If you have decided that you want to clear GATE Examination in order to pursue M.Tech from IITs or to get into PSUs, your next step is to find out a good coaching institute in the nearby area where you can get proper guidance and learning environment. But due to a lot of competition and marketing activities by different coachings, it is very difficult to select the best from many.
In order to select best, you need to be very sharp and informed! Here I have tried to collect some questions that will help you in selecting the best one for you. Try to interact with your seniors, faculty members, attend demo sessions and find out answers to these questions!
Answer– For any business, the most important thing is the quality of its services. The quality of a coaching institute is determined by the kind of results it has produced in “your city’. Here I have highlighted ‘your city’ because it is important to check local results (you can even ask for results from your own college!). It is necessary that the coaching centre of your city performs well.
Answer- It is important to note down what are the extra services provided by the institute. Some coaching institutes provide interview and GD/PI guidance for free (and some charge for it), some provide internships, motivational sessions, super talented batches, extra classes, etc. All these features help you to zero in and select that coaching which will provide you best return on your investment (ROI).
Answer- Colleges in the same city have different timings and schedule for examinations, generally the college timings are from 9am to 5pm. Some colleges have holidays on both Saturday and Sunday while some have a single weekend. You need to check with the timings of the coaching institutes and schedule accordingly. Nowadays GATE Online Coaching is also provided by certain coaching institutes where the student can attend and watch lectures as per his/her convenience. If you miss any classes, some coaching institutes provide you repeat classes while some give you pre-recorded lectures. (Make sure you check those video lectures!)
Answer- Demo classes are generally provided by most of the coaching institutes before you enroll. Some institutes visit colleges also to provide a demo and to give you a feel of the way their faculties approach a concept. You should never join before attending one such demo. Usually, institutes provide demo from their star faculties to impress you, but you can smartly ask for different subject demos to be on safe side.
Answer- You should check the total class schedule so that you get an idea of how much time you will get for self-study and revision. Some institutes are not able to complete courses even 30 days before the classes, which makes it difficult for students to revise and practice those topics. GATE Exam is generally conducted in the month of February, so for safe side you should ask for a schedule where syllabus gets over before November.
Answer- As we discussed, it is really important to check USPs of the coaching institutes but before that, you should check some basic facilities which are mostly provided by all the institutes. Do have a glance at study material provided by them to supplement your preparation, For example, you can check whether solved previous year question bank, practice questions, detailed theory explanations etc, are present in study material or not. Also, have a look at the user interface of the test series offered and whether GATE Calculator is attached to it or not. Your work doesn’t get over after GATE Examination, you require preparation for Group discussions, Technical Interviews, etc. Do check the profile of the experts who will conduct such sessions for you.
Answer- Infrastructure and conducive learning environment form the core of any good institute. Most of the good institutes offer libraries and study rooms to students for practising alone.
The number of centres will tell you whether the institute is famous or not. However, many good institutes have very few centres but are actually good.
Answer- It is very important to know the qualification and profile of faculties who will take your classes. Faculties having masters from IITs and IISc have good exposure and knowledge. Also, the faculties who have qualified Engineering Services Examination (ESE) have good subject expertise. You should also ask if you will be provided multiple or single faculties for all subjects. Different faculties bring varied experiences, tips and knowledge base with them.
Answer- You should visit the classroom where your lectures will be conducted. Check whether proper ventilation, sitting arrangement, etc facilities are provided or not. Ask if the centres have a study room and some book banks where you can sit and practice.
Answer- Some coaching institutes in India have a very huge batch size of more than 300 students studying at a time. In such a scenario, it is very difficult to learn or to ask any doubts. One should always look for classes, where not more than 80 students sit together.
Answer- Most of the institutes take feedback of students very seriously. Ask if they take feedback after completion of a subject or in between the session also. You should also ask for a single contact person whom you can approach in case of any problem. Ask if there is any WhatsApp group where you can discuss with other batchmates also.
Answer- This is the last but very important question on which most of the people take the decision. But even if the fees are higher and the facilities provided are good, you can definitely ask for discounts on the basis of your educational qualifications, or if you can convince more people to join with you. Some institutes also conduct Scholarship tests every year, where they offer hefty discounts and prize money. But still, if you find the amount to be large, you can always go for payment in instalments.
So definitely you should visit all the coaching institutes and listen to what they have to say before making any decision. It would be advisable if you go in groups for enquiry as more the people more will be queries. But don’t forget to take advice from your seniors who have already gone through all such process. They can give you a much better picture. Happy Hunting!