Learning for IIT JEE and medical entrance tests - should you go for coaching classes
Preparation for IIT - does it mean having to go to a coaching center
IIT JEE coaching centres and coaching centres for medical entrance tests are making pots of money because aspiring students and parents alike are all making a beeline for them. Do they really cater to a need or are they there because every parent wants his/her child to be an engineer or a doctor? I want to raise some pertinent questions here. Except for a few coaching centres, do the others really know what they are doing? Or, are they just into the gold rush because parents are willing to pay anything to make their son or daughter an engineer or a doctor? If the IIT or AIPMT Entrance tests are based on the 12th standard or CBSE syllabi, aren’t the schools sufficiently preparing our students for professional courses? If they aren’t, then what is their syllabus catering to? Lakhs of rupees are spent by parents in educating their children - is there any value for the hard-earned money that is being spent? Does preparation for IIT mean going to coaching centers for you? Think again.
Do you need to prepare for IIT only trough coaching classes
My tryst with an IIT coaching institute has not been too impressive, so I thought I will look up the experience of others on the Internet. I did not find the information available there greatly encouraging. I proceeded to research a little more on the subject and it raised more questions than answers. Are these coaching centers credited or approved by any authority to do what they are doing? How equipped are the teachers who coach in these institutes? In my opinion these institutes are run like other schools that just complete a syllabus and are done with it. My question is, do you as a student really need to go for coaching classes to be able to clear the IIT JEE or AIPMT exams?
These last two years, I have been studying not only these institutes but also some of the bright children who attend these classes, and my take from all my studying and researching is this - these coaching institutes do not serve any great purpose. Any student who gets admission into these premier institutions, does so out of pure hard work, commitment and dedicated effort to clear the exams. From the recent interviews of the toppers, one thing is clear-these institutes just want to pay money and buy off the ranks of students who have not even attended their classes for their advertisement purposes.
How to prepare for IIt jee?
Proper study methods and good study habits are what a student needs to succeed in the IIT or Medical entrance tests. There is a lot of self-study material available in the market today that can guide a student in the right direction. You need to pick out the right material that can help you max the IIT or Medical entrance tests. All that a student needs other than the resources is a dedicated approach to mastering the subjects and working their way through them. However, it is up to the student to be able to put in his/her 100% and apply himself/herself to the task. Coaching classes can only help you to a certain level.
What coaching classes can do for you ...
The flip side of the coin in attending these coaching classes on a regular basis is that the physical exertion by itself a huge strain on the student. If the student is in a CBSE or ISC Stream, the workload from the school is by itself enough to keep the student busy the whole day. These coaching classes add an additional amount of stress and strain on the student’s already stretched time limits. Relaxation and social life is something that needs to be forgotten, not only by the student but also by the family that is supporting the student to work harder.
Residential coaching for IIT JEE - My take on this
The residential coaching programmes are a different ball game where the main focus is only on clearing these exams. However, looking at it from the student’s point of view, I wonder if it is really worth it for a child in the sixth or seventh standard to be preparing for an exam for five years or more. Does anyone wonder about the psyche of the child? Do they care about the fact that the student does not have a childhood? Do they even care about the very narrow and limited lifestyle of a student that is restricted to exams and studies alone? Seriously thinking, I’m not sure that I want to go through all this. And after years of preparation, and then finding that you are not able to clear the exam brings in such a huge disappointment that the student finds it extremely difficult to pick himself/herself up again.
The Gap between the school syllabi and the Admission test for IIT JEE or Med school tests
I have nothing against the IITs and the AIPMT-in fact, I am all for them. But I believe that the syllabi of the schools should be able to prepare a student adequately to take up these exams without putting them through a terrible strain. These situations only point to a lacunae between our educational institutions and these coaching centres mushroom to make use of the gap. Very few of them are really equipped to train students to lift themselves a few notches higher than where they are. Most of the students who attend these coaching classes and their routine tests find the burden too much to bear. The drop out percentage is pretty high. I have noticed that after a point of time, the students emotionally divorce themselves from any desire to clear these exams and set their mark lower. Is that what we are doing to our children? Are we trying to break their confidence and make them believe that they can only reach something lower? I am not generalizing here, but this is something that has grabbed my attention.
What is the alternative to caching centers while preparing for IIT and Medical admission test
If the coaching centres that are roping in brilliant students cannot work with them to achieve their goals, then what is the need for these institutions? The media, the advertisements, the hype are are all adding to the confusion of students and parents alike. They are led into believing that coaching classes are a must to clear any major entrance exam. I, for one, believe that the time spent in running around between classes and stretching time between classes and workloads could be spent on better effective study methods, following better time management strategies, effective use of study time and proper study programme planning would take the student a long way towards preparation for these entrance tests.
Can schools help students preparing for IIT's
If schools could come up with a system of helping bright students, who are clearly focused on entering these institutions, by providing them with assistance just geared to help them conquer these tests, then that should be enough. Since, the syllabi for the competitive exams and the board exams are poles apart, which is the root cause of these problems, efforts should be made at the highest administrative levels of the country to resolve this conflict. It is almost as if a student who intends to do well in both the board exams as well as the competitive exams must engage in two equally gruelling courses, each of which were designed to completely engage the student for two years, at the same time, and perform in both courses excellently to get results equivalent to his/her efforts.
As a student You are all that matters - IIT's or not
If a student has conceptual clarity, willingness to work hard and the maturity to sacrifice the many pleasures of student life for a better future it is more sensible to work on your own. Motivation needs to be from within and not because you as a student are persuaded by family and well-wishers. If that is you, you can make it to the top of the class, coaching classes or not. The passion, the commitment and the desire to make it to the top is what it takes to achieve the best in life, whether it is an IIT or an admission to a premier medical or engineering institution. If we realise this fact, the coaching colleges that mushroom by the nights will soon be a thing of the past and parents and students would stand to benefit from such learning.
Written in consultation with and inputs from parents and students.