How to Crack UPSC Civil Services Exam - Check IAS Preparation Tips, Study Plan
How to crack UPSC Civil Services Exam- The UPSC civil service exam is one of the most coveted competitive exams. Lakhs of candidates aim to make their way to the administrative services. However, before achieving their goal, they question how to crack the UPSC civil service exam? Such candidates wonder what is the UPSC study material from where they need to study, how to start preparation for UPSC CSE and what strategy they should adopt so that they could crack the UPSC civil services exam. Owing to the COVID 19 pandemic, this year the UPSC civil services 2022 exam was postponed and will now be held on October 10. Read the full article that is given below to know how to crack the UPSC Civil Services Exam.
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Who can Crack the IAS Exam?
Aspirants who focus single mindedly on UPSC IAS 2022 as the goal, analyse & strategize their exam preparation such that they qualify all stages - (Prelims, Main, and Interview), can win the race to being an IAS officer. To do so, they must visualise only their goal and the path to reach it just like Arjuna’s arrow in Draupadi’s Swayamvar won him her hand.
One can see many examples of aspirants who have pushed their way to making their dreams come true and some of those inspirational stories include names like Govind Jaiswal, Ansar Ahmad Shaikh, Ira Singhal, Gopal Sunara Raj, Sandeep Kaur, Nirish Rajput, Komal Ganatra, Mohammad Ali Shihab and Rashmi Siddharth Zagade etc. The list is endless and the backgrounds varied. However, one thing is common - the zeal and the focus to make a change not just to their lives but also to society in general.
UPSC Civil Services Exam Pattern 2022
Candidates must be well versed with the UPSC exam pattern for the civil services entrance test as this will help them to draw a plan for their preparation.
Prelim Exam: According to the UPSC IAS exam pattern, there will be two papers which are objective type with negative marking (0.33% for wrong or more than one ans).
GS Paper-I: for 200 marks. The number of correct answers decides the merit to qualify for Mains exam of UPSC.
GS Paper-II: The minimum qualifying marks is 33%.
Main Exam: The UPSC main exam consists of a written exam followed by an Interview for final selection.
Written Exam: 9 papers for 2625 marks as follows
Paper-I (Language-300 marks) & Paper-II (English-300 marks) are qualifying.
7 Papers (for 250 marks each): Paper-I (Essay) + 4 GS Papers + 2 Optional Papers. Total marks are 1750
Personality Test (Interview): 275 marks
Note: Merit for final selection is based on the marks secured in the 7 Merit Papers + Interview.
How to Prepare for IAS: PT, Main & Interview?
Strategy for IAS Prelims Exam Preparation
Points to note: The UPSC Prelims consists of two mandatory papers that are objective in nature with multiple choice questions. Paper-II is a qualifying paper with minimum qualifying marks fixed at 33%.
Prelims: Syllabus, Topics, Trends and Preparation
Prelims Paper I: Syllabus
Prelims Syllabus: Paper I‐ (200 marks), No. of Questions-( 100), Duration: 2 hours
Current events of national and international importance.
History of India and Indian National Movement.
Indian and World Geography-Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World.
Indian Polity and Governance-Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
Economic and Social Development-Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
General issues on Environmental ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialization.
Subject Wise Trend Analysis of Previous Question Pattern
Prelims Paper II: Syllabus
Prelims Syllabus: Paper II‐ (200 marks), No. of Questions-( 80), Duration: 2 hours
Interpersonal skills including communication skills; Government strives to have a workforce which reflects gender balance and women candidates are encouraged to apply.
Logical reasoning and analytical ability
Decision making and problem solving
General mental ability
Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. — Class X level)
UPSC-CS Prelim Exam: Official Cut off Marks
Strategy for IAS Main Exam Preparation
When one’s mind is wondering as to how to crack the UPSC civil services exam, then it is essential for one to know the different stages and how many papers are there before drawing the final strategy. The exam has two stages, a written exam of 9 papers followed by an interview of 2350 marks for final selection. The strategy devised is in stages as given below.
Strategy- 1: Understanding the Nature of Questions of UPSC IAS Mains Exam
Questions asked in recent times are application-based linking social, economic, scientific, environmental, cultural, political, etc. problems faced by the people from different regions, religions, castes, genders on a local, national, and world level. Answering these questions needs concepts, facts, and data and not just knowledge of current affairs. A question from the previous year paper explains this clearly.
To what extent has the urban planning and culture of the Indus Valley Civilization provided inputs to the present-day urbanization? Discuss. (UPSC GS Paper-1:2014)
Strategy-2: Understanding Evaluation Methods
The evaluation takes not just the examinee’s educational background and his/her answers, but an analysis of how questions have been answered. Points checked are whether the answer is to the point, has adopted an interdisciplinary approach, and the skill in linking the answer with other relevant subjects and a positive concluding solution. Factors like conceptual clarity, content relevance, objectivity, language proficiency, use of examples, and illustrations in the question help secure good marks.
Strategy-3: Practicing Words & Time Limit
Candidates have to maintain a word limit and answer the questions within a time limit. This needs good practice and can be honed by solving past years UPSC IAS question papers.
