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Shriram group forays into education sector

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CHENNAI, Feb. 18

CHENNAI-based Shriram group has set up a company called Shriram Centre for Learning Pvt Ltd, which marks the group's first commercial foray into education. (The group has been involved in education for a number of years, on a non-profit basis).

The first activity of the company is in collaboration with Lohana's Institute of Finresearch & Education Pvt Ltd (LIFE) of Mumbai. LIFE has been in the last 15-odd years conducting Lohana's Test Series in Maharashtra — giving students exam-writing exercises.

The result of the collaboration between the Shriram Centre for Learning and LIFE is the programme called `Shriram Test Series', meant for students who will be appearing for X standard examinations in 2004.

Students, who enrol themselves for this programme, will be made to take about 60-80 tests, all through the academic year 2003-04, on the syllabus prescribed by the Education Board of Tamil Nadu.

At a press conference here on Wednesday, Prof Aaditya Lohana, Founder Director, LIFE, said that while there were a number of institutions offering coaching services, there were none for sharpening the exam-writing skills of students.

However, enough practice in writing examinations does help students in areas such as overcoming nervousness, avoiding careless mistakes and finishing in time, apart from exposing them to a large number of questions. LIFE has found out that the students' marks increase by about 10-15 per cent, just by practice in taking tests.

Apart from the tests, there would also be `contact classes', where the answers would be discussed. Each student would also get a model answer paper.

Shriram Centre for Learning intends to charge Rs 300 per subject per student per year, which works out to about Rs 25 per month, per subject. The company expects to attract around 2,000 students initially.

Next year, the Shriram Test Series is to be exended to the XII standard students also, Mrs Akhila Srinivasan, Director, Shriram Centre for Learning and Managing Director, Shriram Investments Ltd, said at the press conference.

While the company would prefer students to physically come to one of the six exam centres in Chennai (Anna Nagar, Purasawalkam, T Nagar, Mylapore, Adyar and Ashok Nagar), those students who cannot physically come to the centres also have the option of taking a correspondence test.

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