«Published Annually Vol. 6, No. 1 ISBN 978-0-979-7593-3-8 CONFERENCE PROCEEDINGS Sawyer School of Business, Suffolk University, Boston, Massachusetts ...»
Today in India we have about 225 million adolescents in the age group of 10-19 years, the largest ever cohort of young people to make a transition to adulthood. Their developing brains bring new cognitive skills that enhance their ability to reason and to think abstractly. They develop emotionally, establishing a new sense of who they are and who they want to become. Their social development involves relating in new ways both to peers and adults and they begin to experiment with new behaviors.
Educationists and teachers can play an important role in shifting perception of adolescents to the positive. Adolescents need adults and want them to be part of their lives, recognizing that they can nurture, teach, guide, and protect them on the journey to adulthood.
-Interpersonal skills (for developing -Determining alternative solutions to healthy relationship) problems
-Empathy and perspective taking
A model programme of soft skill development can be prepared as follows, with three levels i.e Certificate Course, Diploma Course and Advanced Diploma Course.
Certificate Course in Soft Skill Unit –I: Parts of sentences
Diploma Course In Soft Skill Unit-I: Assertiveness Meaning- Attitudes- Behaviors Confidence- Self-esteem Asserting different persons: (a) Dormat (b) Indirect (c) Aggressive (d) Assertive Techniques for assertive communication Empowering assertiveness-Tools for
Unit- II: Communication Skills Reading – its importance, techniques, Writing- steps in writing: concept formation, Collection of information, collating information, correcting.
Writing about process, Letter writing Unit- III: Professional Effectiveness Social interest, age, size opportunities, Decision making participation, technology.
Understanding yourself-realistic, Investigative, artistic, social, enterprising, conventional.
Job-satisfaction, skills-writing, communication, Interacting, organizing, intellectual. Managerial, Assessing Organisation-vision, mission,
Proactive, End of mind, Time management, etc.
Self-Growth-Needs, preventing Factors : poor self concept, low Self esteem, irrational thoughts, lack of control.
Overcoming the weakness.
Self awareness – personality, Knowledge, Learning style Unit- V: Presentation Skills.
Unit- VI: Creativity st In 21 century diversity has affected nearly every aspect of education such as access and equity, teaching methods and student learning, quality, management, research priorities, social relevance, autonomy, finance etc. In an increasingly diverse country like India obviously, the higher education institutions have a great responsibility to develop awareness among its student community about valuing, managing and leveraging diversity by being an active and productive member of the society.
Increasing literature on this has shown that diversity enhances teaching and learning effectiveness, as well as institutional citizenship behavior. Research findings have also provided the evidence of the benefits of educational outcomes of diverse educational environments. These also indicate that cross-cultural interaction and increased openness to diversity have significant positive impacts on a range of institutional and social outcomes. In a number of ways students’ learning engagements/ process outcomes and performance/ learning outcomes are enhanced by increasing critical thinking, problemsolving ability and sense of social responsibility. However, more attention is needed to be given on the aspects like the benefits of recruiting diverse faculty in enhancing teaching-learning effectiveness, pedagogical implications, interdisciplinary research and developing multiple abilities like cross-cultural, leadership and technical competencies amongst our university students.
But all these issues should go along with the institutions’ goals and budget. Moreover, the universities/colleges in the new millennium are facing numerous complex challenges like how to structure their programs for enhancing the flexibility and responsiveness in fulfilling students’ expectations and demands from the job market, as well as maintaining the quality and brand name. Thus, our educational institutions need to revisit and redefine their missions and visions in the light of new challenges of globalization and clearly specify how to address this diversity issue. They must chalk out how diversity is defined, valued, measured, incorporated into planning, execution and evaluation process and leveraged by their institute in order to sustain in the global competition.
Managing Diversity in Education Sector
Diversity in education represents a broad range of ideas and initiatives to create learning environments that are safe, inclusive and equitable for as many identities as possible. In this new millennium diversity has affected nearly every aspect of education such as access and equity, teaching methods and students learning, quality, management, research priorities, social relevance, autonomy, finance etc. Recognizing, fostering, and developing sensitivity to the needs of people in various identity groups are primary aims of educational diversity. Today’s diversity initiatives in education encompass an even wider range of categories and practices. Initially affirmative action and equal opportunity policies recognized race, religion, gender color, ethnicity and national origin. Since the 1990s concerns have expanded to include such categories as ability, pedagogy, and learning styles.
Educational practice has gone beyond providing access to minority groups. Now, many educationists are discussing ways to revise teaching strategies, so that methods would be more inclusive. Diversity practices are also responding to new developments in education, such as research about how to teach students with varied capabilities and learning challenges.
