sahadevan, F.R.C.P. (London), the first medical college of Kerala was started at Calicut, in 1942-43, during World War II. Due to shortage of doctors to serve the military, the British Government decided to open a branch of Madras Medical College in Malabar, which was under Madras Presidency then. After the war, the medical school at Calicut was closed and the students continued their studies at Madras Medical College.

After Independence

After independence, education became the responsibility of the states. The Central Government's only obligation was to co-ordinate in technical and higher education and specify standards. This continued till 1976, when the education became a joint responsibility of the state and the Centre.

Education Commission

The Education Commission under the Chairmanship of Dr. D. S. Kothari, the then Chairman, University Grants Commission, began its task on October 2,1964. It consisted of sixteen members, eleven being Indians and five foreign experts. In addition, the Commission had the benefit of discussion with a number of internationally known as consultants in the educational as well as scientific field----.

After 1976

In 1976, education was made a joint responsibility of the states and the Centre, through a constitutional amendment. The center is represented by Ministry of Human Resource Development's Department of Education and together with the states, it is jointly responsible for the formulation of education policy and planning.

NPE 1986 and revised PoA 1992 envisioned that free and compulsory education should be provided for all children up to 14 years of age before the commencement of 21st century. Government of India made a commitment that by 2000, 6% of the Gross Domestic Product (GDP) will be spent on education, out of which half would be spent on the Primary education.

In November 1998, Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee announced setting up of Vidya Vahini Network to link up universities, UGC and CSIR.

Recent developments

The Indian Education System is generally marks-based. However, some experiments have been made to do away with the marks-based system which has led to cases of depression and suicides among students. In 2005, the Kerala government introduced a grades-based system in the hope that it will help students to move away from the cut-throat competition and rote-learning and will be able to focus on creative aspects and personality development as well. iDiscoveri education started by Alumni of Harvard, XLRI is a pioneer in this field. This organization has already developed 5 model schools.

Outdoor Education in India

is relatively new to schools in India, though it is quite well established abroad. Acceptance is slowly increasing with a few schools advocating outbound adventure based programmes among students, to enhance personal growth through experiential learning and increase awareness about various subjects like the environment, ecology, wildlife, history, archaeology, geography and adventure sports. Some organisations that currently offer such programmes for schools are OETS and Wide Aware in Mumbai.Youreka& Ozonewho offer open summer programs based out of Delhi in north and Bangalore in South.

Expenditure on Education in India

The Government expenditure on Education has greatly increased since the First five-year plan. The Government of India has highly subsidized higher education. Nearly 97% of the Central Government expenditure on elementary education goes towards the payment of teachers' salaries.



Non-Formal Education

In 1979-80, the Government of India, Department of Education launched a program of Non-Formal Education (NFE) for children of 6-14 years age group, who cannot join regular schools. These children include school drop-outs, working children, children from areas without easy access to schools etc. The initial focus of the scheme was on ten educationally backward states. Later, it was extended to urban slums as well as hilly, tribal and desert areas in other states. The program is now functional in 25 states/UTs. 100% assistance is given to voluntary organizations for running NFE centers.

Bal Bhavans

Bal Bhavans centers, which are operational all over India, aim to enhance creative and sports skills of children in the age group 5-16 years. There are various State and District Bal Bhavans, which conduct programs in fine-arts, aeromodeling, computer-education, sports, martial arts, performing arts etc. They are also equipped with libraries with books for children. New Delhi alone has 52 Bal Bhavan centers. The National Bal Bhavan is an autonomous institution under the Department of Education. It provides general guidance, training facility and transfer of information to State and District Bal Bhavans situated all over India.

Distance education

India has a large number of Distance education programmes in Undergraduate and Post-Graduate levels. The trend was started originally by private institutions that offered distance education at certificate and diploma level. By 1985 many of the larger Universities recognized the need and potential of distance education in a poor and populous country like India and launched degree level programs through distance education. The trend caught up, and today many prestigious Indian Universities offer distance programs. Indira Gandhi National University, one of the largest in student enrollment, has only distance programs with numerous local centers that offer supplementary contact classes.

Education for special sections of society


Under Non-Formal Education programme, about 40% of the centers in states and 10% of the centers in UTs are exclusively for girls. As of 2000, about 0.3 million NFE centers were catering to about 7.42 million children, out of which about 0.12 million were exclusively for girls.

In engineering, medical and other colleges, 30% of the seats have been reserved for women.

