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Realistic view: (top) Karan, Kaushal, Vivek; (above) Neha, Abhijit, Fayeza.
Realistic view: (top) Karan, Kaushal, Vivek; (above) Neha, Abhijit, Fayeza.


Coaching centres charge a hefty fee but it’s worth it

The money that you have spent here is all worth it. It’s like an investment and there is always a little risk involved.

In this competitive world, you have to do well in competitive exams to get the course of your choice. Coaching centres across the country promise to get you through these exams with flying colours. Be it GRE, CAT or MAT there are professionals offering to help, but at a considerable price.

The coaching centres charge a hefty amount for the classes as well as for the study materials they offer. So, do people aiming to clear these competitive exams believe that they have got their money’s worth from these coaching centres or was it a choice that they regret making?

The Hindu EducationPlus spoke to six people who have attempted GRE, CAT and MAT, asking what they thought about the coaching centres, which now have become a huge business.

Karan Doni (The Princeton Review for GRE preparation): Being an engineering student I do not think that I would have prepared for GRE on my own. Hence, the decision to join the coaching classes was right for me as I needed someone to give me the right guidance. Moreover, in the coaching classes they teach tricks and short-cut methods to answer the questions and this improves your speed. However the fee is the catch here.

Apart from the regular coaching classes, they charge separately for TOEFL and for the admission counselling if one wishes to take it and the amount is not small either. So, they are making a lot of money and it is definitely an extra burden on our pockets.

Kaushal Joshi (TIME for CAT preparation): Most of the people coming to the coaching classes were from the engineering background and I was among the minority coming from a commerce background. I found that not much attention was paid to individuals as a few of us needed extra help in areas such as mathematics, logical reasoning etc. Hence, I had to spend extra time in my preparation, in spite of taking classes for almost a year.

Many commerce students also now aspire to clear CAT and their needs are much different from those of engineering students. So, possibly, segregating people into batches according to their backgrounds would have proved more beneficial.

The 20 mock tests that I had to give however were of great help. These tests helped me realise where I stood and how much more I had to improve. These centres spend a lot on researching and analysing the question paper pattern and also on the expert teaching staff and hence it would be unfair to judge whether or not these centres charge an unreasonable fee.

Vivek Karat (SIMCATS for CAT preparation): I am happy with my decision to join the coaching centre as I do not think that I would have had the drive to prepare on my own. The study environment in these classes kept me focused and the competition kept me on my toes. The other plus point of these centres is the feedback that they give you after every mock test. It’s personalised and your flaws are thoroughly analysed by expert teachers. Even the tricks and short cuts proved very helpful and this I do not think I could have learnt anywhere else.

If because of the help you clear the CAT, then the money that you have spent here is all worth it. It’s like an investment and there is always a little risk involved.

Neha Bharadwaj (MAT applicant): I decided not to go to any coaching class as I thought it would be very strenuous handling both college and MAT classes since both are completely different with different subjects. Moreover, I have my own pace of studying and thought preparing on my own was the best option. I took help from my friends who had taken MAT before and they gave me all the books that I needed to refer to and I solved the previous year’s papers, which I think was very wise as some questions were repeated from the previous year’s papers.

It’s not about how much money one needs to spend on the coaching classes but knowing what works for you the best. Just following the crowd and joining classes is not the right thing to do. One must know the capacity and decide accordingly.

Abhijit Naik (TIME for CAT preparation): Going to the coaching centres gives one many advantages. Firstly, these centres provide you with the latest study material after a thorough analysis of the paper pattern. Those who study by themselves miss out on the latest changes in the exam pattern. Since CAT is now an online competitive exam, it is even more vital that we get familiarised with the online format and in this regard, the centres help the students better.

For the expert help these centres are bound to ask for a fee and it is absolutely justified. There are no free lunches in the world!

Fayeza C.P. (TIME for CAT preparation): There is so much competition nowadays for the CAT exam that one must do his best to prepare. And the centres across the country, with their team of experts, are the best.

Hence it was inevitable that I joined TIME for coaching. The extensive review sessions and the many mock tests give you that confidence that you need for the exam.

The fee was a concern for me. It may be okay for the working people who come for classes to pay the amount, but being a student it did pinch me a bit to spend so much. However, when the question of career comes, I did not want to compromise.



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