The Andhra Pradesh government declared on Tuesday that all degree colleges in the state will employ English as the medium of instruction starting from the 2021-22 academic year.
"The Andhra Pradesh government has decided to make English medium compulsory across all government, private aided and unaided degree colleges in the state from the academic year 2021-22," said an official.
Incidentally, the Department of Higher Education is of the view that English will enhance the career prospects of the students, citing the findings from the India Skills Report of 2019, in which English figured among the top three skills, along with learning agility and adaptability, which the employers look for.
"A 2016 report of Cambridge University titled 'Findings of English at work: Global analysis of language skills in workplace' highlights that about 90 per cent employers in India say that English skills are important for their respective organisations," the official said.
According to the state government, out of the 2.62 lakh students who took admission in degree colleges in 2020-21, 65,981 students enrolled as Telugu medium students.
Analysing the future paths being taken by BSc, BA and BCom students, the official said that English is becoming key to them as new avenues are opening up.
Citing data, the official said that a large number of BA graduates prefer getting into sales and marketing, journalism or research, where it is "essential that students pursue their under-graduation in English medium".
"With the advent of top-notch technology, commerce (and) industry has become highly dynamic, fast-paced and algorithm/software oriented in the last two decades. Therefore, English serves as an essential tool for professionals in the industry who are in the process of becoming highly successful," officials said about BCom students.
English is also key for public sector recruitment through the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC), Andhra Pradesh Public Service Commission (APPSC), SSC, BSRB and others.
"The 'future of work' demands knowing English which will be met with studying under-graduate courses in English medium so that the inherent inhibition wanes away," the official said.
The state government also believes that studying core subjects in English will improve proficiency.
"Studying market oriented programmes in Telugu medium is difficult as the reference materials are available primarily in English," said the official.
Similarly, the government feels that transition from Telugu medium to English medium would be easier in intermediate and degree courses compared to the post-graduate level.
In order to facilitate a smooth transition, the Department of Higher Education has introduced life skills courses such as personality development, leadership, human values and professional ethics in the degree colleges.
The higher education department has thoroughly revised the curriculum, including incorporating a mandatory 10-month internship.
"Thirty per cent of the revised curriculum consists of skill oriented programmes. The department is also developing spoken English courses at levels 1, 2 and 3," the official added.
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