New Delhi, (IANS) President Pranab Mukherjee on Monday said urgent measures were necessary to improve academic levels in higher institutions.
“In two reputed international rankings of universities, there is not a single entry from India against the top 200 places,” Mukherjee said while addressing the faculty and students of institutes of higher learning using the National Knowledge Network (NKN) here at Rashtrapati Bhavan.
“The rankings process should be taken seriously. A high rank can boost the morale of the academic community and open greater avenues of growth and placement for students,” he said.
The NKN is a state-of-the-art multi-gigabit pan-India network for providing a unified high speed network backbone for all knowledge related institutions in the country.
The topic of the president’s address was “Energizing the Higher Educational Institutes in India”.
“As a result of concerted efforts, India today has nine institutions in the top 50 in the BRICS (Brazil, Russia, India, China, South Africa) region, with the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore at the fifth position. Success in the BRICS rating will extend to other international ratings,” he said.
The president said students must learn how to manage knowledge collectively as it was essential for the younger generation to learn how to use latest technologies for aiding their learning process.
“Universities must create an eco-system with adequate hardware and software where ‘inspired teachers’ can be effectively used to propagate knowledge. Entrepreneurship is another quality which must be cultivated in our students from an early age,” he said.
“To take our fascinating and vibrant democracy to greater heights, we need highly educated and skilled young men and women. The students should be prepared for lifelong learning which now is easier because of digital technology.”
Addressing students and faculty of institutes of higher learning twice a year through video conferencing is a practice which the president started in January 2014.