Procrastination is a habit or tendency which delays or postpones the work that we have scheduled for ourselves. It is a tendency displayed by the person who delays a task indefinitely without any substantive reason.
Procrastination is common to everyone, this means that nearly everyone experiences it. Procrastination from Academics point of view has concerns regarding efficiency and productivity. Some intelligent and smart students suffer from procrastination which get reflected in their scores.
Your procrastination would look something like this if you plot it on graph:
As you can see that productivity is affected when you are starting a task or ending a task. There can be other variables but to simplify this, above two graph explains procrastination grossly.
There are primarily two areas where you seem to display dip in productivity. Starting or ending are points of concern over here. You can do the following to help yourself reduce or even eliminate procrastination.
Some strategies to cope up with procrastination,
Dive in head first if you see yourself procrastinating,
If you see or observe that you are procrastinating probably taking time to even start a task because of any reason than best would be to Just get started even if you are not mentally prepared. This will help you break the habit of delaying a task unintentionally.
You must be aware of yourself think about why you are doing what you are doing. Sometimes it could be lethargy, other times it could be uncertainty or sometimes you are affected by your mood. Once you get to know what is causing your procrastination it will easy to remedy it.
Follow a routine, Stick to it
Following a routine which will help you think less and do more. Routines are best way to eliminate procrastination. The habit itself will help you reduce procrastination.
Don’t do too much of planning,
Too much of planning is counter productive. Best would be to survey a task and break your tasks into micro tasks which will help you focus on constituent tasks. Too much of planning will eat away your time and you would be thinking more about how to do the task rather than doing the task.
Distractions are what drive your procrastination. Work or doing a task is universally boring unless you are one of those who love working. Best way is to know what are the distractions that fuel your Procrastination. Example, you often look at social media through your phone when doing a task, or watch videos on youtube when doing a task or in between a task.
Practice delayed gratification,
Delaying your gratification helps develop an habit to focus on tasks and not get distracted. As suggested delayed gratification can help you become an achiever. This can help you become more disciplined and habitual to perform the task. You can read more on stanford marshmallow experiment.
Don’t think too much about the outcome or result,
Often when we are starting a task we nervous or anxious about the outcome. This causes unnecessary delay in starting a task. Best is to be rational and avoid over thinking on outcomes or results. Outcome is not something in your control but effort is. If you believe in yourself, know yourself and your ability. Then by being rational and not thinking much about outcome you should get on with it.
Don’t be harsh on yourself, to increase productivity take short breaks.
Be kind to yourself, sticking for long hours reduces your productivity. You might have observed that after a prolonged hour of study session you find yourself watching a YouTube video or Facebook and you realize that much time is lost. Best is to take break when you feel a little exhausted doing a task. And don’t take a break there where you are doing a task but elsewhere so that you remind yourself to return to completing the task or study session.
We all have experienced it or experience it on frequent basis. The point is to make an effort to change is what will make the real difference.
We are starting a new series of articles. Especially focusing on campus experiences. In this post, we cover our experience of NIIT University, Neemrana. Check it out.
Recently I and Bikram, the co-founder of Brainpundits, were lucky enough to be invited to visit the NIIT university campus. This post is about our experience there in the wonderful campus.
As soon as you enter the vast campus of this recently built university, the first thing you notice is the vast number of trees around it. We are told that the whole land was once barren. And it has been an initiative by the campus itself to make it a green campus with trees all around it.
It is a sprawling campus full of passion and a vision of a strong future. The university, for now, mainly has programs related to engineering and management. As the courses range from B.Tech. to an integrated M.B.A. but after a conversation with teachers, there are plans to bring in later courses revolving around social sciences.
The whole ethos of the campus revolves around one idea: Seamlessness. It means rediscovering the symbiotic relationship between nature and humanity. Not only the architecture of the campus signifies a reconnect with nature, as boundaries seamlessly mingle. But also, the spirit of seamlessness is within the faculty and students.
