The University Grants Commission (UGC) has written to all governors and chief ministers requesting them to encourage teaching and learning, and production of textbooks in mother tongue in their Higher Education Institutions (HEIs), according to chairman M Jagadesh Kumar.
"Teaching through Indian languages is a key area of focus of the National Education Policy 2020. The policy emphasises the importance of teaching and teaching materials in the mother tongue. It is heartening to note that textbooks in the mother tongue and local languages are promoted and used by higher education institutions in our country," Kumar said.
"Teaching is also being imparted in the mother tongue and local language in many college and university undergraduate programmes in social sciences, commerce, science. This has benefited students from all strata of our society, particularly the disadvantaged sections and those residing in rural and remote areas," he added.
Kumar noted that it is a matter of concern that the textbooks and study materials are unavailable in local languages for many of the courses in higher education, science, commerce and professional courses.
"Hence as a first step in providing quality education in the mother tongue medium as recommended in NEP 2020, it is desired that textbooks may be produced in the mother tongue, local language through writing or translation for the subjects of which textbooks are not available in mother tongue and local language at present.
"Promotion of writing or translation of textbooks and teaching process in undergraduate and postgraduate levels in higher education through mother tongue medium will have greater results in improved Gross Enrolment Ratio from 27 per cent to 50 per cent by 2035, increased access to disadvantageous social groups, and better reach.
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"There is a need to strengthen these efforts and promote such initiatives as writing textbooks in the mother tongue and encouraging the use of the local language in teaching, including translating good books from other languages," he added.
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