Teaching jobs are one of the most underrated jobs. Want to know why? Read on.
Teacher’s Day just passed by this month. People, once again, like every year, could see their Facebook, Instagram, Twitter feeds filled with heart warming messages, images with glossy texts showing what life would be like without teachers, messages filled with regards, messages filled with regrets for not listening to one’s teachers, messages expressing love, admiration and so much more.
Here are a few samples : –
“Thank you mam for making me the person I am today. “
“Your teachings that seemed boring at the time is the only thing helping me progress me in life now. “
All the respect, love, admiration teachers seem to get on teacher’s day might fool one into thinking that it is one of the best jobs in the world but that’s not the case usually (even when teaching is indeed one of the best jobs in the world).
Teaching jobs, professor jobs require one to be disciplined (shouldn’t that be a default, especially when you have to discipline several children yourself), hardworking and most importantly one needs to have an affinity towards constant learning, routine life, public speaking and more.
Now let’s discuss why teaching jobs are considered to be one of the most underrated professions in India. A profession is called underrated when people (or majority of them) fail to see the value it provides in terms of compensation, respect, lifestyle etc.
There are many things that have led to the perception of teaching being an average job, but the biggest cause is the teachers themselves, not all, but the specific ones who chose this career not out of passion but just because they couldn’t settle in any other profession. Teaching is often the “Plan B’ for majority of people and as a result, many people don’t prefer teaching as their first profession and end up undermining the profession.
Another reason people undermine the profession is because of the conception around the pay teachers and professors receive, but the truth is entirely different. Initial compensation is low like most of the fields , especially if you are starting as a school teacher but you start getting a handsome pay as you move up the ladder. As far as the compensation for professors is concerned, you just need to look up the numbers yourself and you won’t be left disappointed.
But one more instance when a profession is considered underrated is when people underestimate the hard work that the profession requires. And if that is the reason you undermine teaching as a profession, here are a few things that will change your perception : –
Why Teaching Jobs are Underrated
Teaching itself is changing as a profession
Thanks to the advancements in the fields of Smart Classes, Artificial Intelligence, Virtual Labs, Mobile Apps and more, the role of teacher is always changing. It is not one of those professions where one can stay relevant doing what he or she did 5 years ago. In an age when people are debating about whether teachers will be replaced my machines or not, a continuous efforts towards learning and upgrading oneself needs to come as a default to teachers today, which, to be honest, is a hard thing to foster in real life.
You have to go beyond your formal role
Building on top of the topic mentioned in the first point, machines might not be able to replace teachers because of one single reason – a real teacher’s job goes beyond teaching and assessment. For lots of students, teachers and professors are their sole source for life-issues related counselling, motivation, validation and sometimes even friendship. That’s the reason students stay in touch with their teacher even when they have graduated from their classes a long time back. This part of the job is not mentioned on paper but comes as a default and is one task that simply cannot be and should not be avoided.
You are probably doing 25-30 jobs at a time
No classroom is uniform in terms of quality of the students. In each classrooms, there are students who might be excelling in academics while some might be doing a phenomenal job in terms of co curricular activities while there are some children who might be disadvantages socially, economically or physically. At the end of the day, all these students are unique individual and to foster their learning in the right manner, you have to customize your teaching accordingly. While it’s not a mandate, but you need to give time to each student individually and understand their needs. That is why teaching a classroom of 25-30 students at a time is often comparable to doing 25-30 jobs.
You have long hours and work that you have to take to your home
When people think about jobs where workers have to work long hours,toiling away their nights in front of computers, people usually think of people in media or ad industry, coders at tech companies, agents working in the customer service domain and more. While teachers don’t have to sit for that long in their workplace, that is, schools, to do their work, they often have to bring their work to their homes. When tests are to be checked, or a new topic has to be introduced, teachers often spend hours working even when the official hours are over. If you want to get into the teaching field thinking you will be home by afternoon and then you can resume with your normal life, you might want to reconsider your career options.
Despite all the hardships, teachers job is a rewarding one in many ways. It’s one of those noble professions where you get respect ( at least in the longer term), decent money and a chance to actually contribute to the society in a meaningful way.
It’s completely wrong to undermine teaching as a profession because teachers build the future by building the ones who are the future themselves. When such an important task is part of your key responsibility areas, one simply cannot emphasize enough on the importance of teachers and the roles that they play in our lives and in our society.
Want to learn more about various career prospects? Read here.
Hiring From Colleges | Things to know and Learn before the Process
Hiring a good candidate is an all-time concern for companies. Companies summon all their optimism when it comes to hiring, hoping that the talent they hire turns out to be good. While it’s not wrong to talk about how poorly our education system is structured to shape our students in terms of job readiness, in the end, it’s our job to navigate through these challenges and hire the best. From getting to know candidates and their experience to measuring knowledge, skills, aptitude and behaviors, the task list when it comes to hiring the right talent is exhaustive. But that task list becomes even bigger when it comes to hiring from colleges.
