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ERIC Number: EJ808934
Record Type: Journal
Publication Date: 2006
Pages: 26
Abstractor: As Provided
Reference Count: 54
ISSN: ISSN-1547-9714
Competency Focused Engineering Education with Reference to IT Related Disciplines: Is the Indian System Ready for Transformation?
Goel, Sanjay
Journal of Information Technology Education, v5 p27-52 2006
The growth of the Indian IT industry has been of great interest to the international IT community. Nearly one third of fresh Indian engineering graduates are currently joining the IT industry irrespective of their specialization. The success of the Indian IT industry, however, has not been yet been leveraged for developing India as a preferred destination for engineering education, even in the disciplines related to information technology. Internationally, reforms in engineering education have a long but slow history. Last decade saw an increasing recognition of the need for the transformation of engineering education. Many accreditation agencies have even transformed their accreditation criteria in the last few years from a resource-based approach to an outcome-based approach. This paper collates recommendations about core competencies for engineering graduates by NSF, National Academy of Engineers (NAE), Engineering Professor's Council (EPC), and authors like Felder, Bordogna, and others. It brings together the contemporary prescriptions of accreditation agencies in US, UK, Australia, Singapore, and Japan and also the recommendations made by ACM, IEEE, and other professional bodies with specific reference to various IT related disciplines. These accreditation agencies, NAE, IEEE, ACM, other professional agencies, and researchers have identified a number of core competencies as essential attributes of graduating engineers. There are great similarities in these recommendations that are now being increasingly used for enhancing the quality of engineering education. However, in order to further enhance the value of engineering education, it is proposed that "ability to create wealth, self-sufficiency and a sense of well being through successful engineering enterprise, ability to assist others through philanthropic donation," and "ability to work in multi-location teams" may also be added to the list of recommended competencies, especially at the master's level. Based on Marzano's (1993) "Dimensions of Learning," a three dimensional taxonomy of competencies has been proposed to categorize the recommended competencies along the three dimensions of "attitudes and perceptions, productive habits of mind," and "meaningful usage, extension, and acquisition of knowledge." This taxonomy is projected to have the flexibility to suit varying and emerging needs. The paper then presents current accreditation criteria practiced by the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) of All India Council of Technical Education (AICTE), the accreditation agency in India. The accreditation criterion of NBA continues to be based on the traditional resource-based approach. Recommendations by National Association of Software and Service Companies (NASSCOM) and the Indian Government task force set up to examine the human resource challenge for IT and IT enabled Services (ITeS) sector have been briefly discussed. Both of these agencies have underrated some skills such as "spoken English," "creativity," and "team working" and have categorised them as desirable rather than necessary. The accreditation criteria of NBA and also some recommendations of NASSCOM and the Indian Government task force are not in alignment with the contemporary global perspectives on this issue. The Indian engineering education sector can tremendously help the Indian IT industry to make a much larger contribution in higher value-added markets. It needs to focus on competence building by transforming its traditional teaching, learning, and assessment processes. This focus will also help in leveraging Indian IT industry's success for developing India as a preferred destination for engineering education at least in selected disciplines related to information technology. Further, faculty's unfamiliarity and inexperience with real life engineering projects as well as research on learning also need urgent attention in order to meet these objectives. (Contains 2 tables and 1 figure.)
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Publication Type: Journal Articles; Reports - Evaluative
Education Level: Higher Education
Audience: N/A
Language: English
Sponsor: N/A
Authoring Institution: N/A
Identifiers - Location: India