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  • Ananya Guha
    Dear Sir, Kindly find below an article which I have written on Vocational Education. I would like to share it with readers. Regards, Ananya. S. Guha Officer on
    Message 1 of 2 , Jun 3, 2010
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      Dear Sir,
      Kindly find below an article which I have written on Vocational Education. I would like to share it with readers.
       
       
      Regards,
       
      Ananya. S. Guha
      Officer on Special Duty (OSD),
      IGNOU Institute for Vocational Education & Training (IIVET),
      Shillong
       
       
       
       
       

      Vocational Education: Some Thoughts and ‘Challenges’

       

       

      Even about a decade back in our country Vocational Education was looked upon with condescension, and those who pursued this stream of studies were considered to be ‘weak’ students who otherwise would not have got admission into any other discipline. The point of the matter is that cognitive skills were given undue precedence over what is known as psychomotor skills or aptitude. Our views on education were then stereotyped and straight jacketed into insularity: namely, that only those who were ‘bright’ especially in the science subjects vis a vis performance in examinations were the ones who were endowed with professional skills and aptitude. Again, there was a highly nuanced but forced distinction between what is ‘professional’ and the ‘vocational’. Hence, those who were good at ‘menial’ work like that of carpentry, electrical repair, masonry were the ones who could pursue vocational education! This was a highly prejudiced and un-holistic view of education, with a distinct ‘class’ prejudice.

       

       

      Today, in the country, thanks to the publication of “National Skills Commission Report” (2008), there is a paradigmatic shift in our thinking, by which the above postulates have been declassed, decodified and, thankfully demystified. This was also a lot to do with the fact that adult and continuing education was not really encouraged. However, with the popularity of Distance and Open Education, the mystique surrounding the ‘what’ of eduation was gradually subverted.

       

       

      This brings us to the ‘why’ of education. It is this: Skills, not only mental but, physical are equally important for learning and ‘doing’. Skill competencies are linked to the market and manpower is needed to fill in the void regarding competencies whether it be, manual, labour, various ‘petty’ trades and the like. The fact is that we need people for repair of refrigerators, electrical wiring, also masons and carpenters.

       

       

      Now, the emphasis is on Vocational Education and Skill development, learning and earning, and this learning is a marked shift from the tautology and shrieking hysterics of conventional classroom learning and teaching- learning by rote.

       

       

      A lot now is discussed about skills gap, the hiatus between supply and demand in trades. This is markedly present because Vocational Education was sub categorized and almost an anathema. The National Skills Commission Report has contributed to re-ordering this parenthesis on education that Vocational Education is an ‘if’. Thank God, the policy makers today have reinvented the wheel and have gone, or at least tried to go a step forward; equating it with education in general.

       

       

      But statistics or no statistics, the emphatic fact is that there are young people who after finishing school (+2) have come to realize that conventional studies are not what they are meant for their aptitude lies more within; in the pragmatic, mundane world of materials.

       

       

      This subliminal attribute is, what is changing the very thought processes and rationale of education today.

       

       

      The challenges are,  to steep such thinking in our educational processes, link education with the market and industry; however, organized or disorganized it is, encourage self employment, link it again to financial institutions and finally focus on  this aura of pride in the person endowed with his/her own psychomotor skills.

       

       

      Finally, also to recognize that the person who has say, done welding in the twenty years is as qualified as the Bachelor Of Engineering degree holder; , prior learning at its best.

       

       

       

       

      Ananya S Guha

       

      The author is Officer On Special Duty, IGNOU Institute For Vocational Education And Training, Shillong, Meghalaya.

       

       

       

      xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

       

       

       


    • B.K.Passi
        Dear madam   ________________________________ From: Ananya Guha To: arkitectindia@yahoogroups.com Sent: Fri, June 4, 2010 11:38:36 AM
      Message 2 of 2 , Jun 4, 2010
      • 0 Attachment

         

        Dear madam

         

        thanks for a nice paper and for your good intentions

         

        the question is which kind of skills [skills for repairing fridge or skills for designing local techniques of cooling like pots. pitchers]

         

        B.K.Passi

         




        From: Ananya Guha <nnyguha@...>
        To: arkitectindia@yahoogroups.com
        Sent: Fri, June 4, 2010 11:38:36 AM
        Subject: [Arkitect India] Posting an article

        Dear Sir,
        Kindly find below an article which I have written on Vocational Education. I would like to share it with readers.
         
         
        Regards,
         
        Ananya. S. Guha
        Officer on Special Duty (OSD),
        IGNOU Institute for Vocational Education & Training (IIVET),
        Shillong
         
         
         
         
         

        Vocational Education: Some Thoughts and ‘Challenges’

         

         

        Even about a decade back in our country Vocational Education was looked upon with condescension, and those who pursued this stream of studies were considered to be ‘weak’ students who otherwise would not have got admission into any other discipline. The point of the matter is that cognitive skills were given undue precedence over what is known as psychomotor skills or aptitude. Our views on education were then stereotyped and straight jacketed into insularity: namely, that only those who were ‘bright’ especially in the science subjects vis a vis performance in examinations were the ones who were endowed with professional skills and aptitude. Again, there was a highly nuanced but forced distinction between what is ‘professional’ and the ‘vocational’. Hence, those who were good at ‘menial’ work like that of carpentry, electrical repair, masonry were the ones who could pursue vocational education! This was a highly prejudiced and un-holistic view of education, with a distinct ‘class’ prejudice.

         

         

        Today, in the country, thanks to the publication of “National Skills Commission Report” (2008), there is a paradigmatic shift in our thinking, by which the above postulates have been declassed, decodified and, thankfully demystified. This was also a lot to do with the fact that adult and continuing education was not really encouraged. However, with the popularity of Distance and Open Education, the mystique surrounding the ‘what’ of eduation was gradually subverted.

         

         

        This brings us to the ‘why’ of education. It is this: Skills, not only mental but, physical are equally important for learning and ‘doing’. Skill competencies are linked to the market and manpower is needed to fill in the void regarding competencies whether it be, manual, labour, various ‘petty’ trades and the like. The fact is that we need people for repair of refrigerators, electrical wiring, also masons and carpenters.

         

         

        Now, the emphasis is on Vocational Education and Skill development, learning and earning, and this learning is a marked shift from the tautology and shrieking hysterics of conventional classroom learning and teaching- learning by rote.

         

         

        A lot now is discussed about skills gap, the hiatus between supply and demand in trades. This is markedly present because Vocational Education was sub categorized and almost an anathema. The National Skills Commission Report has contributed to re-ordering this parenthesis on education that Vocational Education is an ‘if’. Thank God, the policy makers today have reinvented the wheel and have gone, or at least tried to go a step forward; equating it with education in general.

         

         

        But statistics or no statistics, the emphatic fact is that there are young people who after finishing school (+2) have come to realize that conventional studies are not what they are meant for their aptitude lies more within; in the pragmatic, mundane world of materials.

         

         

        This subliminal attribute is, what is changing the very thought processes and rationale of education today.

         

         

        The challenges are,  to steep such thinking in our educational processes, link education with the market and industry; however, organized or disorganized it is, encourage self employment, link it again to financial institutions and finally focus on  this aura of pride in the person endowed with his/her own psychomotor skills.

         

         

        Finally, also to recognize that the person who has say, done welding in the twenty years is as qualified as the Bachelor Of Engineering degree holder; , prior learning at its best.

         

         

         

         

        Ananya S Guha

         

        The author is Officer On Special Duty, IGNOU Institute For Vocational Education And Training, Shillong, Meghalaya.

         

         

         

        xxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxxx

         

         

         



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