IAS Syllabus 2020- UPSC has provided the syllabus of IAS 2020 along with the official notification. Students appearing for UPSC Civil Services Exam should check the UPSC syllabus 2020 for better preparation. IAS 2020 syllabus contains important topics of General Studies and other subjects. IAS Question papers are created from the topics of the UPSC Civil Services syllabus. Candidates must go through the UPSC IAS syllabus 2020 before they start their preparation. This will help students to create a good IAS study plan. UPSC will conduct the IAS 2020 prelims exam on May 31, 2020. UPSC Civil Services Examinations is one of the toughest exams. Hence, knowing the complete UPSC syllabus can is the first step towards better preparation. IAS syllabus 2020 is different for prelims and main exam. Read the article to have complete details on UPSC syllabus 2020 for prelims and main exam
Latest: UPSC Admit Card 2020 will be released online in the last week of April 2020!

IAS Syllabus 2020

IAS Syllabus 2020 for Prelims - Civil Service Aptitude Test (CSAT)

Candidates have to first qualify the UPSC prelims exam followed by the Main exam. IAS prelims 2020 is conducted for two papers - General Studies Paper I and General Studies Paper-II. UPSC IAS prelims exam 2020 is intended to test the general awareness of a candidate in subjects like Indian Polity, Geography, History, Indian Economy, Science and Technology, Environment and Ecology, International Relations and associated current affairs. The detailed IAS syllabus 2020 for prelims exams is given below

UPSC IAS Prelims Syllabus 2020 - General Studies (Paper I)

The topics below need to be prepared for the syllabus of IAS 2020.

  • Current events of national and international importance.
  • General issues on Environmental ecology, Biodiversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialization
  • Economic and Social Development-Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
  • General Science.
  • Indian Polity and Governance-Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc
  • Indian and World Geography-Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World.

UPSC IAS Prelims Syllabus 2020 - General Studies (Paper-II)

In the General Studies Paper II (CSAT), questions will be asked from the following topics of UPSC syllabus 2020

  • Comprehension

  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills

  • 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

Best books for UPSC IAS for General Studies Paper I

To prepare the complete IAS syllabus 2020, candidates are advised to follow the below-mentioned books-

Best Books for IAS 2020 General Paper II CSAT

  • Yojana, Kurukshetra, Frontline and the newspapers like Indian Express, The Hindu

  • Analytical Reasoning – MK Pandey

  • Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning– RS.Aggarwal

IAS Syllabus 2020 for Main

According to UPSC IAS selection process, the next stage is the mains stage wherein there will be seven papers - paper I, II, II, IV, V, VI, and VII. The table below contains the IAS 2020 of the seven papers from the questions are expected to be asked.

IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 1)

In paper I of the mains exam of UPSC IAS 2020, candidates will be given multiple topics out of which candidates will have to write an essay.

IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 2)

General Studies - I: Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society

  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
  • Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.
  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
  • Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
  • Effects of globalization on Indian society.
  • The Freedom Struggle — its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country.
  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
  • History of the world will include events from the 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the Society.
  • Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.
  • Salient features of the world's physical geography.
  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian
  • sub-continent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector
  • Industries in various parts of the world (including India).
  • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location-changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 3)

General Studies - II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International Relations

  • Indian Constitution—historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries.
  • Parliament and State legislatures—structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  • Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary—Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  • Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
  • Salient features of the Representation of the People's Act.
  • Development processes and the development industry —the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.
  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and the States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.
  • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • Issues relating to poverty and hunger.
  • Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
  • Role of IAS in a democracy.
  • India and its neighborhood-relations.
  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting
  • India’s interests.
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests,
  • Indian diaspora.
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.

UPSC IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 4)

General Studies - III: Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Environment,

Security and Disaster Management

  • Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.
  • Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.
  • Government Budgeting.
  • Major crops-cropping patterns in various parts of the country, - different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers.
  • Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public
  • Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.
  • Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.
  • Land reforms in India.
  • Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
  • Investment models.
  • Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.
  • Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.
  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.
  • Disaster and disaster management.
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism.
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social
  • networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security, money-laundering and its prevention.
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas - linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
  • Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

UPSC IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 5)

  • Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.
  • Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.
  • Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in-human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics - in private and public relationships. Human Values - lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family society and educational institutions in inculcating values.
  • Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.
  • Government strives to have a workforce which reflects gender balance and women candidates are encouraged to apply.Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.
  • Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and the world.
  • Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and
  • Probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery,
  • Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.
  • Case Studies on the above issues.

