Education industry is growing by leaps and bounds bringing multitudes of options to us.
This is a boon to the students of today as it offers a choice and option for the best. However the competition among the Educational institutes means huge amount of marketing activity. The target of this marketing activity is us, the students and parents of these students.
Unfortunately the scope of the marketing stretches to glamorizing the individual products that are sold. These products are the courses that are offered by these institutes. Since the options for the students are vast, the individual institutes have to go out of their way to impress about what they have to offer. In the process, lots of facts are covered up by layers of glamour. For example- Many institutes resort to highlighting their air-conditioned study halls and provision of laptops to their students. Factors like these hold tremendous attraction for students at that tender age.
In my counseling centre parents approach me with a stubborn child who insists on joining a particular institute for reasons of glamour. Often when I ask these students about what is so good about this institute, they are not able to quote anything more than the glamorous ads they had read. To my surprise when I talk about the courses offered, these students are naively ignorant and yet not interested in the details of the course curriculum.
To my dismay many institutes that boast of state of the art infrastructure do not believe in investing in human resources and severely lack trained and experienced staff. I would like the leave the institutes to their fate as they are mostly in the fray of the business. However that leaves a tremendous responsibility on the students and the parents to choose an institute that caters to their requirement of learning and developing a satisfactory career for themselves and their children.
How to choose the correct institute:
To shortlist the suitability of the institute for your-self, ask the following questions:
1. Are the combinations of subjects offered right for you?
2. What type of degree is it?
3. Does it improve your chances of following your chosen career?
4. Will it be recognized by employers or educational organizations in the country
where you plan to take employment or higher education?
5. What are the options within the subject?
6. What are the teaching methods? Will it solve your purpose?
7. What kind of teaching staff does the institute have at the time of your admission?
8. Are the classes conducted regularly with regular assessments?
9. How is the degree program assessed? Who is the assessing /verifying body?
10. Does the institute offer any scholarship?
11. Do they have hostel/ boarding facilities?
12. What is the placement strategy?
To get the current and authentic answers to your questions the following steps can be most helpful:
1. Refer to at least 3-4 authentic sources that compare college and institutes on the basis of various factors. There are many website on the internet. One has to remember that there is always a personal bias and many a times these comparisons are not complete.
2. Talk to the current students of the concerned institutes- None but the students who are currently studying in the institute can give you the correct information about the quality of faculty and efficacy of education in that institute. Past students may give some details but remember that education is a dynamic phenomenon and faculty and administrators keep changing which may change the key essentials.
3. Study the prospectus of each institute in your list in depth. There are many important points about placement and scholarships etc that are mentioned in fine print and need to be questioned in time.
Most of all try to remove all influence from friends and marketing agencies to work on the selection process with as minimal bias as possible. All said and done you cannot be over careful about this selection process. Howsoever time consuming and tedious this may sound remember that this is going to ensure that the place you take your education is worth your time, money and investment of dreams.