According to the data shared by the HRD Ministry, a total of 6,214 Engineering and Technology Institutions is there in India in which the total number of students enrolled is around 2.9 million. An average of 1.5 million students get their degree every year but employment remains confined within the 20% or even less of the total number of students. The reason turns out to be the lack of skills required in their core domain. In order to be in in fair competition with other countries, the skills of our engineering graduates need to be fixed as the world is moving very fast in the technology field.
In order to avoid this huge loss in terms of manpower and economy, government is in the process of addressing this problem by implementing Outcome Based Education (OBE) system in colleges and university associated with technology. OBE is a model which has student centred instruction that mainly focuses on measuring student performance through outcomes. The implementation of OBE can automatically take care of all the course curriculum, learning as per set standard, teaching-learning process and the evaluation of student knowledge. With the help of innovative and indirect questions ask through practical exams, assignments, mid-term and end terms, student’s knowledge and their average thinking level will differ. In fact, even technical institutes will be able to set their vision, mission, program and course outcomes through this. The achievement of these outcomes will be measurable with various rubrics which in turn will help the department or the institute in identifying their shortcomings.
Though many challenges are being addressed by the OBE as far as improvement of teaching-learning process and quality of graduates produced by the institutes are concerned, but the OBE implementation cannot entirely change the current scenario. Other professional courses such as Law, Medical Sciences, Charted Accountant complete their duration of apprenticeship or internship even before they are professionally enrolled. This kind of rigorous training which is totally skill based has never been implemented before to our engineering graduates. The vocational training which has the duration of one month before the beginning of the final year is simply to fulfil a part of the curriculum without having the need of fulfilling the skill development.
Hence in order to ensure that the crisis of joblessness is solved gradually some hard decisions is required to be taken. Instead of the projects that the B. tech students do in their last six months (8th semester), they should rather work and gain experience in an industry as an apprentice and their final grading should be given by the industry based on some fixed guidelines. Hence the technical institutes and the industries should work together in order to implement this kind of training. All the industries nearby and the specific training they can provide to the students should get identified by the respective colleges. This can be the basis over which students can select their fields they want to work in.Once all this gets effectively implemented the academic institutes, the tie-up industries, and the graduating engineers, all the stake holders will be able to witness the positive changes in the course and its impact.This is high time when placement shouldn’t be the concern, but the concern should rather be on the quality of the course which is being delivered. Nevertheless, through this the industry experts would also be able to get their work done in a minimal cost by a technically sound student. In this process besides a degree, a skill set is earned by the students which can guarantee them a job in their core domain. Focus and work towards this direction will help solving the mystery of poor employability of Engineering graduates.