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Day 48 – Q 1. What are your views on the recently announced National Education Policy (NEP)? Will it lead towards better scientific temper amongst students? Discuss. 

  • IASbaba
  • August 4, 2020
  • 0
GS 3, Sci & Technology, TLP-UPSC Mains Answer Writing
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1. What are your views on the recently announced National Education Policy (NEP)? Will it lead towards better scientific temper amongst students? Discuss. 

हाल ही में घोषित राष्ट्रीय शिक्षा नीति (एनईपी) पर आपके क्या विचार हैं? क्या यह छात्रों में बेहतर वैज्ञानिक स्वभाव ला पाएगा? चर्चा करें।

Demand of the question:

It expects students to express their views on the recently announced National Education Policy. It also expects to put both side views of whether this policy will impart better scientific temper amongst students or not.

Introduction:

The Union Cabinet approved a new National Education Policy,2020 (NEP) which aims to make “India a global knowledge superpower”. The National Education Policy, 2020 is meant to provide an overarching vision and comprehensive framework for both school and higher education across the country.

Body:

Some of the key proposals of new National Education Policy:

  • The NEP proposes to change the school curricular structure from the current 10+2 (Class 1-10 of general education followed by two years of higher secondary school with specialised subjects) with a 5+3+3+4structure, bringing children from ages 3 to 5 years within the formal education system for first time, and ensuring circular continuity in the last four years.
  • A mission for foundational literacy and numeracy, free breakfasts being added to free lunches in government schools, vocational education, new technological skills such as coding along with internships from Class 6, and proposed redesign of the board examinations are some other major initiatives for school education.
  • A new umbrella regulator will absorb arts and science, technical and teacher education into its fold, replacing several existing regulatory bodies, and also ensure a level playing field for public and private players.
  • For students, the biggest change is the introduction of four-year undergraduate degrees, with options for entry and exit at various stages, a credit transfer system.
  • Class 10 and 12 board examinations to be made easier, to test core competencies rather than memorised facts, with all students allowed to take the exam twice.
  • Holistic Undergraduate education with a flexible curriculum can be of 3 or 4 years with multiple exit options and appropriate certification within this period.
  • Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities (MERUs), at par with IITs, IIMs, to be set up as models of best multidisciplinary education of global standards in the country. Standalone technical universities, health science universities, legal and agricultural universities, will be set up with an objective to be the multidisciplinary universities.
  • The National Research Foundation will be created as an apex body for fostering a strong research culture and building research capacity across higher education.
  • An autonomous body, the National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), will be created to provide a platform for the free exchange of ideas on the use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration.

The new National Education Policy is introduced after a 34 years gap. While addressing  some long pending changes this policy aims to instil scientific temper as follows: 

  • Fundamental duties, enshrined in the Constitution under Article 51A . Fundamental duty under Article 51A (h) encourages the citizen to “develop the scientific temper, humanism and the spirit of inquiry and reform”.
  • The NEP strives to introduce vocational training and new technological skills such as coding through standard 6 itself. It will ensure that student is exposed to the real world life applications of theory through the clearly articulated scientific and technological methods.
  • Provision of new umbrella regulator who subsumes almost all fields in itself will ensure educational solutions through cross fertilisation of the issues and in turn imbibing a scientific approach in to students through the regulations.
  • Class 10 and 12 board examinations are made easier, it will test core competencies rather than memorised facts. Hence, instead of rote learning the conceptual clarity of concepts and understanding of subject will take place.
  • Assessment reforms with 360 degree Holistic Progress Card, tracking Student Progress for achieving Learning Outcomes will not only help for the overall development of the student but also to help the student understand his/her inclination in different aspects of curriculum.
  • The National Research Foundation’s objective is to foster a strong research culture and building research capacity across higher education. It will help to develop scientific research culture in the students.
  • Multidisciplinary Education and Research Universities (MERUs) and specialised technical universities will help to develop a skilled student of generalist as well as specialist tendencies.
  • National Educational Technology Forum (NETF), and provision of setting up foreign institutions in the society will help to provide a platform for the free exchange of ideas on the use of technology to enhance learning, assessment, planning, administration.

Conclusion:

A New Education Policy aims to facilitate an inclusive, participatory and holistic approach, which takes into consideration field experiences, empirical research, stakeholder feedback, as well as lessons learned from best practices.  It is a progressive shift towards a more scientific approach to education. If implemented in its true vision, the new structure can bring India at par with the leading countries of the world.

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