The infrastructure of the university is strong as it boasts hostels for both boys and girls. It is a residence university as the students have to live at the campus during their courses. A well-stocked library is complemented by curious students.
The university’s vision also features the seamless assimilation of students from NIIT campus to various big companies in the industry. It aims to fight the state of higher education in India. In a recent report, it was found that almost 80% of Indian graduates are unemployable.
Making things Right
The university aims to amend this by making the students industry ready right from the start. Courses here are research-driven, right from the start which makes it a unique place. Then there are individual research projects being headed by various faculty members on various topics.
At dinner, we meet and interact with some of the students of the university Their faces and thoughts are on the same plane with that of the university’s goals and vision. They are full of bright ideas and looking forward to their individual futures. But also mindful of the environment and how their actions affect the nature around them.
A campus to remember
Next morning, we wake up early for a little trek. The beauty of the campus is further magnified as one watches it from a hilltop. There we also plant two saplings, symbolising our connect with the place for futures to come. It is a tradition of NIIT University that every visitor plants a tree. It is a heart-warming gesture and one that we will remember for a long time.
If you happen to have some time from your busy schedule, then try visiting the university. It’s around 100 km away from Delhi and nestled around the Aravali hills. Your visit will definitely change the way you think about life and this world. Also the importance of sustainable living and education.
This is a first of kind blog post and we will cover more as we visit new and different campuses. Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!
Studying can be a task. If only it could be done rather efficiently and effectively. Often we study book from cover to cover. This article brings in an effective studying approach which can reduce your mental strain and effort. It was propounded by Francis P. Robinson. The SQ3R method.
Francis Pleasant Robinson, a popular educational psychologist, is the inventor of this effective method of studying. During his time in Ohio State University, he worked with an assessment team which worked on studying skills and habits of the new recruits in the army during World War 2. They used the data to devise certain high level strategies for learning and skill development.
Later Robinson’s book effective study outlined SQ3R method which suggests and effective way of studying. This method provides a systematic way of studying in less time.
What does SQ3R stand for?
In essence this should be your approach when you are venturing to read a text.
Using SQ3R technique?
Read the index and preface to get an idea of how you are going to approach. Your survey of the book should be of finding target areas (example concepts,facts) which are important for your exam/assignment. A cursory reading of sub topics and sub dimensions given in the book will certainly help. The survey should be short, usually not more than 5 – 7 minutes.
read here study hacks
Now after completion of survey, ask questions to yourself regarding the text you just surveyed. Use the subheadings and dimensions given to form queries. What happens is, this way of questioning will increase your general curiosity and interests in text you are going to delve into. The questions you form, write them down in a workbook systematically.
Post jotting down questions to the text you just surveyed, go for hunting the answers in the text. Only this time be alert and more focused than you were when surveying. Read areas of concern/importance very carefully and thoughtfully. Read twice/thrice if required.
Now comes the challenging part, try to answer the questions which you had written earlier in your own language and briefly (suggested). At this point note down what important points are required (should make notes in your own words). These notes will provide a basis for reviewing material later.
Make sure that you don’t copy from the book and write very briefly about the topic. This uses kinaesthetic form learning which equally important as other forms of learning.
After completing everything, the final step is to read the notes you have made by reviewing them at spaced intervals (an hour, next day, after a week). The way you shall go about reviewing is to recite in your mind all the major sub heads, dimensions with what they are implying. Through this you will work on recalling material when revising. In essence you are reinforcing what all you have read.
This method of reading was later introduced to graduates also. Mr Robinson had published this method in his book effective study (1946). The book outlines ways to improve on study methods and acquiring effective study skills.
Do you feel like doing something different in your Undergraduate course? Want to explore various disciplines in degree? Then this post is for you as we will discuss the rise and scope of Liberal arts courses in India. Read on.
There has been a rise in Liberal Arts courses in India. Various new universities are coming up, specifically focusing on courses around liberal arts. In 2015, the govt also initiated to invest more in research universities, liberal arts, and social sciences to improve the rankings of Indian universities.
