National Officers Academy is the largest CSS/PMS preparatory institute in Pakistan and enrolls thousands of students every year across 6 campuses. Hence, it has to manage hundreds of students on a daily basis and resolve a variety of issues. For this reason, it has established a Universal Access Number (UAN): 051 111 NOA CSS (662 277). The purpose of this helpline is to provide current and prospective students with the information and guidance they need in the most efficient manner possible. Moreover, all the guidance provided through the helpline is free of cost. If someone calls asking for advice on which books to buy for their subjects, they do not need to be a student or make any sort of payment to get the answers they are looking for.
This helpline is unique, like many other features of NOA, in the issues it addresses. One of the most important functions of this helpline is that it provides students with guidance related to subject selection, which is otherwise only available during the third day of NOA’s Seminar. In my article “Role of Optional Subjects in CSS Examinations” I detail the importance of selecting the best optional subjects based on patterns and trends, along with students’ own preferences and background.
Although NOA has an entire day dedicated to the selection of optional subjects as part of its seminar, it realized the need for having someone available on a daily basis who can help students as the need arises. Students of NOA and non-students alike can call any day to resolve confusions regarding the selection of optional subjects. They will receive personalized individual guidance that caters to their preferences and strengths while keeping in mind trends and statistics.
Another resource provided by NOA’s helpline is guidance on which books students should buy and use to study. They will receive information about NOA’s approach on how to choose books, how many to use, and which ones will do the best job. The Federal Public Service Commission has a list of recommended books, which is extremely vast and why students usually get very panicked and confused. Meanwhile, NOA believes in a one-book policy, meaning that students should use one book to study from and at most, have a second book for reference. They can call any time for detailed counseling on this topic.
When beginning the study process, students tend to get overwhelmed because of the number of subjects and vastness of the syllabus. They end up worrying and stressing out while being confused about where to go for help and information. The helpline exists to address such issues and eliminate fears from students’ minds and give them the confidence they need with practical solutions to their problems.
Furthermore, NOA’s helpline also addresses basic eligibility questions. Students seem to find it easier to contact NOA regarding eligibility requirements and rules for the CSS examinations versus contacting the FPSC. Knowledgeable and trained staff members regarding such topics attend the calls and clarify any such queries. If they do not have the answer, they will, at the very least, connect the student to someone who can further resolve their issue.
NOA’s Helpline should be the first thing that comes to a student’s mind when they need help. It has been created for the benefit of the student so they do not have to struggle to find solutions to their problems. The Universal Access Number (UAN): 051 111 NOA CSS (662 277) is connected to multiple phones with multiple attendants who ensure no call or question goes unanswered.
National Officers Academy