PROFESSIONALISM IN HIGHER EDUCATION
In the context of globalization, education becomes a perquisite for the supply of highly qualified and trained manpower. Education is seen not only as a key to social cohesion but also to mitigate the consequences of globalization. The fundamental requirement for global standards of education is the trained and professionally competent teachers. That a professionally competent teacher is indispensable even in the most well-equipped system of education is accepted by all. Those who teach effectively may make a progressive and productive society. On the contrary, poor teaching would lead to perpetuation of ignorance, misunderstanding, and intellectual and cultural stagnation. As it looks today, in the indian context, where there is an explosion of education enterprises, there is a great demand for good, qualified and committed teachers. The situation is also common to all the developing countries. Such good, qualified and committed teachers could not be possible if we cannot promote professionalism among teachers. Professionalism: Meaning
In a vital and rapidly evolving society the words "profession" and "professional" elude precise definition. For a long period in the West there were three recognised learned professions, theology, law and medicine. These had a prestige which was highly prized and zealously guarded. Then architecture, and later engineering, came to be accepted as professions. With the recognition that there are numerous callings which demand disciplined and scholarly training, the designation "Profession" has come to be claimed by still other occupations. Dentistry, teaching, journalism, librarianship, forestry and nursing are some callings to which the status of profession is generally conceded in mature societies, and the list is by no means complete. It may be that the words "profession" and "professional" will cease to be associated with specific callings, and will relate instead to, standards and attitudes. Different people have different views about the meaning of profession. The word ‘professional’ traditionally means a person who has obtained a degree in a professional field. The term professional is used more generally to denote a white collar working person, or a person who performs commercially in a field typically reserved for hobbyists or amateurs. In western nations, such as the United States, the term commonly describes highly educated, mostly salaried workers, who enjoy considerable work autonomy, a comfortable salary and are commonly engaged in creative and intellectually challenging work. Less technically, it may also refer to a person having impressive compet4ence in a particular activity. Acc. To C. Saundres “A Profession is based upon specialized intellectual study and training, the main purpose of which is to supply skilled service and advice to others for a definite fee or service.” Cogan (1953) has given a very comprehensive definition of ‘profession’ as “a profession is a vocation whose practice is founded upon an understanding of the theoretical structure of some department of learning or science, and upon the abilities accompanying such understanding. This understanding and those abilities are applied to the vital practical affairs of man. The practices of accumulated wisdom and experience of mankind, which serve to correct the errors of specialism. The profession, serving the vital needs of man, consider its first ethical imperative to be altruistic service to the client”. In the light of all the above definitions, we can derive certain special characteristics of a profession. They are: . It requires a high degree of a general and systematized knowledge. . It requires a long period of specialized intellectual training. . It is characterized by work that is essentially intellectual. . It provide a unique social service.
. It controls its standards of entrance and...
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