Marketing, as a separate course in universities, has been taught in Bangladesh for the last four decades. I, personally, have been involved in teaching marketing at university level for about eleven years. In my observation there are some problems in teaching marketing in Bangladesh. Here, I am pointing out those for further discussion. It is mentionable that my objective is not to offend anyone or any institution. Rather, one should consider it as a self-criticism effort of a teacher who wants to overcome these limitations.
Most of the universities are not developing their syllabuses in a right way. In many universities there is no well designed syllabus even. Local issues are highly ignored in most cases. The ‘ghost’ of western theories is running after them. University Grants Commission (UGC) is doing almost nothing in this regard.
Improper Course Outline
With few exceptions, teachers are not preparing their course outlines in an appropriate way. They are focusing on the western theories and examples only. In private universities teachers are under severe time pressure. In public universities faculties are not motivated enough to do something effective for their students. Moreover, teachers are interested mainly in their personal matters, and career issues i.e. achieving foreign scholarships, acquiring promotion-power-position, earning money and so on.
Lack of Local Text Book
We are teaching marketing for the last forty years in Bangladesh. Unfortunately we have a very few standard text books on the Bangladeshi perspective. As a result, students are suffering from lack of knowledge of the challenges of the local marketing environment.
Traditional Education Methodology
On one side, faculties are busy with their routine works e.g. taking classes, conducting exams, assigning grades to the students. On the other side, students are running after grades only. No body is thinking of creating anything new and adding to the present knowledge stream. Universities are treated either as ‘good’ coaching centers or as ‘effective’ training institutes.
Lack of Support for Research Works by the Universities
On one hand, in Bangladesh private universities are providing almost nothing for conducting research works. With few exceptions, they are only maximizing their net financial return. On the other hand, public universities have become wasteland for knowledge and are doing almost nothing but politics. Research works on local marketing issues are being shattered but nobody cares. Teachers are looking for higher degrees only. Once they get it they just become complacent in research works and search out ways of earning position-power-money.
Lack of Interest to Understand and Explore the Local Marketing Environment
Almost all of the teachers are uninterested to know the reality of the local marketing environment though they are living in this country and planning to build up their career in this country. Most of them are living in the fantasy of the western society.
Lack of Corporate Attachment
It is not possible to teach marketing with its full notion from a theoretical perspective only. Universities need to build up and maintain effective relationships with corporate world in this regard. It is expected that universities will be the guiding body of corporate practices. Unfortunately there is no such relationship between them.
Absence of Learning Culture
Students are merely engaged with their preparation for exams. In most cases, they are not interested to learn anything more. On the other hand, with few exceptions, teachers are busy with making money. They do not know much out of their syllabuses. They are not interested even to learn anything in depth and contribute to their disciplines.
The Benchmark of the Evaluation of a Teacher
The success of a university teacher is measured either by the amount of money s/he has earned in his or her life or by the number of foreign degrees s/he has achieved. In worst cases, his or her success is determined even by his or her political power and position. Nobody is interested to know his or her contribution to the discipline.
*These are not all. You may point out some more aspects of the issue. Without pointing out the problems it will not be possible for us to get rid of those problems and get our education system to a world standard. Dear friends, nothing will be achievable without your active involvement. So, do not hesitate; do something for yourself and for the country!