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Career guidance

Quite often we teachers of Electronic Science have to deal with questions as below from students pursuing a course in Electronic Science. I have tried to answer them with whatever knowledge I have regarding the subject and its prospects, with the belief that it may be of some help to the students. However, by no means should it be construed as a professional career guidance in any way whatsoever.

Q. What are the main topics taught in Electronics Honours or Electronic Science Honours?

Ans. Electronics Honours or Electronic Science Honours is an interdisciplinary subject wherein you will study topics from physics, electronics and communication, mathematics and computer science. About 50% to 60% of the topics are common to those studied in physics honours but you would learn in greater detail the physics of electronic devices and also the working of electronic devices and circuits. In addition to a few experiments in physics (mostly related to electrical circuits), you would be performing many experiments on electronic circuits and devices. You would also be learning in detail the working of the microprocessor by learning assembly language programming and also perform related experiments on interfacing. You would be learning programming languages like C/C++/java etc as well as learn circuit-simulation using software like Spice. Consequently, more of the stress is on practicals than theory, which is sure to help you in your quest for good jobs.

The latest Electronics Honours syllabus of Calcutta University may be downloaded from here.

Q. What are the job prospects of Electronics Honours or Electronic Science Honours?

Ans. Graduates in Electronics Honours get recruited in IT/Software companies like TCS, CTS, Wipro etc, Electronics and Telecommunication companies like BSNL, Airtel etc, academic institutions and also in research organizations like DRDO, to name a few. Electronics Honours students have better chances to be absorbed in these jobs since they have more exposure to circuits, computation, programming and simulation (the subjects being integrated in their syllabus to a greater extent). However, to get higher paying jobs, it is advisable to pursue a post-graduate degree.

Q. What post-graduate courses can be pursued by Electronics Honours graduates?

Ans. M.Sc. in Electronics courses are offered in many universities and also in some colleges with post graduate departments. Interestingly, the proportion of M.Sc. Electronics seats for Electronics Honours students is much more compared to M.Sc. Physics seats for Physics Hons. students, making it relatively easier for Electronics graduates to pursue M.Sc. They can go on to pursue M.Tech. in Electronics or even a Ph.D. Some universities like Calcutta University run 3-year post graduate B.Tech. degrees in radiophysics, opto-electronics, information-technology, to join which Electronics Honours students are eligible. Some students also opt for M.C.A. and a few for even an M.B.A.

Q. Which competitive exams can an Electronics student appear in?

Ans. Electronics Honours graduates can appear in
JAM (Joint Admission Test for M.Sc.) to pursue M.Sc-Ph.D.-dual degree at all IITs or M.C.A. at IIT Roorkee. They may compete for the Wipro Wase fellowship to pursue MS (Master of Science) in Computer Science alongside working at Wipro. They can also sit for all other competitive exams open to any Indian graduate.

With a post-graduate degree like M.Sc., Electronics Honours students can appear in competitive exams like GATE (graduate aptitude test in engineering), NET (National eligibility test for lectureship), SET (state eligibility test for lectureship), IES (Indian engineering service) etc. Qualifying in NET makes you eligible for a teaching job in any college in India while qualifying in SET makes you eligible for the same in your own state. A Ph.D. is a must in addition to the above, should you aspire for a position at a university. Qualifying in GATE makes you eligible to pursue M.Tech. courses or even a Ph.D. in many of the engineering colleges and institutes. It also helps you to obtain scholarships which can take care of your tuition expenses.

Dr. Abhijit Poddar
Dept. of Electronic Sc.
Surendranath Evening College
Kolkata 700009.
Email: abhipod at gmail dot com
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