Tuesday, November 8, 2016

Why Engineering Colleges are shutting down?

Why Engineering Colleges are shutting down? The boom in Information technology based service industry during the time period 2000 to 2010 led to increase in the number of engineering colleges in India. Majority of these engineering colleges where mostly established by politicians, small scale businessmen, and individuals who wanted use privatisation of higher education as a mean to enhance their wealth and power in the society. Though the regulatory body like AICTE have been regulating the quality of the education, they have miserably failed improve the quality of education at large. The structured curriculum delivered through, outdated university system has not created professionals who are up-to-date with technological changes. Other than the IT service industry and traditional manufacturing industries majority of the 16 Lakhs engineers don’t find employment or able to be technical entrepreneurs like developed countries. When one looks deeper into the current state of engineering education the answers are crystal clear, 1. The technological changes have led to more job opportunities outside IT industry and automation in the developed countries has led to decline of skilled manpower in the IT service sector. 2. Engineering education has become manufacturing industry rather than learning centres. Volume of students: AICTE based on the facilities available for the conduct of courses allots minimum number of intakes per disciplines .Normally this number is 60 per discipline at Bachelors level and 18 at Master level. Considering the rigorous nature of engineering and technology education this is huge number to be trained especially at the undergraduate level. Quality of Intake at Undergraduate Engineering courses: Students passing from the 10 + 2 system of secondary school education with mathematics as a subject along with Physics, Chemistry are eligible to apply for the engineering colleges undergraduate programs. To fill the number of seats that has been allocated to the engineering colleges in each discipline of undergraduate degree programs the entrance level qualification in-in-terms of mark secured have been lowered bare minimum of 45 % in the qualifying School leaving examination that securing a seat in an engineering course has become so easier. Syllabus Up gradation: Since all the engineering colleges are affiliated to Technical University in that particular state upgrading syllabus with respect to changing technology has become tedious process in getting consensus syllabus across the country. The syllabus created being centralized doesn’t provide flexibility to innovate where ever required as per the location needs. Lack of need based delivery: Most of the engineering colleges function like manufacturing industry. Most of the courses are delivered to structured syllabus with specific text books and laboratories exercises. This is turn creates apathy among students in creative thinking and experimentation. The methods of evaluation is about the volume of information known in a particular subject rather than the depth of understanding a student has in particular subject. Lack of applied engineering: Most of the subjects are delivered through theoretical means rather practical mode .Route learning has become the fulcrum of education. Most of the engineering colleges have readymade laboratory equipment for the training purposes. Irrespective of the discipline of engineering most of the laboratory exercises are standardized. Experiments are always performed on the training equipment in groups rather in individual nature. This method of teaching and learning process has resulted in growth of many small and medium scale industries which supply readymade equipment to setup laboratories for the listed experiments. Lack of Quality Professors Engineering colleges lack quality teaching professionals. Since most of the professors have graduated from similar type of engineering colleges. There has been constant neglect of research and development at college level since the academic culture and environment is not created by the Postgraduate degree holding professionals. Most of the doctorates who are currently employed as teachers in engineering colleges lack the depth of engineering skills. They have got degrees for the post and promotion not for the love of science. Somehow the quality of engineering doctoral degrees has not sufficed the quality of teaching. Since their methods of learning, researching and thought process is similar to that of undergraduate engineering education. Teachers mostly lack the practical skills in engineering. Engineering is basically design and construction. When such teachers stand in the classroom and theoretically explain concepts on white boards rather than experimentally presenting them and correlating with theoretical aspects, the students end up as memorizing USB sticks. Many of the engineering college teachers lack even the basic skill sets minimum required to develop any engineering design on their own. Engineering Colleges as Profit centres: Though privatization of engineering colleges has contributed in immensely to progress of IT and IT enabled sector majority of the colleges run as profit centres .Private investors look at engineering colleges as a profit centres and the number of colleges have grown over the years due to rampant corruption at large. Establishing and running an engineering college has become a goal oriented business model. AICTE and UGC regulates the fees to be charged by the private run engineering colleges .But there has not been a standard evaluation model to assess on the fees collected and the investment made on the infrastructure development like laboratories ,library and other campus amenities. Even though some colleges fulfil these minimum requirement they have failed to inspire students to use these infrastructure. Decline in core disciplines: Starting from late 90s the growth in the service industry has resulted in total decline of traditional and fundamental areas of engineering and technology. Students and parental focus on short term service jobs has resulted in huge surge in the number of students enrolled in Information Technology and Software related courses. So there has been a steep decline in the core disciplines like electrical, mechanical and civil engineering at both Bachelors and Masters Level. In the NASSCOM-Mckenzie report it has been observed that 9 million engineering students will go for the IT/ITES sectors and BPO creating six million vacancies in the manufacturing sectors, retail and transportation. Focus on English language and Aptitude Test: Most of the engineering colleges are more focused on providing employment to students in the IT service industry and BPO’s through placements. Students are encouraged only to improve their English spoken skills and aptitude solving techniques. Since the industry requirement is limited towards programming and debugging huge programs for back office work and employment is easy focus on core areas of engineering is side-lined and curriculum developed ends up only being benchmark to pass evaluation process. Societal Issues: The economic growth in the IT service industry has resulted in the societal consciousness that getting engineering degree is the stepping stone to success .This has resulted in the pressure among students to pursue engineering degree though the individual may not have an inclination toward engineering .Its societal respect and recognition given for engineers that has resulted in decline in the quality of the students passing out with engineering degrees. As per the report of the NASSCOM-Mckenzie report only 25 % of the graduates of the engineering colleges are employable. Quality of Postgraduate Engineering Education: As the number of seats in Bachelor degree in IT related engineering disciplines were increased to meet the requirements of IT industry from 2000, the demand for qualified engineering professors increased, this led to creation of more specialized courses based on the American model of Postgraduate education .M.Tech and M.E courses were approved and launched across many engineering colleges which have completed 4 years of operation and have required Accreditation as per the norms of AICTE. Similar to the undergraduate curriculum the PG curriculum was structured and rigid .Such a curriculum cannot offer scope for research as part of the curriculum. This has led to grooming of below quality teachers in engineering education.

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Am simple and broadminded.Though am born as a christian i don't follow any religion as such. Had spent some time in Europe for my post graduation, later i choose to do research and teaching in India which am very passionate about. My colleagues say my character resembles Howard Roark of Fountainhead. Am free spirited but morally grounded extremely focused, doing things which make me and others happy. Life is to be lived without compromising any of your principles.I enjoy building things ,am workaholic,am very intense and live in my own small world ,, different people have different things to say about me but am not the typical kind of person,, eccentric for some , but above all am always myself.Researching,creating ,pumping out ideas  and teaching are my hobbies.Do read when i get bored, love all kinds of music,but prefer something of a fusion or alternative kind,would love to write my ideas as book ,,very passionate about my country,,everything in my life has been around doing that very thing for a country. but i cant stand where India is heading today?!!!