“Education is the most powerful weapon which you can use to change the world,” said Nelson Mandela. Education is the medium through which we can change the world. It helps us to turn weakness into strength, and failure into success. It helps us in searching for their solutions. It helps us in increasing the mental ability of a person which in turn changes the way a person thinks. This results in a change in the pattern of social relationships and hence, it may cause social change. One of the main impetuses of education is to change the attitude, thinking, and lifestyle of a person.
According to Britannica, social change refers to the alteration of mechanisms within the social structure, characterized by changes in cultural symbols, rulers of behavior, social organizations, or value systems. Hence, it means that to change a man is to change society only. When a person gets educated, he/she knows what is right or wrong. Thus, education not only prepares a person for social change but also encourages an individual to proceed in the direction of social change. Our Indian history had a member of important and notable social reformers like Swami Vivekananda, Raja Ram Mohan Roy, Rabindranath Tagore, and Mahatma Gandhi who took an important role in the process of bringing out social changes. Many reform movements were led by these reformers. Education changes the outlook and the traditional approach toward social and economic problems. It sharpens the skills and the knowledge of the children. Technical education helps in the process of industrialization which results in vast changes in society. Education not only preserves the cultural traditions i.e., customs, traditions, values, etc. Of the society but also transmits them to the next generation.
Role of education in social change
Education perpetuates eternal values Promotes capacity to welcome social change Evaluation of social change Transmission of culture Removal of obstacles Increasing the areas of knowledge Leadership role Mother of new changes Spreading knowledge.
Stabilizing Democratic Values
- Control channelizes and modifies thoughts of new generation.
- School as a workshop for citizenships training.
- Awareness against social evils.
- National and international understanding
- Equality among masses
- Social Awakening
- National Development
Education is responsible for the transmission of desirable elements of the culture in the mind of the new generation. It may be noted that all the social and cultural heritage of the past society is not wholly acceptable to the new society. The new generation does not want everything that the previous generation used to practice. They want only the helpful and desirable elements must have to make conscious control of social heritage. It must carefully examine which elements or items of the past experiences have the capability of developing a new generation towards progress. It is noteworthy that with the changes or society new hopes and aspiration and their needs crop up in the common mind. Keeping in view of this fact education must have conscious control, design, and select the items of social heritage and transmit them to the new generation.
Education is responsible for the dissemination of new knowledge and experience in the mind of society. Every new society carries with it that genius who can contribute to new creations and new inventions for social progress. Education should give new light and a new direction to the minds of those geniuses through which new thoughts, ideas, activities, and new creations may emerge. It is due to such creativity that old faith, belief, and the way of life are changed and new activities and thoughts are going to develop. Human history carries innumerable instances of this fact. The extraordinary person with the creative genius of the new society contributes his own thought and idea to be followed by others. Gandhiji and Karl Marx and other socio-political and religious reformers from time to time have been able to bring about such social change and development. So it is evident that education can disseminate new knowledge and ideas for social change and development.
Social change refers to an alteration in the social order of a society. It may refer to the notion of social progress or sociocultural evolution, the philosophical idea that society moves forward by dialectical or evolutionary means. It may refer to a paradigmatic change in the socio-economic structure, for instance, a shift away from feudalism and towards capitalism. Accordingly, it may also refer to social revolution, such as the Socialist revolution presented in Marxism, or to other social movements, such as Woman’s suffrage or the Civil rights movement. Social change may be driven by cultural, religious, economic, scientific, or technological forces.
Education is very important for social change it helps in improving the mental ability of a person when a person gets educated they know what is right and what is wrong. Education completely changes the way a person thinks, behaves, attitudes, and lifestyle too. To change a man is to change society only Education brings a change in every aspect of a person’s life and hence Education is a perfect instrument for bringing social change.
Mrs. Sarita Almeida
School Principal at Rahul Education, Mother Mary’s English High School