The Impact of Globalization on Education

The Impact of Globalization on Education

Globalization is simply a new form of Capitalism. It certainly couldn’t be that simple. It is definitely a much more complex, far reaching concept, influencing almost every aspect of our lives. Globalization is a kind of standardization or harmonization. In the world of international business and industry, standardization insures consistent quality and a common basic for cooperation. The Influence of globalization is not limited to governmental and economic situation. Such diverse areas as fashion, language, education, cultural value, art, laws and societies can be significantly influenced, and a more subtle influence can be felt on all aspects of human activity. Those segments most directly impact by the effects of globalization.

Globalization causes internationalization to occur, or more accurately, internationalization is the result of globalization. The result of bringing cultures, people, economics, laws and governments into direct interaction and influence or the preparation of the countries to adjust to accommodate the changes associated with globalization.

Globalization- Challenge or Opportunity

Two of the strategic and long-term questions that Globalization poses to the higher education systems are: (i) ‘Commoditization’ - the use of knowledge as a purchasable and saleable good. (ii) ‘Alternative providers’ with profit motive of education’s landscape that are engaged in the transmission of knowledge using Information and Communication Technologies. Displacing and reinterpreting knowledge raise fundamental questions to the Universities, more so, in the area of autonomy and academic freedom. They also pose questions with regard to the very objectives of Education system in terms of its ethical obligation to make knowledge freely available to those who seek for it. The apprehension is, that the globalization, may herald a basic change in the very role that the Universities play in the society. Defining universities simply as ‘service providers’ and changing their responsibility to the society for the shorter gains, May in the long run, ruin the very objectives with which the universities were established. The dynamics of Globalization is no doubt a challenge as well as an opportunity. Education today, Globalization or no Globalization, is no more constrained by geographical boundaries. Innovative forms of translocation and transnational education have become a Possibility. Multi campus institutions, "franchised institutions learning centers providing university degree, off campus education, distance learning, internet based distance education, virtual universities merging of part studies to combine into a whole for obtaining national as well as international degrees are only few models as examples. As far as education is concerned, an enthused and well-informed student has umpteen choices, for the first time in the history of education, to access for a "global marketplace". Yet, the matter of the fact is, this access remains only as availability. Who can reach to it and how? What alternative provisions are made for those who cannot afford to reach is the crux of the matter. 

Present Scenario of Education in India: As on today we have more than 300 universities, institutions of higher learning and deemed universities, out of which 95 deemed to be universities, 13 institutions of national importance, 19 central universities, 203 state universities, 5 institutions established under state legislation act and about 16,885 colleges including 203 Autonomous colleges. Education System has increased fourteen-fold in terms of the number of universities and thirty three-fold in terms of the number of colleges, in comparison to the number at the time of Independence. At the beginning of the academic year 2004, the total number of students enrolled in the formal system of education in universities and colleges was 99.53 lakh-12.97 lakh (13.3 per cent) in university departments and 86.57 lakh (86.97 per cent) in affiliated colleges and 4.37 lakhs teaching Faculty employed making India’s system of education the second largest in the world. “To finance this expansion, the Government of India has consistently increased its share in the total expenditure on education—from 49.1 percent in 1950–51 to more than 90 percent today. It is significant that despite these impressive statistics the system caters to hardly 6 percent of the relevant age group, as compared to more than 80 per-cents in the developed countries.” This is partly because the expansion has been offset by the growth of the Population in the relevant age group.

Nevertheless, the fact illustrates how difficult it is for developing countries to bridge gaps and to keep pace with the developed world. Resource constraints are severe, and the quality of education available to most Indian students is questionable in terms of its ability to face the challenges posed by further education as well as employment market. The situation is further complicated by the rigidities of the education system, the political pressures from regional, religious and caste-based groups, and related problems.

Benefits of Globalization in Education: Standardization: - Globalization has forced institutions to develop a higher degree of standardization, not only in the curriculum but also in admissions administration and the qualifications of instructors. Transparency has caused institutions to examine long-standing policies and practices in light of international standards of equality of opportunity, professionalism and ethics in teaching and research.

Ease of quality assessment: - It requires benchmarks and a set of measurable indicators of quality. As university web pages and printed materials, we can easily to access information and become available to allow outside observers to access the quality of the academic programs, facilities and research activities. As for universities expand international exchange programs, students and faculty members are able to compare the quality of their programs against those of their exchange partners. Increased participation in international conferences and symposium provides another platform for accessing quality.

Intercultural understanding: - Globalization has a great potential for strengthening intercultural understanding. Intercultural understanding requires an awareness of what are values, what is considered proper behavior and what is acceptable in another culture. In addition to understanding one’s own culture, students must learn that there are other cultures and other beliefs, and that those cultures are not wrong, just different. The tremendous experience of academic exchange in another part of the world promotes intercultural understanding, develops language facility and accelerates maturity. Though, the opportunity for participation in international exchange program is limited, university should be encourages to sponsor and support these exchange programs.

Leveling the playing field: - Globalization provided a more level playing field for the development of education. If students are learning the same materials no matter where they are receiving that education and the quality of the instruction is of the same high quality, graduates from institutions throughout the world will have more equal opportunity for success in all fields. 

Risk of Globalization for Education: Linguistic risk: - Although English is the global language; it is now and never will be the only language in the world. It is important the some courses and some degrees program be offered in English. This will strengthen language skills and promote international exchange opportunities. Many Universities offers a number degree programs in English, which makes it much easier for us to attract exchange partners from around the world.

On the other hand, the primary language of instruction will remain Hindi. It is critical that our students have a firm foundation in their native language. We also encourage students to learn other languages as part of academic program. It was because we want our students learn more language in order to make them can communicate with people all part of the world.

Economic Risk: -

Privatization of education in India was a condition of our international loan package during the economic crisis. Creating a competitive environment while retaining academic quality and diversity is a major challenge. Effectively competing for dwindling research funds, struggling to attract the best and brightest students and instructor and remaining on the cutting edge of new technology are among the economic challenge we face.

Cultural Risk: -

The cultural risk is the most subjective and the hardest to deal with. Culture and cultural values are continually evolving. As education becomes more specialized and curricula focus more on the globally recognized standard courses and programs we must be careful not to lose sight of our cultural uniqueness, institutional traditions and social identity.

The author of this article is Assistant Professor, Pioneer Institute, Indore

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