Exam preparation can be an intense and stressful journey for students. In a detailed Reddit post, a former student of the ‘Top One Percent’ exam preparation company has raised some concerns about the quality of their services in GMAT and GRE preparation.
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- The balance between effective tutoring and student effort is crucial. Success in exams relies on both the guidance provided by tutoring companies and the dedication of the students themselves.
- A former student of ‘Top One Percent’ claims the company’s content and strategies are ineffective, calling into question the marketing tactics and teaching approach of Sandeep Gupta.
- Additional students have come forward to support these claims, sharing similar experiences of inadequate preparation and misleading marketing strategies.
Exam preparation can be a highly stressful period for students, marked by a blend of pressure to perform well and the challenge of mastering vast syllabuses. Good tutoring plays a pivotal role in navigating this stress. Effective tutors not only provide clarity and simplify complex concepts, but also offer tailored strategies to tackle exams confidently. In this high-pressure phase, the right tutor can be a beacon of support, significantly reducing the anxiety and burden of exam preparation. But what if the quality of tutoring leaves you extremely disappointed? This happened to a Redditor who claimed to have used Top-One Percent. The company was created by Sandeep Gupta, a well-known Indian tutor who claims to be the only person in Asia to have reached a perfect score on both GMAT and GRE exams, and that his students can achieve very high results.
GMAT and GRE – Are They Gateways to Advanced Education?
The GMAT (Graduate Management Admission Test) and the GRE (Graduate Record Examination) are standardized tests primarily used for admission to graduate programs. The GMAT is often required for business schools, particularly for MBA programs. It assesses analytical writing, integrated reasoning, quantitative, and verbal skills. On the other hand, the GRE, which is more broadly accepted beyond just business schools, evaluates verbal reasoning, quantitative reasoning, and analytical writing. These exams are crucial for students aspiring to pursue postgraduate studies, as they provide a common measure for comparing qualifications and readiness for advanced study.
Both GMAT and GRE scores are used by universities to assess the potential of applicants for advanced study in various disciplines. These scores are critical components of admission applications for graduate programs, including master’s and doctoral degrees, across many universities worldwide. They help admission committees gauge a student’s suitability for rigorous academic work.
Achieving a top score in these exams can be challenging. They are designed to test a high level of analytical, quantitative, verbal, and reasoning skills. Preparation for these exams often requires dedicated study, practice, and sometimes, guidance from specialized coaching or preparatory courses. A high score in the GMAT or GRE can significantly enhance a student’s application, showcasing their capability to succeed in a competitive academic environment.
This is the reason one of the students decided to take the “Top-One Percent” courses on exam preparation, and left disappointed, to put it lightly. They shared their experience on Reddit, making very bold claims and calling the owner, Sandeep Gupta, a ‘fraud’.
What Are the Main Claims Against TOP?
A former student of “Top One Percent,” an exam preparation company popular in India, has made several claims about the company’s services and practices. The author begins by criticizing the company’s marketing strategies, claiming they exploit emotions and aspirations of students aiming for high percentiles in exams like the GMAT and GRE.
“it has students getting a 99 percentile and they use emotions (infact psychology) to get students to aspire a 99th percentile.”
The content quality, especially for the verbal and quantitative sections, is another major concern highlighted by the Redditor. The student asserts that the difficulty level of the provided materials does not match that of the actual exams.
“Whatever he taught, I didn’t see one question similar to it on the exam.”
Furthermore, the author accuses the company of using gimmicky techniques that are ineffective in actual test scenarios and alleges plagiarism of content from other well-known prep resources. The Redditor remarks:
“Sandeep Gupt’s content includes a lot of TTP stuff like the way he teachers things is pretty similar it almost seems like he has copied the content.”
