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Candidates should put more emphasis on preparing for optional subjects

In my opinion, candidates should put more emphasis on preparing for compulsory subjects as most of the students fail in these subjects.

Education and achievements.
I graduated from Government College University, Lahore, and did my masters in International Relations from Quaid-i-Azam University, Islamabad. I started my career as Sub-Editor in Pakistan Broadcasting Corporation. I was also selected as ‘analyst’ in Pakistan Atomic Energy Commission and Assistant Director in ISI (Ministry of Defence). However, I didn’t join any of the above jobs as PMS was my first choice and I cleared it in the first attempt by securing first position.

Tips for getting top position.

In my opinion, candidates should put more emphasis on preparing for compulsory subjects as most of the students fail in these subjects.
What sort of guidance should be sought?
Candidates should seek guidance pertaining to English essay and grammar paper. Moreover, they should also read newspapers and make short notes for general knowledge paper.

Role of academies.

Personally, I don’t think that academies are helpful for the candidates. Most of the academies are in the business of minting money. However, these are a bit helpful for interview preparation.

Discuss books or notes; what should be prepared and how?
Selfnotes are of fundamental importance for the preparation of competitive examination. They should be prepared thoroughly and diligently.

What is the key to success?

Set clear objectives in mind
Patience and perseverance
Diligent preparation of notes
Make notes as short as possible
Skillful execution

What should be the strategy how to make oneself differentiate from the rest of the students and secure top position? How many months and daily hours are required for final preparation?

Diligent preparation and execution

At least eight months and five to seven hours per day are enough.

What are the steps for the preparation, especially English Essay and Composition?

Write essays on diverse subjects. It is also proper and effective to have them checked from friend or some experienced teachers. The most important thing is to practise by writing on different issues as there is no other way around. After that, things start becoming easy with practice and I have learned this technique through my experience.
First thorough read the question and divide it in parts then attempts it accordingly. This technique shows the examiner that the student knows the answer and he/she is hitting it directly. Make intelligent use of blue pen and black marker to create a good impact.
 
Secondly, as far as English grammar is concerned, I think students should make precis of the Dawn editorials. They are really helpful in this regard.

So students should also memorise  pair of words and idioms. Moreover, practice of short essay is also very vital.

What combination should the students opt for the optional subjects?

In any competitive exams, candidates have to compete with thousands of other candidates. So the selection of subjects should be judicious. I would strongly recommend the following subjects; Punjabi/ Persian, Geography, Social Work and Mass Communication.

How to get excellent marks in written and interview?

Give proper and equal time to each question. First thoroughly read the question and divide it in parts then attempt it accordingly.

It is handy to give a brief outline of every question before attempting full answer. This technique shows the examiner that the student knows the answer and he/she is hitting it directly. Make intelligent use of blue pen and black marker to create a good impact.

Whereas interview is concerned, following is the strategy:

Read newspapers and make short notes.

Develop your  opinion whatever it  is. There is nothing right or wrong in humanities, politics and international relations.

Be frank and give normal answers to the interview panel. Confusion and nervousness are your biggest enemy.
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Give mock interviews to your friends and seniors.

My marks are following:

English essay: 70, English composition: 80, Urdu: 59, Islamiat: 67, Pak Affairs: 65, General Knowledge: 61, Geography: 126, Social Works: 127, Mass Communication: 115 and in interview: 142.

Any message

First of all, I would like to pay tributes to my teachers and above all a great selfless human being Prof Irfan Waheed Usmani for his all out efforts and sacrifice not only for me but also for all students and candidates of PMS/CSS. The key to success in PMS lies in patience, perseverance, faith, hardwork and above all prayers and good wishes of your parents and loved ones.
By: Ali Waseem

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