The Education Structure of India

Category: Study Destinations
Posted on September 10, 2019

We shall start with a brief history of the Indian Education system, which is quite different and exciting to know.

India had the Gurukula system of education in the past, which means, any person who wished to study requested a teacher (Guru) to teach them. Upon accepting the proposal, the admitted student(s) would stay at Guru’s place and help him in all the activities. This learning taught students about running a house and everything the child wished to learn including;

  • Sanskrit
  • Holy scriptures
  • Mathematics
  • Metaphysics

Student stays with Guru as long as he wants or could return after receiving everything he/she wanted. Nature and life used to be the main topics in learning without memorizing.

The education system overturned and showed a broader picture with the introduction of Universities like;

  • Nalanda
  • Takshashila
  • Ujjain
  • Vikramshila

The government of India passed a mandate in the education system, which stated, free and compulsory education for children up to the age of fourteen. The government started providing education to all citizens irrespective of caste and creed, and there was no discrimination.

After this exceptional approach, India now has more than 7,40,000 formal schools along with approximately 175 universities. It has a high-quality education where all the teachers and faculties are adequately trained on the respective areas of teachings and working on a full-time basis.

Did you know?

The modern education system was initially being brought to India by Lord Thomas Babington Macaulay in the year 1830. Introduction to the English language and current subjects were taught. Teaching was conducted in classrooms with a closer relationship between the student and the teacher.

In 1921, the first Board was set up in India - The Uttar Pradesh Board of High School and Intermediate Education and was renamed to Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) later in 1952.

The education system of India is divided into different levels that include;

  • Pre-primary
  • Primary
  • Lower Secondary
  • Upper Secondary
  • Undergraduate
  • Postgraduate


Preschool education starts at the age of five and continues further for a year. In this initial stage of learning, a child prepares to go for the next level, i.e., the primary education.


Primary schooling starts for children who are six years old that consists of classes one to five. This level of education is crucial to every child because this is the stage where they learn various subject topics. Off-late, There is quite a change in the education system with the advent of technology, which has simplified the teaching and learning methods.

Would you like to know some exciting trends practiced in different schools in India?

  • The use of technology in the classroom, also known as smart classes (Google classrooms)
  • 3D printing which helps in forming and shaping the imagination of young creative minds.
  • Virtual reality that provides children with more real-life experience and helps them to learn, to remember, to understand faster.
  • Game-based learning helps to create the next generation to be better self-trained.

Lower Secondary

The middle stage or elementary education starts from class six to eight. In this level of education, children learn the essential programs and, learn different subjects like history, geography, Environmental science, English grammar, and one-second language. The teaching is more subject-focused.

Upper Secondary

The upper secondary is a combination of two years of lower secondary and two years of higher secondary education, i.e., class nine to twelve. More subjects or choice of topics can be chosen by the students who can later follow as the mainstream subject for specialization. Students appear in board exams, class 10, and grade 12. The marks scored in the Board decides the subject stream to choose further in higher studies.

The various curriculum bodies that govern the Indian school education are;

  • State Government Boards
  • CBSE - Central Board of Secondary Examination
  • CISCE - Council for the Indian School Certificate Examination
  • NIOS - National Institute of Open School

Higher Education

The total number of students in the higher education sector is vast, which makes the country third largest in the world. Colleges, Universities, and Research centers come in the category of higher education and, students go for it after completing twelfth standard or any intermediate course.

There are about 380 universities and deemed universities, with over 17,500 colleges and more than hundreds of national and regional institutes.

Undergraduate Colleges

Students start their initial period of higher education in Undergraduate Colleges, after completing class twelve. Various subjects can be chosen by students depending on the marks obtained in board exams. Subjects like Medical Science, Architecture, Engineering, Arts, Commerce, and Basic Sciences, etc.


Universities offer degrees at all levels like;

  • Bachelor
  • Master
  • Doctorate

Universities can be state, central, or deemed universities, which provide different programs along with varying researches in the respective fields. These Universities follow the guidelines of the University Grant Commission, which also provides funds. State governments help to raise funds to local Universities, respectively.

Grading System

  • 85% and above - Excellent
  • 80-85% - Superior
  • 70-80% - Very good
  • 60-70% - Good
  • 50-60% - Satisfactory
  • 40-50% - Average
  • 35-40% - Pass
  • Below 40% - Fail

Would you like to know more??

Check out the well-known Educational Institutes in India;

  • Indian Institute of Technology Bombay
  • Indian Institute of Science Bangalore
  • Indian Institute of Technology Delhi
  • Indian Institute of Technology Madras
  • Indian Institute of Technology Kanpur
  • Indian Institute of Technology Kharagpur
  • University of Delhi
  • Indian Institute of Technology Roorkee
  • Indian Institute of Technology Guwahati
  • University of Calcutta

Distance Education

The learning opportunity for working professionals, homemakers, and those who were not able to complete their studies.

Financial Aid

The government provides financial support to underprivileged or economically backward people who wish to gain their aimed career. Financial aid also acts as a scholarship to students at a higher level of studies.

We hope this information about one of the largest school education systems in the world (INDIA) is helpful. If so, please do derive benefit out of the same.

Bhumika Sharma
Bhumika Sharma

Bhumika has more than 4 years of experience as a software engineer. Having done MCA from Dayananda sagar Institutions, Bangalore and BCA from Sikkim Manipal University, Sikkim, she found her calling as the head researcher at PlanAll. In her free time, her 5 year old daughter, Mishka, keeps her busy and happy.

Amina Lawal
September 13, 2019 - 07:43am
Amina Lawal September 13, 2019 - 07:43am

Great.....useful information.

Kiya Patil
September 11, 2019 - 05:14am
Kiya Patil September 11, 2019 - 05:14am

Wow......Thank you so much for sharing such a good blog.

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