Home Inspiartional Ex-IRS Officer’s Free UPSC CSE Course Eliminates Want for Paid Lessons

Ex-IRS Officer’s Free UPSC CSE Course Eliminates Want for Paid Lessons

Ex-IRS Officer’s Free UPSC CSE Course Eliminates Want for Paid Lessons


Whereas hundreds of thousands of Indians wish to get into the Union civil providers, only a few resolve to give up it as soon as they obtain their dream. So, why did Ravi Kapoor, a former officer of the Indian Income Service (IRS) of the 2011 batch, resolve to formally give up a yr in the past?   

“I wasn’t involved in the subject material, i.e. taxation. Guided by service guidelines, it’s an accounting and number-based kind of labor that doesn’t contain an excessive amount of creativity. Working within the IRS additionally vests you with numerous energy. I used to be neither involved in the subject material nor the pursuit of energy. The work was suffocating my curiosity and my power. My coronary heart was simply not in it. That’s the reality,” Ravi shares with The Higher India

Throughout his service, nonetheless, Ravi discovered an avenue that may permit him to give up—mentoring UPSC (Union Public Service Fee) aspirants. Since 2020, Ravi has been working a Free On-line Mentorship Programme (FMP) for hundreds of aspirants, and is at the moment the Chief Mentor of UPSC at Testbook, a web based examination preparation platform. 

Taking upon his 10 years of bureaucratic expertise and grasp’s diploma in medical psychology, Ravi’s method to UPSC mentorship has all the time been geared in direction of psychological health and motivation.

And the outcomes of his FMP have been promising. Final yr, 7 of his college students cleared the UPSC examination. This yr they’re anticipating round 20 college students to clear the examination. Extra importantly, the FMP has given UPSC aspirants a alternative, which is what stands out essentially the most about it.

Free UPSC CSE Coaching
Ex-IRS officer and educator Ravi Kapoor (on the left)

Recognising the hole available in the market

Suffice it to say that a complete cottage business has been constructed on UPSC teaching. Stroll on the streets of Mukherjee Nagar in New Delhi and each second constructing there may be working a UPSC teaching centre. As Ravi notes, “I began this to get rid of the requirement for [paid] teaching. In apply, this didn’t occur. Aspirants needed to devour my content material however that didn’t cease them from becoming a member of teaching institutes. They need a classroom atmosphere.” 

What the FMP did was resolve the issue of lack of steerage by way of this gruelling examination course of. “Aspirants don’t perceive what they’re paying for after they be part of a training institute. They’re really paying these institutes to information them by way of a course of in order that they don’t need to information and plan [the course] themselves. That’s what we’ve got been capable of do,” he says. 

As Ravi explains, “The scholars are given the selection of whether or not they wish to attend teaching institutes or not. That alternative didn’t actually exist earlier. A lot of the mentorship and steerage is in programs like our FMP  similar to the content material can also be out there in all places. In case you use them each well, you may bypass the requirement of teaching. Finally, the selection must be with the patron (aspirant).”

Ravi’s resolution to give up a fascinating occupation to mentor UPSC aspirants and problem the established order established by the teaching institutes comes from dealing with the drawbacks of the traditional faculty training system himself. 

Ravi Kapoor runs a free course for UPSC aspirants
Ravi Kapoor runs a Free Mentorship Programme (FMP) for UPSC aspirants.

‘The training system failed me’

Born right into a modest middle-class household in West Delhi, Ravi grew up together with his share of struggles. Throughout his teenagers, Ravi was an obese boy with no noteworthy educational achievements. He suffered bullying and isolation, which led to rising introversion and was a extreme blow to his vanity. Solely later did he perceive that he had Consideration Deficit Dysfunction (ADD), the prognosis of which helped him establish and assist himself higher.

Upset with the normal training system that wasn’t tailor-made to neurodivergent college students like him, and to beat his emotions of inferiority, Ravi shifted his focus to bodily health and bodybuilding.  

“As a rebellious teenager, I felt faculty was a waste of time. There was a time after I determined to drop training altogether. I needed to make a profession in sports activities. Regardless of making an attempt to make one thing of those pursuits even after faculty, it was very tough as a result of folks like me didn’t have the required help construction or infrastructure to excel,” he recollects. 

