CAREER GUIDE
 


Women cut out for lectureship
Damodar Agrawal

W
OMEN are cut out for college teaching. In the years gone by, their presence in campuses has vastly increased. Selection committees of universities are excited by the phenomenon. There are now more women applying for lectureship and more women being appointed. As in most cases, they are found to be more qualified and have been outnumbering men in grabbing positions.

How to be fluent in English
J.R. Singh

C
oaching centres claiming to train students in spoken English and those which groom them for TOEFL and IELTS have recorded an unprecedented growth. The number of students who want to learn the art of speaking fluent English is rising with each passing day.

Hike in US college fee to hit Indians hardest
Beloit (Wisconsin, USA):
Major US colleges have announced their tuition fees for 2004, and across the board there is a hike of almost 15 per cent, which is certain to hit Indian students harder than any other group, as they form the largest enrolment group every year in US colleges.

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Women cut out for lectureship
Damodar Agrawal

WOMEN are cut out for college teaching. In the years gone by, their presence in campuses has vastly increased. Selection committees of universities are excited by the phenomenon. There are now more women applying for lectureship and more women being appointed. As in most cases, they are found to be more qualified and have been outnumbering men in grabbing positions.

According to a UGC source, this trend has been noticed in Central universities. As men retire, about 45 per cent of the vacancies are filled by women. In promotions, too, they have surpassed their male counterparts and are reported to be more serious about their vocation. According to an estimate, nearly 35 per cent of all teaching vacancies in colleges are now filled by women. They are believed to be more sensitive to their studentsí needs and problems.

The real challenge is to obtain high qualifications to be able to face competition to get into the job. If you have a masterís degree from some good American or European university, the task becomes easier for you. You should have a good academic record and should have cleared NET. Universities have the right to relax qualifications with the approval of the UGC.

As for the pay scales and allowances, they are equal to Class A officers of the Central Government. Depending upon the city where one is posted, the starting salary may be around Rs 15,000 per month. There are about 1,260 womenís colleges in the country, which make appointments every year. Besides, in 248 universities and 9,000 other colleges, too, women can apply. The environment of our colleges is safer for women.

In the distribution of workload, the convenience of women colleagues is fully taken care of. Even otherwise it does not exceed the average of 18 to 20 periods a week, 180 days a year. This gives women more time for household affairs. They are still left with much time to participate in college extra-curricular activities and academic and creative work. Many are convinced that after the IAS, teaching is the best job for them. However, the institution must be chosen carefully. If your academic record is good, your bargaining power will improve. You may then opt for a university in your city. Central universities and UGC-funded colleges of Delhi must be given the top priority. For job satisfaction, look for the countryís top colleges. The pay scales are almost the same everywhere, but prestige, too, is important.

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How to be fluent in English
J.R. Singh

Coaching centres claiming to train students in spoken English and those which groom them for TOEFL and IELTS have recorded an unprecedented growth. The number of students who want to learn the art of speaking fluent English is rising with each passing day.

Why are people rushing to these academies? Why do people, who are good at written English, even some holding a Masterís degree in English, have to go to these academies? With the spread of education, speaking English fluently has become a status symbol. Those who can write English, but cannot speak it fluently look for places where they can hone their skills. This is because they have not been taught English the English way. Students are taught in their regional language or mother tongue and are then trained to translate the words into English. This system works well in written English, but fails miserably in spoken English.

Most people, who are good at written English, fail to speak it fluently because they arrange their ideas in their mother tongue and then translate these into English.

Thus, they unsuccessfully try to perform two mental jobs at a time ó thinking in their mother tongue and translating it into English. This process can be compared to multi-tasking in modern computers, which is evidently not possible for the human mind.

The solution lies in thinking in the language which one intends to speak. To speak English fluently, one should practise thinking in English. This will take some time, but will definitely lead to improvement in oneís fluency in English. Teachers should encourage students to think in English. The country today is witnessing an increasing demand for people who are good at written and spoken English. Call centres, employing people who can understand and speak good English, have seen a rapid growth, with other countries outsourcing jobs to Indian companies.
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Hike in US college fee to hit Indians hardest

Beloit (Wisconsin, USA): Major US colleges have announced their tuition fees for 2004, and across the board there is a hike of almost 15 per cent, which is certain to hit Indian students harder than any other group, as they form the largest enrolment group every year in US colleges.

In 2003, nearly 90,000 Indian students enrolled in American colleges. The average annual tuition fee has now crossed Rs 14 lakh per annum as against Rs 12 lakh last year.

The availability of financial aid has also come down in 2004. For many international students, financial assistance is necessary to be able to get American education.

The 2004 costs of a university in the USA will range between $ 30,000 and $ 60,000 per annum or Rs 14 lakh plus on the lower side.

However, a large portion of a college's financial perks have now been reserved for American citizens for the academic year 2004.

American academic experts are suggesting that students must broaden their search in order to identify institutions that charge reasonable fees.

