Friday, June 20, 2014

How to plan your academic career and how to choose a course

 Hello Friends,

Choosing  a right course at under graduate level is very important. Choosing a right course may open a lot of opportunities for you and choosing a wrong course may make you regret too. A right course is not just a nomenclature of the course, rather it is a blend of a right course content, a right/ appropriate institute, and an appropriate course chosen on the basis of your own planning, your ambition, your own aptitude and interest. A course should not be chosen just for money. Although it sounds impractical that money follows passion but it is true. You think about a particular area of study and you will find a related course somewhere. However, you should not get confused and you should not follow your friends or advertised materials you are getting. You may feel confusion about job, money, salary  and so on. You need to be cautious. Choosing a right course is like a marriage. If you get a compatible life partner, your life will blossom but if your partner is not compatible, your life gets ruined. Be wise, don’t follow blindly anything, be aware and choose a right course.

How to choose a right course and shortlist final 3 courses
You are a science student, you are a commerce student, you are an arts/ humanities student and now after 10+2 you have to take a vital decision of your career, a turning point. You come across thousands advertisement, thousand suggestion from friends who may or may not have knowledge about the course and institute (finally we Indian like to give free advice even when one have not sought it) then what to do? Students with lower percentage are in big dilemma. They think that their life is in dark. They are not going to get admission in a good college so they should accept any college and any course. There are few students too, who may feel that only course is important, opt any institute and do it (say BBA B.Tech, BE, B.Arch etc.). However, nothing is a black and white and none of these are true. It depends on certain aspects and we cannot apply a simple rule universally. You also need to make clear what do you want to do it. There will be always thousands options available but you need to focus on really what do you want.

Step 1:
Focus on your long term goal, aim and what do you really want to do:
Having a clear mission, mission and objective for yourself is a first step. Think what do you want to be aspire in your life. It could be Lata Mangeshkar, it could be Sachin Tendulkar, It could be Dr. C V Raman, It could be Lal Bahadur Shastri, it could be Nelson Mandela, It could be Dr. APJ Abdul Kalam, It could be Dr. Amartya Sen, it could be Warren Buffet, It could be Kalpana Chawla, It could be M.F. Hussain, It could be Amish, it could be Taslima Nasreen, It could be Mother Teressa and so on with your own identity. If you look at these people, they had a very clear focus i.e. what do they want to do their life. By the time you studied your 10+2, you have come across various subjects, various topic and in few of them you might have liked. Just think, do you want to pursue your career from those subjects? So a biotechnologist, a doctor, a lawyer, a social worker, a psychologist, a business executive, a branding personality, a creative person, an author, a poet and so on.

Step 2:
Search a right course for you
After deciding your aim and goal in the life, search what courses are available for you. Don’t keep so many aim. Keep only 5 different areas of interest and rank them between 1 to 5. Now search for courses available on your goal/ area of interest. You may search on google, you may search on You may see announcement on it, you may visit its shiksha café question and answer section and find out various questions and answers posted, you may visit various announcement, discussion and expert view on this. There are also various other career portal. Remember, only go through an independent review of such courses and institutes.

Step 3:
Search worth of the course
Check worth of such courses you have find out in your career and see whether it meet your own goal. For instances, you may be interested in learning new languages. You have options like French, Ardhmagadhi, Pali and English. You may find lot of career opportunities after learning French and English but you may not find any career prospects after learning Pali. So Pali, you may take only as a subject of interest but you may not find career prospects after this. Your objective may be a stable career, money, able to start your something own and so on. vTo check worth of the course, you should see:
1.       What career opportunities does it provide ?
2.       Does it allow you to switch between a job and starting your own venture or to pursue your interest?
3.       Does it allow to do higher studies if you desirous to do so?

Step 4: Find a right institute:
Choosing right institute after finalizing courses is equally important. In our country,  very few such reliable data available.                 You may need to spend few extra time to search valid and independent information. They are available through professional independent blogs, write ups and through news reports (not through advertisements). 