What is Liberal Arts?
But let us first explain what Liberal arts is all about. The focus of liberal arts courses is having an interdisciplinary bent to it. This need arose because of various reports arguing that almost 80% of Indian graduates are unemployable. Hence, the focus is now shifting towards a more holistic education program in India.
The idea is to hone a student’s reasoning, basic mathematical and writing skills – in every aspect. With this, the student is able to do any kind of job irrespective of what actual content one is taught. These skills are the main focus of these interdisciplinary courses.
Students, who have done these courses have actually stood out in their workplaces. This happens because being taught through different perspectives and lenses, they approach problems from various vantage points. They also end up having strong interpersonal skills and these all are attributes of a strong liberal arts education.
The students improve upon their soft skills, leadership skills, communication skills and gain a more holistic lends towards life. With the focus being more on the expression of ideas – in the form of academic writing, ethics, and environmental studies.
Top Universities Offering Liberal Arts Courses
Now, let’s have a look at some of the top universities that offer Liberal arts courses in India.
Ashoka University, Delhi
Ashoka University is a unique institution in India. It is largely a philanthropic institution with over 40 founding members. Also, One of the most promising institutes for higher education in India. It is largely famous for its Young India Fellowship (YIF) program, which we covered in an earlier post.
But there are other courses in this university, especially Undergraduate and Graduate courses focusing on Liberal Arts. The structure of the course is similar to courses abroad, with having three elements: minor, major and certain foundation courses.
Students have options to pick from a range of subjects – from maths to political science, sociology and much more. The focus is on flexibility for the students. There are courses on History and International Relations, B.A. in Politics, B.Sc. in Computer Science and Entrepreneurship and much more. The annual cost comes around 6-8 Lacs. For more details: www.ashoka.edu.in
FLAME University, Pune
Another famous university is in Pune. FLAME or Foundation for Liberal and Management Education is one of the oldest institutions focused on liberal arts in India. It is an autonomous university and offers a multidisciplinary course similar to Ashoka University.
The unique thing about this university that it offers courses on music, dance, entrepreneurship, film and tv studies and much more. The average cost comes to around 5-6 Lacs. For more details: www.flame.edu.in
Jindal School of Liberal Arts and Humanities, Delhi
This is a very recent school and is part of the OP Jindal University in Haryana. At present, its intake is very focused and hence not that many get admission in this place. The curriculum covered are all the fundamentals of a good liberal arts course.
It offers a range of interesting range of courses from the political economy of and natural resources to the course on desire, law and popular culture and to urban space and much more. They have also started a unique program of residency, called ‘artist-in-residence’ program for their students.
The students also have the option to finish the second half of their 4-year degree program in Florida. The average cost comes around to 6-8 Lacs per year. For more details: www.jslh.edu.in
Azim Premji University, Bengaluru
Azim Premji University or APU was initially set up in 2001 as part of the Azim Premji Foundation with a purpose to enhance learning. Its objective was to help students becomes outstanding professionals in the domain of development.
To realize this, the institution has taken an interdisciplinary approach in the makeup of its courses. Apart from standard Undergraduate courses, the university offers courses on combined humanities. The students also have the option of selecting minors from sciences, economics, development studies, and data sciences.
The key objective of the university is to contribute towards making India a just, equitable, humane and sustainable society. The average cost comes around to 2-4 Lacs per year. For more details: www.azimpremjiuniversity.edu.in
Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts, Pune
Another very famous school of Liberal arts is the Symbiosis School for Liberal Arts or SSLA. The school offers the students to do a four-year fulltime Bachelors in Liberal Arts. It is a structured program and based on international models.
Its main is to bring to students a wide range of courses to pick from and choose minor and majors according to their liking. For example, a student can have a business major with an anthropology minor and various contrasting combinations.
The average cost comes around to 2-4 Lacs per year. For more details: www.ssla.edu.in
There is a changing trend in Indian education and these universities have taken a step towards initiating change. By focusing on interdisciplinary courses, the trend is now towards a more holistic environment. So, if you want to do a more comprehensive Undergraduate course then these are some of the most lucrative options. Till then cheer and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits.