Once the student has identified a number of colleges he or she is interested in, the student must ask the college for as much material as possible.

Beyond the application itself, other literature such as the college handbook, brochures, course lists, etc, can provide a lot of information about the college, and may help with the application itself.

Once the student has all of this information, he or she should try and narrow down the choices to roughly 10-12 colleges. ó ANI
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QUERY HOTLINE

What is data mining?

Q Could you please tell me what data mining is and where it is used?

Rajeev Bansal, Chandigarh

A Data mining involves trawling large databases for relevant information, and analysing large sets of data into meaningful patterns. It has multiple applications:

For instance, astronomers use data mining technology for analysing scientific data. Law enforcement agencies use it to identify criminals from a large number of suspects on the basis of certain parameters.

Banks and research institutions use it as a decision support tool for financial and statistical analysis.

Open schooling

Q I had to discontinue my studies after class X due to some health problems. Now, I am continuing my studies through open schooling. Please tell me whether I will be eligible for the medical/dental entrance exams as a NIOS student?

Prem Kripal, Jalandhar

A You can certainly continue your education even at this stage. The flexible open school system is especially designed for people like you who had to discontinue their studies for one reason or another.

Although the National Institute of Open Schooling (formerly, National Open School) has a large enrolment of students across the country and is recognised on or par with CBSE by over 150 Indian universities, it continues to battle a colonial mindset that still associates education with formal classroom learning. The Association of Indian Universities has issued a circular to all Indian universities, stating the equivalence of qualifications of students passing out of the NIOS with those from other recognised boards.

Besides regular colleges, students passing out of the NIOS are eligible for admission to various professional courses such as the All-India (CBSE) Pre-Medical/Pre-Dental Entrance Exam (now in 2 stages), the CBSE AIEEE, IIT-JEE, etc.

For a complete list of institutions that accept NIOS students, refer to the NIOS prospectus or log on to their website: www.nos.org.

Air Force

Q Is there any way students can enter the Air Force straight after school other than through the NDA exam?

Karan Kler

A The Air Force holds rallies for selecting candidates for technical and non-technical streams at select Air Force stations.

For technical trades, you should have passed intermediate/class XII or equivalent exam with mathematics, physics and English (50% agg) or a 3-year diploma in engineering (mechanical/electrical/electronics/automobile/computer science/instrumentation).

For non-technical trades, you need to have passed your matriculation or equivalent course (50% agg) with pass marks in English, or you should have passed your intermediate exam (50% agg) with pass marks in English. The upper age limit for technical trades is 20 years, while that for non-technical trades is 18 years.

When appearing for selection at a recruitment rally, make sure you carry your original certificates along with photocopies.

For complete details, log on to www.careerairforce.nic.in. Or refer to Caringís Guide to Careers in the Armed Forces (Vision Books) which also describes the various other entry routes to the defence forces.

Aromatic plants

Q Can you please give me some idea about aromatic plants farming and also suggest a correspondence course related to this?

Preetinder Singh, Ludhiana

A The nascent food ingredients and fragrance industry in India is slowly gaining muscle. This hush-hush industry is not only developing downstream processes but is also beefing up its exports in a bid to grow the Rs 400 crore market for fragrances and Rs 200 crore market for flavours. The area around Jaisalmer is the sole producer of guar gum, a popular binding agent used by ice-cream manufacturers the world over.

India is also the largest producer of vanilla pods, used to make vanilla essence. A small but key ingredient in bakery products and confectionery, vanilla is grown in very few, select regions worldwide, Kerala being one of them.

Big players: Bush, Dragoco, Danisco.

The University of Madras, Institute of Correspondence Education, Chepauk, Chennai (www.universityofmadras-ice.ac.in) offers a 6-month Certificate in Herbal Farming and 1-year PG Diplomas Medicinal & Aromatic Plants through distance learning, which you may find useful.

Medical technicians

Q I have completed Class XII (science stream). Can one make a career in the technical support side of medicine i.e. X-ray, MLT etc.?

Angad Chitkara, Amritsar

A With advancement in medical sciences, the technical support team, along with doctors and nurses, has become indispensable for any medical set-up. Whether itís a general physician, a surgeon or a specialist, each one is dependent on the services of technically qualified professionals to assist them in diagnosing and treating diseases.

These professionals include medical technologists, radiographers and radiotherapy technicians who work in close association with doctors in clinics, medical labs, X-ray departments and operating theatres. They perform chemical and microscopic tests in highly specialised laboratories. They also supervise the work of laboratory technicians and assistants who perform routine lab tasks. Radiology technologists prepare patients for X-ray under a doctorís supervision. Medical technicians are also trained to conduct pathological investigations.

ó Pervin Malhotra, Director, CARING

Please send in your query, preferably on a postcard, along with your name, complete address and academic qualifications to: Editor, Query Hotline, The Tribune, Sector 29, Chandigarh-160020, or at careerguide@tribuneindia.com

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