View: India needs to improve its educational outcomes to catch up with China

Education

Both China and India started building their national education systems under comparable conditions in the late 1940s. Different policies and historical circumstances have, however, led them to different educational outcomes, with China outperforming India not just in terms of its percentage of literate population and enrollment rates at all levels of education, but also in terms of number of world-class institutions in higher education, and greater research output.

The roots of China’s successful education system date back to the Cultural Revolution(1966-1976), which unintentionally expanded access to the primary education through democratising the schooling system, which was previously elitist in character, thus addressing the problem of mass illiteracy.

In contrast, India continued to focus on its higher education system since independence and only realised the importance of basic education in 1986, keeping it behind China and many other countries in Asia in educational development. In terms of enrollment, China reached a 100 percent gross enrollment rate (GER) in its primary education in 1985, whereas, India attained that level only in 2000.

In terms of secondary school enrollment, India and China both started at the similar rates in 1985, with about 40 percent of their population enrolled in secondary schools. However, due to a wider base of primary school students, the rate of increase in China has been much faster than in India, with 99 percent secondary enrollment rate in China and 79 percent in India in 2017.

India is closing in on the Chinese rate in terms of access to education, but on the literacy level front, there is a huge gap in the percentage of literate populations in the two countries. In the age group of 15-24 years, India scores 104th rank on literacy and numeracy indicator, compared to China’s 40th rank.

The OECD Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA), which assesses after every three years the domain knowledge of 15-year-old students in reading, mathematics, science and finance, revealed that students in China performed above the OECD average in 2015. Moreover, one in four students in China are top performers in mathematics, having an ability to formulate complex situations mathematically. Further, China outperforms all the other participating countries in financial literacy, by having a high ability to analyse complex finance products. For India, the comparable data is not available as it was not a participating country in PISA 2015.

However, in India, the Annual Status of Education Report (ASER) 2017 provides data for rural youth, aged 14-18, with respect to their abilities to lead productive lives as adults. According to this survey, only about half of the 14-year-old children in the sample could read English sentences, and more than half of the students surveyed could not do basic arithmetic operations, like division. For basic financial calculations, such as managing a budget or making a purchase decision, less than two-thirds could do the correct calculations.

With regard to the higher education system, both India and China dominate the number of tertiary degree holders because of their large population size, but when it comes to the percentage of the population holding tertiary degrees, only about 10 per cent and 8 per cent of the population possess university degrees in China and India, respectively. By contrast, in Japan, almost 50 per cent of the population holds a tertiary degree, and in the United States, 31 per cent of the population hold a tertiary degree.

In terms of the international recognition of universities, the Times Higher Education (THE) World University Ranking for 2019 places seven of the China’s universities in the top 200, compared to none for India. The global university rankings, which are based on various performance metrices, pertaining to teaching, research, citations, international outlook and industrial income, shows progress for several of China’s low-ranked universities, largely driven by improvements in its citations.

In fact, the Tsinghua University has overtaken the National University of Singapore (NUS) to become the best university in Asia due to improvements in its citations, institutional income and increased share of international staff, students and co-authored publications.

While India has progressed in terms of massification of education, there is still a lot which needs to be done when it comes to catching up with the China’s educational outcomes. China’s early start in strengthening its primary and secondary education systems has given it an edge over India in terms of higher education. Moreover, Chinese government strategies are designed in line with the criterion used in major world university rankings, especially emphasis is on the two factors which weigh heavily in the rankings — publications and international students.

The relentless publications drive, which is very evident in China, is weak in India and has led to a growing gap in the number of publications contributed by the two countries. Further, China enrolled about 292,611 foreign students in 2011 from 194 countries, while India currently only has 46,144 foreign students enrolled in its higher education institutions, coming from 166 countries. The large number of international enrollments in China is a reflection of its state policies granting high scholarships to foreign students.

To catch up with China, India needs to lay emphasis on improving its educational outcomes. Massification drive for education has helped India raise its student enrollments, but a lot needs to be done when it comes to global recognition for its universities. Further, it needs to focus on building the foundation skills which are acquired by students at the school age, poor fundamental skills flow through the student life, affecting adversely the quality of education system.