ASER report is published by NGO Pratham. The annual report presents the state of education in India. The report focuses on education and quality of education which is provided in India.
ASER 2018 has covered about 600 districts. In its report, it has found that overall enrollment has increased up to 96 percent. However, the study has revealed that the learning deficit is increasing. Due to this learning deficit, it reflected in adulthood making people less capable.
The report’s findings,
- Slightly more than half of all children enrolled in class 5 can read at least a standard 2 level text.
- Gender Gaps have been reducing over time.
- About 44% of all children in standard 8 can solve a 3-digit by 1-digit numerical division problem correctly.
- In basic arithmetic, boys seem to hold an advantage. Nationally, 50% of all boys in the age group 14 to 16 can correctly solve a division problem as compared to 44% of all girls.
- Government school children in some states are doing significantly better, with an increase of 3 percentage points or more over 2016.
- Only 27.2% of class 3 students were able to read the textbook for class 2 students.
- Only 50.3% of class 5 students were able to read the books prescribed to class 3 student.
The report presents findings that paint a sub-optimal image of education in India. Especially, focusing on learning outcomes where children were not able to do simple math and reading the text. Many children were unsuccessful in performing tasks which were meant for students of primary level. What is problematic is learning deficit seems to be widening.
In India education is a fundamental right. The state has even amended the constitution and enacted legislation to provide for education that is free from 6-14 years of age. This means that up to 8th standard education is free. However, the very same education is suffering from quality. In all the education provided can make or break a child. A good education will reflect on the capability of a child when he/she becomes an adult, ready to join the workforce.
Education is important for overall development and better decision making.
Ever had one? Addiction is a dreadful compulsion one faces where consequences seem to affect us less and our choice is motivated by getting maximum pleasure out of the experience.
This experience associated with taking psychotropic substances (popularly called drugs), Alcohol, Smoking, or even with some feelings especially those related to love. The high which you feel could be triggered by any one of the above mentioned.
Before we understand the impact of discrimination.
How Addiction Affects You?
Let’s first understand how pleasure and pain affect the brain,
Pleasure, the good feeling/sensation you get is the pleasure you’re experiencing. The chemical messengers trigger the release of dopamine which is released in the brain reward center. Dopamine is what guides our behavior to pursue pleasures in general. The 3 primary motivators are food, sex, and drugs.
Likewise Pain, the chemical messengers send messages from spine via thalamus to cerebral cortex where it is deciphered as pain. The instant uneasy sensation produced making you say ‘ouch’ is called pain.
Addiction closely relates to pleasure more than it relates to pain. Merriam Webster defines Addiction as ‘ a strong and harmful need to regularly have something(such as drug) or do something.‘ Our behaviors are driven by need feel pleasure and in some cases urge to acquire more pleasure becomes the only rule that governs life.
Addiction is not necessarily that happens when one consumes drugs more often. It can be from alcohol, smoking, painkillers, phone, social media, intimacy, gaming etc. Regretfully, we can get addicted to many things in the current age.
How addiction works?
Your brain is wired to make you do stuff that promotes more dopamine production. More dopamine crudely translates into more pleasure. So, your behavior is motivated to chase dopamine. Example, taking alcohol produces dopamine which translates into you feeling good.
more alcohol = more dopamine = more happy feeling
Hence, you more likely to be drinking it or engage in binge drinking of alcohol, because drinking of more alcohol would lead to more feel good. Same can be said about drugs or social media depending upon varying levels of intensity. Drugs being more intense would produce more dopamine.
Addiction as urge or habit, since your dopamine levels are set higher or you now require more dopamine than the usual level which you were adjusted to before you started drinking alcohol. You are likely to crave it more. The urge that you feel to drink more, governs your behavior.
Signs you are addicted,
- It affects your daily functioning.
- It is all that you look for, dominates your thoughts.
- Affects your social life. Become less social.
