Which optional subject should I choose?
Many students opt for the scoring subjects. But before you choose a subject, keep in mind your interest and aptitude for the subject. Do not choose an entirely new subject in which you will have to work very hard.
If you prepare the optional well for the Prelims and you choose the same subject in the Mains, it will prove to be useful and also save a lot of labour and time.
Where are the exams held?
The Prelims exam is held in a large number of important towns and cities across India. The actual list of cities are published along with the notification every year, but you will know your actual center (school, college, etc) only in your admit card.
The Mains exam is held at fewer places, in the bigger cities. The list of centers is posted to you along with other relevant documents once you clear the Preliminary stage.
When are the Prelims exams held? What is the purpose of the Prelims?
Prelims are usually held by mid of May; however, with introduction of CSAT, it is being conducted in June this year. Prelims are basically screening test. Its marks are not added in the final test. This objective test has two papers:
Paper I – GS 200 marks
Paper II – CSAT 200 marks
There is the continuation of negative marking for wrong answer.
How much of newspapers and magazines should I read?
Read as much and as many newspapers and magazines as you can. It will help you with preparations for General Studies, and will help you in the interview stage also. However, keep a balance between the time you spend on your optional and
selected papers. Read the daily headlines. Keep track of new laws and amendments to the Constitution. Keep abreast with the newsmakers in sports and politics. Read editorials regularly and concentrate on your Optional(s). The Hindu is the best newspaper. Read it if it is available in your city or town or village. If you have time in your hand, read Frontline (Magazine). Monthly magazines with a roundup of the monthly events can act as a fine supplement for daily newspapers.
Which books should I read?
Civil services are perhaps the toughest exams conducted in India. The key to reading is quality and not quantity.
While reading, keep in mind the syllabus. However, the syllabus for both Prelims and Mains is very broad and vague. It does not give you an idea of the type of questions you can be actually asked. Therefore it is mandatory to keep an eye on the type of
questions that are to be expected. Previous years’ question papers, and other sample papers are a must. For Geography, refer to our suggested
What is the educational qualification needed to appear in IAS exam?
Any degree (graduation). It may be regular or distant. The candidate must hold a degree of any of Universities incorporated by an Act of the Central or State Legislature in India or other educational institutions established by an Act of Parliament or
declared to be deemed as a University Under Section-3 of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification..
When should I produce the proof of passing my graduation examination before UPSC?
All candidates who are declared qualified by the Commission for taking the Civil Services (Main) Examination will be required to produce proof of passing the requisite examination with their application for the Main Examination failing which such
candidates will not be admitted to the Main Examination.
Can final year students of graduation apply for UPSC CSE?
Candidates who have appeared at an examination the passing of which would render them educationally qualified for the Commission’s examination but have not been informed of the results as also the candidates who intend to appear at such a qualifying examination will also be eligible for admission to the Preliminary Examination.
What is the educational qualification needed to appear in IAS exam?
The candidate must hold a degree of any of Universities incorporated by an Act of the Central or State Legislature in India or other educational institutions established by an Act of Parliament or declared to be deemed as a University Under Section-3 of the
University Grants Commission Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification.
Any degree (graduation). It may be regular or distant.
What marks are reckoned for merit ranking in the written part of the Civil Services (Main) Examination?
Marks obtained by the candidates for the Papers I-VII only will be counted for merit ranking (of those candidates who obtain the specified minimum marks in the qualifying papers). However, the Commission will have the discretion to fix qualifying
marks in any or all of these papers.
Is the Indian language Paper compulsory for candidates hailing from the States of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim?
The paper on Indian Language (Paper A) will not be compulsory for candidates hailing from the States of Arunachal Pradesh, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland and Sikkim. 11
What are the Cut-off Marks for the compulsory language Papers?
SerThe minimum qualifying standards in each of the two Qualifying Papers i.e. English and Indian Languages is 25%.vices
Can a candidate write the Civil Service (Main) Examination in English and take the interview in Hindi or any other Indian language?
The candidates, opting for Indian Language medium for the written part of the Civil Services (Main) Examination may choose either the same Indian Language or English or Hindi as the medium for the interview. The candidates, opting to write the Civil
Services (Main) Examination in English, may choose either English or Hindi or any other Indian Language opted by them for the compulsory Indian Language Paper in the written part of the Civil Services (Main) Examination, as the medium for interview. The
candidate has to indicate the language medium of their interview at the time of filling up of the Detailed Application Form (DAF) However, the candidates, who are exempted from the compulsory Indian Language Paper, will have to choose either English or Hindi
as medium of Interview of Personality Test.
How are the Question Papers for the Civil Services (Main) Examination structured? What is the duration of each paper?
The question papers for the examination are of conventional (essay) type. Each paper are of three hours duration.
Can a candidate write different papers of Civil Service (Main) Examination in different languages?
