Individualized education: Vedic education prescribes different training for people based on their proclivities since very early age. Vedic thought recognizes three different inclinations in people. The first is inclination towards intellectual pursuits, second is the inclination towards martial pursuits and third is the inclination towards business pursuits. Students in each of these categories are given custom education. Modern education system makes everyone go through the same set of education.
Focus on character build-up rather than skill training: Srimad Bhagavatam canto 7 chapter 12 Narad muni describes the lifestyle of a student in the Gurukul. The student is submissive to the guru, controls his mind and senses, lives for the benefit of the guru, at the same he develops firm friendship with guru. This inculcates an attitude of humility and service in the student which enables him to make important contributions to society later. Student lives an austere and simple life that prepares him to face any situation in life. Modern education is based on skill training which becomes outdated very soon.
The system of dakshina (gift) to the teacher according one’s own capacity: The fees of the Gurukul would vary according to the ability of the student therefore everyone was given an equal opportunity for education irrespective of the economic status (SB 7.12.13-14). Modern education is highly commercialized with teachers and universities clearly working on models of profit. Good education is accompanied with exorbitant fees. This creates a difference in the level of education received by the rich and the poor.
Living with guru of high ideals and character: In the Gurukul the students would stay with the guru who would himself be of very high character. They would have a first hand experience of virtuous qualities from the life and behaviour of their guru. Hence they would very naturally assimilate these qualities. In modern times character of the teachers is not very important, all that matters is their skill to explain a material subject.
Based on theistic world-view: Vedic education is based on a theistic worldview and thus all its aspects are consonant with this world view (SB 7.12.2). Students are not only taught the means to earn their livelihood but also devotion to God and self-realization. Vedic education is complete education because it focuses on three categories of knowledge para vidya ( knowledge about God, philosophy of devotion and its practical application), apara vidya (knowledge that can help in creating means to help in devotional service. Example temple architecture, vedic social science, proper çulture behaviour and etiquettes, ayurveda etc.) and avidya ( which is knowledge not connected to Krishna. Example the various schemes for sense gratification and atheistic philosophies). Vedic knowledge is in-depth in para and apara vidya and has sufficient knowledge to save a student from avidya. Modern education mostly focuses on avidya that divorces one’s mind and heart from devotion to God.