Reading Comprehension for SBI PO 2017

Mentor for Bank Exams
Reading Comprehension for SBI PO 2017
Directions (1 – 11): Read the following comprehension and answer the following questions:
The education sector in India is in ferment, hit by a storm long waiting to happen. The butterfly that flapped its wings was the much-reiterated statement in a much publicised report that hardly a fourth of graduating engineers, and an even smaller percentage of other graduates, was of employable quality for IT-BPO jobs. This triggered a cyclone when similar views were echoed by other sectors which led to widespread debate. Increased industry-academia interaction, “finishing schools”, and other efforts were initiated as immediate measures to bridge skill deficits. These, however, did not work as some felt that these are but band aid solutions; instead, radical systemic reform is necessary. Yet, there will be serious challenges to overdue reforms in the education system. In India-as in many countries-education is treated as a holy cow; sadly, the administrative system that oversees it has also been deceived. 
Today, unfortunately, there is no protest against selling drinking water or paying to be cured of illness, or for having to buy food when one is poor and starving; nor is there an outcry that in all these cases there are commercial companies operating on a profit-making basis. Why then is there an instinctively adverse reaction to the formal entry of ‘for-profit’ institutes in the realm of education? Is potable water, health or food, less basic a need, less important a right, than higher education? While there are strong arguments for free or subsidised higher education, we are not writing on a blank page. Some individuals and businessmen had entered this sector long back and found devious ways of making money. Though the law stipulates that educational institutes must be ‘not-for-profit’ trusts or societies. Yet, there is opposition to the entry of ‘for-profit’ corporates, which would be more transparent and accountable. As a result, desperately needed investment in promoting the wider reach of quality education has been stagnated at a time when financial figures indicate that the allocation of funds for the purpose is but a fourth of the need.
Well-run corporate organisations, within an appropriate regulatory framework, would be far better than the so-called trusts which-barring some noteworthy exceptions-are a blot on education. However, it is not necessarily a question of choosing one over the other; different organisational forms can coexist, as they do in the health sector. A regulatory framework which creates competition, in tandem with a rating system, would automatically ensure the quality and relevance of education. As in sectors like telecom, and packaged goods, organisations will quickly expand into the hinterland to tap the large unmet demand. Easy Loan/ scholarship arrangements would ensure affordability and access. The only real structural reform in higher education was the creation of the institutes for technology and management. They were also given autonomy and freedom beyond that of the universities. However, in the last few years, determined efforts have been underway to curb their autonomy. These institutes, however, need freedom to decide on recruitment, salaries and admissions, so as to compete globally. However, such institutes will be few. Therefore, we need a regulatory framework that will enable and encourage States and the Centre, genuine philanthropists and also corporates to set up quality educational institutions. The regulatory system needs only to ensure transparency, accountability, competition and widely-available independent assessments or ratings. It is time for radical thinking, bold experimentation and new structures; it is time for the government to bite the bullet.
1. Why, according to the author, did the initiatives such as increased industry-academia and finishing schools did not help to bridge the skill deficit?
(A) These steps were only superficial remedies and the problem could be answered only by reforming the entire education system.
(B) These initiatives operated on a profit-making basis rather than aiming at any serious systemic reforms.
(C) The allocation of funds of such initiatives was only one fourth of the need.
a) Only A
b) Only B
c) Only B and C
d) Only A and B
e) None of these
2. Which of the following suggestions have been made by the author to improve the state of-education in India?
(A) Allowing the corporate organisations to enter the education sector.
(B) Easy availability of loans and scholarships for making education more affordable.
(C) A rating system for all the organisations to ensure quality.
a) Only A
b) Only A and B
c) Only A and C
d) Only B and C
e) All A, B and C
3. According to the author, what 'triggered a cyclone' which saw similar views on the state of education being echoed across other sectors as well?
a) The campaign for allowing corporates in the education sector on a 'for-profit' basis.
b) The support for the increase in the industry-academia interaction.
c) The report mentioning that only a small percentage of graduates were employable in software industry.
d) The report supporting the idea of making the education completely 'for-profit' in order to improve upon the standards.
e) None of these
4. Which argument does the author put forward when he compares the education sector with sectors catering to health and potable water etc.?
a) Education should also be provided free of cost to all as health services and water.
b) Taking an example from these sectors, there should be a protest against the commercialization of education as well.
c) Allowing corporate entry in education would result in rampant corruption as in the sectors of health and potable water etc.
d) As in these sectors, commercial organisations should also be allowed to enter the education sector.
e) None of these
5. What does the author mean by the phrase 'we are not writing on a blank page' in context of the passage?
a) Corporates would never enter education if they are forced to function on a non-profit making basis.
b) The commercialization of education has already started in India.
c) Education has been reduced to a profit making sector by some corporate organizations.
d) Government will not allow corporates to enter education as India can't afford to have costly education.
e) None of these
6. What is the author's main objective in writing the passage?
a) To suggest the ways to improve quality of education in India.
b) To highlight the corruption present in the education sector.
c) To compare the education sector with other sectors.
d) To suggest some temporary solutions to the problems in education.
e) None of these
7. According to the author, which of the following was the only step taken in order to reform the higher education?
a) Allowing organizations to enter the education sector on a 'for-profit' basis.
b) Creation of autonomous institutes for management and technology which were not under university control.
c) Setting up the regulatory Fram work for all the existing universities.
d) Making the availability of educational loans and scholarships easier
e) None of these
8. Which suggestion does the author make in order to, make the institutes of higher learning for technology and management capable of competing globally?
a) To limit their autonomy to acceptable limit and give partial controls to the government.
b) To allow corporate organisations to take them over in order to provide more funds.
c) To increase the allocation of funds to such institutes.
d) To provide freedom to decide on recruitment, salaries and admissions.
e) None of these
9. Which of the following is not true in context of the given passage?
a) According to the law, education institutes should not be run for profit
b) There has been no protest against the selling of drinking water and paying for the health services.
c) Only either corporate organisations or government controlled organisations can exist in the education sector.
d) The introduction of 'for-profit' corporates in the education sector has been facing a lot of criticism.
e) All are true
10. Identify the correct antonym for the word blunt from the passage.
a) Radical
b) Genuine
c) Noteworthy
d) Devious
e) None of these
11. Find a replacement for the word ‘promote’ used in the passage.
a) Aid
b) Foster
c) Endorse
d) All of these
e) None of these
1. A)   2. E)   3. C)   4. D)   5. B)   6. A)   7. B)   8. D)   9. E)   10. D)   11. D)