Strategy-4: Keeping the Main Syllabus in Mind
Candidates must remember all the topics of the UPSC syllabus for different papers and be able to answer clearly on all of them.
Strategy-5: Other Techniques to practise
Practice as many solved papers, sample question papers of UPSC IAS civil services , and Mock test series as possible for both Prelims and Main exams.
Revision (daily, weekly & monthly) for each topic and subject is a must.
Make notes in brief for each subject you study with headings for each topic and subtopic.
Read newspapers, like The Hindu, Indian Express…, and note down important burning topics of current affairs with relevant information in bullet points and correlate with the static portion of the syllabus.
Strategy & Tips for IAS Interview Preparation
IAS interview or the personality test is the last stage in India’s toughest competition. The less than a half-an-hour exercise can change the life of a candidate. It is not a mere test of knowledge but a holistic test that takes stock of an aspirant’s true personality. Interview board members check candidates’ critical approach and thought process related to social, economic, administrative, political, demographic, etc. problems and their viable as well as practical solutions. Therefore preparation for UPSC-CSE Interview/Personality Test is crucial and some tips for that are:
Start preparing for the interview along with the Main’s exam.
Try to discover yourself and understand the different aspects of your personality including the hidden ones.
Know your biodata well as it will be the basis for questions related to information from the biodata like hobbies, education, work experience, service preference, etc. Be prepared for in depth questions on any aspect from your biodata.
Inculcate positive thinking during and after your preparation and give your best shot.
Check out topper interviews to understand and strategize your preparation. Be confident and try to avoid nervousness during the interview.
Be truthful in expression and deed. Always give correct facts. Impressing the interview board at any cost is not the aim but impressing them for the right reasons is.
Work on your communication skills and be calm during the interview.
Maintain soberness in both dress and body language.
Revise topics from optional subjects as well as keep stock of current affairs topics. Read newspapers regularly and keep abreast of all that's happening around the world.
Know about your district and state’s unique features.
Try to understand the interview questions first and then use common sense to answer.
Join IAS mock interviews in different coaching if possible for practice purposes.
Practice before friends to know your strengths and weaknesses.
IAS Success Formula - Study Tips for Cracking IAS exam
Setting up a Goal: First step towards cracking the IAS exam is to analyse eligibility, capabilities, and the required means/resources to achieve it. The goal should be SMART (i.e. S- Specific; M-Measurable; A-Achievable; R-Realistic; and T- Time-bound).
A set goal helps you stay focused
It helps in overcoming delay
It helps in measuring your progress.
It helps in setting barriers against distraction
It enables you in managing your time
It motivates in scaling milestones
Daily Routine (Time Management) through a timetable - The 24 hours in a day, 7 weeks in a month, and 12 months in a year is enough to prepare for the toughest entrance examinations of the country provided it is utilised to the best. One of the key factors which play the most important role in cracking the IAS exam is having a balanced routine or timetable that focuses upon studies as well as the normal daily activities. A timetable helps keep the study schedule on track.
"Time is really the only capital that any human being has, and the only thing he can't afford to lose." - Thomas Edison
However, no fixed timetable suits every aspirant. They should prepare their own timetable chart based on their strengths and weaknesses, their convenience etc.
Importance of Good Health for Cracking IAS Exam: The Greek philosopher Thales said, “A Sound Mind in a Sound Body”; means a sound body would ideally function better. A healthy diet, sound sleep and activities to destress and keep the body fit should be part of the routine for every IAS aspirant.
Emotion Management for IAS Exam: It is easy to be demotivated or stressed during preparation and combating this is important. A bonding with like minded professionals preparing for the exam will help make the preparation journey better.
How to Manage Study for CSE/IAS Preparation
How to Manage Reading Speed: This is important as the syllabus is vast and aspirants need speed to cover it all. So when the the question pops up in one’s mind as to how to crack the UPSC civil services exam, some habits that help are:
Concentration and focus on the content.
Avoid rereading and move on to new topics once done.
Use a timer to gauge your reading time and fix time slots for particular texts or pages
Learn to skim through the important facts
Practise till the desirable reading speed is achieved
Make your own Study Timetable
Divide the UPSC IAS syllabus into Prelims and Main. Further, divide both into subjects and chapters/topics.
Then divide the time span, say a year into months, a month into weeks, and a week into days. Now divide the day into a group of hours.
Next, make a chronological classification of subjects, topics, and sub-topics of prelims and the main syllabus according to strong and weak areas and the importance of questions asked in the examinations.
Put the chapters subject wise in months and topics/ subtopics in weeks and days categories to fix a schedule that completes them all.
Incorporate revision time every day, every week, every month, and every third month.
How to Schedule Revision for IAS Preparation?
Revision is crucial as one prepares for the UPSC IAS exam on their own . The concepts, facts, and other information studied have to be revised to avoid forgetting them. A gap of 9 to 15 days in between two revisions may cause forgetting some of the topics learnt. So most of the IAS toppers recommend a 3 Tier Revision Plan as given below
Also Read: How to Prepare for UPSC IAS Without Coaching
Time Table for IAS Preparation
3 Tier Revision Plan
Morning and Night recaps
Practice Sessions: Revision every 15th day and every 3rd month with not just study material but mock papers, past years question papers will make the plan a better and a viable one.
