Medical Professor careers

Teaching is a popular career option available to those interested in pursing medicine in an academic setting. Medical professors in India are able to find steady employment in medical schools and teaching hospitals, both private and public (that is, government). In India’s medical colleges, “the term Professor is used for the senior most teaching faculty. The postgraduate trainees are called "Junior Residents," while the term "Senior Resident" is used for those who are in a teaching post after their postgraduate training. Alternately, a Senior Resident is one who is enrolled in a superspeciality training such as DM in Neurology or MCh in Cardiothoracic Surgery, etc. After Senior Residency of three years, a doctor is eligible to apply for the "Assistant Professor" post which is usually a regular appointment and a permanent job in Govt [government] colleges. He [or she] then gets promotions every 3 to 5 years to "Associate Professor", then as "Additional Professor" and finally becomes a "Professor." Usually a Professor (or in the absence of a Professor, an Additional Professor) is the Head of the Department.

Requirements to become a Professor vary somewhat depending on the field one wants to teach, but the general requirements for a medical professor are as follows: attaining an MD (Doctor of Medicine) or MS (Master of Surgery) in the specialization one intends to teach, or completing an MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery) with an MSc (Master of Science) in the specialization one intends to teach, or attaining an MSc in the medical specialty with a PhD (Doctor of Philosophy) in the same medical specialty, or attaining an MSc in the medical specialty with a DSc (Doctor of Science) in the same specialty. Furthermore, in order to teach at a Professor’s level at a medical college, the professor must have 4 years of teaching/research experience in a recognized medical college as a Reader or Associate Professor in the specialization he/she wants to teach, and it is highly preferred that he/she also have at least 4 “research publications indexed in Index Medicus/national journal” and 1 research publication in an international journal. The salary for a Professor at a medical college in India varies based on the employer (private institution versus government institution), the professor’s experience and skill, and other factors, but on average, the salary falls between Rs. 52000 per month in the public sector, and probably more in the private sector, although the latter salary is hard to find as private medical colleges don’t openly disclose such information/data.

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Attaining the rank of Professor at a medical college takes many years in school as a student, and then many more years as a teacher, so patience and perseverance are two very important personality traits that one must possess in order to be successful in this career. Professors also have to be masers of communication, as it is their job to teach complex and oftentimes confusing or overwhelming amounts of medical information to their students, and to do so in such a way that the students are able follow along, understand, and retain said information. A teacher is also an entertainer of sorts, since he/she must be able to hold the attention of the students in his/her class throughout the lesson, so having a charismatic personality and creative/entertaining methods of teaching is very helpful. Professors should also be approachable, so an open and friendly personality is best suited for this position. Lastly, professors (and all other ranks of teachers) must be organized and well-prepared for class, so as to encourage the same in his/her students, thereby elevating the quality of education all around.

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