Academic journal article South Asian Journal of Management

An Introduction to System Dynamics Approach for the Visualization and Analysis of Problems of Indian Engineering Education Sector

Academic journal article South Asian Journal of Management

An Introduction to System Dynamics Approach for the Visualization and Analysis of Problems of Indian Engineering Education Sector

Article excerpt

The Indian engineering education system is becoming more and more complex due to various reasons like unmanageable number of colleges affiliated to universities, wide spectrum of student quality, multi-boss system in management and conflicting interests of stakeholders. Present methods of linear thinking based on the mental models of policy makers and administrators are insufficient to analyze the problems related to such a system. The result of a study to analyze the assessment capabilities of present accreditation process of engineering programs is presented in the paper to strengthen this argument. System Dynamic approach is proposed as an alternative for the visualization and analysis of the problems faced by the Indian Engineering Education sector. Different methods of System Dynamics (SD) are explained and models have been developed for two entirely different issues of Engineering Education sector. Though the data is assumed, models are formulated and simulation results are presented to motivate the use of SD.

1. INTRODUCTION

An Engineering Education System is of paramount importance in generating the technical manpower required for building a strong nation. With rapid progress in the information and communication technologies in recent years, the demand for technical manpower in this area has also increased. This has resulted in setting up of a large number of colleges throughout the country, offering a variety of programs to meet the demand. With the ongoing liberalization and globalization of the economy, more and more foreign universities/institutes are entering into joint ventures with Indian universities/institutes. All this has resulted in bringing the quality of education to the center stage.

The Indian Engineering Education System is facing a large number of challenges due to various complex issues like:

* Mushrooming of colleges

* Wide spectrum of student quality

* Lack of experienced faculty and their quality

* Location of colleges in remote places with non-proximity of industries

* Unmanageable number of colleges affiliated to a single university

* Multi-boss system-AICTE, state government, university and management

* Lack of appropriate performance measures

* Conflict about indicators of quality among experts

* Lack of proper methods of collecting, storage and analysis of information.

* Inadequacy of accreditation process to:

- Make consensus about the validity of the process

- Encourage continuous improvement.

The approaches and methods adopted to resolve these issues are very important in this situation, for the maintenance and improvement of quality standards of engineering education. A study of the present assessment methods of engineering programs has been undertaken in this connection to analyze its capabilities in promoting quality education in India.

2. STUDY OF THE PRESENT METHOD OF ASSESSMENT OF ENGINEERING PROGRAMS

2.1. INTRODUCTION TO ACCREDITATION PROCESS OF NBA

The All India Council for Technical Education (AICTE), set up to oversee the growth and quality of technical education, established the National Board of Accreditation (NBA) in 1994. The NBA has the task of assessing the performance and to accredit the engineering programs from various engineering colleges in India. The basic objectives of NBA Accreditation (Manual for NBA Accreditation, 2000) are:

* To assist all the stakeholders in technical education to identify those institutions and their specific program which meet the norms, standards and criteria prescribed by the council;

* To provide guidelines to the technical institutions for the improvement of existing programs, and also for the development of new programs; and

* To stimulate the process of continual improvement in the technical education system in India.

NBA has formulated the standards by which individual programs in any institute will be judged so as to give an indication of their strengths and weaknesses. …

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