Mini Courses of GS IV: Human Values

Mini Courses of Ethics, Integrity, Attitude, Aptitude and case studies for IAS Mains Examination



  • “ The value concept is able to unify the apparently diverse interests of all the sciences concerned with human behavior.”
  • Values are beliefs. But they are beliefs tied inextricably to emotion, not objective, cold ideas.
  • Values are a motivational construct. They refer to the desirable goals people strive to attain.
  • Values transcend specific actions and situations. They are abstract goals. The abstract nature of values distinguishes them from concepts like norms and attitudes, which usually refer to specific actions, objects, or situations.
  • Values guide the selection or evaluation of actions, policies, people, and events. That is, values serve as standards or criteria.
  • Values are ordered by importance relative to one another. People’s values form an ordered system of value priorities that characterize them as individuals. This hierarchical feature of values also distinguishes them from norms and attitudes.


Education and Society

Education provides necessary knowledge and skills which enable an individual to operate ideally in the society and also contribute to its efficient functioning. Education is inspired by ideological postulates that derive from society; but its function does not end at transmitting cultural heritage and in promoting the ideals and values held by society. Given a purposive orientation, education can be a powerful instrument for reshaping and modernising the society. Educational institutions do not exist in a vacuum. They are an integral and sensitive part of society No educational system can operate without being influenced by the norms and values of society.

Objectives of Education

The three perennial objectives of education have been described as:

  • pursuit of man to know himself and the universe and to relate himself withi the social world as effectively as possible;
  • building bridges between the past and the future, i.e., transmission of the accumulated results of the past to the growing generation so as to enable it to carry forward cultural heritage and to build the future;

National Policy on Education

The Government of India announced its desire to formulate a new Education Policy for the country. After receiving views and suggestions from different quarters, the NPE emphasis laid stress on:

  • radical reconstruction of the education system;
  • improving quality of educalion al all stages;
  • giving greater attention to science and technology;
  • cultivating moral values;
  • strengthening integration; and
  • developing a sense of common citizenship and culture.

The important measures proposed in the policy were:

  • Initiating funded programmes by the government for providing access to education to all students, irrespective of sex, caste and creed.
  • Adopting common education structure of 10+2+3 in all parts of the country. The breakup of first ten years will be five years for primary, three for middle, and two for high school.
  • Providing equal opportunity of education to women. SCs. STs and OBCs, minorities and the handicapped.
  • Assuming responsibility by the nation of providing resource
  • support, reducing disparities, universalisation of elementary education, adult literacy and technological research.
  • Implementing programme of adult education.
  • Implementing programme of vocational education.
  • Taking steps for de-gradating of higher education. Courses to be redesigned to meet the demands of specilisation. Enhanced support to be provided to research in the universities.
  • Initiating open university system.
  • Delinking degrees from jobs.
  • Developing new pattern of rural university.
  • Strengthening technical and management education, and also system of rural polytechnics.
  • Giving better deal to teachers with greater accountability.
  • Focusing on imparting value education.
  • Providing infrastructure for physical education, sports and games.
  • Introducing reforms in examination system

Religion in Secular Society

How is religion relevant in secular society? Religion played and continues to play a key role in the affairs of man and society because of its functions.

S.C. Dube has identified nine functions of religion:

  • explanatory function (explains why. what. etc.. relating to the mysterious).
  • integrative function (provides support amid uncertainty and consolation amid failure and frustration ),.
  • identity function (provides a basis of maintenance of transcendental relationship for security and identity).
  • validating function (provides moral justification and powerful sanctions to all basic institutions),
  • control function (holds in check divergent forms of deviance),
  • expressive function (provides for satisfaction of painful drives),

This is Part of Online Coaching & Study Kit of IAS Mains General Studies - IV

<< Go Back to Main Page