The British Minister of State for Universities and Science David Willetts, who signed the MoU is travelling as a part of the delegation that has come along with British Prime Minister David Cameron
India and Britain signed two Memorandums of Understanding (MoUs) for strengthening educational ties between the two countries. The MoUs signed by Minister of State for Human Resource Development Jitin Prasada and British Minister of State for Universities and Science David Willetts will focus on strengthening community colleges.
The two sides also discussed strengthening educational ties, with Willets suggesting increasing the validity of the english proficiency test conducted by Britain from the current two years to five years. Willetts was in India as a part of a delegation that came with British Prime Minister David Cameron.
On this occasion, HRD Minister, Dr. MM Pallam Raju highlighted the government initiatives in promoting community colleges and explained the areas where cooperation was possible. Minister Willets asked the Indiangovernment tosort out the issue relating to one year master s course granted by the UK Universities. The visiting delegation also showed keen interest in teachers training and school leadership sectors.
The leaders also deliberated on strengthening the present programmes of educational cooperation between the two countries and new avenues for cooperation. The leaders discussed ways to enhance mobility of students, researchers, faculty and educationists between the two countries. They also observed that institutional linkages and leadership development are two areas in which substantial progress has been achieved under the UK-India Education and Research Initiative (UKIERI) since its inception in 2006 and the fact that more than 1025 partnerships had been supported in different areas including over 380 in the second phase of UKIERI from 2011.
The two leaders appreciated that UKIERI has provided a vibrant platform for various collaborations in the areas of research and innovation, vocational education and skill development and leadership programmes. Institutional collaborations for thematic partnerships have also been institutionalized under UKIERI.
The Ministers also recognized the need for capacity building of English language teachers in new methodologies. The two leaders affirmed their support for a strong partnership in delivering skills to their citizens.
The leaders welcomed the partnership between the UK Open University and Government of India, supported by British Council and UKAID, to provide training to teachers using web-based and other innovative technology.