After having worked with multiple recruiters and student bodies, here are a few insights you can benefit from when it comes to hiring from colleges: –
Bulk Hiring from colleges: –
Aptitude based hiring with support from assessment companies can be your savior with regards to bulk hiring.
Whenever you plan to bulk hire freshers, one pragmatic expectation you should keep in mind is that nobody will start producing results from day 1. Also, you might have a certain set of requirements for the positions you aim to fill and properly testing each candidate for that is nearly impossible. In such a case, you must optimize your hiring process in a way that allows you to precisely measure things like aptitude, I.Q. etc. Properly measuring these allows you to hire people who might not be ready for the job from day 1, but at least have better capabilities than others to learn.
You can partner with companies which provide ready-made assessments like Aspiringminds, Elitmus and many more. Or you can get in touch with companies which provides assessment platforms where you can put your question and share the exams with students like Wheebox.
While many of these practices are already in practice, one of the best ways to hire freshers in bulk, I believe, is the one mentioned below: –
- List down your requirements or skills required
- Create a curriculum for the subjects (as per your organization’s requirements)
- Tie up with the university to embed the curriculum in their university curriculum as compulsory or optional as per their protocol
- Colleges will train the students as per your curriculum and make the students job ready as per your requirements
What After College is working towards such initiatives enabling companies and educational institutes to work out such collaborations.
Skills based hiring:-
The nature of work is changing, job roles are dynamic in nature, unfortunately curriculum are not hence grades and marks fail to be a good representation of a student’s readiness for job and skills. If you truly want to hire good talent, go beyond grades and start looking at skills a student possesses. Think about whether the student has the skills required for the job and bring him/her on board, being able to do this without getting influenced by a student’s academic performance is the key challenge recruiters need to overcome.
One of the best ways for skill based hiring is the following :
- Organize hackathons in colleges, design the problem statement as per the organisation’s requirement.
- Share the problem statement with the college students and give an overview of the problem statements.
- Assess the student as per the performance of the student in the hackathon.
- Hire the student as per your requirement
Hackathons have been common in the software domain. Many companies such as HackerRank, HackerEarth already enable brands to do the same online. This competitive format and its variations are also viable in sales, marketing, finance and other engineering domains too. What After College as a company have been working with institutions for a long time now in terms of enhancing the skills of their students and with a decade long experience of doing so, one thing I can say for sure is that skill based hiring works.
Internship – Pre Placement Offer
I always believe that giving PPO’s to interns, who did well in their tenure and/or show promise is always a good investment. Because within their internship period, my company gets to know them and test them within different scenarios and also the candidates get to know about our company and its culture. And all this happens over a small amount of stipend or in some cases not even that. Instead if I hire someone full-time in my company, no doubt I get the chance to test him/her too but in exchange for one handsome package.
College Based Start-up Acquisition
Nowadays college based start-ups are doing so well. And these guys get so much exposure on their own about different job profiles in their early ages. Trust me, investing in these guys won’t be a loss to your company in any ways. They have all that you need; different skills, leadership qualities, risk management, decision making power, professionalism.
You can hire them directly in your company according to your required work and profiles or if their start-up is similar with the profile of your company then acquiring their working start-up can be a good investment again.
Hire immediately after school
Hiring candidates directly after their schooling can be a good experiment for your company although training them can be a tough job for your organization. But there are smart ways of pulling this strategy off that can ensure higher ROI then your current training and hiring methods.
With distance learning becoming huge in terms of demand, I suggest organizations to hire students directly after schools and train them as per their requirement. Here is my suggestion for the organizations:
Reports says that students after higher education are unemployable despite students paying huge college fees. The curriculum at universities isn’t well aligned with what organisations want either.
As a result, organization should hire the students after school by assessing them on the basis of aptitude and get associated with a university for providing accredited distance learning degrees to these students.
They should open a small college in their premises or tie up with a college for the same, train the students and also utilize them for the jobs at their organisation.
It is a win win situation for both students and organization where students don’t need to pay any fees to the organization for training and company get the employee with minimal compensation.
Synergies can be explored between colleges and companies to come up with innovative use case. Honestly, when it comes to hiring college students, we have just seen the tip of the iceberg in terms of what can be achieved.
Survive layoffs – How to survive the layoffs in the I.T. industry
Given the layoffs in IT industry, it’s important to keep in mind and understand skills that are becoming outdated and being replaced by new skills which are highly in-demand.
Jobs in fields such as manual testing, tech support, system administration have become outdated and are being effected by the developments in the field of A.I, machine learning, automation and robotics process automation based systems.
Moreover, with newer developments in artificial intelligence (AI), robotic process automation and cloud computing, which help complete the job with less manpower, software companies are now having to reconsider their strategies.
Furthermore many software developers are at the verge of losing their jobs as they fail to upgrade their knowledge to newer technologies. With AI based platforms that automatically make your website come into existence, web designers are going to get hit hard. Many other programmers might feel the heat too from these automated development platforms.
However, there is surge in demand for latest and innovative technologies like data science, artificial intelligence, hardware product programming, machine learning and digital marketing. These are the fields where demand is higher than supply and hence people with these skills can get a premium on their salaries.
