Tuesday, December 13, 2011
News Brief: CMU Engineering Dean Calls for Overhaul of Higher Ed in India
Pradeep Khosla, dean of Carnegie Mellon University's College of Engineering and the Philip and Marsha Dowd University Professor, wrote about the need for an overhaul of academic institutions in India in an opinion piece published in the Dec. 11 issue of the Mint, a premier business news publication in India.
"When I visit universities in the country, I am struck by the deficiencies in infrastructure and facilities," Khosla wrote. "This is compounded by the mediocre quality of teaching and the lack of high-quality professorial talent. All of this indicates — not surprisingly — that our academic institutions are in need of an overhaul if India is to achieve its ambitious development goals."
He encouraged India to adopt the model of higher education in the United States.
"The process in the U.S. is not perfect, and certainly, the country's educational system has faced its share of criticism. But at the university level, it does demand more of students than test-taking talent. And during the four-year process of getting an undergraduate degree, more skills are cultivated and developed than the ability to take tests once a semester.
"While I can see several reasons why adopting the U.S. system could be difficult, these surely aren't insurmountable. We will all be better served if the graduates of Indian institutions were educated and acquired skills beyond just test-taking during their four-year stint at an engineering college," Khosla wrote.