A typical theme in Ravi’s adolescence is the failure of the college training system in India to assist college students like him who didn’t wish to pursue typical careers in engineering and drugs. 

“I by no means bought to discover what I needed to simply as a result of my educational inclinations have been unconventional. For instance, after I was in Class 10, I used to be fascinated by philosophy and psychology. Though I needed to go for them in highschool, neither my mother and father, lecturers nor mentors allowed me to. Not solely was I denied the prospect to review these topics however I used to be additionally judged for it,” he says.

“Individuals round me informed me that ‘severe and profitable folks’ don’t have interaction with these topics. A serious failure of the college training system is its incapability to encourage apparent curiosity in areas deemed ‘unconventional’,” he shares.  

The truth is, after Class 12, Ravi utilized for a Psychology (Honours) course at Zakir Hussain School, Delhi College, and was even accepted. It’s a path he needed to take. 

“However I used to be pushed in direction of engineering. Satirically, I cleared my UPSC civil providers examination selecting psychology as one in all my non-compulsory topics and lately earned a grasp’s diploma in it. In hindsight, I didn’t need to take such a long-winded street to pursue my actual educational pursuits,” he muses. 

Secondly, he argues that the faculty training system to a big extent overlooks youngsters who aren’t neurotypical. “Rising up, I used to be fairly severely consideration poor and this was fairly apparent. However I wasn’t given the sort of care and a focus any such baby wants. And, after all, everybody pushes you in direction of science. Though I did ultimately develop an curiosity in engineering a lot later in life, there was this exterior push,” he says.

Discovering readability in UPSC preparations

The final notion of getting ready for the gruelling three-part UPSC civil providers examination is that it requires rote studying and parsing by way of huge quantities of studying materials. For Ravi, nonetheless, UPSC preparations stuffed these important data gaps created in class and faculty.  

“As an aspirant, I learnt the whole lot from scratch. I stuffed all these gaps in my training, studying and understanding in regards to the world, and the way issues really join and attained a level of conceptual readability throughout my UPSC preparations. I by no means achieved this degree of readability in class. This revelation, following my preparation, made me a unique individual,” he says. 

He vividly remembers a couple of moments that led to this mental awakening. 

“Initially, I went to teaching institutes and understood nothing. My most popular topic, and one in all my non-compulsory topics (for the Mains examination) was Psychology, given my proficiency in it regardless of having no educational background,” he recollects. 

“Whereas studying a chapter on motivation, I found theories about what motivates folks. There have been components about how childhood influences make an individual the best way they’re, how one can deliver out their true potential and the roadblocks alongside the best way. Studying such materials gave me solutions to the questions that I all the time had. To me, this was actual data,” he shares. 

“Why wasn’t I taught this stuff as an alternative of Physics? That is the stuff I needed to know as a result of these ideas helped me clarify my behaviour and the behaviour of individuals round me,” he provides.  

These ideas gave him a level of emotional and mental maturity that was lacking in his life. 

“After which, the whole lot I noticed and discovered was related to the way it pertains to actual life. I started to be taught in regards to the world as it’s reasonably than what I learn in books. For instance, UPSC doesn’t ask you questions like who made UPI or to provide its full kind. They may reasonably ask you, whenever you root a transaction by way of UPI, what are the banking channels it goes by way of and why, what are the issues with UPI, and so forth,” he explains.

“The vantage level of UPSC will not be that of a supervisor sitting in an ivory tower and judging folks under. If you see the world as a UPSC aspirant, you interconnect issues, discover options and ask varied questions. For instance, I skip a crimson mild and a visitors policeman offers me a positive. Underneath what regulation is the visitors policeman given the authority to slap a positive on me? What occurs if I don’t pay the positive? The place does the authority to punish me for not paying the positive come from? You ask these questions and start to grasp how this method works,” he provides. 

Free course for UPSC aspirants by Ravi Kapoor

Mentoring UPSC aspirants

A few years into the job as an IRS officer, Ravi started feeling a way of vacancy and it solely grew till he bought in contact with an previous trainer from his days as an aspirant in 2018. It was that trainer who steered to Ravi that he ought to mentor UPSC aspirants.