Primarily, there are two types of diversity: First one is structural and the second one is interactional. The structural diversity refers to the numerical and proportional representation of students from different ethnic or racial groups in the student population (Hurtado et al., 1999). The second type of diversity is characterized by the interactions that students have with difference, diverse ideas and information as well as by the interactions that they have with diverse people. The impact of each type of diversity is complimentary to and enhanced by the presence of the others. Rather, structural diversity is a necessary precursor for diverse interactions to occur. Diverse ideas and information emerge largely due to the presence and effects of diverse people (Gurin, 1999).
There are three major types of outcomes that emerge from campus diversity (Gurin, 1999).The first one, learning outcomes refer to active learning processes in which students become involved while studying in college, the engagement and motivation they exhibit, the learning and refinement of intellectual and academic skills, the values they place an these skills after they leave the campus. The second one, democracy outcomes refer to the ways in which higher education prepares students to become involved as active participants in a society that is becoming increasingly diverse and complex. There can be three major categories of engagements such as citizenship engagements, cultural engagement and compatibility of difference – characterize democracy outcomes (Gurin, 1999). Citizenship engagement refers to the students’ interest in active participation in community social service, and motivation in influencing social and political order. Cultural engagement refers to students’ levels of cultural awareness, racial tolerance and commitment to promote inter-cultural understanding. Compatibility of differences refers to an understanding by students that certain common values exist across diverse ethnic groups, and group conflict often can be constructive and beneficial if used appropriately. This aspect relates to the students’ ability to live and work effectively in a diverse cultural set-up (Gurin, 1999). Thirdly, the process outcomes measure the students’ satisfaction, perception of campus climate etc. which reflect the ways in which students perceive that diversity has enriched their college/campus experiences. The final outcome is the material benefit that students gain (for example, higher pay package/salary/perks) from attending diverse colleges and institutes. Literature on diversity and research evidence also support that greater exposure to diversity leads to growth in democracy outcomes. Students who have been exposed to greater diversity are more likely to possess better racial understanding, cultural awareness and appreciation, engagement with social and political issues and openness to diversity and challenges, low ethnocentrism and racial stereotyping, greater involvement in community service and civic responsibility. Students who interact more with diversity also show greater relative gains in critical thinking and active problem solving, self-efficacy, retention and domain skills. Research on the organizational impact of diversity suggests that, when managed correctly, diversity benefits organizations by helping to attract the best available human talent, enhancing marketing efforts, increasing creativity and innovation, improving problem solving abilities and organizational flexibility. In educational institutions the impact of a diversified faculty has also been very impressive, and a positive indicator of many classroom discussions and student centered teaching practices (Milem & Wakai, 1996). Moreover, women faculty and faculty of color enhance an institution’s ability to achieve the primary missions of research, teaching, diversified curricular offerings, and voluntary community services.
Changing Forces: Current Scenario
Post-globalization the educational institutions are operating in a new environment. Colleges and universities now-a-days are struggling with new changing forces such as confronting younger and techno-savvy as well as older and career-driven students, unprecedented competition in the job market and quality, accountability, and affordability in the global context. Thus, the higher education today is facing the new challenges like a) student engagement, b) institutional accountability c) revenue generation d) global competition and so on. Some of the developments across the world, which have been unfolded in the last decade, have significant impact on educational institutions. For example, the impact of global warming, climate change and the emergence of environmental sustainability have emerged as key political, national and international research agenda for the new century. These are the global stresses that include population stress, energy stress, environmental stress, climate stress, economic stress (e.g., inflation, economic recession widening gap between rich and poor classes) which directly or indirectly influence higher education system (Thomas Homer-Dixon, 2006). There is also the rapid emergence of new connected global economy, communication, and knowledge networks. Due to IT revolution, and globalization we are also witnessing major transformations in knowledge sector like virtual universities, on-line courses, e-learning packages etc. A large number of globally networked companies are coming up in education industry. In this changing world, especially in Asian region India and China are the new world players both educationally as well as economically. These countries are expanding their education systems and networks by improving the quality, accessibility and increasing investment on infrastructure, technology and participation in both secondary and post-secondary education. In other European countries also significant developments are taking place such as implementation of Bologna and Washington Accord guidelines for accreditation, quality and comparability of higher education courses. In India the Ministry of Human Resource Development has taken some initiatives like implementing NAB (National Accreditation Board) for accreditation of higher and technical courses, major pedagogic research projects under the ‘Mission of Education Through ICT’, redesigning the technical and science graduation courses as per the pedagogic principles and improving the quality and comparability of its higher/technical education degrees in International job market.
The IT revolution is also creating new expectations and opportunities for how students want to and can learn. Often it is being asked whether higher education should remain campus-based or become more distributed through virtual mode. The traditional universities are no longer viewed as the sole or key repository of leading-edge knowledge or the best place to access
Conference papers © Knowledge Globalization Institute, Pune, India, 2012