According to the Dictionary, a Course is Education imparted in a series of lessons or meetings. The Dictionary definition provides us a basic terminology of what the word 'Course' stands for. However these 6 words have a Realm which is far reaching than what the definition stands for. A Course's reach can be gauged with opportunities it provides and aspiration it fulfils. It is these Courses which make one's career and make one stand apart from the crowd. India has a vast number of Educational Institutes which impart education of these Courses. According to one estimate there are about 259 Universities with 11,089 Affiliated Colleges. And these numbers are on the rise with the rise in the employability of the Courses. By the time you are reading these line, several more Universities must have have come up or would be 'In-The-Making'. Education in India is constantly evolving and expanding, this is evident from the number and variety of Courses being offered by various Colleges and Universities. There is a Course for everyone and just about everything. Such a variety of Courses was not evident earlier. Only a handful of Course were available for the students. However with the passage of time, the scenario has changed. Today we have so many Courses in a vast array of disciplines that it is mind boggling for one to chose the most suited to one's area of interest. It has largely benefited both the Education system and the students as they have far more better employment opportunities than their predecessors.
Level of Courses
The national education in India follows the 10+2+3 pattern. In this pattern of study the first 10 years are devoted to general education, 2 years for diversification from general education to specialised academic or vocational courses and 3 years for Degree Courses. programmes. These first 12 years of education is known as School Education, which excludes pre-primary education comprising of nursery and kindergarten education. At the +2 level, a student has the choice to select a stream (academic or vocational), keeping in view his interests and professional pursuit.
H.S.C - H.S.C. stands for Higher Secondary Certificate. It is popularly known as 10+2 or just +2. This Course can only be pursued by those candidates who have complete their 10th class at school. It is prerequisite for admission into Graduate Level Course.
Graduate - Graduate Courses are those Course which can be purused by those candidate who have acquired Higher School Certificate (HSC) or in simple words, candidates who have cleared 10+2 (12th pass). Graduate Courses are provided in varous streams like Arts, Science, Commerce etc. Graduate Courses are mostly of 3 years duration with certain exceptions. This is the course which lays foundation for one's desired path of career. Those who complete a Graduate Course are known as 'Bachelors', for example a candidate who has cleared a Graduate Course in Science acquires 'Bachelor of Science' Degree and as such is known as Bachelor of Science (B.Sc.).
Post Graduate - Post Graduate Courses are those Courses which can be pursued by only those candidates who have acquired a Bachelor's Degree. In most cases, one can pursue Post Graduate Courses in only those streams which were taken during graduation. However there are certain exceptions, like a Science Graduate can pursue Post Graduation in Arts. This is the course which provides advanced education in one's chosen field of study. Those who complete a Post Graduate Course are known as 'Masters', for example a candidate who has cleared a Graduate Course in Commerce acquires 'Master of Commerce' Degree and as such is known as Master of Science (M.Sc.).
Pre-Doctorate - Pre-Doctorate Courses are those Courses which are research based. These Courses can be pursued only by those candidate who have acquired Post-Graduate Degree. Pre-Doctorate Courses can be pursued in only one discipline or a subject. This Course requires one to complete a Thesis. Candidates who have completed a Pre-Doctorate Course acquire M.Phil. degree and as such is known as Master of Philosophy (M.Phil.).
Doctorate - Doctorate Courses are those Courses which are Advanced Academic Courses. These Courses can be pursued by only those candidates who have completed their M.Phil. Course or Matsters Degree Course which varies from Institute to Institute. These Courses require mostly Thesis work and very less course-work. The terminology of this Course is known as Ph.D. which means 'Doctor of Philosophy'.
Types of Courses
There are various types of Courses in India. There are various criteria according to which Courses in India can be divided. Here we have provided a Broad Classification for the benefit of the users.
These are as follows:
1. Correspondence Courses
As the term 'Correspondence' goes, these Courses are those which provides education through the exchange of teaching material between a student and teacher / institution who are geographically remote from each other. These courses are also known as Distance Learning Courses. Correspondence Courses in India are very popular as these provide one a comfort level of studying at one's own pace and will. These are mostly pursued by working professionals who do not have the time to go for regular classes. With the growth of technology, the study material of these courses is being provided through Internet, Television and Radio. However, these Courses have lesser value than the Regular Courses. The Universities which provide these Courses are known as 'Open Universities'.
Some of the Leading Institutes providing Correspondence Courses
Dr. B.R. Ambedkar Open University.
Dr. Babasaheb Ambedkar Open University, Ahmedabad.
Indira Gandhi National Open University (IGNOU).
