First a Disclaimer: “Teaching is the only major occupation of man for which we have not yet developed tools that make an average person capable of competence and performance. In teaching we rely on the “naturals,” the ones who somehow know how to teach. “ [Source: Peter F. Drucker, management consultant/educator/author]
The reason this disclaimer was mandatory…was simply because there is no job on this planet that carries more responsibility than the job of a teacher. Thus, you need to ask yourself this question before you take a leap of faith: “Do you hold a genuine desire to teach and impart knowledge?” If you answered ‘Yes,’ this article is for ‘YOU’!
So, how can you effectively turn your hobby of teaching into a full-time career? Before I answer this question, you need to ask yourself the following three pertinent questions:
- What level of students do I wish to teach?
- What kind of commitment in self-study am I willing to undertake?
- What league of institutions do I want to join in order to teach?
The answer to these three questions are mandatory if you want to transform your simple hobby into a flourishing full-time career.
Response to 1Q:
The response to the first question will help answer whether you want to teach pre-schoolers, high-schoolers, or college graduates. The reason this question becomes important is because the education level and the level of skill required differs on the basis of the level you wish to teach. For example, while a kindergarten teacher is simply a graduate, school teachers are usually graduates with an additional B.Ed degree, while a person who wishes to become a professor in a college will have additional degrees like the M.Phil and the Ph.d.
Response to 2Q:
Furthermore, you need to realistically ask yourself what kind of commitment you are willing to make in pursuing your hobby of teaching into an actual career. This is because while a B.Ed degree will only require a commitment of two years, pursuing a Ph.D. degree means a commitment that may last upto eight years (or more) which is pursued after completion of NET (National Eligibility Test), which is now a UGC-requirement for post-2009 Ph.Ds if you wish to become a lecturer/professor.
Response to 3Q:
If you wish to teach at ivy-league schools or colleges, you need to demonstrate (1) academic excellence (good marks are a pre-requisite as are publications) and (2) innovation (vis-a-vis the pedagogy or andragogy), and (3) communication (there is no point in having knowledge if you do not know how to disseminate it).
Thus, if you truly enjoy the process of teaching, you simply need to enrol for a B.Ed if you want to teach at a school or pursue a Ph.D. if you want to teach at a college. Furthermore, I would also like to tell you that it is a myth that you can only pursue a Ph.D. after completion of M.Phil. That, however, is not the case. It is possible to pursue a Ph.D. degree — from an institute of repute — even without an M.Phil.
Note for Prospective Professors: I would also advice you to check out the UGC recruitment guidelines to understand the scoring policies of all central universities and institutions — i.e. every degree obtained, every published paper or book, etc. has a corresponding score that you obtain that makes your overall score on the basis of which candidates are selected.