- Lack of control over oneself, you are almost like bee driven to it without much thought.
- Feeling of strong urge repetitively frequently in a day.
- During the day it’s all that you think about
- Lack of motivation.
- Confusion and hallucination (extreme cases)
- Uneasiness and Anxiousness.
Drug Addiction affects,
- Decision making
In all, addiction can have an everlasting physiological and mental impact. It may take a long time to recover from it, generally more than 6 months. In cases of extreme drug abuse, it can cause permanent damage to the brain. United Nations report on drug abuse, estimated that drug kills about 200,000 people annually.
Addiction is a problem. One has to remain mindful to not become susceptible to the habit that expresses addiction. In time one should asses and take proper precaution to not fall prey to it. Know you know how addiction works you can better deal with it or eliminate it timely.
By the way, social media can be addictive!!
Want to start your day the best way possible? Here are 9 productive ways to start your day! Read on.
Ever woken up feeling lethargic or with a bad feeling how the day will pan out? We all wake up sometimes on the wrong side of the bed and feel unproductive. And then our whole day ends up being feeling like a waste.
Here to help you with the morning blues, we are to give you 10 productive way to start your day. And in the process have a productive and fulfilling day. These tips are sure to get you started on the right foot.
Keeping Your Shades Open
One thing that you should do before sleeping is keeping your window curtains open. This is because when morning comes you will get the bright positive rays of the sun. You will feel energized and start your day with a positive mood
The first thing you should do after you get up is stretch that lethargic body of yours. Stretching helps in getting your body ready for the wear and tear of the day ahead. It is essential to loosen up your muscles and tendons so that you can move effectively throughout the day.
Apart from stretching you can also meditate for a little as 10-15 minutes early in the morning. With meditation, your brain becomes focused and determined to face the challenges of the day. This helps your mind reboot after the previous day’s baggage.
Drink Lemon Water
You should also before your breakfast has a glass of lemon water or lemonade. Lemons are full of nutrients like potassium, vitamin c, and antioxidants. Drinking lemonade spikes up your energy levels, both physically and mentally. Drink it on an empty stomach and before any kind of workout.
You should also maintain a journal every day and in the mornings update it with the goals of the day. By doing this you not only keep a check on the things to do during the day but also keep yourself updated. It also helps you in keeping yourself at check so not to digress from the day’s set goals.
Apart from all these things, if time permits, do take out some time to do some exercises. Maybe do a little jogging for 10-15 minutes. Even that goes a long way to get your body feeling fit and ready for the long day ahead.
Avoid Screens till Breakfast
It’s also advisable to avoid using mobile phones extremely early in the morning. So, set yourself a rule that no looking at the phone unless required to, till you have your breakfast. It is a much healthier way to start your day.
Have a Proper Breakfast
As they say, breakfast is the most important meal of the day. It is one of the most productive ways to start your day. People who eat breakfast are less likely to be obese as they have more stable blood sugar levels. A healthy breakfast gives you energy and improves your short-term memory as well
Listen to Music You Love
Starting your day with the music you love is another positive way to start it. Listening to your favorite music brings you positivity. It is the perfect way to start your day and gets your pumped up to face the day ahead.
In Conclusion – Go to Work with a Positive Frame of Mind
With all these things did you sure are to go to your workplace with a positive frame of mind and have an extremely productive day. These are just some of the ways as you can personalize them to whatever suits you the best. So, hope these tips help you! Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!
We are told from everyone not to ‘drop’ a year if we fail to get into that esteemed institute or university. But in this post, I argue that taking a break in life is not only a good thing but also an essential thing. Read on.
Ever since we start going to school from our early ages, we never stop. From kindergarten till 12th, we are on a continuous march. And after 12th class, we have to make a decision about college and then our college life starts.
After that, we usually get a job, which usually goes on till we are in our late 50s or early 60s. In between, we get married and have kids and our own family. Everything seems planned, and more importantly, fixed. And any sense of deviation is frowned up on by the society, your peers and even your family.
