Changing Trends in Academic Practices in Higher Education Reasons and Remedies

Tuesday, July 15, 2014: 8:46 AM
Room: Booth 44
Oral Presentation
Duru ARUN KUMAR , Humanities and social Sciences, Delhi University, New Delhi, India
Rachit JAIN , Instrumentation and control, Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology, Delhi University, New Delhi, India
Raunaq SAWHNEY , Netaji Subhas Institute of Technology, Delhi University, New Delhi, India
Professional engineering education has projects, practical learning and training, and internships as important components, besides the usual lecture and tutorial components. They are important for the application of the knowledge gained through course-work. They also provide an essential exposure to professional work culture and facilitate professional role taking.

Based on fifteen years of teaching experience and close interaction with the students in an undergraduate college located in a metropolitan city of India it is observed by the author that the importance of some of these core academic practices followed in the educational institutes has gradually declined. Their role in transfer of tacit knowledge (Polanyi) through personal interaction is not given its due importance. In some premier institutions of higher learning these practices are either significantly reduced or replaced by information and communication technology enabled virtual learning modules.

An effort is made to explain the reasons for these changing trends in academic practices. Three interrelated mechanisms are identified as having advanced this process, increasing credential value of higher education, academic consumerism and a widening gap between professional education and industrial growth in India.

These changes have important implications on knowledge growth and quality of skilled manpower. Based on the feedback of the educationists and faculty members, recommendations are made to increase the involvement of all the stake holders in encouraging academic practices through experiential learning