Personal attention

Published : May 08, 2009 00:00 IST

A.R. Khan: We continuously monitor the performance of every student.-SUSHIL KUMAR VERMA

A.R. Khan: We continuously monitor the performance of every student.-SUSHIL KUMAR VERMA

A.R. KHAN of the Khan Study Group (KSG) has been teaching IAS aspirants for the past 18 years. With an award to its credit for being the best in the business, KSG has delivered an 80 per cent success rate this year.

What is your idea of teaching the IAS aspirants?

We focus on the skills that are necessary for students to get into the job. Any coaching institute has a limited job. But in the process, we try to make them better people. We have our methods to keep the students oriented towards their goal. We call it POD [Proof of Delivery].

Both teachers and students, after their class, should feel that they have delivered at their levels. So what we do is to put them through a specially designed test. If they are able to answer the questions in the test, both the teacher and the students are satisfied. We pay attention to every student because we are not a huge number here.

So is this the USP of your institute?

We give them handouts and continuously monitor the performance of every student. So the student always knows where he stands. This helps him to put in that extra effort. Quite often when a student is learning by himself, he doesnt know his position. Our classes are not huge, which helps us even more. We would never go to a scale where our education becomes an industry.

What subjects do you specialise in?

General Studies is the most popular course here. We have got a team of people who specialise in their respective fields. We choose teachers who have the knack of interrelating things. To teach history, you need not be a historian. What this exam requires is proper weaving together of all the subjects so that students get a holistic perspective, and that is what our teachers do.

We focus more on answer writing. Its not about how much you know but how much you produce. Even with limited skills, the students should come up with fantastic answers, and that is why we are here.

Did the economic slowdown hit the sector in any way?

In these times of economic recession, a large number of people have shown inclination towards the civil services, which is quite contrary to the general myth. I have always seen people running towards it rather than going away from it. Now the seats are hovering at 600 to 700 a year. There was a time when it was around 400 seats.

The numbers are almost always demand driven. Bureaucrats are donning the role of facilitators now. In our context of indicative planning, there will always be a role for them.

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