In this post, I will argue the opposite and talk about ‘dropping’ a year and how it can actually help you in various aspects. Let’s try to see first why the idea of ‘dropping’ a year is seen as something negative.
‘Dropping’ a Year – What Exactly are We ‘Dropping’?
One of the reasons why dropping a year is looked down upon in the society it is because of the expectations attached to each age bracket of our lives. Society – an extension of our peers and families – has standardised expectations of how our lives should go, which I mentioned earlier.
Any person who seems to step away – intentionally or unintentionally – from this set track faces a backlash of an emotional kind from the nearest kin or friends. This leads to self-questioning and even depression at times. As we, seem to have, fallen under the eyes of our peers.
Also, look at the way the phrase is coined – Dropping a Year. What exactly are we dropping? We don’t have the ability to drop time, literally. Some even call it ‘wasting time by not being on the set path’.
Pausing Life to Know Yourself Better
I would like to offer an alternative way to look at the same thing. Our lives have become so fast-paced that we sometimes lose track how fast things pass by us. From our school days to our college days and then our work life – all seem to fly past us without us noticing.
And during all these phases we fail to see how we, as a person, change. We do not reflect on what we are doing and how it may be affecting our lives. And in the process, we end up doing things which we might not even want to – prime example choosing a certain stream which may not be right for you. Or even doing a certain job which is not right for you to begin with. Which often leads to discontentment among the people.
I argue that it is important – imperative even to take a break, or pause life for a bit. Pause life so you can reflect on what you are doing, why you are doing it and what does it mean for you. Take a break to reassess your life, your wants and needs, and your passions.
A Personal Anecdote
Just to give you an example, I will narrate my story. In class 12th I had taken the subjects PCM or ‘non-medical’ as commonly known. I didn’t know why I took them but I guess I was just following the herd at that moment.
Lo and behold, I ended up failing 12th, unsurprisingly. After that, I took a break, paused my life for a few years. Yes, years! I didn’t take the 12th board exams for another couple of years as I felt it was not what I wanted to do. Sounds blasphemous, right?
Instead, I did other things – I read literature, some philosophical in nature, watched a lot of world cinema, traveled and had new experiences. In all, I went on a journey to discover myself in order to know myself better.
After this break, I found myself reinvigorated and more confident about what I wanted to do. Roughly 10 years later, I am on my way to do what I want to do and feel at peace about it. And yes, I did clear that 12th eventually.
What You Can Do
Well, I am not saying everyone takes a break of 2-3 years and start wandering around. For those students who feel comfortable and know that they want to do what they are doing, then you don’t need to.
But for those who feel things are moving too fast and you feel confused about yourself and what you want to do. Then taking a break is always a good option. Take that trip or do some volunteer work or read that novel you’ve been putting off or start reading literature if you haven’t or start learning a musical instrument – whatever floats your boat.
The idea is to explore other avenues that life has to offer. And in doing so you will explore yourself – which is the main objective. The period of break depends on you and your comfort level.
At first, your peers and family members will strongly object to it but it is something worth resisting. But its always better to stop and explore the things you feel like doing rather than going with the flow and doing things you don’t want to do.
Now, what I have said is a very personal opinion about life and how to explore it. It doesn’t that is a right way or ‘the’ right way. But it is one of the ways as there is no right way. As in the end, life is all about trying to be the best version of ourselves. Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!
Regression happens when we are reading. To explain it simply it means when we are re-reading the text. I am sure almost everyone has gone through regression. It reduces both our reading speed and efficiency.
Imagine if it happens to you when you are giving a test and you get stuck with that text/para/lines. Then what will you do? Often what I have observed is that people when reading either
- Read it loudly
- Would frown
- Bring text closer to the eyes.
Both of the methods prove to be inadequate.
Being a voracious reader. I am a daily newsreader. I have extensively read art, literature, nonfiction, meteorology, law, Macro Economics, and politics.
Problem is trying to hard or focusing more through facial expression will not help.
