Pure science has picked up


Scientist experimenting in a laboratoryScientist experimenting in a laboratory

Dear Sir,

I’m studying in Class 12 (PCMC). I need guidance on government colleges offering a bachelor’s course in International Relations and Politics. And what career options would it open for me in India and abroad? 



Dear Satyam,

International Relations is picking up fast as a promising career with globalisation, migrations and inter-country trade. Many reputed universities have started offering courses in this field, but almost all of them are at the post-graduate level. Some colleges do offer a Bachelor of Business Administration (BBA) with international relations as one of the subjects. I am not aware of any government college offering this course at bachelor’s level. You may pursue a basic degree and then go on to specialise with a Masters degree. Jobs will be open to you both in India and abroad because the location is no longer very important – individual employees are working from one location for a company in another continent, and perhaps reporting to a boss in a different country. Ensure that you have the right aptitude, i.e. being able to get along with people of different cultures, understanding diversity, curiosity to learn new methods and practices, etc.


Dear Sir,

My son, studying in PUC I (PCMC), is interested in pursuing pure science, especially Physics. Kindly suggest some good colleges where he can pursue his studies. Also, shed light on the specialisation available and the scope for him to do research. He wants to do something useful to society.

N Raghavan


Dear Raghavan,

Very happy to know of your son’s desire to serve society through science. Pure sciences have picked up very well in the past few years.  He can start off with appearing for the Kishore Vaigyanik Protsahan Yojana exam (www.kvpy.org.in) for which the last date to apply is in September and the exam is held in November. He could have appeared this year itself, but now he can do it in 2019. If he gets a good score, he can join IISc, one of the five IISERs or any of the reputed institutions offering science education. If for some reason he does not qualify, he can take admission in a BSc course in the best college available close to you, and in the final year, start preparing for a Masters in Physics or a related subject, offered by IITs, NITs and many other specialised and reputed institutions. Subsequently, he can go on to research and doctoral studies.


Dear Sir,

I’m studying in Class II
(PCMC). I want to take up digital marketing or some online business. But I don’t know if it has a good scope in today’s world. My parents are guiding me to take up engineering and then do MBA from a reputed college. Please suggest some other good options.



Dear Chinmay,

Digital and online commercial activities will continue to grow in opportunities year after year, and if you have the right skills and aptitude for that kind of work, you can certainly make a good future in it. Some people do get into it after a basic engineering degree, others come in through the BBA stream. The choice is yours, but it should be based on your capabilities, inclination and interest – whether you are more of a technical person good in science and math, or if you are more of a people-oriented person with good interpersonal skills and business acumen.


Dear Sir,

I’m a Class 12 student, in science stream. I’m passionate about Social Sciences and Music. After I pass 12th, I want to build my carrier in the above areas. Is it possible for me to opt both the courses - BA in Social Sciences and Bachelor of Performing Arts- simultaneously? If not, what are the options before me? 

Sarang Shastri


Dear Sarang,

It is good that you have identified what you are passionate about. Do check with experts in the field about your abilities and potential to do well. However, it is unlikely that you will be able to study a degree course in both Social Science and Performing Arts simultaneously. You will need to take a choice between them, and once you are making progress in your chosen field, you can take up an Open University degree in the other field to supplement your learning. As you go higher in each of the fields, you will get some clarity about what you would like to go in depth and make it your long-term career. At some point, you may be able to combine your two interests also.


Dear Sir,

I am currently pursuing 3rd-year mechanical engineering. I wish to study MBA after working for a couple of years. But I was told that it is better to do MSc first since I intend to continue in this field. I have also heard of a course called project management and am unable to find more details on this. Please guide.

S Ravi


Dear Ravi,

It is generally advisable to go in for an MBA after you have acquired some work experience and you have identified your domain specialisation. It may not be necessary to do an MSc at this juncture. However, you do need to take a decision some time or the other whether you would like to be in pure technology or move more towards management, which will become easier when you start working. After you gain work experience, you can consider acquiring an international qualification from the Project Management Institute (www.pmi.org.in) or a postgraduate diploma from Indira Gandhi National Open University (www.ignou.ac.in). 


Dear Sir,

I am in eighth grade, and a lot of my friends go for tuitions - online as well as offline. I score average marks and have a few weak subjects that I need to work on. My parents, teachers and relatives all advise me to go for coaching too. But I have heard that one should only take these classes if you decide to take Medicine or Engineering, none of which I am really interested in. What should I do? 



Dear Anon,

Coaching is not meant only for medicine and engineering. If you feel that you are struggling with concepts or falling behind the class or losing grades, it does help if you could identify a good teacher who can spend time with you personally and help you clarify doubts, improve your study methodology and give you a boost to overcome your deficits. Do not go blindly to coaching classes that have a large number of students like another classroom, and take coaching only in the subjects where you genuinely feel that you need some hand-holding.

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