Regarding the teaching approach, the student describes the classes as a waste of time, using ‘basic common sense’ rather than effective strategies. The Redditor also criticizes the doubt-solving mechanism and the instructor’s attitude in classes, alleging inadequate explanations and disrespectful behavior. Moreover, the author expresses skepticism about the success stories and testimonials published by the company, suggesting that they are often repeated (more than several times) and outdated. They also question the legitimacy of the company’s success rate, suggesting that the actual percentage of students achieving high scores is minimal.
Finally, the Redditor advises against falling for the company’s marketing tactics, labeling the entire operation as a fraudulent money-making scheme. They conclude by urging others to be wary of the company and its promises, summarizing their experience as “the worst experience of [their] life.”
Other Students Come Forward with Accusations
Several former students have come forward to support the allegations against Sandeep Gupta’s “Top One Percent,” echoing concerns over the quality of classes and content. One student described their experience as a complete waste of time and money, stating that the course did not prepare them adequately for the exam.
“I completed the whole course diligently and then after my first Official mock I knew these people aren’t even capable of getting you a decent score, forget 99th percentile”.
Another student recounted their disappointment with the quality of content, especially as they progressed through the course. They noted a significant disparity between the company’s materials and the official guide (OG) questions.
“I then realized what difference exists in OG and [Sandeep Gupta‘s] content”.
These testimonies paint a picture of disillusionment among students who invested time and money in the company’s programs, only to find themselves unprepared for the actual exam. The dissatisfaction extends beyond the ineffective strategies to a broader critique of the company’s approach to GMAT and GRE preparation, reinforcing the initial claims of inadequacy and misleading marketing.
A Weird Side of TOP’s Marketing Strategy
The moral implications of such marketing tactics are significant. They raise questions about the boundaries of persuasive advertising and the ethical responsibility of educational service providers to maintain honesty and integrity in their promotional efforts. And while some tactics can be questionable yet highly effective, other tend to force a person to reassess the services of the company overall, leaving a nasty impression.
While “Top One Percent” has received mixed reviews for its exam preparation courses, one aspect that consistently raises eyebrows is its marketing approach. A student of the program shared their experience, highlighting the peculiar nature of the company’s promotional tactics. They joined the course following friends’ successful scores but were taken aback by the aggressive and somewhat personal marketing strategies employed by the company.
“I have my test on the 27th and I’ll report back on how it goes but so far I wouldn’t go to the extend of calling him a fraud. I definitely hate all the marketing he does. It’s like he is trying so hard to sell. Sometimes he sends weird messages like “I’m hurt that more than 50% of you didn’t show up in today’s class etc..”
Another point constantly being raised in relation to this matter focuses on student testimonials. Not only does Sandeep Gupta recycle them several times, but such reviews are the first thing that pops up when you visit the cite. One of these testimonials is weird to say the least.
The student, who is yet to take their exam, feels ambivalent about labeling the company as fraudulent. Although they do express clear discomfort with the marketing techniques, particularly the emotional appeals and guilt-inducing messages.
Can a Tutoring Company Make You Reach a Perfect Score?
While these companies provide structured learning materials and guidance, the real question is the balance between the quality of tutoring and the student’s own efforts. One commenter pointed out the importance of the student’s role in the learning process, saying:
“A person can help you become better only if you put in directed efforts.”
This highlights a crucial aspect: the responsibility of students to actively engage with the material and practice diligently.
On the other hand, the quality of tutoring provided by these companies cannot be overlooked. A good prep course should offer clear explanations, relevant materials, and effective strategies that truly aid in understanding and retaining the content. However, merely watching videos or attending classes isn’t enough. As another commenter suggested:
“You need to practice, you need to go through various mocks and prepare yourself for GMAT.”
Ultimately, success in exams like the GMAT depends on a combination of high-quality tutoring and the student’s own commitment to learning and practicing. While a prep company can guide and provide tools, the student’s effort, work ethic, and determination play a key role in achieving desired results. Therefore, students should approach these courses with the mindset of complementing them with their hard work and dedication.
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