Policy Recommendations from Employers for Enhancing Skills through ODL

Gayatri KANSAL

This paper aims at seeking recommendations for the Open and Distance Learning (ODL) policy from the industry to ensure learners graduating from ODL system are employable and are at par with those who have graduated from conventional system. Survey from total 97 employers spread over 7 industry sectors indicated that policy intervention is required to enhance skill development through ODL. This will enable ODL system and its learners to overcome major challenges related to credibility and recognition. These recommendations stressed on enhancing the quality of ODL education and skill development through collaboration between academia and industry and use of technology. It is highly advocated that government agencies should ensure that quality parameters like recognition, accreditation, industry relevant curricula, be implemented and fulfilled by ODL institutions as well. Apart from the core subject knowledge, employers also stressed upon the need to foster employability skills such as problem solving, critical thinking etc. in the curriculum. Both the quality of ODL programmes and its linking with skill development will enable ODL system to bridge the gap between demand and supply of skilled manpower. The herculean task of skilling millions of people in India can be achieved through collaboration and use of technology. Collaboration is the key factor to bring about synergy between academia and industry. It will enable the learners’ job ready and give productive output at their work places, there by contributing to the economic development of the country. Alliance will also provide learners a smooth transition from learning to earning.

KEYWORDS: ODL, skill development, industry, employment, policy.

DOI : 10.17718/tojde.471653