Creativity, Innovation and Entrepreneurship prime focus for holistic education: New National Education Policy 2020

The Union Cabinet approved The National Education Policy 2020-NEP on July 29, 2020[1]. The NEP proposes a paradigm shift on how education is disbursed by various institutions across the country. As the present education system limits itself in various aspects and unable to encourage innovative and out-of-the-box thinking among young minds. A much needed move for the transformation of education ecosystem The NEP seeks to establish an educational landscape that caters to the overall-development of students in order to create industry ready work force to meet global industry requirements and also emphasis on entrepreneurship and startups ecosystem. This work presents NEP 2020 from creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship perspective.

Introduction:

Creativity, innovation and entrepreneurship remain at the heart of the Policy. The Ministry of Human Resource Development (now, the Ministry of Education) has recognized that India lags behind when it comes to research, innovation and entrepreneurship. This lack of creative and critical thinking mainly stems from the fact that the current educational framework does not award such thinking. This has resulted in stagnation of Intellectual properties, local manufacturing and self-sustainability. Creativity leads to innovation and innovation eventually results in the generation of Intellectual Property and further can be taken up to entrepreneurship and startups.

New Policy aims for Universalization of Education from pre-school to secondary level with 100 % GER in school education by 2030 and aims to bring 2 crore out of school children back into the main stream [5]. New Policy aims for Universalization of Education from pre-school to secondary level with 100 % GER in school education by 2030

Key Principles of NEP 2020

A multi-disciplinary approach to develop 21st century skills

A multi-disciplinary approach that eases the divide between arts, science and technical colleges is a welcome move to prepare students for jobs in the future. In the longer run, the NEP aims to make education flexible and broad-based to develop equivalence of vocational and academic streams. The purpose is to create useful capabilities while offering specializations across disciplines. The focus of the framework is to allow flexibility to students to select their field of study that aligns with their area of interest. For example, a student pursuing music will be able to learn coding and science together. The result will be a creative combination as well as a flexible curriculum for students.

More importantly, NEP signals the end of rote learning. The comprehensive framework brings in assessments based on the application of core concepts to inculcate a problem-solving mindset. The focus will be on revamping the curricula in tandem with global standards. Integrating vocational and academic courses will help develop industry-ready professionals, equipped with ‘21st century skills’.

With the introduction of many transformational reforms, the NEP will undoubtedly result in the increased generation of ideas leading to increase in SME and MSMEs in future.

The policy envisions a holistic education by bringing an integration of sciences, social sciences, arts, humanities and sports to actualize multidisciplinary culture in academia. Conceptual understanding, creativity and critical thinking will be the foundation of research and innovation in the new vision. It is aimed at producing revolutionary research and preventing the reproduction of similar works lacking pioneering prospects. The policy also envisions the transformation of India into an equitable and vibrant knowledge society by providing high-quality education to all. The ‘demographic dividend’ of India can be fully utilized by inspiring and encouraging a considerable number of committed scholars to quality research in various fields. The policy also aims to build a holistic approach to the preparation of professionals by ensuring broad-based competencies, understanding of the social-human context, a strong ethical compass, in addition to the highest quality professional capacities.  

Proliferation of Intellectual Property:

  1. Establishment of the National Research Foundation (NRF).
  2. The abolishment of Rote Learning
  3. Streamlining PhDs and Degrees with Research
  4. Fueling Research and Innovation in Colleges and Universities
  5. Education 4.0 and the National Education Technology Forum
  6. Disruptive Technologies

Preparing a roadmap for entrepreneurship

Given the explosive pace of technological development allied with the sheer creativity, the NEP, promotes student entrepreneurs with the exposure to vocational education in partnership with industry and in alignment with the Sustainable Development Goal 4.4 (SDG) [2]. Integration of vocational education with educational offerings in all institutions by choosing focus areas based on skills gap analysis and mapping of local opportunities will develop entrepreneurial competencies besides capacities and will go a long way to make vocational education a part of the larger vision of holistic education.

Framework for 21st Century Learning and Era of specializations

NEP 2020 will ensure the holistic development of learners. We have to advance our students with 21st-century skills. These 21st Century skills will be: Critical Thinking, Creativity, Collaboration, Curiosity, and Communication. The new NEP is a means of fulfilling New India, New Expectations, and New Requirements. NEP will bring in a reduction in curriculum content to enhance essential learning and critical thinking. Stress will also be given to removing language barriers in order to achieve better results in learning.

Further, as part of a holistic education, the ideas of imaginative and flexible curricular structures enable creative combinations of disciplines for study.  NEP provides for rigorous research-based specialization by giving opportunities for multi-disciplinary work including industry; opportunities for internships with local industry/businesses-houses; actively engaging with the practical side of learning, all of which are bound give impetus to entrepreneurship.

Focus on technical education for the overall growth and development

Also, the focus on technical education is decisive for India’s overall growth and development, and is well addressed in NEP. The technical sectors like engineering, technology, management, architecture, town planning, pharmacy, hotel management and catering technology continue to demand well-qualified individuals and hence closer collaboration between industry and institutions to drive innovation and research is actively encouraged in NEP [3].

Soliciting inputs from national and international entrepreneurs and practitioners; integrating vocational education programs into mainstream education, complementing with a parallel voluntary and more business-focused approach; creating entrepreneurship oriented programs with expanded high-quality opportunities that can make effective use of these qualifications would allow breakthroughs to be brought into NEP and/or implementation in an optimal fashion. Besides, as part of multi-disciplinary education, the focus will be on research & innovation by setting up start-up incubation centers, technology development centers, centers in frontier areas of research, greater industry-academic linkages. These initiatives will go a long way in preserving and promoting entrepreneurial acumen and will also vastly strengthening the existing entrepreneurial sector.

The idea of infusing entrepreneurship into education has spurred much enthusiasm in the past few decades. A myriad of effects has been stated to result from this, such as economic growth, job creation and increased societal resilience, but also individual growth, increased engagement and improved equality. Putting this idea into practice will however, pose significant challenges alongside the stated positive effects. However, the NEP provides a novel path to the education system so as to make India a global knowledge-power and economic-giant.

The way forward – NEP 2020

In a nutshell NEP aims to usher producing prolific, productive and contributing young minds for building an inclusive, equitable, and self-reliant Nation.  The New National Education Policy NEP promotes a participatory, holistic, and inclusive approach into education. The policy released is the result of field experiences, factual research, feedback from stakeholders, and lessons learned from best practices. Its progressive march is a shift to a more scientific approach to education. 

The authorized structure caters to the cognitive development of the child, gives them social and physical awareness emphasizing on creativity. The new structure can make Nation become one of the leading countries in the world and make our children and youth realize potential and contribute to national development. 

Dr.Kiran Kumari Patil,
Professor CSE,
REVA University
Kirankumari@reva.edu.in

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