UPSC exam being one of the toughest exam in the country, needs a substantial amount of practice and hard work. The syllabus is vast and learning has to be meticulous. The examinations for IAS are conducted in 3 stages namely,
- UPSC prelims
- UPSC mains
- Personality test- Interview
The preliminary examination contains multiple choice-objective questions. The marks scored in prelims serves as qualification for the main examination and not for final ranking.
1. UPSC Syllabus for paper 1- General studies- Paper I [200 marks]
The duration of the exam is for 2 hours and the marks scored in this test are counted as merit for UPSC mains. The UPSC syllabus for General studies-I is:
- Current national and international events.
- History of India.
- Geography – Comprising of Physical, Social and Economic Geography of India and the World.
- Indian Polity and Governance – Comprising of Constitution, Political System, Panchayat Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
- Development- Comprising of Economic, Social and Sustainable Development
- Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc.
- General issues on Environment- Its Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change
- General Science.
The duration for this paper is two hours and the marks scored are not counted for merit ranking in Prelims but entitles to be a qualifying paper with minimum score of 33% marks. The questions presented here are only ability based.The UPSC syllabus for General studies II is:
- Interpersonal skills
- Logical reasoning.
- Analytical ability.
- Decision-making and problem-solving.
- General mental ability.
- Basic numeracy and Data interpretation.
- The cut-off percentage of prelims varies every year, depending on the number of aspirants.
The main examination consists of 9 papers, whereas only 7 papers will be counted for final merit ranking. For the remaining two papers, the candidate should secure minimum marks prescribed by UPSC each year.
1. Qualifying Papers – Not counted for final ranking:
Paper A – Indian Language – 300 marks
Syllabus- One of the Indian Languages has to be selected by the candidate.
Paper‐ B – English Language – 300 marks
Papers to be counted for merit ranking:
Paper‐I Essay -250 Marks
Candidates have to write an essay on a topic from a given set of options. The writing has to be crisp and concise with clear expression.
Paper‐II- General Studies -I – 250Marks
Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography etc.
Paper‐III General Studies -II -250 Marks
Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.
Paper‐IV General Studies -III -250 Marks.
Technology, Economic Development, Bio‐diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management.
Paper‐V General Studies -IV -250 marks.
The syllabus for General Studies IV is designed to test the candidates’ approach to issues relating to Integrity. Topics included are – Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude.
Paper‐VI Optional Subject -Paper 1 – 250 Marks.
Paper‐VII Optional Subject – Paper 2 – 250 Marks.
The syllabus for optional subjects can be chosen depending on candidate’s expertise and interest.
The candidate will be interviewed by a panel. The questions asked can be pertaining to candidate’s general interest, interpretation and demonstration of logical statements, mental eminence and integrity.
The technique of the interview varies with different panel member but eventually it all leads to the same approach of testing the mental abilities of the candidate.
The interview also tests the knowledge of the candidate relating to current affairs ranging from insignificant issues to major game changing issues.