Talvinder Singh, CEO, co-founder, Pragmatic Leaders shared his views on the opportunities and challenges of Indian education system with FE Education Online.
What is the best thing about today’s education system?
The best thing about today’s education system is the variety of courses, programmes and exposure to possible career choices is unprecedented. Never before in India, so many options were available to make a viable career choice.
What is the one thing you would like to change in the system?
The dependency on certification of how much you know and not on how much can you do.
What is the role digital has played in the evolution of the education system?
Right from the early days of computing, digital has been used heavily to elevate learning experiences. Computers were initially used to learn maths, weather, astro and more. Large scale LMS were implemented in universities to make it easier to learn. With the advent of Internet, first books got online through Amazon and they got into our palms through e-readers. Live virtual classes started in early days of internet and as the speed and quality of connection improved, students were able to learn from a desktop and didn’t need to go to a virtual learning centre.
The last big change happened a decade back when knowledge was unshackled and made easily accessible through edX, Coursera, among others. And now the next big revolution is underway through platforms that are focused on skilling, upskilling and reskilling through software systems to make it predictable and consistent.
What has been the disadvantage of digital in education?
Digital learning does offer a lot of possibilities, but this can also cause decision paralysis and a vicious cycle of procrastination. By decision paralysis I mean, learners find it hard to decide which programme or course to take. By procrastination loop I mean, learners end up wasting a lot of time procrastinating on learning because the learning material is usually available to be watched or studied anytime. Digital also creates a sense of distance and a true sense of serendipitous learning doesn’t happen, like in physical learning centres like colleges.
What is the career advice you would like to give to students?
Following COVID, the world is experiencing a turning point in every possible dimension. Our manner of working and conducting business has radically altered, along with the changing population and their needs. In this new society, skills will always be more important than degrees and credentials. These skills have a half-life and they expire in three years or so nowadays, as compared to eight years earlier. So concentrate on honing your application skills. Enroll in classes taught by working professionals rather than academics to accomplish this. One must gain knowledge directly from experts in the field.
Additionally, if you are still a student, try to get as many important internships as you can. And during such internships, put effort into learning about the organisation and asking questions.