HYDERABAD: The biggest monsters are examinations and syllabus in an education system which promotes learning by rote, observes Dilip Mukerjea, a mind mapper. In the city for a session on learning better at BITS, Hyderabad, the author of a sizeable number of books on memory skills, he spoke of a roadmap for Indian students in a world of exponential competition.
“Show me one system where students learn all the parameters of vocabulary and memory. Across the IITs and IIMs, all the institutes promote learning by rote,” points out Dilip who runs ‘Braindancing International’ in Singapore. The recently released Programme for International Student Assessment (PISA) report on performance of 73 countries ranked India second-last. “There has to be a change in the curriculum as well as methods of teaching,” opines the author of ‘Unleashing Genius’.
“There is no such thing as a learning disability. The deficiency is in the teachers as there is no single model of teaching which fits the needs of all. Everyone has a similar capability to learn, what is important is the way people use their skills to correlate and remember what they have learned,” explains Dilip who prescribes a visual method of remembering information. Stressing the importance of note-making, the educationist observes that a ‘map’ format of writing notes helps recall and recollect better.
In a country where marks define the student, the teacher of memory skills believes that “evaluation should not be a judgment on pass or fail but a continuous process.” The process of developing memory comes through the three-step mantra prescribed by the mind mapper- learning with comprehension, reviewing it and reapplying what is learned.
“In a country where Vedic Mathematics originated, the subject has not been given enough importance. It should be developed into a game as part of the curriculum through which students can master arithmetic skills,” suggests the man who has developed his own technique to aid those looking for enhanced skills for remembering and recollection.
“Good teachers are not valued in the present system and many of them need to relearn to teach. If the present system of education continues, India will never be able to top the PISA ranking. There is a need to rework the curriculum and the way it is taught to encourage proper comprehension. Like I said in BITS, beautiful campuses alone cannot guarantee good education,” quips Dilip before he leaves for Chennai for another session on decoding the mind and its machinations.