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Career counselling; questions and answers

Lahore

August 10, 2020

Q1) Dear sir, I like reading your informative columns. I need advice for the education system of my kids. Sir, I have 2 kids who are studying in a school which follows the matriculation education system. My relatives and friends are suggesting me that CIE is a better educations system and I am getting confused. I think this is the right time to get any mistake corrected as my both kids are under 5th grade. Your suggestion and guidance would be very useful for me. (Asghar Butt, Karachi)

Ans: Our national curriculum /education system which is normally referred to as 10+2 or matriculation followed by FSC or FA is a well-established structure and there is nothing to worry about. However, the CIE which is commonly known as O & A-Levels is recommended for those students who wish to go abroad and have no intention of studying in Pakistan for their undergraduate. If you think you can afford the British education system and you wish to send your children abroad then I would recommend the CIE system. However, students of FSc and FA also go abroad and they have a double edge of passing the national entry tests with greater success than compared to peers of O & A-Levels.

Q2) Sir, I completed intermediate (high school) from Canada. Due to some unavoidable circumstances I could not continue my education. I am 35 years of age now and I live in Islamabad. Now I want to continue my education as what should I do? Can you please guide me for a good education which I can still get at this age? (Kaleemullah Khan, Islamabad)

Ans: Education is not conditional or has any age limit or time. You can continue or resume your studies anytime when you wish. I am not sure if the high school that you did from Canada is equal to Intermediate/FSc. However, if you have in your possession your original certificate you may consult the IBCC located in Islamabad who maybe in a better position to advice you whether it is a 12th grade certificate. If so, you may start/commence your studies based on the equivalence provided.

Q3) Abidi Sb, my younger daughter is currently finishing her O-levels and she intends to go to medical college in Pakistan or join an institution abroad. Your suggestion is needed to advise whether she should continue to do A-Levels or she should shift to the national curriculum and do FSC? (Sarwar Shafeeq Chattha, Gujrat)

Ans: Please be advised that if your daughter is expected to pass her A-levels with straight A’s and she is a bright student let her continue in this system as she will do better during her MBBS with A-levels. However, if she would like to apply for an overseas admission in Medicine, then A-level is the best choice. In case you feel she would only be studying in Pakistan and she is not expected to do well in A-levels she must change her study path and switch to the national curriculum and do an FSC (pre-medical) with high grade marks that are required by public sector medical universities.

Q4) Respected Mr Abidi, I passed my Mechanical Engineering (4 years) last year and I am looking to do a Management (MSc) so that I have a good mixture of engineering and management to find better career opportunities in the industry. Your expert opinion shall be highly appreciated if I should do an MBA or MSC? (Wajid Murad, Narowal)

Ans: I suggest you should gain few years work experience (relevant) in the industry and even if you don’t find a good job you should look at doing an apprenticeship or internship to gain some experience. Once you have industrial experience of a few years you will be in a better position to decide which area of management you need to go to add value to your engineering degree. There are MSc degrees in Technology Management or Project Management which you may like to Google and they may be more relevant to what you have in mind.

(Syed Azhar Husnain Abidi is a renowned educationist in Pakistan, with more than 20 years of experience as provider of education counselling services. He has represented Pakistan in over 100 national and international seminars, conferences and fora. He is a recipient of the most coveted civil award Tamgha-e-Imtiaz).