By Beas Dev Ralhan
Modern-day education is drastically different from the education of the past. Today’s schools are at the forefront of technology with computers, projectors, internet and other technological tools being commonplace in classrooms. These tools are helping students access a diversity of information and has changed the way we perceive education is imparted to students.
The rising adoption of digital classrooms in Indian schools is helping break new ground in learning by enabling students to grasp difficult concepts with ease. Students can now access new educational resources in the form of videos, ebooks, presentations, recorded classes, discussion forums, scholarly articles, research papers and more on the internet.
The education sector had been largely technologically stagnant in the last century and has only become technologically innovative in the last three decades. In addition to technology, in the last two decades, the growing economy has also bolstered the education sector. This economic growth has fuelled the dreams and aspirations of students, resulting in the establishment of new institutions catering to the modern Indian student.
With the introduction of the internet in the mid-1990s, young Indians were exposed to global trends in education. After 2005, when the internet became the mainstay of Indian society, Indian students were increasingly exposed to the education and educational resources from around the world, which in turn, resulted in their demand for an education that is at par with global standards.
The expectations of the modern student
Modern students have unprecedented digital literacy which along with the influence of their peers is the reason behind their drive to succeed, resulting in high expectations from schools and institutions. The adoption of technology and subsequent changes in the education sector are a direct result of the changing attitudes, needs and expectations of the modern student. The current generation of students has a dynamic style of learning as they do not prefer being passive receivers of information and require more immersion and engagement with their learning environment.
Modern students consume digital media on a large scale and are interact mostly through online messaging as opposed to face-to-face communication. Learning for them is not limited to attending classes or going to school as they have access to webinars, presentations and online classes. Modern institutions should consider the creation of learner-centred classroom environments to engage modern students. Game-based learning and simulations are helping learners visualise complex concepts. This trend is becoming increasingly popular and is an obvious expectation of students.
The qualitative abilities of teachers are what makes an institution do better than others. Employing highly qualified faculty is an effective way to meet the expectations of students and also increasing applications. Qualified teachers will not only attract more students, but will also reinforce the positive image of the school.
Modern students are looking for a curriculum that is comprehensive and exhaustive. Given the extremely demanding job market today, students expect a curriculum that will equip and empower them intellectually. A thorough course of study will not only challenge students but also prepare them to succeed in a rapidly changing technological world by imparting leadership, teamwork and collaborative skills.
Modern students consider school to be a second home and spend most of the day there. From boosting their confidence to making them learn the importance of teamwork and association, infrastructure facilities like playgrounds, amphitheatres, labs, libraries have a huge influence upon the perception of the school.
Today’s student’s high expectations from their institutions and also from themselves. They prefer a learning environment which encourages their learning and rewards their scholastic efforts. They are constantly seeking support and guidance from their teachers. They thrive in a place where only the best is expected from them and which recognises their uniqueness as a person.
Meeting the expectations of the modern student
The increasingly globalised world today is knowledge based, making the economy globally competitive and the types of skills students need to become successful are vastly different from that of the past. A great career is a priority for every Indian student. They want to be trained, taught and guided efficiently so that they can fulfil their dreams. The broader access to information has completely changed the educational landscape and the responsibility of staying ahead of the technology curve rests solely on institutions. They need to adapt fast to the changing times to understand the rising expectations of students. Institutions should put more focus on imparting entrepreneurial skills, life skills, financial literacy and people skills.
Beas Dev Ralhan is the co-founder and CEO of Next Education India Pvt ltd.
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