In fact, some of the sources that provide good skill based courses along with their fees are as follows : –
▪ Training + Certification (Around 35000 to 45000)
▪ Training at free or nominal pricing, Certificate at around $350 from renowned university
▪ Universities and offline training institute are also offering these courses
At this point, you must be thinking about the R.O.I of these courses.
Job cuts in Indian I.T. companies will be 1.75 -2 lakh per year in next 3 years, due to under- preparedness in adapting newer technologies hence it is better to invest money right now and be prepared for the future jobs, rather than thinking of R.O.I of the certification program. Although, as mentioned, due to lack of skilled individuals, people equipped with these skills can charge a premium in terms of salary.
Furthermore, in my opinion, one must have the 3 Cs to sustain in the uncertain Job Scenarios :-
▪ Complex Problem Solving Skills which involves computational thinking and solving real time problem
▪ Creativity & Innovation
▪ Critical thinking
If you are in the I.T. industry, get started in new domains which can lead to employability. Furthermore, just knowing the basics isn’t going to cut it. People need to establish themselves as authority in their chosen field and have expertise in it.
Furthermore, the Trump administration has been cited as one of the major reasons behind the layoffs. It won’t be right to blame Trump, for he has fulfilled the election promise of giving jobs to local people including IT professionals by tightening H1-B visa norms, which were being misused by companies by paying less to foreign professionals working in US. It is for companies to tackle the situation, and such situation they have undergone in previous years. It is not new for them. They know to tide over it or at least this time, need to learn how to tackle such situations.
Understanding India: The future of higher education and opportunities
We are living in an age of rapid technological changes. There is no industry or part of our life that has been untouched and changed by technology and the field of education is no different. Students are going to witness remarkable changes in the way they consume educational content, experience their college life and overall teaching pedagogy that we have been following for years. With the smartphone and internet penetration increasing in rural areas, these changes won’t be limited to urban areas but will change lives of students in rural areas too.
This opens up a range of opportunities for enterprising people wanting to begin their entrepreneurial journey in the education sector. India is one of the fastest growing markets in many segments and education is one of them. Furthermore, the recruiters and the corporate world has identified that a huge proportion of our graduates are not employable and the dissatisfaction of the students with current education system too, has reached a peak level. This make the current time to be the best to do a startup in the education sector.
The education industry faces a series of challenges and business need to understand the nuances of the education system to fully tackle them but there are several key areas that are going to define the future of higher education and opportunities that exist for people in the education sector.
Expect an increase in the adoption of online education
Internet access is becoming common and among many uses, one of the major uses of internet is for learning. From just being a source for references, Internet is becoming a place where students can even get degree courses. Even in terms of online education, skill based courses specifically will be more in demand.
Courses that have received accreditation from some prominent institute will see an uptick in enrolments. Furthermore, a reduction in the cost would really be able to make these courses receive mass adoption. Capsule courses that focus on teaching one specific skill (ex – leadership, negotiation) will be in demand as well.
Research driven pedagogy will become the dominant one
Curriculum that will involve lots of research and hands on experience (read – experiential learning) will be the preferred ones. Class lectures, assignments, terms and the other things that constitute regular pedagogy will be replaced by more hands on approach.
Startups that can enable institutes to start or easily operate their experiential learning efforts by either creating content or connecting students to relevant sources can expect to do well.
Virtual reality and augmented reality will play a key role
Imagine models popping out of books that better explain the given topic, or simulation of different topics in the VR world that children won’t only learn from but also interact with. While VR is still a few years away from reaching a critical mass, augmented reality is widely used already (Snapchat, Pokemon Go) and will make its way into the education sector even more prominently.
Companies working on A.R. enabled books that better explain the content and are more engaging, V.R. based simulations of various processes will see mass adoption in the coming times.
Personalization will become more of a need than a nice to have
The nature of work as well as what we study are becoming dynamic in nature. Students in the same class might want to learn different topics from each other or at least would like to learn one topic more deeply than the other. Same course content, curriculum to serve hundreds of students at the same time may not work at all in the near future making way for personalized solutions for students.
One clear opportunity in this space is adaptive learning. Startups that create systems with their own content that adapt to a learner’s needs or simply integrate with existing systems to make them more adaptive can expect positive response from the market in the coming days.
Artificial Intelligence and big data are going to influence the future classrooms in a big way
AI systems and big data are already influencing our day to day lives and the decisions we take. The foreseeable future of education is not without systems where AI is not integrated.
Opportunities exist both on the macro (ex – finding why a course sees decline in engagement after a certain time) and micro level (ex – intelligent bots that interact with students to increase engagement or assess their performance) with regards to AI and big data in the education field.
Overall, the EdTech industry is booming and is witnessing a huge amount fresh entrepreneurs with great interest in the field. The question to be asked is whether these entrepreneurs will be able to serve the market well and continue to innovate at the rapid pace at which education sector is moving. Those who will be able to do so will definitely emerge as the winners.
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