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Tutorials get Net-savvy

Many portals have been launched about three months back, keeping the hysteria around Board examinations in mind, reports Anuradha Mukherjee.
By Anuradha Mukherjee | Hindustan Times, New Delhi
UPDATED ON FEB 19, 2008 02:14 AM IST

If you felt there is a parallel industry mushrooming around the business of examinations and entrance tests only in the form of tutorial centres in your neighbourhood, think again. Given the increase in the reach of Internet in Indian cities, several online tutorial companies have also jumped onto the Board examination bandwagon.

On offer are ready-made subject notes, online mock tests, and live tutorials — the works. Interestingly, many of these portals were launched only about three months back, keeping the hysteria around Board examinations in mind. “We offer live tutoring online through a conferencing platform. Students can take classes in a group or take individual lessons,” says Chandan Aggrawal, director Learning Hour, one of the portals offering online tutoring.

So basically, instead of going to a regular Master jee for tuitions in the evening, you could log online and attend a Mathematics class. But this is a paid service and you could be paying anything from Rs 200 per hour for an individual lesson in Mathematics if you are a Class X student.

But are students logging on? Seems like the concept of paid online tutoring is yet to catch up here, because while there are many takers for free services, not many queue up when they have to pay for it.

“I log onto websites that offer mock tests when I am relatively free to check out my math skills. But they are not really my main source of preparation. I have been preparing with my school teachers and personal tutors all over the year,” said Rashmi Narang, a Class XII student.

Also, there seem to be more takers for portals that offer free services. At least that seems to be the trend at the moment. Tcyonline.com is another such portal that offers “support services” for examinations. “We offer pre-assessment tests that allow students to check their weak areas after preparing a chapter. We also offer free CBSE mock tests,” said Vijay Raj of Tcyonline.com.

Raj says the service is free of cost at the moment and the website records 500 registrations every day. Teachers, however, have a word of caution. “It may not be too good to spend so much time in front of a machine. I am also not in favour of too much tooling,” said Lata Vaidyanathan, principal Modern School (Barakhamba Road).

She, however, added that this could be helpful if tuitions are required. “If anything, online tuitions reduce unnecessary travel time and equations. A student can simply log online and get instant marks on the basis of the paper he or she has attempted without being judged,” said Vaidyanathan.

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