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Its raining CATfundas November 18, 2006

Posted by Sharath Rao in india, media, rant.

Saubhik Chakravarthy has this question about the recent shows on Indian TV ( I didnt watch any by the way ) that had experts taking questions about the CAT exam from aspiring applicats. He is bang on the mark when he asks :

I wondered though, every time I caught the show this week, whether a televised exam guide was really helpful. Which is to say if an “expert” tells me that my weak areas should be covered and my strong attributes should be optimally used so that I can make up for my weaknesses, would I be any wiser? If I am nervous about the quantitative bit of the test, would the advise that I should focus on the main areas inspire more confidence? If an expert says this year’s exam paper is likely to be easier than last year’s — last year’s was apparently really tough — should I worry less?

I dont blame the media at all. Here is why – we are talking about 20 somethings that the show caters to and this is no comparison to child targetted advertising being unethical. The media will do something because it anticipates that there are aspirants out there who will find the show helpful and consequently viewership translates into advertising revenue.

What I would like to say and in doing so I believe that it might be a favor to Saubhik since he doesnt need to be politically incorrect and bear the burder of calling a spade a spade. If there is any serious aspirant who really finds that these experts will have anything new for her/him a day before the exam, one must cast a doubt on that applicant’s competence, leadership qualities, commonsense, emotional quotient and the sense of initiative. Its quite likely then that the esteemed IIMs ( and this is certainly no sarcasm here ) could do without them. In other words and the words of the aspirants (and their role models) themselves, what is the ‘value-add’ ( to the aspirants’ prospects, not the channel!) of these platitudes at the eleventh hour ?

Infact Sameer my very good friend from KREC who is now at IIM, Calcutta apparently took some questions on this show on CNN-IBN or so. I would like to ask Sameer just to make sure I am not missing something ( I have never written the exam myself) – was there a question from the aspirants that is not quite standard knowledge or that has not quite a standard answer.



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