Reasons of Foreign Degrees' Popularity in Nepal


Basu Dev Wosti

In Nepal, international graduates are prioritised over national graduates in terms of salary and positional hierarchy in the companies. For instance, an international graduate even with less percentage is prioritised over national graduate with higher percentage. The main reason for this is the curriculum and teaching methodology.

If we are to talk about education system of Nepal, I studied what the generations before me studied and the generation after me will also study the same curriculum. Is there a positive change in this? Is there an educational revolution? What will my children learn different that of my grandparents? Nepal have not been able to provide the education that the global industry requires.

In Nepal, instead for knowledge, people study for degree resulting in lack of self-esteem and confidence for undergraduate students. They are unaware of their own interests due to which there are a lot of unemployed graduates in Nepal.

In Nepal, educated unemployment is rapidly increasing. On the other hand the organisations are facing problem to hire qualified employees to work for them because of the curriculum they studied in Nepal where students cannot solve problem and are not critical thinkers which is a major problem.

The best thing about international degree is it’s curriculum. Usually, Nepalese travel to Australia, USA and UK for their higher education. In comparison to Nepal they are more industry relevant and are subject oriented and this is one of the reason for prioritisation of international degree over Nepalese degree. The international degree is researched based education which trains students to be problem solvers.

In order to gain knowledge and solve problems, one must do research. However in Nepal, these  methods are not motivated but instead one can graduate in Nepal by reading the old questions, notes, guess papers and books which can be found in the market. This is true for undergraduate and post graduate degrees. In contrast to international degrees, Nepalese education gives lower grades to students who rely on research.

In other highly developed international countries, it is not necessary like Nepal to read from only one book. One can read from 4 -5 books, journal articles, journals etc. The answers are unique to the students. Each student then can defend and prove why their unique answer is correct. This is due to the curriculum that they have designed which is excellent. The curriculum is designed after a lot of research by the experts and these experts forecast the needs and requirements of the industry while they design the curriculum. This is why they are developed and we are still developing. In Nepal, we do not research on the industry requirement and the kind of human resources that the industry needs in the future which is polar opposite that of other developed countries.

In Nepal these days, there are education providers which are affiliated to international universities and the demand is very high for these kind of colleges and educational providers as these students can compete not only domestically but globally. As the degree of Nepal is not globally recognised, the post graduate degree holder of Nepal is not accredited by international universities. And this is a major problem for Nepal.

International degrees make a student creative. For instance, a student studying website design must design and create a website in order to pass the assessment. Nobody can guarantee a job but universities can guarantee knowledge and this can only be possible through curriculum. If the curriculum, is strong then the grades are not very much important as the student will have the knowledge required. They will have self-confidence. 

What are the problems?

The main problems are political instability and bureaucracy in Nepal. These problems are prevalent in from the Ministry of Education to Universities where changes in politics have been barrier for those organisations to work with freedom. This causes small or no change at all in education of Nepal. The political parties push their agenda rather than country’s agenda.

 These problems is the reason for students from Nepal to travel to other counties for education even though they want to study in Nepal. The same opportunity in terms of education that they receive in the other countries they can get in Nepal by studying in institutions affiliated to foreign universities.

Problem in Curriculum or methodology of learning?

The curriculum of Nepal is not that bad as it is thought to be but however we are not able to make them practical as they are supposed to be. The assessment method of Nepal is extremely liberal and there are not any tools check plagiarism. However, in other countries plagiarism is a crime which leads student to be more creative and gains knowledge.

Education for Job or Education for entrepreneurship?

Only education will not make you productive, professional and entrepreneurial. In Nepal, the education system does not make student entrepreneurial and free thinker. The government of Nepal has talked about providing loans to aspiring entrepreneurs who is optimistic but it has not reached them yet. Whether you want to work for a company or start your own, one of the skill that you must have is a critical thinking skill which is not provided by education system of Nepal.

The foreign education makes students critical thinkers, they provide them with practical knowledge, prepares them to be entrepreneurs. In other countries, unlike Nepal no job is big or small. An international graduate is give more priority in Nepal because of these reasons and besides he or she having high level of confidence in them.

Can an International Degree Solve Nepal’s problem?

Someone who has loved abroad their whole life cannot understand Nepal’s problem. But someone who have completed bachelor’s or higher secondary education may understand the problem. If these people, leave country for education and comeback to Nepal with skills and knowledge and utilise in Nepal then it give good results.

Nepal is still developing so there are a lot of opportunities here. Just by adapting system from a developed country we can reach great heights in Nepal but understanding the core problem of Neal is extremely important.

Problem of emigration

This depends on an individual. Usually because of perception of opportunities such as PR, work permit in developed countries, people settle in abroad. Someone who returns to Nepal after education is even labelled crazy.

There are two categories of people who travel abroad for education. One category come from a good economically strong family who travel abroad only for education and once complete return back to Nepal and run their family’s business. This is a minority category.

The other large group of people fall in the category who go abroad and settle over there. They are the ones who need to pay their loans they have acquired for education. Their primary focus in abroad will in making money.

In general, the main reason for difference between educational system of Nepal and other developed countries is the curriculum. International education are research based, creative and motivates students to be critical thinkers. This automatically makes students intelligent, confident and are more successful once they enter their career. Nepalese education system is old, stagnant without any innovation. This is the reason why we are entering international degree.

The contributor of this article is Administrative Director at ISMT college.