Importance of General Over Technical Eduaction
The importance of highly specialized scientific and technical education is also well recognized and can not be ignored.
General education highly required today in each country. Although, in the modern world, the importance of highly specialized scientific and technical education is also well recognized and can not be ignored. But a broad education is also important, and this chapter makes the case for liberal or general education (the terms are used interchangeably) at the university level in developing countries.
In some countries, the term “liberal education” recalls colonial domination and education.
This is very unfortunate. While this particular method of education has Western roots, our emphasis is on an educational approach developed by each country, paying specific attention to its own culture and its particular needs.
The goal for all countries is similar-a broad, flexible, interactive education that addresses the whole human being—but the road to achieving this goal is unique and cannot simply be transplanted from one country to another. The time has come for national debates to begin. What is an educated person? Once a country has accepted the general education concept, what are the implications for curricula and other aspects of training?
This debate is under way in a number of developing countries. Some institutions in India, the Republic of Korea, Nigeria, Pakistan, the Philippines, parts of Latin America, and some others already practice general education, although the quality of these efforts is uneven. Most recently, the National University of Singapore has engaged a major curricular review with the intention of creating a new core curriculum.
Leaders from both government and education concluded that national preparation for the knowledge based world required soundly designed liberal education, as opposed to exclusive emphasis on specialist, and usually technical, subjects. The Task Force hopes this interest in general education will continue to spread across the developing world, and that many more countries will develop increasingly broad, flexible, and innovative curricula.
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