[“source=economictimes.indiatimes”]

Nokia X5 aka Nokia 5.1 Plus Launch Teased for July 11 in China

Nokia X5 aka Nokia 5.1 Plus Launch Teased for July 11 in China

HIGHLIGHTS

  • The poster for the launch event was teased on Weibo
  • Nokia X5 is expected to be dubbed the Nokia 5.1 Plus in global markets
  • It will sport a display notch, dual rear camera setup

Earlier this week, we saw reports suggesting July 11 to be the launch date of the upcoming Nokia X5 aka the Nokia 5.1 Plus. As part of the latest developments, HMD Global licensed brand Nokia has now officially teased the smartphone’s launch that is set for 8pm China time (5:30pm IST) on July 11. The teaser reveals that a new handset in the Nokia X series will be unveiled at the product event, which tips the launch of the rumoured Nokia X5 in China. A live stream will be available for the event. This smartphone will reportedly be called the Nokia 5.1 Plus in international markets.

As per a post on Nokia’s official Weibo account on Monday, a new Nokia X-Series phone is all set to become a reality in China come July 11. Last week, a poster had been spotted on Chinese search engine Baidu that showed off alleged posters of the Nokia X5 in China; the smartphone is expected to get a price tag of CNY 799 (roughly Rs. 8,300) for the 32GB variant and CNY 999 (roughly Rs. 10,400) for the 64GB model. As for design elements, much like the recently launched Nokia X6, even the Nokia X5 will sport a display notch and a bezel-less display. The phone will also get a dual camera setup and a fingerprint sensor at the back.

As for specifications, previous leaks suggest the Nokia X5 will sport a 5.86-inch HD+ (720×1520 pixels) TFT display with a 19:9 aspect ratio. It might be powered by an octa-core SoC, possibly from the MediaTek P series or the Qualcomm Snapdragon 600 series. This will be coupled with 3GB/ 4GB/ 6GB of RAM and 32GB/ 64GB of inbuilt storage.

In terms of optics, we can expect the Nokia X5 to sport a vertical dual rear camera setup with a 13-megapixel primary sensor. A 8-megapixel selfie sensor might adorn the front of the smartphone. Connectivity might include 4G LTE, Bluetooth, USB, while battery capacity is set at 3000mAh.

An official post by Nokia had also suggested the company’s two smartphones are in the works for launch later this year, one powered by a Snapdragon 710 SoC and the other by the flagship Snapdragon 845.

[“Source-gadgets.ndtv”]

Money likely to move from India markets to China: Marc Faber

Money likely to move from India markets to China: Marc Faber

Equity markets across the world have performed very well as most markets in Asia have given a return of 20 to 25 percent in dollar terms. India is up 30 percent in dollar terms.

“I am positive on emerging markets for about a year relative to the US,” Marc Faber, the editor and publisher of The Gloom, Boom & Doom Report, said on CNBC’s “Squawk Box.”

“If I look back, after 2014, emerging markets grossly underperformed the S&P 500. If we look at major markets in Asia, India rose 30% in USD and Chin hasn’t gone up that much which bring me to conclude that some money will move from India to Chinese markets,” he said.

Why will the money move from Indian markets to China? “Sentiments around China were very negative in the past six months to a year but that is now turning positive,” added Faber.

Commenting on the dollar, Faber said that the U.S. dollar could “easily rebound” by 4 to 5 percent from current levels, but President Donald Trump and his administration stand in the way of the currency’s long-term strength.

The greenback has had a tough year, with the dollar index tumbling nearly 10 percent since the start of 2017. At the same time, gains among currencies such as euro and peso also added to the dollar’s pain, said a CNBC report.

Commenting on Gold, Faber said it is an under-appreciated asset. Data suggest that from December lows in 2015, the GDX, the Gold ETF is up more than 100% and this year the GDX is up more than 25 percent.

