Importance Of Career Counseling In Schools Amid Changes In AICTE Guidelines

Career counseling for students is an integral function of school education, think of it as a bridge that connects academic knowledge to the world of careers.

The shift from high school to the world of colleges can be as scary as it is exciting for students. With the fast-evolving world of careers and hundreds of career options, students today have the opportunity to convert their passions and hobbies into lucrative careers. However, more choices can often mean more confusion. Add to that the weight of knowing that the decision they make today will impact their lives for many years to come and the decision becomes monumental. In order to ensure that students make well-informed and best-fit higher education decisions, proper career guidance and counseling at this stage becomes extremely critical.

The education landscape is rapidly changing and it can be difficult for a student, or even a subject teacher to keep track of changes, new rules and regulations for all academic streams and subjects. A case in point here is the new eligibility criteria set forth by AICTE, for admissions to the four-year B Tech and BE programs. The new criteria states that Physics and Mathematics are no longer compulsory for students hoping to secure admission in these technical courses. But what does this mean for students? Does it open up the field for students who may have been otherwise technologically inclined but not interested in these two subjects? Where do students who have studied these subjects stand in relation to those who do not need to study them anymore- do they have an added advantage? Or does this mean that a strong foundation in these subjects is not as important as previously thought? Who can students go to for these answers?

In such cases, it can be tough for students to understand the thought behind and the application of such a policy. The AICTE regulation, for example, has been brought out in line with the new National Education Policy’s multidisciplinary approach to help accommodate and provide opportunities to students from diverse backgrounds. This regulation also helps students get an opportunity to study biotechnology, textile engineering, agriculture engineering, and other areas of engineering which do not require physics and mathematics.

The responsibility of helping students maneuver their choices and decision-making based on these new rules lies with schools, after all, school education is a means to an end, not an end in itself. The purpose of school education is only fulfilled when students are prepared to apply academic knowledge to the real world of careers.

Career counseling for students is an integral function of school education, think of it as a bridge that connects academic knowledge to the world of careers. 

A teacher who is trained to provide career counseling can make learning joyous by making subjects come alive for students. Teachers are also well placed to provide career counseling to students because of the long-term trusting relationship they build with students over years of sustained classroom interactions. Every student is unique, with unique strengths, interests, and goals, and an adequately trained counselor who can provide customized guidance can make all the difference.

Career counseling is like the navigation system in an airplane with a tank full of subject knowledge, but no idea where to go, an airplane can lift off, but will remain suspended in motion, unable to make progress. It is critical that schools wake up to realize that this is the missing link in how they prepare their students for future success.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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