No, the Candidates have the option to write their answers either in English or in any one of the Eighth Schedule languages except the Qualifying Language papers Paper-A and Paper-B, which they have indicated at the time of filling up of their online
application form for Civil Service (Preliminary) Examination.
Which is the language / medium of question papers?
The question papers (other than the literature of language papers) are set in bilingual i.e. Hindi and English only.
Can a candidate choose an optional subject, which he has not studied at graduate/post graduate level?
What are the provisions for reservation for SC, ST, OBC and Physically Disabled candidates?
Reservation will be made for candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes. Scheduled Tribes, Other Backward Classes and Physically Disabled Categories
in respect of vacancies as may be fixed by the Government. Civil Service (Main) Examination
What are the provisions regarding community reservation and change of community?
A candidate will be eligible to get the benefit of community reservation only in case the particular community/ caste / tribe to which the candidates belong is included in the list of reserved communities issued by the Central Government. If a candidate
indicates in his/her application form for Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination that he/she belongs to General category but subsequently writes to the Commission to change his/her category to a reserved one, such request shall not be entertained by the
Commission. Similar principle will also be followed for physically disabled categories.
What information should be given by persons already in Government Service to their Head of Office?
Persons already in Government Service, whether in a permanent or temporary capacity or as work charged employees other than casual or daily rated employees or those serving under the Public Sector Enterprises are required to submit an
undertaking that they have informed their Head of Office/Department, in writing, that they have applied for the Examination. Candidates should note that in case a communication is received from their employer, by the Commission, withholding permission to the
candidates applying for/appearing in the examination, their application will be liable to be rejected/candidature will be liable to be cancelled.
What are the eligibility criteria in terms of physical requirements/ functional classification required for a Service/ Post?
The physically disabled candidates shall also be required to meet special eligibility criteria in terms of physical requirements/functional classification (abilities/disabilities) consistent with requirements of the identified Service/Post as may be prescribed by its Cadre Controlling Authorities. The details of physical requirement and functional classification are given in the Rules of Examination.
What is the eligibility for availing reservation by the Physically Disabled Persons?
The eligibility for availing reservation against the vacancies reserved for the physically disabled persons shall be the same as prescribed in “The Persons with Disability (Equal Opportunities, Protection of Rights and Full Participation) Act, 1995.”
What are the minimum educational qualifications prescribed?
The candidate must hold a degree of any of Universities incorporated by an Act of the Central or State Legislature in India or any other educational institution established by an Act of Parliament or declared to be deemed as a University under Section-
3 of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956, or possess an equivalent qualification.
Is there negative marking at Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination?
Candidates should note that there will be penalty (negative marking) for wrong answers marked by a candidate in the Objective Type Question Papers. There are four alternatives for the answers to every question. (i) For each question for which a
wrong answer has been given by the candidate, one-third (0.33) of the marks assigned to that question will be deducted as penalty. (ii) If a candidate gives more than one answer, it will be treated as a wrong answer even if one of the given answers happen to
be correct and there will be same penalty as above for that question. (iii) If a question is left blank, i.e. no answer is given by the candidate; there will be no penalty for that question.
What is the scheme of Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination?
The Examination shall comprise of two compulsory papers of 200 marks each. (i) Both the question papers will be of objective type (multiple choice questions). (ii) The question papers will be set both in Hindi and English. (iii) Details of the syllabi will
be provided in the Examination Notice and Gazette Notification published by the Government. (iv) Each paper will be of two hours duration. 8
If a candidate has applied for the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination but has not appeared at any paper in the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination will it be counted as an attempt?
No, an attempt is counted only if a candidate has appeared in at least one paper in Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination.
Is an attempt at the Civil Service (Preliminary) Examination (CSP) counted as an attempt at the Civil Service Examination (CSE) ?
(i) An attempt at a Preliminary Examination shall be deemed to be an attempt at the Civil Services Examination. (ii) If a candidate actually appears in any one paper in the Preliminary Examination, he/she shall be deemed to have made an attempt at
the Examination. (iii) Notwithstanding the disqualification/ cancellation of candidature, the fact of appearance of the candidate at the examination will count as an attempt.
What is the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination?
UPSC conducts Preliminary Examination of the Civil Services Examination for recruitment to the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), Indian Police Service (IPS) and other Central Services and posts in accordance with the
Rules published by the Department of Personnel & Training in the Gazette of India Extraordinary. This examination is meant to serve as a screening test only; the marks obtained in the Preliminary Examination by the candidates who are declared qualified for
admission to the Main Examination will not be counted for determining their final order of merit. Only those candidates who are declared by the Commission to have qualified in the Preliminary Examination in the year will be eligible to appear in the Main
Examination of that year provided they are otherwise eligible for admission to the Main Examination
What is the structure of the Civil Service Examination?
The Civil Services Examination (CSE) comprises of two successive stages: the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination (CSP) and the Civil Services (Main) Examination (written and interview). 7 Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination