Tuesday, July 8, 2014

What is professional?

The other day, I wrote the definition of Expert. This entry is a sequel to it.

My past entry: What is Expert?

Science and Art, or Knowledge and Experience are often compared with each other. They are poles apart, but are essential to perform a qualified work.

In mental health practice, evidenced based psychiatry is a strong tool of science. You should read a large amount of academic papers which refer to the state of the patient in front of you. On the other hand, some decision makings require an inspiration to recognize the real figure of the patient at a glance. Evidence can show various choices, but would not tell you which is the best answer.

Good practitioners have his sense of the artist to create a great work. They utilize it unconsciously. I will call them Specialists.

However, they sometimes depend on their vague feeling similar to the instinct. It often causes situations that a specialist is not a good tutor. They can do on their own, but cannot explain how to do. Therefore, pupils who want to acquire the skill of a specialist need observation and mimicking, not training, for a long time.

In contrast, there are great theorists. Most of the economists can predict the national fiscal situation in the future, at least according to them. They offer several recipes to avoid financial crisis. However, they have no experience to carry out their own planning. Only few fortunate economists are involved in the decision making in the government.

Some scholars are in the same situation. Teaching and coaching methods have been developed by some talented experts. Unfortunately, they seldom teach their own pupils. So, experts have great ability to construct and explain their region of their interest. In general, they lack real experience about their academic.

In terms of this context, Specialists and Experts are compared with each other, they represent Art and Science, knowledge and experience. Then, who possess the both factors?

I will call the person Professional.

Therefore, professionals have to be able not only to achieve a great performance, but also explain how to do so to others. They are the condition of professionals.

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