Introduction of Project Management Curriculum Framework
PROF. VIJAY KANABAR, PROFESSOR AND DIRECTOR OF PROJECT MANAGEMENT PROGRAMS AT BOSTON UNIVERSITY, USA
Prof. Vijay Kanabar held an open discussion with project management faculty members of various institutes where he stressed on the need to review the existing curriculum in colleges.
"There will be 15.7 million new project management jobs globally across seven project industries by 2020. The increase in the rate of projects being sanctioned in recent years has called for inclusion of project management studies at a larger scale with immediate effect," he said, setting the tone for the discussion. So, will a 20-week baseline course be a good start to introduce the PMI global framework in India?
Under PMI Curriculum and Resources, a curriculum framework was launched for project management at the under graduate level in India. The framework offers 30 knowledge modules which can be combined in different ways to design up to eight project management courses.
He also underscored the importance of including soft skills and basic knowledge of region-specific, cultural sensitivities in today's project managers to help them create a framework for day-to-day interpersonal communication at the workplace.
Talking from his experience, Prof. Kanabar said that while project management courses can be integrated into existing courses, those need to be reconstituted into small modules for better effectiveness. "The idea is to offer the course as a set of recommendations rather than as prescriptives," he added.
Answering queries from faculty members, he said the course has been designed to be flexible and modular so that institutes can incorporate different elements into it. Replying to a query, he said localization was important and the curriculum has taken into account regional demographics and cultural nuances. "Ethics is in one of the modules but if an institute wants to incorporate ethics with the study of law, it is free to do so," he explained.
Prof. Kanabar concluded that most models being learnt are not used in the industry, yet they are recommended to give students a good perspective through historical data. "What you teach in theory can become relevant at any point in one's work life."