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Tips To Select Online Learning Platforms

Higher Studies is a very important milestone in your career and Preparing for its Entrance Tests is as critical as it may get. Reason being it lays the foundation stone in your journey to achieve your goal of pursuing higher studies from a reputed institute.

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In order to do well in Entrance Exams for Higher Studies, the role of Test Preparation Enablers cannot be overlooked. And with the emergence of Technology, offline coachings have already taken a back seat and Online Test Preparation Platforms are gradually becoming the first choice of exam takers, especially when it comes to Higher Studies. 


However, with 100s of Online Test Preparation and Learning Platforms available across Higher Studies exams; it has become vital to understand the key parameters which one should keep in mind while selecting the Online Learning Platform for Test Preparation. 


There are high-level considerations beyond the course fee that should impact your choice of an Online Learning Platform. Here are some tips to select Online Learning Platforms for Preparing for Higher Studies; they will help you look at what is really important and necessary.


Know What You Need and Are You Getting It?


Are you a retake of an exam or a first-time taker? An answer to this will decide what you need for an efficient preparation for your target examination. For example, if you are a retaker you may not be requiring the course for any exam in its entirety but you may need a part/section of it. Does the Learning Platform offer you courses in parts/section wise? 


If fresher, you may need to start everything from scratch. It becomes important for the course being offered by a Learning Platform to ensure that you start to learn from the Basics and not from few steps ahead of where the assumption is you already know the very basic things. 


Thus, you need to check out the different variants of a course and the coverage depth in every variant being offered by a Learning Platform before deciding which one to go for.


Know Your Time Limits


Are you a working professional, college going student or a student taking a year drop? 


The answer to the above decides how much time you have in hand to dedicate for your exam preparation for higher studies, and thus the structure of the course being offered becomes important to fit in your time limits. 


If you are a working professional or a college-going student – you should prefer a self-paced, video learning course. This ensures you can study on the go, utilize your time effectively and are not bound by the time and batches of Live Online Classes. 


Ask About Personalised Doubt Solving and Support


Most of the online learning platforms have used the word “Personalised Doubt Solving” as just a bait to sell themselves over offline coaching institutes. However, invariably majority of the Online Learning Platforms fail to provide Personalised Doubt Solving.


Thus, talk to past students and current students of a platform to know if the platform actually helps you with your Doubts in an effective manner before zeroing down on one platform. 


Remember that getting your doubts solved is what helps you to improve your scores on a regular basis and is an unavoidable aspect of your preparation journey for Higher Studies. Do not overlook it while deciding on the learning platform.


Is there Exam Specific User Interface


Almost every entrance exam for Higher Studies has a different user interface. For example, when it comes to MBA – User Interface for CAT (entrance test for IIMs and most of the top B Schools in India) is different from that of NMAT by GMAC, which in turn is different from the interface of exams like XAT, SNAP or CMAT.


One of the areas where technology has helped students is to ensure they are familiar with the user interface of the exam they are going to appear for. Now if the learning platform only has a generic user interface to offer you for every entrance exam – then it should get a thumbs down from you. 


You should be sure that the learning platform is going to provide you the exam specific interface. Exam Toppers have always preferred this as a critical aspect of a learning platform, and this has helped us even at Career Anna to create a strong differentiator as we offer exam specific interfaces.


Do Not Buy Big Numbers, Buy the Experience and Specialists


Just like offline coachings used to do, even online learning platforms have started to buy the names of toppers, put up fake listings or take the claim of success of a student even if the student never used any learning content provided by the platform. 


While we are always driven by testimonials and past results (which can always be faked), it is important to consider the experience of the faculty and the specialists in the team which is designing and delivering the course content for any learning platform for a specific course. 


For example: Say a big No to a learning platform which offers you MBA Coaching but the teacher has never done MBA himself and has not even cracked top MBA Entrance exams himself (thus does not know what it actually takes to crack an exam). 


Compatibility with Low-Speed Internet Connectivity


It is equally important for you to know that the courses being offered by the learning platform do not need extensive buffering again and again for self-paced courses. Even for Live online classes, a platform should be able to offer you the technology which enables you to attend a live class even at a low internet speed. 


This plays a vital role if you are coming from remote areas of the country or from tier 3 or 4 towns. Learning Platform should be able to help you overcome the issue of limited internet speed at non-prominent cities.


Look into the Analytics Dashboard


Today data drives everything and so does it even for enabling you to improvise your exam preparation for higher studies – by providing you the deep insights which help you to understand where you stand today, areas you are strong or weak with, areas you need to work upon to maximize score and lot more.


It is important for you to ensure that the learning platform offers you an insightful Analytics Dashboard to help you through the journey by ensuring a continuous score improvement based on Analytics.


Consider the Total Cost


Last but not the least, Cost of availing services has always been an important parameter for purchase decisions. However, when it comes to Online Learning Platforms what is important is to consider the “total cost” and “not just the fee” you see listed on one particular platform. 


The difference is there are quite a few online learning platforms which offer below par quality of training courses. To allure you, they use the bait of extremely low fee. However, once the student is enrolled with them, he realizes the mistake and ends up enrolling in some other online learning platform for learning.


Thus total cost shoots up, while it could have remained low. You end up spending more than what say even the platform with the relatively higher fee was charging you. So, it becomes important for you to ensure that you are not getting over allured by the throwaway fee listed by some of the learning platforms. Else you may just end up enrolling for multiple learning platforms, which on any given day is not a cost-effective thing to happen.


Before I end, I would like to say that a learning platform should always be considered as an additional support (thus important to select it wisely) which helps you in maintaining a regularity in your studies, helps with latest trends of questions and may help you in performing better in your competitive exams for higher studies. But, it is your dedication and hard work which will ultimately yield results and ensure you come out with flying colors.

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house


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