What are the challenges faced by universities today?

Universities world-over look to be recognised for quality of education they impart, for R&D activities, innovation, leadership and sustainability, which is aimed at contributing to the social and economical development. But due to increasing number of universities, there are many challenges that they encounter, such as unavailability of teachers, adaptability with changing technological trends in learning & assessments, un-employability of graduating youth and growing difference between industry expectations from academia. Moreover, the increase in student enrolments is exerting a lot of pressure on their available resources, both infrastructural and manpower. In India, the above challenges are manifold.

What can universities do to overcome these challenges in Indian context?

The Government of India has recognised the current trends in education sector as alarming, as it is contributing semi-fi nished talent to industries. To arrest these trends, the government is coming up with much needed changes in policies and procedures through bodies like AICTE, NAAC, NBA, etc. Moreover, industry bodies like NASSCOM and CII have been suggesting academia on all platforms to evolve an outcome based curricula. With inputs from all quarters, universities are doing their bit but much is still to be done, especially in curricula standardisation - for teachers as well as students – to make it industry relevant; standardisation of classroom deliveries; and tests & examinations conduction, which means the universities need to adapt to the changes quickly for sustainability.

How can Indian universities adapt to change? Please suggest.

With the internet revolution, technology is now not limited to only a PC at home or offi ce but it has scaled up and is now accessible in every corner of the country through multimedia mobile phones and other gadgets. Moreover, students today spend more time with mobile gizmos and have good selflearning and networking capabilities, which is evident with the growing number of social networking sites and cloud applications. Looking at the above trends, it is the time that universities also adapt to technology to reach students by promoting learning beyond classroom through ICT-based classroom deliveries and using technology in conducting examinations or result declaration.

Many private companies working in the space of providing education services have evolved innovative products to address to the hunger for imparting education using technologies right from kindergarten, K12 to collegiate education. It will be a good idea for universities to look at tailor-made solutions both for subject specifi c skills and generic skills to expedite the process of change and provide students with innovative learning and assessment possibilities, and simultaneously empower teachers to use technology in delivering sessions that will lead to standardisation and to make classroom sessions more interactive. The universities need to look at collaborating with industry, academicians, experts and their peers in India and abroad for using ICT to impart quality education.

This way the universities can ensure to have a scalable model to address to the growing student base and also ensure quality course deliveries, improve innovation through R&D and contribute to well-rounded professionals to the industries. This in turn helps them in improving the socio-economic status of students and contributes to nation building.

Can you throw some light on Globarena Technologies and its activities?

A highly motivated team, worked with the best multinationals and fi nest research organisations, has conceptualised the Globarena Technologies. We continuously strive in Transforming Talent by providing solutions that enables institutions to impart quality and holistic education by imbibing in them critical employability skills with the right blend of subject skills that is sought in the global marketplace. Our solutions and programmes are comprehensive, affordable and scalable, as they can be deployed on the LAN or facilitated through the internet or can be facilitated through Instructors Training. We have partnered with many universities, educational institutions and government education department in improving faculty effectiveness and student engagement. We also helped several corporates to get right talent that result in increasing their productivity.

We are NASSCOM partners to deliver NAC.2.0 - an assessment conducted by them to identify and provide entry level talent for the ITeS companies. We also provide examination management solutions (OnMark) both end-to-end that includes onscreen marking solutions and examination conduction solution (OneX) to leading Indian state universities.

In the given education scenario, how do you think industry can contribute?

Traditionally, organisations spend more on recruitment and training, due to the imbalance driven by type of skills and abilities required for a particular job and availability of fresh talent which is not industry ready.

We have been working to bridge the industry-academia gap and in this effort pioneered many innovative solutions for educational institutions to make availability of qualifi ed and well-rounded professionals for the industry. Our solutions are a fine blend of learning, assessment and ICT to enable educational institutions, be-it a college or university, collaborate with companies to incubate talent based on their current/ future requirements by training them on their systems and process very early in their academic pursuit than waiting for them to graduate. Moreover, ICT/conferencing solutions ensure wholesome geographical coverage of talent pockets that enable companies/HR to hire the right talent from across regions without making any disparity between rural and urban.

Our technology enabled learning and assessment solutions help students to prepare on critical generic and specifi c skills, that they are expected, to demonstrate at workplace. Our skills assessments solutions ensure scientifi c categorisation of talent for the HR to choose from and in turn help in saving valuable time and efforts as they are calibrated with the industry requirement.

 

Mr VSN Raju, CEO, Globarena

People and Management

Media Kit