Career guidance needs more prominence to guide the youth – Times of India

By | August 20, 2021

To help students make an informed career decision, a career counsellor is needed. However, most of the Indian institutes give the least importance to it. Just like the West, India needs well-trained professionals with extensive knowledge of jobs and careers. The dearth of skilled career counsellors is because not many institutes offer this course.

Highlighting the acute short supply of trained professionals, A Vimala, HoD, Department of Extension & Career Guidance Bharathiar University, Coimbatore, says that the absence of undergraduate and postgraduate programmes to create a pool of professionals in this field is the only reason for the shortage of the well-trained professionals in this field. Realising the lack of talent and skilled workforce needed to become professional career counsellors, Bharathiar University, started a two-year MA in Career Guidance programme in 2008, with an intake of 20 students. Lack of awareness among students about the availability of such a programme is a major hindrance for the university to attract students.


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“To address this issue, government assistance is needed. They must promote and advertise career counsellors as a job opportunity in government schools and colleges. A separate hiring process must be followed. Currently, academic institutions have no other option but to utilise teachers as career counsellors,” says Vimala, adding that every job needs a certain amount of expertise. Teachers can help address issues related to the subject, not career guidance. “The main purpose of the two-year MA Career Guidance programme is to prepare the students as career counsellors and guide to develop a global as well as a national vision for education and employment. The programme provides opportunities for students to extend as well as deepen their knowledge and understanding of education, guidance, counselling, various tools for the psychometric tests, event management, organising career exhibitions, understanding of the source of information for guidance and employment opportunity and skill assessment at school, college and industry level for early and midcareer,” explains Vimala.

Course curriculum

Guidance and counselling practice, curriculum development, positive psychology of counselling, e-career guidance, English Communication and Testing, career development in social context, aptitude assessment for career, personality development and career management are major course contents of the MA Career Guidance programme. The current culture of peer and societal pressure, marks obtained in boards are doing much harm to the future workforce. Interest hardly matters while choosing a career option.

Systemic lacunae

Other than Bharathiar University, Rajiv Gandhi National Institute of Youth Development, Sriperumbudur, also offers MA Career Counselling programme. Some certificate programmes are offered by private institutions. “NEP also stresses on career counselling in schools towards identifying student interests but nothing is being initiated by governments,” says Vimala.

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