SC/STs and OBCs

The Government has reserved seats for SC/STs in all areas of education. Special scholarships and other incentives are provided for SC/ST candidates. Many State Governments have completely waived fees for SC/ST students. The IITs have a special coaching program for the SC/ST candidates who fail in the entrance exams marginally. Seats have been reserved for candidates belonging to Other Backward Classes as well in some states like Tamilnadu, Karnataka and Andhra Pradesh. The struggle for reserving seats for students from OBC categories in elite institutions like IITs, IIMs and AIIMS and Central Universities is still going on. The Supreme Court of India is obstructing this reservation for the reason that there has been no caste-wise census since 1931 and the population share of OBCs cannot be based on 1931 census. The Department for the Welfare of SC/ST/OBC/Minorities introduced the SC/ST tuition-fee reimbursement scheme in 2003-2004. The scheme applies to SC and ST students of Delhi who are enrolled in recognized unaided private schools and who have an annual family income of less than Rs. 1 lakh. It provides a 100% reimbursement of the tuition fees, sports fee, science fee, lab fee, admission fee and the co-curricular fee if the student's family income falls below Rs. 48, 000 per annum and a reimbursement of 75% if the family income is greater than Rs. 48, 000 per annum but less than Rs. 1 lakh. The subsidy provided by the scheme covers between 85% and 90% of the beneficiary's total running expenses in studying in a private school.

Post Graduate Classes at Correctional Homes

The Government of West Bengal has started the Post Graduate teaching facilities for the convicts at the Correctional Homes in West Bengal. The first of its kind has already started at Alipore Central Correctional Home, Kolkata where Utthan Paul, a life convict is pursuing his Post Graduation in Political Science from Netaji Subhas Open University. Dr. Imankalyan Lahiri , Lecturer in Political Science of Netaji Subhas Open University is taking his classes.

Chronology of main events

  • 1935: Central Advisory Board of Education (CABE) set up.
  • 1976: Education made a joint responsibility of the states and the Centre.
  • 1986: National Policy on Education (NPE) and Programme of Action (PoA)
  • 1992: Revised National Policy on Education (NPE) and Programme of Action (PoA)
  • December 17, 1998: The Assam Government enacts a law making ragging in educational institutions a criminal offence.
  • November 1998: Prime Minister Atal Behari Vajpayee announces setting up of Vidya Vahini Network to link up universities, UGC and CSIR.
  • September 2006: Education Reforms In India

The World Does NOT Revolve Around You

“Listen, you spoiled little cretins, the world does not revolve around you,” I patiently explained.

“You’re kidding right?” hooted my students derisively.

“Pick up your instruments, start together on the downbeat and count carefully.”

How many music teachers have had the first part of that conversation? Almost none, at least not out loud. The second installment is an every day plea for many.

Our youth-obsessed culture seems to make a liar out of me, but lest you think your work is in vain, let me present you with a few ideas.

One of the things adults commonly complain about in their later years looking back on school, aside from a lousy prom, was that they felt ‘alone’ and like an ‘outsider’. The band and orchestra students that I have canvassed don’t often feel that way. Isn’t that interesting? I’m lobbying to have my son do a graduate research project on this issue. I’d love to see the results, wouldn’t you?

Common sense, that harbinger of things ‘everybody knows’ insists that if you learn to be part of a group that needs you in order to get something done, you will feel valuable and worthwhile. Anecdotal evidence supports this concept.

Our sports-mad country feeds us with stories of the scrawny child who becomes Mr. Olympia seven times, makes multimillions in movies and then governs California. What is often overlooked is that music serves many valuable parts of the maturation process that sports do not.

Let me elaborate briefly. Most people involved with music know the statistics. Music makes you brighter, helps you focus in all areas of study, gives you greater mastery over fractions than heretofore thought humanly possible, etc.

But here’s a thought for all those guitar players strumming alone in their garrets. When you have to listen and fit in, when there is the tyranny of a written part to play you are going to find yourself learning new musical concepts at light speed. Why? For the same reason that learning say, mathematics, is easier with some formal guidelines. Reinventing multiplication or discovering every formula newly takes a few lifetimes of inquiry, just check your history texts. Solitary inquiry is necessary and good and I hope it has a place of honor in everyone’s intellectual pantheon, but it cannot be the only method of realization.

One thing ensemble music instruction teaches you is that you must ‘make nice’ with others in order to get the job done. “So what?” you say. It gets back to the heart of both of our issues.

One of the signs of maturity, which my adorable dumplings in the lower grades find difficult to exhibit, is one’s place and involvement in an activity. In spite of what our youth worshipping culture and media would have you believe individuals are generally not the most important things on the program. In music you learn that you can have a part that is vital to the results, but so are the other parts. Together you all help to create a whole that is satisfying to everyone.

This is something that musicians learn and team players discover, but many other people miss completely. Unlike sports where there can be a competitive factor to be the ‘best’, music requires everyone be good to make the whole creative performance satisfying. This is an even higher level of sophistication than sports because creating your part well and thoroughly gives you no personal glory but makes the whole experience better for all the other players and the audience. And all without someone else having to ‘lose’.

A good musician must practice alone but still be able to play with a group to create something larger than themselves. The product of this collaboration? All of us have favored pieces of music associated with the times
of our lives, and a majority of those pieces were created within a group, rather than by a solo artist.

Both musician and listener profit from this synergy. With recordings you can hear your favorites repeatedly extending the memories for a lifetime. So, although the world doesn’t revolve around any one of us, the extended fruits of our conspiracies are definitely worth striving for. Go forth and make music for yourself and for all of us.