There are many reasons for regression
|Mental Fatigue||Poor Comprehensibility||Distraction|
|Stress when reading||Disturbances
|Not much of Reader|
One of the basic reasons for you regressing is either the topic which you are reading seems tougher to comprehend or you are not much of a reader.
So, you must read as much as you can fighting the regression as it comes along. Progressively, you will tend to regress less than you used to. It is a fact.
Some hacks that I use whenever regression happens,
- If you are reading for a long time and you start to regress/reading the same lines again, then you should probably take a short break, probably a tea break.
- Regression may happen when your text is very closely written and is comprehensive. A textbook with long paragraphs and shorter font should be avoided. Since reading requires eye movement closely placed text and shorter font will make it likely that you will regress.
- Usually what I have noticed is that eyes tend to vacillate between some lines or a para, re-reading it. This is costly when you are giving an exam. If you notice yourself stuck in regressing, Jump to the next most suitable lines, which your mind is able to comprehend easiest. Skip those lines if required and come back to them after reading whole text/chapter.
- Most important, consciously make an effort to understand whatever you are reading. Let it be slow at first (if it is). Reading is a skill. Any skill takes time to develop, you have to put in practice into it.
Regression is not necessarily a bad thing. It might be indicating something, for example, distraction, lack of concentration, boringness with respect to text which you are reading, and disturbances.
With the board exams going on, we get busy with them. But after the exams, we are faced with a tough choice of choosing between streams. In this post, we cover the stream of Humanities and the core subjects of it. Read on.
We all have that moment when someone asks us the question “What do you want to be when you grow up?”. At that moment, our imagination to think about jobs is limited and often driven by the two most talked about jobs. Yes, you know what I am talking about. Either a doctor or an engineer. These are the two ideal jobs that every parent or uncle or aunt talks about.
What if you don’t want to be a doctor or an engineer?
But what if you realise, by the end of your 10th class, that you do not want to be a doctor or an engineer? And you feel you are not comfortable with numbers or dreaded maths! So, you begin to think, out of all the options arts and humanities is the only available option.
But you, like some of the students fresh out of 10th, feel confused what after arts and humanities? What are the job opportunities in this stream? What are the subjects in this stream all about? As most of your life you have only heard of jobs that fall either in the science stream or the commerce stream and subjects like psychology or political science may feel alien to you!
Fear not! I will ease your stress and help you by explaining the subjects in this stream and future job opportunities that each subject has to offer. But first, you have to get the notion of your mind, and believe me when I say this, that arts and humanities, or social sciences, is not an inferior choice. Rather, it is one of the most challenging fields out there and if one excels in this field the sky is the limit!
What is it all about?
So, what is it all about? Social Sciences or arts and humanities is a major category of discipline that studies societies and human relationships within these societies. It includes subjects like Economics, Political Science, Sociology, History, Geography, and Psychology.
You should note though, that is not an exhaustive list and there are other subjects as well but for now, we will focus on these as these are the options available when you enter 11th class. Another thing to note, all these subjects are interlinked as they are all trying to understand the human society from various perspectives.
Economics – Or How Money Works?
Economics as a branch of social science is concerned with the production, distribution, and consumption of goods and services of a country. It studies how individuals, companies, governments, and nations make decisions on allocation of resources to satisfy their wants and needs and also studies on they should do it in a better and organised manner. You will get to learn about the economy of the country and how it works. Do note however that if you do not like maths that much then you may not like economics, as maths is an integral part of economics.
Job opportunities after doing your graduation with economics, one can do a masters in economics and become a data analyst, a stockbroker. One can even do a Ph.D. in economics later on and become an Economist and do research with companies or even advise the government on economic policies.
One can also become a Professor of Economics at a college or a university. Some of the most famous economists from India have been Amartya Sen (Nobel Laureate) Kaushik Basu, Jagdish Bhagwati, Arvind Subarmanian (former Chief Economic Adviser) and Raghuram Rajan (former IMF chief)
Political Science – Is it all about Politics?
