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Practicum vs Internship: Differences And Importance

Practicum vs Internship, most people don’t even know the purpose of practicum or even the difference between internship and practicum.

Undergraduates likewise graduates, nowadays, are not only expected to complete their academic sojourn with just outstanding grades. The world out there today demands more than some theoretical knowledge taught within the four walls of lecture rooms. Hence, the need for hands-on skills.

For this, and many other reasons like being suitable for a job application, having prerequisite knowledge about occupational demands as well as scaling the odds of a new job, students often get puzzled as to which of the required training [internship, externship, or practicum] should be done ahead of graduation.

You had or will one time also find yourself in this dilemma. If you are lucky to have not gotten to the stage to take such a decision yet, this is an opportunity to avert it.

In this article, I will explain sequentially and comprehensively the type of training you need. And the differences that occur between them. This post will, primarily, center on practicum and internship. Their relevance to employment; peculiarities, and other necessary details.

What is practicum?

Practicum, also known as work placement, is a graduate-level training program where students gain practical experience in their various fields. It focuses on allowing trainees to acquire relevant observation and documentation skills needed in their respective areas of specialization.

Practicums are mostly for graduates in areas of education, mental health, and social work. It allows them to internalize basic work requirements before getting into the mainstream.

What is an Internship?

An internship is a training program mostly for undergraduate students where trainees get professional experiences towards navigating future work expectations. It is, oftentimes, a long period experiential course that equips students with sought-after skills especially ones related to one’s field of study.

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Internship opportunities often come up during semester breaks at the university. However, regardless of when done, students are advised to secure an internship before graduation to ensure better chances of getting employed. Prospective employers give credence to experienced job seekers over others.

What is the purpose of a practicum?

As earlier noted, the practicum is almost inevitable for anyone who wishes to have practical insight as regards his or her course of study. Thus, the next couple of lines will, expansively, roll out the importance of practicum.

Practicum enables students the privilege to gain hands-on exceptional skills and the chance to work with the best teams and heads in an industry or establishment.

Also, it sets the pace for networking. Life is all about connection. Everyone virtually will on one occasion or another need another life-changing opportunity.

Having gone through practicum, you will mix up with quite many people whose relationships will most likely help you in future endeavors. Schools are, primarily, meant to teach theoretical aspects of work. To fill the gap of not knowing practical experiences, students are to go for practicum.

Aside from the above benefits, the practicum also serves as a resume/CV booster for anyone with relevant experience in one’s future career. Having seen the values of practicum, let us now delve into the advantages behind internships.

Benefits of Internships

An internship offers numerous benefits. Among which are:

Internship exposes students to ideal and real-world problems across different fields. Internship widens trainees as to what to expect in the larger society.

It, as well, eases the transition from student life to a full-time worker. For anyone that has an internship, working after graduation won’t seem odd and difficult.

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Internship, like other training experiences, increases a job seeker’s chance of getting employed. The importance of an internship can’t just be stressed enough.

It also builds students for future demands. Being a very focused course, students often get an idea of what it is like in the outside world because it improves creativity.

Unlike most hands-on skills, interns often get paid during the period spent interning. It goes a long way in covering expenses and other life requirements.

Differences between Practicum and Internship

Even though these two pieces of training are relevant, there are, however, differences between them. And knowing the difference will help you in navigating your way to a future career.

While an internship is mostly a full-time hands-on skill with a high level of involvement, a practicum is essentially concerned with observation and documentation.

Interns get paid while garnering experience. For someone going through practicum, no fee or stipend is paid.

However, sometimes, interns do not get paid depending on the agreement between the intern and the company where he or she works. But, there are agitations to enforce laws that all interns should be duly paid during the period spent interning.

An internship requires a long time when compared with a practicum. Most interns spend two to six months at industries or companies where they intern.

How to secure a practicum and internship

Getting an opportunity to intern at a reputable establishment or getting an offer for a practicum in a well-meaning industry is not as hard as you think. Ask me how.

Oftentimes, students and recent graduates find it difficult to get hands-on internships because many do not know what it entails. Everybody wants a boost to their CV.

So, the rush for internships is always on the high. But how do you successfully secure an internship space? Carefully read the steps below and see how it is done.

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First, be it practicum or internship, you need a very convincing and appealing resume. Your prospective employer meets your resume before they meet you.

Therefore, employers place a premium on a good resume. Besides, there are thousands of people who submit resumes daily. So, you need to have an exceptional one to be considered for a job.

What makes a resume awesome? Ensure that information stated is clear and accurate. Not include the experience you have not gotten or places you have not worked.

Also, carefully state your contact information; resume objective; work experience; skill, and other relevant information. After getting a well-formed resume, you need to have a good cover for it to convince the HR manager or personnel that you are the most qualified for the internship.

Once, the above requirements have been ascertained. You need to now lookout for internship opportunities. Internships abound everywhere. So you just need to search for anyone that suits you.

And lastly, prepare for an upcoming interview. Because if eventually you get selected for an internship or practicum opportunity, you will surely be called for an in-person interview.

The only way you can ace such an interview is to prepare ahead of it. I hope this article was helpful and you could share it with your friends and family?

About Martin Vernon

A lifelong learner, educator, and advocate for education as a means for individual and social change. Thanks for stopping by and I hope you have a great day!

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