GLOBAL CHANGES IN THE PRACTICES OF TEACHING AND EMERGING CURRICULAR TRENDS
Dr. A. V. Iyer
To most people globalization is a business related phenomenon. It is a result of increasing liberalization of national economies. In India training the workforce of tomorrow for the increasing globalized work environment has not been a high priority. This changing profile of the Indian society is necessitating changes in the entire fabric of the Indian Educational System. Today’s economy places value on broad knowledge and skills – technical and technological, flexibility, multitasking, teaming, problem solving and project based work. Today’s output from the educational system are expected to be well equipped not simply with technical know-how but also with the ability to create, analyse and transform information and interact effectively with others.
Industry operates today in a progressive fashion – with globalization and its emerging challenges. To add to this the rapidly changing technological advancements and quick silver revolutions in the field of Information technology has transformed the industrial scenario that in turn has impacted the educational sphere. This continuous and constantly changing profile of the industrial sector has prompted and necessitated with urgency the need to review, rejuvenate and reenergize the curriculum and the curricular or teaching practices in every field and facet of education, so that the consumer, i.e the industry benefits from this exercise.
At this juncture, the nation needs a compelling vision of new order for education that will inspire educational leaders, educators, learners and society alike. The responsibility of executing this exercise basically lies on the teachers . Highly effective teachers impact student outcomes that that has a chain reaction in the subsequent systems. Research both in India and overseas confirms that a highly skilled and professional teaching force makes a difference.
Teaching to rigorous standards and basing practice on what is known about teaching and learning demand much more from the practitioners, including a deeper knowledge of content, a better understanding of how learners best adapt themselves to the content, the ability to be spontaneous and alert to related issues and make the teaching exercise relevant, interesting and meaningful to the context. In addition , the use of knowledge and skills is of paramount importance – thinking critically, applying knowledge to new situations, analyzing information, comprehending new ideas, communicating effectively, collaborating, solving problems and making good and speedy decisions. Effective teachers have always helped learners discover the value and relevance of new skills and knowledge through their potentials and competencies.
In a knowledge economy core subjects continue to be relevant and they continue to open doors to opportunity – nonetheless it is essential developing academic content standards that are all well aligned with assessments. Liaison between education and industry is a symbiotic affair where both stand to mutually benefit. Building a vibrant and interactive education industry interface, that probably calls for an interdisciplinary and cross cultural course material would probably be resourceful in preparing new entrants to the world of work. This would be an ongoing task with essential focus in the following aspects., namely,
1. Dissemination – expanding on the efforts and sharing with other universities ( national and international)
2. Professional Development – The success of such efforts ultimately is dependent on training faculty so that they are in a position to think and act on the course curriculum in global terms. An empowered teacher is a reflective decision maker who finds joy in learning and investigating the teaching learning process – one who views learning as construction and teaching as a facilitating process to enhance and enrich development
3. Internships – a semester long work experience that would allow learners to ‘apprentice’ with professionals from the field
Curriculum for the future, besides taking care of the teacher and related teaching skills that he/she should possess should also take cognizance of learning skills and the experiences that the learner should be provided with , keeping in view both the industry needs and the global environment. Industry should play a pivotal role and offer all their support to educational institutions. Such a vibrant curriculum would be goal and vision oriented, growing, dynamic and a change agent –charged to face the challenges in the environment and pragmatic enough to tap the opportunities put forth by the industry