Karnataka State Open University.
Kota Open University.
K. K. Handique state university.
Madhya Pradesh Bhoj Open University.
Nalanda Open University.
Netaji Subhas Open University.
Pt. Sunderlal Sharma OpenUniversity, Chhattisgarh.
Tamil Nadu Open University.
U.P. Rajarshi tandon open university.
Uttaranchal open university.
Vardhman mahaveer open university.
Yashwant Rao Chavan Open University.
2. Online Courses
Online Courses in India are still in their budding stage. These Courses are all most similar to Correspondence Courses in terms of 'Study Approach'. The only difference is that, most of the Study in these Courses is done through Internet in the form of Virtual Classrooms. That is why these are Courses are also known as 'E-Learning (electronic learning) Courses'. There are very few Institutes which provide such courses. There is a certain amount of 'Information Deficiency' regrading Online Courses as there are very few people who actually are aware of these Courses. There is also the factor of 'Trust' and 'Worth' when it comes to repute of such Courses. There are various Foreign Educational Institutes which provide various types and levels of Online Courses. Some of the Indian Institutes also provide Online Courses. One of the Institute which provides India specific courses is GurukulOnline Learning Solutions or GOLS. http://www.gurukulonline.co.in/ . Information on Foreign Institutes providing Online Courses is available at - http://www.onlinedegreeshub.com/
3. Vocational Courses
Vocational Courses are those Courses which impart education of or relating to an occupation. There was a time when Vocational Courses in India were looke down upon as the 'Inferior Cousin' as compared to Regular Courses. However, these Courses have gained importance, over the past few years owing to the demand of higher levels of skill both in government and business sector. These Courses are more technical and practical based and as such provide direct employment uopn the completion of these. These Courese are of great importance to weaker sections of the society and handicapped persons as they provide them the opportunity which they deserve.
Some of the Institutes providing Vocational Courses are:
As the term goes 'Short', Short Term Courses are in fact of short duration. Academically speaking various Universities and Colleges have a provision of providing Short Term Courses in various areas of disciplines. The duration of these can vary from anything, like 2 weeks or a 2 months. Though there are certain unrecognised Institutes which provide Short Term Courses in India but the one's that are provided by reputed Universities and Colleges, are worthy of pursuing. Short Term Courses are like 'Crash Courses' in nature, i.e. providing only the necessary study material in a minimal period of time. These are beneficial for those who want to upgrade or specialise in their field of expertise. Most of the Universities and Colleges in India provide Short Term Courses for the added benefit they provide to the candidates.
5. Extension Courses
Technically speaking, Extension Courses are those whose knowledge is applied to bring about desirable changes usually through various strategies & programmes of change & by applying the latest scientific & technological innovations. In simple words Extension Courses are the one's which provide technical methods & techniques which can be directly applied on practical basis. Earlier Extension Courses in were limited to Technical and Agricultural Institutes. However in modern times principles, methods & techniques of Extension Education are applicable to veterinary & animal husbandry, dairying, home science, health, family planning, etc. These Courses are mostly meant for the rural folk who need the knowledge of modern techniques to get the maximum benefit from their occupation. Most of the Agricultural and Engineering Institutes provide these courses.
6. Diploma Courses
Diploma can be defined as a document certifying the successful completion of a course of study. Diploma Courses are those Courses which are a bit specific in nature as compared to General Degree Courses. A Diploma is lower in rank when compared with a specific Bachelor's degree of that discipline but equivalent to general degree in that discipline e.g. Diploma in Engineering of Electronics Engineering is lower than Bachelor of Technology in Electronics Engineering but is equivalent to Bachelor of Science in Electronics. Diploma Courses in India are provide by most Educational Institutes.
There are various specialisations offered in Academic Institutions. These specialisations are based on various academic disciplines. The benefit of these specialisations is that one can pick one's specialisation as per one's desire or one's ability.
Course Specialisations can be divided into:
Agricultural / Veterinary.
Civil Aviation and Merchant Navy.
Fashion and Interior Designing.
Multimedia, Animation and Gaming.
The Most Pursued Courses in India
The education scenario in India has not changed much in terms of popularity of the Courses. Engineering and Medical Courses in India are still the most pursued one's. One research estimates showcase 36 Universities and 1195 Colleges offering Undergraduate and Postgraduate Engineering courses in various branches. Over 200,000 students take admission in Indian Engineering Institutes and Colleges. Courses like MBA, MCA, Mass Communication are also popular. It comes as no surprise that India churns out a vast number of Engineers and Doctors who are in good demand in the foreign job market.