Education in Praxis

It is heartening to know that the theme of the 69th General Conference of Ao Kaketshir Mungdang is “Education in Praxis.” As per the official abstract of the theme, the knowledge acquired by a student should enable him to become a productive citizen. It states that simply obtaining a certificate that endows one with a degree should not be the end goal; rather, it states, a student should be able to contribute, in various ways, to the community he/she belongs and the society at large through one’s knowledge and skills. As per the abstract, the challenge laid before the students is whether they can achieve the kind of education that will enable them to be relevant in terms of intellect, skills and attitude – not only now but five or ten years into the future – so as to live a balanced life. “If this achieved, there can be a possible end to the problems of unemployment in our society,” it concludes.


The focus here seems to be on education in ‘praxis’ and alleviating the unemployment problem through it. ‘Praxis’ is defined as an idea translated into action or something in reality rather than something in theory. The Cambridge Dictionary defines it as the process of using a theory or something that you have learned in a practical way while the Collins Dictionary define it as the practice and practical side of a profession or field of study, as opposed to the theory. It has been a long held belief that the “educational system” in Nagaland is not fine-tuned to equip the students with the knowledge and education they need to face the world in these ever changing times. While we might have identified the problem, the issue has always been about offering the solution. If the “educational system” is at fault, what then must we do about it? One answer to that question, albeit being blunt, is that there is no such thing as a perfect educational system and that how we define “education” would determine if the system is ideal or not.


Oscar Wilde’s statement, “Education is an admirable thing, but it is well to remember from time to time that nothing that is worth learning can be taught” makes relevance here. Traditionally, our education has been limited to teaching answers that will help students in school. Schools never taught us skills that we will carry with us after college in order to navigate through the harsh world of reality. It is about time to recognize that skilling is “education in praxis” but that would require us to agree that formal education alone is not the only form of education.

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