What is a Practicum?

Many have heard the term "practicum" before, but many others still don't exactly know what it means. The meaning of this popular term of higher academia is actually not quite as complex as one might initially assume. To learn more about practicums today, follow along here with our brief summarization.

Fancy Terminology

So what exactly is a practicum? Defined quite simply, practicum means requirement or prerequisite. It is the practical application of certain required areas of a given field of study. For example, a course syllabus may likely contain a list of practicum, or required and specific areas of learning within the course. A degree program is also likely to come associated with a central practicum detailing all of the key and required portions of its application along one's path to its completion.

Wider Examples of Use

Certainly, as touched on above, the use of this term is mainly seen around educational institutions and facilities. There, it refers to required components of any particular academic endeavor. Outside of these aligns, however, there are plenty of additional places where we can see the term used.

One quite clear example of this is the use of the term in the professional realm by the ACA, or American Counseling Association. At the association's web page dedicated to the recommended, continuing education of counseling professionals, a valuable counseling practicum is established. This particular guide to continued education efforts features a course list as well as the contributors to that course and its materials. This is just one example of a professional counseling practicum.

Another great example of the use of a practicum in the professional world can be seen courtesy of the government's SLP Program. Short for the Savvy Leader Practicum Program, the SLP is a program aimed at furthering the leadership effectiveness of those already working in government positions. In the program, participants are expected to spend approximately 60 hours in training and coursework designed to heighten their leadership skills.

Finally, yet one more example of the use of this term is that of Google's fairly well-known, engineering practicum program. In this program, participants are routinely invited to apply to a sort of internship program within the company. The program is said to provide a whole host of opportunities, from networking and mentorships to great experience and practical skills in emerging industries today. The program is intended specifically for students and those working toward a future career in the vast world of technological engineering.

Whether it's an educational, leadership, engineering, or even a counseling practicum, these sets of guidelines assure that all in attendance know exactly what is required of them along the path to eventual completion. In college, this term's use generally refers to course and greater degree requirements and components. Otherwise, in the business world, the use of this term can denote a number of professional meanings, all of which do denote certain requirements and components to the completion of something greater. These are the basics of what the term "practicum" is all about today.