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Monday, Oct 25, 2021
Outlook.com

Read Between The University Rankings

Rankings largely reinforce the dominant impressions about institutions’ reputations, says little about students’ needs

Read Between The University Rankings
Photograph by Suresh K. Pandey
Read Between The University Rankings
outlookindia.com
2021-09-17T18:48:11+05:30

I would strongly advise students not take institutional rankings as the absolute criterion of their choice of where to study. To students who can dare to be imaginative and experimental, I would go one step farther and say, don’t even consider them as your primary criterion. When it comes to ranking systems in India, these rankings simply indicate traditional and popular assumptions about education and excellence, failing to take into account changes that come with time, needs of particular students, or for that matter, the rapidly evolving needs of the world order. There are many reasons behind this. But let me begin with a personal experience that shaped and eventually upset educational choices made in my own family.

ALSO READ: With A Legacy Of Fine Knowledge, India On Way To Become A Global Education Hub?

In 2016, when we moved from California to Delhi, our professional move was part of a significant step in the higher education ecosystem. After nine years teaching at Stanford University, my partner and I were going to be among the early cohort of faculty at Ashoka University, with the responsibility of setting up new programmes and curricula at the new private institution. A more intimate educational decision was to find schools for our own children, six and two, who would be moving from public school in Palo Alto and a Spanish-immersion playschool, respectively. We felt lucky to find places in one of the oldest and best-known schools in south Delhi. We loved its spacious grounds, and the lack of “bling” that seemed to have become the social norm in most south Delhi private schools. It also happened to be a school that was consistently ranked high, often first or second, in the annual...

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