To achieve the goal of revamping the curriculum, we are urging all the colleges and universities to come up with a new and modern curriculum in their institutions, thus making the classes more interesting for the students to attend, says Shuchi Sharma, Secretary of Higher & Technical Education Department, Government of Rajasthan, in conversation with Kartik Sharma & Prathana Dutta of Elets News Network (ENN).
You have recently taken the position of Secretary, Higher Education and Technical Department, in the State of Rajasthan. How do you see this responsibility and are you looking forward to it?
It’s a great responsibility that I have been entrusted with and I feel though a lot has been done to give a good education system to the society still there is the scope of improvement. In fact, something needs to be done in a direction that emphasizes the evolution of the student as a good human being. Therefore, I believe somewhere a dent is needed in the fundamentals of the present education system to achieve this goal.
What are the challenges that you foresee towards achieving the target? How do you plan to address these challenges?
At the 15th World Education Summit Mumbai, you spoke on the concept of ‘Joy of Giving’. Could you share your insight on this concept and what is the need of such a concept in the Higher Education sector today?
Knowledge shared is knowledge gained. ‘Joy of Giving’ is the concept that is tied up to the innate nature, compassion and interdependence in human beings. It is a paradox that more we acquire more discontented we become. In reality, acquiring more and more leads to discontentment and what we give to others is what makes us feel content. If we inculcate ‘Joy of Giving’ as an essential part of the school curriculum, we can teach the child to apply it in day-to-day activities, thereby crystallising the curriculum. A child who is a ‘giver’ is more beneficial to the society than an ‘acquirer’.
What is your vision in developing the higher education ecosystem in the state of Rajasthan?
Besides infrastructure, we need to focus on the syllabus and keep it from getting redundant. Irrelevant topics which are still taught in classes need to be removed. In case of a redundant syllabus, not only are teachers disinterested in teaching, even the students don’t turn up in lectures due to boredom. We need to move in the direction of upgrading the curriculum. To achieve this goal, we are urging all the colleges and universities to come up with a new and modern curriculum in their institutions, thus making the classes more interesting for the students to attend.
What measures are taken to enhance the quality and upgrading the curriculum of Technical Education in the state?
TEQIP (The Scheme of MHRD and World Bank) has provided Rs 10 crore to each engineering college of Rajasthan and Rs 20 crore to Rajasthan Technical University, Kota, for enhancement of quality and up gradation of curriculum of technical education. In last few months, the department has arranged many training seminars, conferences for improvement of pedagogy and various latest equipment’s. About Rs 25 crore will be spent in current financial year on modern labs, computers and research facilities by which more than 10 thousand students of technical institutes will be benefitted with better facilities in education, research and consultancy.
What are the newly introduced schemes for Research and Development of the state in terms of technical education?
Choice Based Credit System (CBCS) and semester system has been introduced in all departments of Rajasthan Technical University, Kota. This has been recognized by National Board of Accreditation, New Delhi.
- Uploading of university degrees on National Depository platform.
- Under RUSA Scheme of MHRD there is construction of cafeteria and books in library will be marked with radio frequency identification (RFI)
What initiatives have been undertaken by the department to make education sector vibrant and result-oriented?
With an objective to prepare good academicians, the department has started induction training programme for newly appointed assistant professors. Initiatives like free coaching classes for regular students of the colleges help the department in making education sector vibrant and resultoriented. Subject matter experts in the department are preparing e-content for these classes. The department is also opting for skill education initiatives along with regular studies to make students after their graduation and post-graduation degree.
Please provide a brief description about the administrative initiatives taken for smooth functioning of the department.
The review meetings with the concerned officials of the respective department on regular basis are among the major initiatives that helped in smooth functioning of the department. We have also installed Biometric attendance system for principals and professors. The OIC system installed in various colleges helps in monitoring the progress and problems of the colleges at CCE level.
What message would you like to give to the students?
My message to the students is that life is the most precious gift of God. It should be lived joyfully. For this, every moment should be lived creatively. We should not lose any opportunity to leave something new and go on contributing to building a healthy society.