Since time immemorial, teaching has been considered one of the noblest professions you can take up. Teachers have always played the role of catalyst for social changes in our society. Mankind has always regarded teachers as a boon to the society because it’s only a teacher who by making use of his/ her intelligence, patience, and wisdom attempts to not only polish the learner’s intellect and aptitude but also takes steps to shape a multi-faceted personality.
Teaching has always held a place of pride in Indian social milieu and ethos. Right from famous ancient teachers like Vashisht, Dhaumya, Dronacharya, Kripacharya and Parashurama, religious teachers and preachers like Adi Shankaracharya, Ramanujacharya, Sri Ramakrishna Paramhamsa down to modern day educationists like Dr.Radhakrishnan, Sir Ashutosh Mukherji, Prof. Meghnad Saha, Shri J.C. Bose, Dr. Satyendranath Bose, Dr. Amartya Sen (US resident and Nobel Laureate) not forgetting our former president Dr. A.P.J Abdul Kalam, teachers have by and large been venerated and held in high esteem by pupils of all age groups and from all fields of study. The keynote of our culture has always been: Acharya Devo Bhava (Teacher is God).
Teaching as a profession is divided into many areas of specializations, each requiring different skill-sets and each employing a different method of training. Some of the major areas of specialization include teaching at nursery schools, middle schools, high schools, colleges- universities, institutes, and special schools (for students with specific needs).
Eligibility Criteria for Teaching Career in India
The teaching profession is a highly-specialized field, and requires comprehensive training to gain expertise in the field. For some reason teaching is considered simple and easy to do. There are some myths and incorrect generalizations that exist about the teaching career.
It is commonly believed that anyone can teach, provided he has some knowledge for the subject. Nothing could be farther from the truth. Knowledge is just one thing that a teacher should have among other things. The fundamental qualities required are excellent communication skills, the ability to hold the attention of young minds, to inspire confidence and finally, the ability to set an example by word and deed.
The answer to the question, how to become a teacher in India, is not a simple one. As a teacher, you need to have a Bachelors in Education (B.Ed) degree. Colleges across the country offer these degrees. Some universities offer B.Ed courses by correspondence too. One can do a Masters in Education (M.Ed) later, to add to qualifications. But it is also important to have the necessary in-depth knowledge of the subject you want to teach and are going to specialize in.
As a matter of fact, M. Ed is only required to enhance your possibilities of promotion or getting the next higher grade. In case you want to specialize as a nursery teacher only; you must undergo a special nursery teachers’ training, available at various universities.
Basic Training Certificate (BTC), Diploma in Education (D.Ed) and Teacher Training Certificate (TTC) are other teaching courses in India that can help you get a teaching job.
In case an individual plans to be a games/physical fitness instructor, he/she will require obtaining a certificate/ degree or diploma from any one of the sports institutes located around the country.
One can also appear for the Central Teacher Eligibility Test (CTET) conducted by the CBSE for appointment as a teacher for classes I – VIII in government and state schools as well as unaided private schools that accept CTET scores.
College and university teaching requires a different approach. After finishing M.A. in a subject, one can become a specialist by doing M. Phil. or Ph.D. If you want to know how to become a lecturer in India, it is important to remember that you will have to clear the NET exam conducted by the University Grants Commission (UGC). One can then apply to colleges for a job as and when a vacancy arises.
Teaching Skills and Attributes
Teaching is often considered an easy-enough job. The common perception is that you need to know your subject, understand the lesson plan, and make it interesting for kids. This is simply not enough. One requires a blend of essential attributes like patience, confidence, liking for and an understanding of children/ students to pursue a teaching career. Teachers must also have the capacity to organize with ease, be friendly and helpful, possess the skill to communicate well, to initiate a liking in their students’ minds even in the case of most boring subjects.
A teacher has to be a friend, philosopher, and guide to his wards.A teacher should be initiative driven, and passionate about the cause and role of teaching in the society. A potential teacher should be always eager to learn continuously.
Teaching Job Prospects
If you are intent on pursuing a teaching career in India, you could teach at the pre-primary, primary, middle school, or high school/secondary school levels. Some of the many institutes you can seek employment with include:
- Play schools
- Nursery schools
- Primary/elementary schools
- Secondary schools
- Educational research institutes
- Self employment by starting institutes/tutorials
- Special schools: it deals with children having physical and mental handicap and learning disabilities. The job involves lot of sensitivity and emotional attachment towards the students with disabilities.
Salary and Package
As a teacher, your salary can vary greatly depending on your training, your qualification, and the type of school you are employed by. The level at which you are teaching can also make a difference to your salary package. Unfortunately the salary package in the profession of teaching are not very high.
According to Pay-scale, the average salary for a high school teacher in India at the entry is level is around INR 2.45 LPA. For an experienced teacher, teaching at high school level, the average salary is INR 4.71 LPA.
In some school, teachers receive additional benefits like accommodation, subsidized fees for children, pension, and gratuity. Some schools also assist teachers with skill up-gradation.
With the private education market booming in India, salaries for teachers is poised to increase, hopefully starting a renewed vigor in the profession over all.