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Education in India - Statistics & Facts

The schooling system in India dates back to centuries where the gurukul system was prominent. Gurukuls were essentially where students learnt under the guidance of a teacher or guru while staying in the latter's home. This involved everything from keeping up cleanliness on the premises to studying scriptures. Many religions, such as Hinduism, Jainism, Buddhism, and Sikhism, followed this tradition of schooling. A few of the oldest teaching institutes at Taxila, Nalanda and Vikramashila are recognized as India's earliest universities.

India established schools and centers for higher education before becoming independent from the British. Some of these are more than a century old, and continue to be prestigious educational institutions even today. The Indian Institute of Science, established in 1909, for instance, is one of the leading educational institutes in the country. After the introduction of the British system of education, there was a drastic decrease in indigenous institutes across the country. While Christian missionaries introduced English language schools, the Jesuits mixed this in with the European college system. The first Indian Institute of Technology at Kharagpur was established in 1950, post-independence to promote technical education.

Children in India enter schooling from the young age of two into pre-nursery or playschool. Primary education, from the ages six to fourteen, is mandatory according to the Indian government. Diploma courses can be taken right after school years, providing certification in specialized courses. Students who have completed their secondary education are eligible to get admission for an undergraduate degree in the arts, science, and commerce field. There were close to 40 thousand colleges in the country for technical and research training in 2017. Currently, Bangalore, the state capital of Karnataka has the highest number of collages in its urban district.

Apart from regular schooling, students take up private tuition for early school years for above average performances in academics. A plethora of learning institutes has been growing steadily in recent years that prepare students to fare well in competitive exams. The results of competitive exams conducted nationwide are crucial for admission to engineering, medical, and other civil services. Although these institutes have benefited the micro-economy, they induce stress among students who must put in extra hours of learning apart from regular school hours.

In the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic in India, the online education market has observed increased acceptance. With schools and colleges closed throughout the country, online classes have become a foundational component of the education system, to the extent that the government has approved universities to offer degree programs that are fully online. The key drivers for the E-learning market in India can be attributed to the exponential growth in smartphone penetration, improvement in internet connectivity and favorable E-learning programs and applications such as Vedantu and BYJU´s.


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