UPSC IAS Main Syllabus 2020 (Paper 6 & 7)

Paper VI and VII will contain topics from the optional subject selected by the candidates. There are various subjects that the candidates can select for paper VI and VII. Check the list of papers below

IAS Subjects for paper VI and VII





Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science






Civil Engineering

Electrical Engineering

Medical Science

Commerce and Accountancy







Political Science and International Relations



Public Administration



Literature of any one of the following languages:

Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili,

Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santhali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu

and English

UPSC IAS Exam Pattern 2020

Along with the IAS syllabus 2020, it is a must to know the exam pattern. The prelims exam comprises two papers – General Studies paper I and General Studies paper 2. Both papers will contain only objective type questions. Prelims exam is conducted to select candidates for mains.

IAS Prelims Paper Pattern

Name of paper

Number of Questions

Total Marks


General Studies 1



2 hours

General Studies 2



2 hours

UPSC IAS Main Papers Pattern


Name of Paper

Total Marks


Paper A

Indian Language


3 hours

Paper B



3 hours

Paper 1



3 hours

Paper 2

General Studies 1


3 hours

Paper 3

General Studies 2


3 hours

Paper 4

General Studies 3


3 hours

Paper 5

General Studies 4


3 hours

Paper 6

Optional subject 1


3 hours

Paper 7

Optional subject 2


3 hours





Personality Test



45 minutes to 1 hours

Grand Total




UPSC IAS 2020 Question Papers

The best source to know the correct IAS Syllabus 2020 is the previous year's question papers. It will help the candidates understand the types of questions asked in the exam. Candidates can also check and download the set-wise Civil Services question papers below.

Previous Year UPSC IAS Question Papers

Question Set

Set A

Set B

Set C

Set D

Download Link Paper I

Click Here

Click Here

Click Here

Click Here

Download Link Paper II

Click Here

Click Here

Click Here

Click Here

How to Prepare for UPSC IAS 2020?

In order to prepare for the UPSC IAS exam, candidates must strategise their preparation techniques so that they can prepare well for the exam. There are a few tips and tricks mentioned below to help the aspirant prepare well for the exam.

  • Know all the topics of IAS Syllabus 2020 from where the questions can be asked in the exam.

  • Pick the best books for preparation

  • Make a study schedule and follow it

  • Solve previous year’s question papers

  • Take as many mock tests as possible

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs) - IAS Syllabus 2020

Question: Which of the subjects can I choose for UPSC IAS exam ?


There are many subjects that are listed for appearing in UPSC IAS exam. You can choose any of the subjects of your choice. The top 10 optional subjects for UPSC IAS exam is listed below:

  • Agriculture

  • Medical Science

  • Economics

  • Chemistry

  • Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science

  • Commerce and Accountancy

  • History

  • Law

Question: Is there any change in UPSC CSE Syllabus 2020?


Since the detailed notification will be released by the authority in February 2020, you will be able to know any changes if done. However, for now, you can totally rely on the syllabus of the previous year.

Question: Who got highest marks in UPSC Ever?


The highest marks ever scored in the UPSC exam were by Anudeep Durishetty, the topper for UPSC 2017. He scored 1126 (55.60%) out of 2025 marks. He scored 950 out of 1750 marks in Mains and 176 out of 275 in the personality test (UPSCInterview).

Question: Which of the books can I refer by toppers to clear IAS preliminary exam


  1. Indian Polity for Civil Services Examinations by M. Laxmikanth (Polity) ...

  2. Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh

  3. Economic Survey by the Ministry of Finance

  4. Indian Art and Culture by Nitin Singhania

  5. Oxford School Atlas by Oxford Publishers

  6. Certificate Physical and Human Geography by Goh Cheng Leong

Question: Which optional subjects have the highest success rate in IAS/UPSC exam


Optional Subject

Candidates Appeared

Success Rate













UPSC Civil Services Exam Updates and Articles

Questions related to UPSC Civil Services Exam

Showing 1164 out of 1164 Questions

Can i became ias officer after doing mbbs

Aniket Sharma 6th Apr, 2020

hi harsh,

Yes you can be an IAS officer after doing mbbs. Its not wrong to have a patriotic feeling for nation and feeling to make our country a better nation or society. Being a doctor you will work in a hospital but being an IAS officer several hospitals, clinics will be under you where you can make them better. Also IAS is a very respected job in the country and offers a lot of perks.

