Emerging Challenges and Trends in Commerce Education in India
Dr. Daniel Penkar Director | the education magazine

For several decades, the Indian education system has been one of the most significant factors contributing to the economic development of this country.

Commerce education is considered as one of the most popular career options in India. It is the backbone of business, trade and industry. This type of education stresses on developing people to make optimum utilization of available resources. Traditional Commerce education has become irrelevant in the modern era of globalization and digitalization. There is an urgent need to modify its structure in order to cope up with the dynamic environment of businesses today. To keep pace with growing complexities, the need of the hour is to ensure that appropriate change occurs in commerce education so that the students opting for it will find a place for themselves in the job market.

Commerce Education in India

Commerce in India holds a very important position in the educational system. Subjects like Accountancy, Economics, Business Law and Management encompass the core of the commerce stream. The stream is pursued through various courses like B.Com, M.Com, BBA, MBA, BMS, MMS, CFA, CA, ICWA, CS and many more.

Options after Commerce education

The Indian education trend is such that, students opting for commerce education amount to 16 percent as compared to 40 percent of students opting for Arts and 19 percent students choosing the science background. It is observed that when a student joins the commerce stream, he has in mind that he will surely choose to pursue a post graduation i.e. an M.Com, an LLB or a professional course such as CA, ICWA or CS.

He may also be preparing for an admission to a premier institute for managerial studies either by opting for a PGDM, MMS or an MBA programme. In fact, a commerce student has a great deal of options subsequent to his graduation and looking at the existing scenario in the job market, he can select a particular course or specialization by opting for a PGDM, MMS or MBA programme.

Selection of a specialization also depends upon the trend that is prevalent in the job market or what he/she is good at, either in Finance, Marketing, HR, Operations or Supply chain management. After pursuing these degrees or courses following a graduation in Commerce, the student is more likely to be industry ready and can start at better positions and superior designations with excellent pay packages as well.

The other indirect advantage here is that after following his/her graduation, opting for a Post graduation degree in commerce and management will inspire the student to start a business and become an Entrepreneur. Students of commerce, learn relevant aspects of business and economics as well as all interconnected activities starting from production to the stage of consumption. They tend to develop a very thoughtful outlook as regards to the outside world.

A commerce degree holds high regard also because of the innumerable career options such as CA, CS and MBA that can be opted for after completion of graduation. An MBA programme further provides an opportunity to choose careers as per their liking by opting for Marketing, Finance, Human Resources, Production, International Business, Operations or Information technology. Commerce as a career option is fast gaining importance in India and abroad. Its popularity amongst the Indian students is growing day by day.

Challenges in Commerce education

The current condition of commerce education is such that it lacks employability skills and does not enable students to face complexities of business. If somebody will ask me a question, “Does commerce education offer good employability skills and talent?” The answer will be a straight ‘No’. When I say ‘No’, what are the reasons for saying no? The most important reason being lack of communication skills, lack of analytical skills, lack of confidence, lack of ability or capacity to work for long hours, lack of dynamism etc. The result is that either the students are not employable or they are employed but with below standard salary packages. In order to break away from such situations, commerce students resort to an MBA, MMS or PGDM programme.

To overcome these challenges:

  1. High priority should be given on developing a proper board for drafting the syllabus.
  2. Making regular changes as per the need of the industry and global markets.
  3. Making English the compulsory medium of instruction after standard XII.
  4. Case studies for developing analytical and presentation skills.
  5. Encouragement to apply for practical training through internship programmes.
  6. Exposure to real industrial problems and solutions.
  7. Exposure to successful corporate strategies and reasons for failures.
  8. Exposure and analysis of successful global strategies.

About the Author: Dr. Daniel Penkar

The author is working as a Director at S. B. Patil Institute of Management since the last 8 years. He holds esteemed degrees like M.Com. M.A. (Eco.), M.M.S., Dip. E.A.M.(USA), Ph.D.(Mgmt),D.Lit. He has authored 8 books and has 56 research papers to his credit published in various National and International conferences and journals. He is a life member of the Indian Society of Training & Development (ISTD), Higher Education Forum (HEF) and Indian Society for Technical Education (ISTE). He has guided 4 M.Phil and 8 Ph.D students till date. He has a rich experience of 34 years in the field of education and industry.

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