India lags behind in data science skills, even as general technical skills improve: Coursera

Indian professionals continue to lag behind in data science skills, although their overall technological skills have improved compared to last year, a new study says.

Coursera’s latest Global Skills Report (GSR) for 2022 revealed that in terms of overall skills mastery, India has dropped four places to rank 68th in the world. In Asia, India ranks 19th. The report also shows an increase in India’s technological proficiency levels from 38% to 46%, with the country strengthening its position with six seats.

While cloud computing is emerging as the strongest technological skill on the Coursera platform, knowledge in data science fell from 38% in 2021 to 26% in 2022, leading to a decline of 12 ranks, the report shows.

In addition, the report says India has low scores on basic and specialized skills in data science, including data visualization (10%), statistical programming (14%) and data management (22%), along with others. The strongest skill in data science for Indian technicians continues to be machine learning (41%).

The report gathered data from 100 million students in more than 100 countries who have used the edtech platform to develop a new skill in the last year. It analyzes three of the most sought-after areas of employment-enhancing skills in the digital economy – business, technology and data science.

“The big resignation and automation call for stronger investment in human capital, as institutions must prioritize the development of the highly sought-after digital and human skills needed to build a competitive and equitable workforce,” said Jeff Magionkalda, CEO of Coursera.

“Our data show that these skills are not evenly distributed and low-wage students and workers need access to flexible, accessible and fast roads to entry-level digital jobs that provide a basis for a stronger and more inclusive economy. He added.

In terms of the country, West Bengal is a leader in terms of skills. The eastern state is ranked first in the three domains. The state showed the highest levels of digital skills in the country, ahead of Karnataka (the state in which the Indian Silicon Valley Bengaluru), which ranks fourth in technology and number 6 in data science. Andhra Pradesh is one of the three best performing countries with high skills in business and technology. It has been proven that students from the state have 100% mastery of security engineering, operating systems and computer networks.

Overall, Indian learners in the southern states perform better than those in the northern states in all three domains, the report shows.

Citing a report from the Microsoft industry that 28 million new technology jobs will be created in India by 2025, Raghav Gupta, managing director for India and APAC, Coursera, said: “This year GSR signals a significant need for Indian learners to overcome critical skills gaps, especially in data science, to ensure that this digital potential does not become a missed opportunity.

“Strong collaboration between industry, academia and government, focusing on the rapid deployment of high-quality digital and human skills training, would be key to ensuring that India’s workforce remains sustainable and competitive in the face of rapid technological transformation,” Gupta said. .

The report also showed that Indian professionals are focusing on improving their digital financial skills, with some studying investment management, blockchain and risk management courses.

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