Students are the future of a nation. The literacy rate of a country is the measure of its advancement. A large population of India still lives in the rural parts. So, it is necessary to give importance to education in rural schools.
Schooling in the Rural Regions
Over the years, the population of school-going children has improved in the rural parts of the country. A report by ASER states that the proportion of students not enrolled in schools is less than 3%. In 2018, only 4.1% of girls were not in school compared to 10.3% in 2006 in India.
The various education schemes introduced by the government have helped bring this positive change. But the quality of education provided in these rural schools is not up to the mark. The ASER report also states almost 50% of 5th-grade students could not read the 2nd-grade text.
The incapability stems from a lack of funds and proper infrastructure. The schools fail to invest in the overall development of the students.
State of Higher Education in Rural Schools
While more students are attending schools, the higher education scenario is not so bright for them. A good proportion drops out of the system. Many cannot bridge the gap between skill acquisition and prospective job opportunities.
Students need proper guidance to overcome these shortcomings. The primary cause to graduate, for most students in rural areas, is employment. A career guidance counsellor would make them aware of such job requirements and prepare them for an early age.
The rural schools often lack technological integration with education. Their urban counterparts are way well equipped with modern appliances. This creates a bridge in the academic advancement of students from rural regions.
What is Career Counselling?
Career counselling is the process of helping students choose a career based on their interests and skill. A career guidance program encourages students even to take up unconventional paths and excel in them. They assess students based on their strengths to select suitable profession.
Need for Career Counsellors in Rural Schools
Schools need career counsellors to guide a student in selecting an appropriate stream and subjects. It allows them to be aware of the various career options available. Career counselling for school students prepares them for alternate professional choices as well.
Rural students often drop out of high school or change their streams mid-session. All these can be avoided if they acquire guidance at an early stage. The entire system should be integrated to include parents, students, and teachers in making an informed decision.
The process makes them interact with experts who help them in making those decisions. Career guidance programs assist students in understanding the job spectrum and other requirements for a particular profession.
Candidates undertake psychometric tests that analyse their attitude and behaviour. This evaluation helps in the determination of proper career options. For the rural population, financial condition plays a significant role in this decision.
These programs encourage overall development and not just academically. Students get to sharpen their skills from an early age.
Skills Required for Career Counselling
Career counsellors should have excellent communication skills to interact with students. They have to be patient, compassionate, and non-judgmental. They are expected to be well aware, informed, and able to address the doubts of the students.
6 Ways to Become a Career Counsellor
Following are the requirements to become a career counsellor:
- A bachelor’s degree in psychology or human sciences
- A master’s degree in counselling
- A certification course for career counselling
- Pass the required tests for certification
- Take additional certification courses
- Work in the field while staying updated about the latest improvements
Global Career Counselling
The Global Career Counselling certification under UCLA extension and Univariety is a course for career counsellors to gain dual globally recognised certificates. It has a curriculum of 15+ modules over a span of 40+ hours. It focuses on familiarising the candidate with career counselling as an occupation.
UCLA and Univariety are both associated with numerous schools and colleges. They provide in-depth knowledge about the field. The course is conducted by renowned instructors from India and abroad. Being online, it can be easily accessed across horizons.
The course is broken down into 6+ modules by Univariety and 9+ modules by UCLA. One has to complete the course within six months of enrolment. Only on completion of the first six modules, the next nine modules can be accessed. The passing criteria are to score 65% in 3 attempts for the Univariety modules and then 100% in unlimited attempts for the UCLA ones.
The curriculum focuses on the working of the Indian education system, admission processes of US, UK, India, and other South Asian countries. It gives insights on the behavioural and psychological aspects of students, which determine their suitability for a specific profession.
Professional Guidance for Rural Students
The rural student community consists of many underprivileged kids. It is difficult for them to make professional choices without any help. Most of these families are not well aware of the changing employment scenario. It becomes difficult for them to compete with the privileged class.
All schools, urban and rural, should, therefore, offer career counselling programs by professionals.