If we compare the performance of the S&P, it is a fabulous performance and some gold shares have even done very well, he said.

[“Source-moneycontrol”]

Cambridge University Press faces boycott over China censorship

Cambridge University Press was urged to refuse censorship requests for not only its China Quarterly journal but also any other topics or publications. Photograph: Nick Ansell/PA

Cambridge University Press must reject China’s “disturbing” censorship demands or face a potential boycott of its publications, academics have warned, as a Communist party newspaper attacked critics of Beijing’s information war as “arrogant and absurd”.

In a petition published on Monday, academics from around the world denounced China’s attempts to “export its censorship on topics that do not fit its preferred narrative”.

The appeal came after it emerged that Cambridge University Press (CUP), the world’s oldest publishing house, had complied with a Chinese instruction to block online access to more than 300 politically sensitive articles from its highly respected China Quarterly journal. The blacklisted articles covered topics including Chairman Mao’s Cultural Revolution, the Tiananmen massacre and the cult of personality some claim is emerging around China’s president, Xi Jinping.

The petition attacked CUP’s move and urged it “to refuse the censorship request not just for the China Quarterly but on any other topics, journals or publication that have been requested by the Chinese government”.

“If Cambridge University Press acquiesces to the demands of the Chinese government, we as academics and universities reserve the right to pursue other actions including boycotts of Cambridge University Press and related journals,” it added.

The author of the petition, Peking University economics professor Christopher Balding, said he hoped it would serve as an alert to how China had dramatically stepped up its efforts to stifle free thinking since Xi became its top leader in 2012and began a severe crackdown on academia and civil society. “I think this is an increasing problem that really needs to be addressed much more forcefully by the international academic community,” he said.

Balding complained that while it was fashionable for academics and publishers to attack US president Donald Trump, they were far more cautious about criticising Xi’s authoritarian regime for fear of reprisals. “Standing up to the Chinese government involves definite costs. It is not an easy thing to do. There will be potentially punitive measures taken against you. But if it is a principle that is right in the UK and if it is right in the US, then it should also be right in China. And there will be times when you have to accept costs associated with principles.”

Another signatory, Griffith University anthropologist David Schak, said he believed CUP had sullied its centuries-old reputation by bowing to China’s demands. “Cambridge seems to be the one who is now censoring rather than China, even though they are doing it at the request of China … They have soiled their copy book.”

Schak added: “It makes you wonder what they are in the business of doing … I thought university presses were there to publish good research.”

“They are acceding to China whereas [they should have said]: ‘What you do, we can’t stop you from doing that but we are not going to do that ourselves.’ You put the onus entirely back on the Chinese government rather than cooperating with them.”

Suzanne Pepper, a Hong Kong-based writer whose piece on politics in the former colony was among the blocked China Quarterly articles, said she expected censorship from China’s rulers but not from CUP. “It makes them complicit, accomplices in the fine art of censorship, which we are all supposed to deplore,” she said.

Chinese intellectuals also lamented the attempt to limit their access to foreign research. “This whole case makes me feel extremely disappointed,” Li Jingrui, a Chinese novelist, wrote on Weibo, China’s answer to Twitter. In an oblique reference to China’s one-party state, she added: “I’m left with the feeling that there is absolutely no escape since every single breath on Earth belongs to the king.”

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The Global Times, a Communist party-controlled tabloid, rejected criticism of China’s tight internet controls, claiming they were designed to protect the country’s security and were “within the scope of China’s sovereignty”.

“Western institutions have the freedom to choose. If they don’t like the Chinese way, they can stop engaging with us,” the nationalist newspaper argued in an English-language editorial. “If they think China’s internet market is so important that they can’t miss out, they need to respect Chinese law and adapt to the Chinese way.

“Westerners [who complain about China’s internet controls] are arrogant and absurd,” it added.

An article in the paper’s Chinese-language edition put the same argument in even starker terms, calling opponents of the CUP decision “ridiculous”.

“China is powerful now and is able to protect its own interests,” it said.

[“Source-theguardian”]