You may use following tests:
  1. 1.       Rank of such institutes
  2. 2.       Eligibility criteria for admission
  3. 3.       Last cut off for the course
  4. 4.       Reputation of such institutes
  5. 5.       Whether it has approval from required body. It is as follows:

 Now look at the following table describing degrees need to approval from which authority.
Sr. No.
Course Sectors
Degrees Nomenclature
Approving and controlling bodies
Engineering, IT and Management
Diploma in Engineering, BE, B.Tech, M.E., M.Tech, MBA, MMS, MBS, MBE, Master of Management, PGDBA, PGDHRM, PGDMM, PGDFM, PGDM, M.Phil and Ph.D in engineering, technology,   management
AICTE (All India Council for Technical Education), New Delhi
Diploma in Architecture, B.Arch., M.Arch, M.Phil and Ph.D in architecture
Council of Architecture, New Delhi
Diploma in Pharmacy (D. Pharm), Bachelor of Pharmacy (B. Pharm), Master of Pharmacy (M.Pharm), M. Phil and Ph.D in pharmaceutical science
Pharmacy Council of India (PCI), New Delhi
ANM, GNM, Diploma in Nursing, B.Sc. Nursing, M.Sc. Nursing, M. Phil and Ph.D in nursing
Indian Nursing Council (INC), New Delhi
MBBS, MD, DM, M.Ch., M.S., M.Sc. (field related to medicine only), Diploma, MHA, DPB, FCPS, MCPS, M.Phil and Ph.D in medicine and any course related to modern medicine
Medical Council of India (MCI), New Delhi
LLB, LLM, M.Phil and Ph.D in Law
Bar Council of India, New Delhi
Ayurvedic Medicine
DAMS, BAMS, MD (Ayurvedic Medicine), MS (Ayurvedic Medicine), Diploma in Ayurved and Ph.D in Ayurvedic Medicine
Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), New Delhi
Unani Medicine
Central Council of Indian Medicine (CCIM), New Delhi
Siddha and Naturopathy
Diploma in Naturopathy (ND), Bachelor of Naturopathy and Yogic Science (BNYS), Bachelor of Naturopathy (B.Nat.)
Department of AYUSH, Government of India
DHMS, BHMS, MD (Homeopathy), MS (Homeopathy), Ph.D Homeopathy
Central Council of Homeopathy, New Delhi
Teaching and teachers education
D.Ed, B.Ed., M.Ed., M.Phil and Ph.D in education
National Council for Teachers Education (NCTE), Bhopal
Rehabilitation and special education
D.Ed. Special Education, B.Ed. (Special Education), M.Ed. (Special Education), Post Graduate Diploma in Rehabilitation Psychology, Hearing impaired, learning disability etc., M.Phil and Ph.D in special Education
Rehabilitation Council of India, (RCI), New Delhi
Aerospace and Aircraft related courses
B.E./ B.Tech. (Aerospace), B.E./ B.Tech. (Aeronautical), Aircraft maintenance engineering, flying related course
AICTE and DGCA (Directorate General of Civil Aviation

Please note: If you are planning to opt course which is profession oriented such as BAMS, BHMS, MBBS, BNYS you need not to bother a lot about ranking ,but you must ensure approval but you must prefer ranking for quality education.

Final step:
Once you completes all these process now shortlist top 3 courses. Out of these 3 courses, now go through their syllabus and see if you are really interested on those syllabus and see out of these 3 which attracts you most and opt top institutes offering these courses based on your percentage (see their last cut off) and yes, of course you can apply to all three courses in same or different institutes.

To reiterate my statement again, decision taken based on your passion is never wrong but yes, decision taken for courses based on money can go wrong as those money factors depend on certain conditions such as market condition, new technology and innovation, government regulations (recently , Union Government amended Companies Act which increased job prospects for CAs and ICWA but it hampered career prospects for CS (Company Secretaries) as it said for private ltd companies appointing a company secretary is not mandatory (earlier, the companies with 5 crore and above turnover, it was mandatory). Luckily, after so much protest, on 12th June 2014, government issued a fresh circular making it mandatory again for pvt. Ltd. Companies above 5 crore. Similarly, once Nokia was market leader in mobile so Symbian OS was in demand, now Android has dominated the market so those software engineer with Symbian OS experience found no job. So, follow your passion and money, success and fame will follow you.

You may find edited version of this article on following:

All the best
Govind Sharma

1 comment:

  1. Hi Govind,
    Thank you for your post.
    I was pursuing my be. Mechanical from VTU university. I got somany year backs and finally discontinued my course. I lost Many years and now I am where I began. Now I am working in middle east as sales executive(Industrial machineries). I don't want sales in future. I want to continue my studies but not the same.
    I am intrested in architecture, construction, geology and environmental science etc. I am planing to do AMIE in civil but now iei is heading with an approval problem. Will you give me a good option through distance or any Advice from you plz.
    Thanks in advance


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