You can check this pdf for detailed knowledge of IAS syllabus/ eligibility criteria etc. : Check here (https://www.upsc.gov.in/sites/default/files/Notification-CSPE_2020_N_Engl.pdf)

I hope this answer will help.
All the best for the future!!


My friend is having a doubt.His aim is to become an IAS. But,his parents are forcing him to do engineer.So, he also agreed.And he told me that he wish to learn for IAS exam also doing BE CSE.He is confused that whether he could learn for both BE and IAS exam.What he will do now?Any tips to learn?...

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 6th Apr, 2020

In order to appear for UPSC, you just need to be 21 years old and passed graduation in any discipline from a recognized university,you can apply even in your final year. UPSC doesn't discriminate among aspirants and hence allow people from all background to appear for this exam. If you see previous year trends people from different backgrounds have succeeded such as arts,engineering, medical etc and continue to do so, even if you pursue graduation in computer science engineering, that in no way will hamper your prospect for UPSC because eventually it's the preparation and planning that matters and make an aspirant successful.

UPSC takes two years,one year for preparation and another one for appearing in the three stages of exams namely prelims, mains and Interview, so PERSEVERANCE is the key to success in this exam,you've to make targets on a daily,weekly and monthly basis.In this case, the sooner you start,the better it's. You can start your preparation in gradual manner by being acquainted with UPSC syllabus and having integrated approach for prelims as well as mains, and newspaper reading on a daily basis. Both of above mentioned steps will make your foundation strong for UPSC preparation. Later on,start with NCERT books and move to other standard books, keep the resources minimum always, start practicing answer writing in advance as writing for mains will be a humongous task, solve previous year papers and do mock tests and test series to evaluate your performance.

can any ias officer join IAF ?

Ankita yadav 6th Apr, 2020
Hi aspirant
Yes an IAS officer can apply for IAF. Both are the government services but with different sectors. For IAF you have to move through all the process fir example exam medical training etc.

IAS banne k liye Kitna study karana hota hai...?

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 5th Apr, 2020

UPSC Civil service exam is one of the most prestigious exam, and with number of candidates increases every year makes it highly competitive, the syllabus is extensive whether it's prelims or mains,hence it's best to have an integrated approach while preparing for this exam, UPSC takes two year that is one year to prepare and another year to appear for the exam,so PERSEVERANCE is the key to success in this exam, you need to have a disciplined life in terms of daily,weekly,monthly targets if you miss you'll lag behind to complete such a humongous syllabus, you need to solve mock tests and do test series, also practicing answer writing in advance is a must.This exam tests mental capacity of candidates because in this two years of preparation period,you'll have moments of anxiety and doubts, so it's important to have a balanced mind, doing yoga and meditation can help you a lot dealing with things going on internally,also you have to take care of health,eat healthy food and sleeping on time, at the same time you also have to balance out your studies with other things,it can be your hobby, it's just that you have to keep up that enthusiasm alive which made you choose to appear for this exam and and afterwards have a career in the same.

ias preparation strategy for absolute beginners

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 5th Apr, 2020

You can go through the steps as mentioned below in order to start your preparation for UPSC in a gradual manner:

Be well acquainted with UPSC Syllabus, learn it by heart, that's the most crucial step to crack this exam, to know what to read and what to skip. In addition to this, never ever make a differentiation between prelims and mains, what I mean is do not prepare separately for each, because nowadays what's happening is even in prelims, UPSC frame questions based on Mains syllabus, So, the first towards preparation shall be a integrated preparation for both.

Read any newspaper like The Hindu, or Indian Express on a regular basis to be updated as well as gaining knowledge which shall be highly useful to you in future exam preparation part.

Start with basics, for each subject, you can do with NCERTs for this.

As you progress, move on to other relevant books, keep your resources minimum like Polity by Laxmikanth, History of Modern India by Bipin Chandra etc.

Start practicing answer writing in advance, even in a little way, writing mains is a huge task for nine paper, it requires immense practice along with knowledge.

Practice previous year question paper which you can get from the site of UPSC,in addition mock papers, and test series which you can get it from any of the sites extensively dedicated to UPSC, , it's highly important to evaluate your performance while doing so.
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