Most of the students when they hear the term political science they think “arey mujhe politics main nahi jana hai” as they feel the subject just revolve around elections and parties. But it is much more than that as political science as a field is about studying the relationship between flows of power and how it affects human relationships in a society.
A student of political science will not only learn how the institutions of the government work or study about elections and voting behaviour but you will also learn about how power operates within the society and even in the household. It gives you the tools to understand the workings of a society.
Job opportunities after graduation and masters in political science, one can do a Ph.D. and become a research analyst for various research institutes in India, like CSDS (Centre of Studies of Developing Societies). One can also become a political commentator for media outlets.
Apart from that the prospect of teaching, political science is a good subject to have if you’re considering for UPSC exams, especially clearing IAS. Some of the biggest names in political science. Some of the biggest names in political science in India have been Rajni Kothari (founder of CSDS), Pratap Bhanu Mehta (Current VC of Ashoka University), C. Raja Mohan (an expert in Indian Foreign Policy) and various others.
Sociology – A Study of Society
Sociology is a field of study concerns itself with the study of structures in the society. By structure, I mean like family, caste, gender, religion, class etc. A sociologist tries to understand the relationship between these structures and how they work and influence human relations.
Job opportunities in the field of sociology are of research analyst, after doing your Ph.D. Apart from that one can also work with NGO’s after one’s masters in sociology. One can also work with ICSSR (Indian Council of Social Science Research) in their funded research projects as a research associate. Some of the famous sociologists from India have been M.N. Srinivas, Dipankar Gupta, Meera Kosambi and various others.
History – More Than Just Dates
We all have that idea about history that it’s filled with dates (oh how we dread the dates! Battle of Panipat anyone?). But I am here to tell you that the subject of history is more than just dates that you had to cram at school.
History as a field of discipline deals with the study of the past events in society. It tries to tell a story, in as many details as possible, to not only describe what might have happened but also try to explain why it may have happened. Domains within history range from economic to social histories of nations.
Job opportunities in the field of History, apart from teaching, after graduation and masters range from being a historian and working with ICHR (Indian Council of Historical Research). One can also work as an archaeologist, which comes as an option later on, and work with the Archaeological Survey of India. Some of the most famous historians from India have been Ramchandra Guha, Bipan Chandra, Satish Chandra, and various others.
Geography – The Study of the Earth
Geography is the scientific study of the earth and its physical features and how humans interact with these features. It seeks to understand where things are found, why they are here and how have they evolved.
Geo- means earth and -graphy means to write, meaning to write about the earth. One also learns about the relationship between these features and humans and both influence each other.
Job opportunities in this field range from being a cartographer (geographers who makes maps, graphs, charts, and models), to being surveyors. Specialisation in geography also means jobs in Urban or Rural planning.
Other jobs in this field concern the area of Remote Sensing, that is experts who study floods, earthquakes and other natural phenomena like these. If interested, consider taking admission in Indian Institute of Remote Sensing (IIRS), Dehradun, which is a premier institute in India.
Psychology – The Study of the Human Brain and Emotions
Psychology as a science tries to understand the way humans behave and ask why they behave the way they behave. The field of psychology is broad and has various aspects to it, ranging from cognitive, social, neurological etc. It is the scientific study of the human mind and its behaviour.
Job opportunities in this field after masters are one of Clinical Psychologist, that is dealing with people who have serious mental disorders and working with them in either hospitals or rehabilitation centers or NGOs.
Another aspect is of Counsellor or Psychiatrist, where one has to meet and give counsel to people to help them with either their internal issues or interpersonal problems. As a counselor, you can work either in therapy centers or in your own clinic, schools or colleges.
If you are interested then you can after graduation getting admission in National Institute of Mental Health and Neuroscience (NIMHANS), Bengaluru as it is premier institute for further research in the field of psychology.
So, here you are friends. The Humanities stream explained in detail, alongwith its subjects. In an upcoming post we’ll explain other streams in detail as well. Till then cheers and keep exploring yourself with Brainpundits!