Daily Revision Schedule: Aspirants should look at all important points which they studied the whole day before going to sleep. Likewise in the morning, they should quickly revise all chapters and topics they covered the previous day from the UPSC exam study material.
Weekly Revision Schedule: Aspirants should revise all the subjects, chapters, and topics that they studied in the past 6 days of the week as doing this on a regular basis will help them to crack the UPSC civil services exam.
Monthly Revision Schedule: This is the third stage of revision which is better fixed on the last day of every month. The aspirants should revise all the subjects, chapters, and topics along with solved papers, and mock tests for topics they have revised in that month. Likewise a quarterly and six monthly revision schedule would be an ideal thing to incorporate in the timetable.
How to Evaluate Study Progress for UPSC/IAS Exam
A. Learning Evaluation: IAS aspirants must check their learning progress and evaluate their preparation from time to time (weekly and monthly). For this, they can take a mock test and previous questions asked from a particular topic and solve them. They need to check their capability of answering - hundred percent correct, or fifty percent correct as well as how many questions they could not answer. As per the test result of that topic they can reschedule that topic for study or revision.
B. Speed Evaluation: Mock tests are the best tools to evaluate speed as well as for improvement. Aspirants need to solve papers within a set time limit and gauge their performance. They should strive to improve on it with every test they take.
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Questions related to UPSC CSE
I am an ias aspirant i will be 37 year on this coming October. So i will be able to give ias exam on nxt year i.e.2023 i belong to ST category.
No, you are not eligible for UPSC 2023 examination.
This is because,
For st category, upper age limit is 37 years old as on 1st of August of the year of filling the form i. e means to be eligible you should not be more than 37 years old on 1st August 2023 in case of UPSC 2023
But you will be 37 years old in October 2022 itself means more than 37 years old as on 1st August 2023 i. e 37 years and 10th months old as on on 1st August 2023 and thus not eligible for UPSC 2023
UPSC eligibility criteria is provided below:-
******** You must have a bachelor's degree in any, discipline from a recognised university .
******** Minimum age limit :- you need to be at least 21 years old to be eligible as on 1st of August of the year of filling the form
******** Maximum age limit :-as on 1st August of the year of examination
General category :-32 years
Obc :- there's 3 year relaxation on upper age limit for obc , so upper age limit is 35.
Sc/st :- 5 years relaxation, so upper age limit is 37.
********Attempt limit:- The maximum of times one can appear in UPSC is given below category wise :-
General/ EWS - 6
OBC or General PwD - 9
SC/ ST - No limit , can appear till upper age limit .
For detailed information related to UPSC eligibility criteria , you can visit our page at
after second puc we can apply ias
In order to apply for UPSC IAS Exam or to appear in one, you first have to be graduated and have to score the required percentage in the graduation level. You cannot directly apply for UPSC exam for IAS or IPS.
The minimum educational qualification required to take on the IAS exam is graduation . You have to have a degree from a recognized university to attempt the IAS exam conducted by the UPSC every year.
Further, to know more about the UPSC IAS Exam and its eligibility criteria, you can follow the below mentioned link to know more : https://competition.careers360.com/exams/upsc-cse
i hope that this will help.
What book i want to read for ias
New UPSC aspirants are always in dilemma about study material because market is full of different resources for one subject. Different toppers and teachers advice for different material. But there are certain resources on which you can rely. Some of them are:
- First of all, be thorough with class 6th-12th NCERTs for all subjects.
- There are certain necessary and advisable books like Lakshmikant for polity, spectrum for Modern History, RS Sharma for Ancient History, Economics NCERT for economics, GC Leong for Geography, etc.
- For dynamic subjects like International Relations, one can take notes or printed materials from any coaching institute and newspaper is must for these subjects.
- Apart from these books, newspaper is very important for UPSC. Aspirants cannot leave it even by mistake.
These are standard resources for UPSC. For optional you can search for best notes.
Hope it helps.
All The Best!!
how to become IAS after complete bba ? how many years to become IAS after bba
Make a legitimate schedule so you can finish your prospectus on time.
Begin perusing The Hindu paper. It will truly help you.
Take the schedule and earlier year papers of this test and dissect them. Figure out what is the idea of the test, what sort of inquiries UPSC poses, and what is the degree of strength. You will get an unmistakable picture that will help you in the long haul. This investigation will assist you in fostering a way to deal with perusing books from this test point of view.
Begin your readiness from NCERT books.
It will take 2-3 years on average to become an IAS.
i am an ias aspirant i will b 37 years and 8 months on aug 1 2024 will i be able to give ias xm i belong to sc category
hope you are doing well
UPSC Civil Services Exam Age Limit: Candidate must be a minimum of 21 years of age and must not be more than 32 years of age. General Category & EWS: 32 years; 6 attempts. OBC (with certificate): 32 years + 3 years; 9 attempts. SC/ST: 32 years + 5 years; unlimited attempts.
sorry to say but now you are not eligible for UPSC exam cause your age is higher than the age limit.
sorry, but best of luck.