The Myth of CSS Success

CSS is a competi-tive exam, but true competi-tion arises only when everyone gets equal opportu-nities.

CSS is a challenging exam that requires a thorough knowl­edge of global and domestic affairs. Every year, CSS sees thou­sands of hopefuls, but only a few succeed.

The CSS exam is unlike any other exam students take during their educa­tional journey. Creativi­ty and opinion formation are crucial skills needed to succeed in the CSS exam. The education system in the coun­try does not effectively prepare stu­dents to meet the required skill lev­el and competency expected by FPSC for the CSS exam.

One cannot master CSS simply by suddenly starting to prepare for it. Unless students complete all the preparation stages, they won’t be able to pass the exam. The educa­tion system in Pakistan is divided, resulting in students appearing in CSS exams with skills acquired from different curriculums and languag­es chosen by their parents. Because of the unequal education systems, certain graduates excel in English speaking, writing, critical think­ing, and grasping fundamental con­cepts, surpassing the majority edu­cated in compromised systems.

Additionally, the quota system has certain drawbacks, as it should not solely consider residency in an un­derprivileged province as the basis for availing its benefits. The purpose of facilitating students through quo­ta systems becomes obsolete when students from underprivileged ar­eas have access to resources and fa­cilities for getting education from top universities in Pakistan and abroad. Students from privileged backgrounds in underprivileged ar­eas benefit greatly from the quota system, as they have access to top educational facilities in the best uni­versities. The quota system increas­es the chances for better allocation in CSS. Those students who lack re­sources to access quality education in schools and universities become the true casualties in such situations where their privileged fellows from the same province get education from the best universities and also take benefit of the quota system.

To make matters worse, those who qualify for CSS seldom acknowledge this reality and present themselves as superheroes. CSS toppers some­times attribute their quick success to a few months of preparation, ne­glecting to mention the influence of their educational background. The suffering of impoverished students goes beyond this. They are lured by the fairy tales of CSS-qualified stu­dents, envisioning success within the same timeframe, and overlook­ing personal abilities and limita­tions. A lot of successful candidates share success stories that typically leave out important facts like years of hard work and access to quality education because they worry that revealing the truth might under­mine their superhuman persona.

However, many students, despite having a weak educational back­ground, can pass this exam. These students never stray from the path of hard work and are always working towards their goals by constantly im­proving their ability to express their genuine opinions in exams. Such stu­dents face a continuous stream of challenges, demanding great dedi­cation to achieve excellent marks in both the psychological and interview phases. CSS is a competitive exam, but true competition arises only when everyone gets equal oppor­tunities. In this exam, what matters the most is students’ ability to write good English, critically evaluate ar­guments, and generate compelling answers. Ensuring a level-playing field in CSS requires action to be tak­en. The government should establish academies to help students from dis­advantaged backgrounds prepare for CSS exams. Merit-based scholarships should be provided to students, and they should be supported by recruit­ing the best faculty.

For students who are unlucky in accessing quality education, this of­fers immediate relief. It will address the concerns of students from dis­advantaged areas and enable them to prepare for the exam without any additional financial burden.

Furthermore, there needs to be a total ban on showcasing fake success stories in CSS. CSS successful candi­dates should be mandated by the gov­ernment to present accurate informa­tion aligned with their educational qualifications. This will help CSS aspi­rants understand the true level of ef­fort required to pass the exam.

Additionally, a CSS qualifier should only be allowed to join a CSS acade­my if they genuinely belong to and have been adequately prepared by the academy. The facts can be con­firmed by checking the data from the academy. This measure aims to pre­vent the exploitation of CSS aspirants.

Moreover, strict monitoring is nec­essary for the quota system. Quo­tas should be given only to students with weak educational backgrounds, verified through their academic de­grees. Those who attend prestigious universities should not be eligible for quota benefits in CSS.

Implementing education reforms, especially at the university level, is crucial for equipping students with the necessary skills to succeed in CSS. A suggestion is to advise all uni­versities to commence classes for students interested in appearing in CSS exams. Competent faculty must be hired by universities and semi­nars should be arranged to assist students preparing for CSS. The CSS exam provides young people with a chance to improve their prospects in life and move up the ladder.

It’s time to support all students, particularly those from disadvan­taged educational backgrounds, by offering them top-notch facilities to help them prepare for the exam.

Moreover, it is crucial to estab­lish specific regulations to address the menace of disinformation about CSS preparation stages, protecting the time of deserving candidates. By offering relief to CSS aspirants, Pakistan can effectively foster the talent of its youth.

Waqar Hassan
The writer is a civil servant. He can be reached at waqarhassancsp@

The writer is a civil servant. He can be reached 
at waqar

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