Teaching – A Promising Career Option
According to an old adage, “Teaching is the profession that creates all the other professions”. True indeed! Excellence and high quality in education at any level are only possible if we have the best teachers. In India, however, the teaching profession is often seen as a last choice career option or a “fallback” career by majority of people. The general perception is that teaching jobs and careers in the education sector generally don’t get the limelight they deserve. This leads to an increasing need to clear the misconceptions about the teaching careers in today’s scenario.
People must understand that today very few professions hold the promise of self-development and personal fulfillment as teaching does. Though the initial years might be a bit of struggle, it is the only profession where you are not under any constant stress of achieving fixed targets. Teaching allows you to set your own targets and get respect while achieving those.
In India, there is today a huge demand for well-trained and highly motivated teachers at all levels. Teaching as a profession is divided into many areas of specializations, each requiring different skill-sets and each employing a different method of training.
Required Skill Set – When it comes to professional skills, a teacher should possess the following:
- In-depth knowledge of the subject
- A knack for research
- A drive to constantly update knowledge
Besides the skill set mentioned above, a good teacher should also possess the following traits:
- Excellent communication skills
- Leadership skills
- Creativity and innovation
- Patience and Self-confidence
Eligibility Criteria: To start a full-fledged teaching career, a Bachelor in Education (B.Ed.) degree is a pre-requisite. You can also accentuate your job prospects by pursuing a Masters in Education (M.Ed). Besides these, you can also obtain the Basic Training Certificate, Diploma in Education and Teacher Training Certificate to get a teaching job.
The CTET or Central Teacher Eligibility Test, conducted by the CBSE, and the TET or Teachers Eligibility Test are also valuable qualifications that help you to become a teacher in junior schools. You can prepare systematically for these tests with the help of TET books available readily in the market or online.
However, if you aspire to teach in a Degree College or University, you must clear the NET exam conducted by the UGC. Having a Ph.D or M.Phil degree is also a criterion for such jobs.
Career Options in Mainstream education Teaching
Mainstream educational institutions, i.e., schools and colleges offer majority of well-paid teaching jobs in India. According to your qualifications, you can apply for a teaching job in the following institutions.
Elementary education (School level: This involves teaching students at the school level with a different educational criterion for each stage.
- Preschool and Kindergarten stage – A teacher handling preschool children needs to undergo a special training to be able to handle the tiny tots.
- Primary school stage – This includes teaching classes I to V. Here, a teacher is expected to teach the basics of all the subjects.
- Secondary, Higher secondary and Senior secondary – To teach students at the secondary (classes VI to VIII), higher secondary (classes IX and X) and senior secondary (classes XI and XII) levels, a teacher needs to be specialized in a particular subject by completing a masters’ degree in addition to the B.Ed. degree.
Higher Education (Colleges and Universities):If you wish to teach at the college level, it’s a pre-requisite to have a Master’s degree in your chosen subject with a minimum of 55 percent marks and you must qualify National Eligibility Test conducted by UGC.
- Undergraduate level and Post Graduate Level – At this stage, a teacher, more commonly referred to as a Lecturer or a Professor imparts higher education to students in specialized subjects. He also guides them in their research work.
So if you are still in a dilemma, remember that teaching is a rewarding career that is completely unaffected by industry recession. So roll up your sleeves, follow your heart, and take a stride forward!