Initially, Ravi determined to begin writing a weblog, which he continues until day, and this was transformed right into a e-book titled ‘The Final Cheatbook for UPSC Civil Companies’ printed in late 2020.  

“As phrase unfold in regards to the e-book, folks started approaching me with extra questions. These weren’t questions I may simply reply with a remark. As an alternative, I wanted to place them by way of some course of. They weren’t merely on the lookout for recommendation however needed to be taught. I may have put up a video on YouTube however that isn’t instructing except they’re (aspirants) actively concerned. They should generate an output whether or not it’s within the type of an essay or reply to sure questions,” he explains. 

“How do you try this at no cost? That was the problem,” he says. 

What gave Ravi the time to write down his e-book and develop his FMP was the COVID-19 lockdown in March 2020. This gave him the time to create and write. “I used to be working 10-12 hours a day writing and creating content material as a result of there was nothing else to do. I used to be passionately concerned within the course of and realised the chance to give up positioned earlier than me 9-10 years after becoming a member of the service. Additionally, my work was getting an excellent response and having an affect on folks,” he says.  

In brief, the FMP consists of a lecture he posts on YouTube adopted by an e-mail which incorporates a rigorously crafted project. College students have to finish it on the day they’re given. In the event that they don’t end the project on that day, they received’t get the subsequent one.  

“It’s a free e-mail course the place I assist aspirants put together for his or her UPSC exams. Upon becoming a member of this free course over e-mail, I ship you assignments every single day with markers on what must be carried out. When you end the project, you e-mail it again to me and I get to know whether or not you’ve carried out it or not. And I put you thru this sequence of assignments and in that course of, I not solely present the requisite research materials but in addition psychological recommendation. The method I’ve established helped deliver regularity and consistency to UPSC preparation,” he explains. 

To facilitate this course of, he employs Buyer Relationship Administration (CRM) instruments which most companies make use of to promote their wares or providers. “I began to make use of these instruments with the aspirants. This was the innovation I adopted to facilitate studying. I used the sequential CRM emails and created a movement or a journey. When you enter this journey, you’ll obtain an project from me by way of this automated e-mail. Nobody has used these instruments for academic functions earlier than,” he explains.

The UPSC civil providers examination incorporates three components—prelims, mains and interview. Ravi’s FMP covers prelims apart from CSAT maths, essay writing, present affairs and Basic Research (GS) reply writing and ethics. It doesn’t get into an excessive amount of element with non-compulsory topics in addition to psychology and philosophy—topics Ravi ready for throughout his UPSC preparations. 

YouTube player

“This course covers methods to stay constant in your preparations, to maintain your head below management and assist aspirants strengthen that power and readability on a daily-basis with my assignments,” he claims. 

“Additionally, after our aspirants clear the prelims, I organise the ‘Mains SuperGroup’. About 100-200 college students are inducted into this group freed from cost and I mentor them by way of essay writing, ethics and what non-compulsory topics they need to take,” he provides. 

For the interview course of, the FMP presents a video of a pupil who cleared the UPSC examination and college students are requested to take their digicam and reply primary questions on why they wish to be part of a selected service (IAS, IPS, IFS, and so forth), file themselves after which observe it. 

“Earlier than the tip of the day, I ask them to ship their inputs and provides them suggestions. We additionally advise them on the sort of physique language and sort of solutions required throughout these interviews. After which I put all of them by way of a means of lecturing as a result of they should verbalise the data of their head. One of the simplest ways to verbalise this data is to show. So, they develop into pro-bono interns on the FMP. Following this, I conduct their mock interview,” he provides. 

YouTube player

Life after IRS

After formally quitting the service final yr, Ravi knew that he wanted to discover a approach of not simply sustaining himself but in addition supporting the FMP. Because of this, he joined Testbook, an ed-tech startup which has developed a web based examination preparation platform.

“They’ve their teaching institutes, paid programmes and a big ecosystem, however my work there may be to assist bridge the hole between college students and lecturers—a key concern in on-line training. I’m working with them to develop options. Fortunately, I’ve the time to fulfil my skilled duties and run my free programme as effectively. That may by no means cease,” he says.     

You may comply with Ravi Kapoor on his Instagram and YouTube pages.

(Edited by Padmashree Pande; Photographs courtesy Ravi Kapoor)



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