UPSC IAS Syllabus 2020 will be released by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) along with the official notification of Civil Services Exam on February 12 at UPSC IAS 2020 syllabus will be released for both prelims and mains exam for all aspiring candidates. The syllabus of UPSC IAS 2020 will contain all the topics and chapters from where the questions will be asked in the exam. Candidates must go through UPSC IAS syllabus 2020 before they start their preparation. By going through UPSC IAS 2020 syllabus, candidates will be able to find all important topics to study and maintain a study plan. Candidates need not go here and there to look for the topics to study for UPSC IAS as they will get all topics in the syllabus itself.

IAS Syllabus 2020

Latest: UPSC Admit Card 2020 is to be released tentatively by March 28 in online mode

UPSC IAS 2020 prelims exam is scheduled to be held on May 31, 2020. As per the exam pattern of UPSC IAS 2020, the test will be held in three phases - prelims, mains, and interview. The prelims exam will be held for two compulsory papers - paper I and II of 200 marks each while the mains exam will be held for paper A (optional paper 1), B (optional paper 2), I, II, III, IV, V, VI, and VII. To know more about UPSC IAS syllabus 2020, go through the article below.
Latest: The application form of UPSC IAS 2020 is available now!

IAS Syllabus - Stage Wise

The examination authorities determine the syllabus of UPSC IAS for each stage of the following stages:

  • Prelims

  • Mains

  • Interview

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

The first stage of UPSC IAS exam is the prelims. Candidates who pass the prelims phase will become eligible to appear for the mains exam. The prelims exam of UPSC IAS is conducted for two papers - General Studies paper I and General Studies paper II, both of which contain objective type multiple choice questions. UPSC IAS prelims exam 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 for prelims stage is mentioned below.

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

The topics below need to be prepared for the IAS paper I syllabus.

  • 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.

Best books for UPSC IAS For General Studies Paper I

In order to study in an organised way, candidates must pick the best books for IAS. The list of books for General Studies.

  • Manorama Yearbook

  • Yojana Magazine

  • Newspapers: Hindu or Indian Express

  • NCERT Biology Class 12th

  • Indian Economy- Ramesh Singh

  • Economic Survey of India, by the Ministry of Finance

  • The Lexicon for Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude by Niraj Kumar

  • NCERT Class 9th to 12th

  • NCERT Class 12th

  • Indian Polity, by Laxmikanth

  • Introduction to the Constitution of India, by Durga Das Basu

  • Certificate Physical & Human Geography, by Goh Cheng Leong

  • Geography of India, by Majid Hussain

  • Oxford School Atlas

  • NCERT Class 6th to 12th

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

In the General Studies paper II (CSAT) of IAS prelims exam, questions will be asked from the following topics.

  • 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

Recommended Best Books for IAS 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

UPSC IAS Syllabus 2020 - Mains

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 topics for each of the seven papers from the questions are expected to be asked.

UPSC IAS 2020 Syllabus - Mains paper I

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

UPSC IAS Syllabus - Mains Paper II

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.

UPSC IAS Syllabus 2020 - Mains Paper III

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 2020 Syllabus - Mains Paper IV

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 Syllabus 2020 - Mains Paper V

  • 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 2020 Syllabus - Mains Paper VI and VII

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, the list of which is mentioned below:

Syllabus of UPSC IAS 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

According to the exam pattern of UPSC IAS exam, the prelims exam comprises two papers – General Studies paper I and General Studies paper 2. Both the papers will contain only objective type questions. Prelims exam is conducted to select candidates for mains. The exam pattern of UPSC IAS prelims exam has been provided below.

UPSC IAS 2020 Syllabus - Pattern for Prelims

Name of paper

Number of Questions

Total Marks


General Studies 1



2 hours

General Studies 2



2 hours

All those candidates who will pass in the prelims exam of UPSC IAS 2020 will further have to appear for the mains exam, the exam pattern of which has been mentioned in the table below.

UPSC IAS Syllabus 2020 – Mains and Interview 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

In order to prepare for the test, candidates must go through the previous years question papers of UPSC IAS. It will help the candidates understand the types of questions asked in the exam. Candidates can also check and download the question papers of the UPSC Civil Services Prelims exam for Paper I and II held. Check set-wise Civil Services question papers below.

Previous Year UPSC IAS Question Papers (2018) for Prelims (Set A, B, C, D)

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

UPSC IAS Admit Card 2020

The examination authorities will release the admit card of UPSC IAS in online mode on April 28, 2020 for prelims exam. Candidates will be able to download admit card by using application number and password/ date of birth. IAS admit card will contain the details related to the candidates and the exam like name, date of birth, registration and roll number, date and time of the examination and exam centre details etc. Candidates must carry the admit card to the UPSC IAS exam centre along with one of the prescribed photo ID proof.

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 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

Contact details:

Union Public Service Commission

Dholpur House,

Shahjahan Road, New Delhi - 110069

Facilitation Counter Phone No: 011-23098543 /23385271 /23381125 /23098591

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 1152 out of 1152 Questions

After joining as a NDA officer ,can i give ias exam

Deepshikha Student Expert 2nd Apr, 2020
Well,Yes you can go for UPSC examination after getting into NDA. The basic eligibility criterua is that the candidate must hold a graduation degree in any discipline recognized by the government of India. The candidate must be a citizen of India and must be atleast 21 years of age and the maximum age must be 32 years. For Scheduled Caste and Scheduled Tribe,a relaxation of five years is given.
Hope this helps.
Good luck.

I want to be an ias Officer I am in class 8 should I take bsc in inter or ba in inter because I am going to take ba in graduation

Ankita yadav 1st Apr, 2020
Hi aspirant
It's good that you have decided your goal from this age, you should prefer arts side in 12th and then BA with history and political science.

I completed my inter second year (commerce). Goal is to become an IAS officer. So can I join any degree with civils? is this compulsory now? because the institution fee is too high which I cant pay. So can I join any degree college by taking B.A and continue self preparation for upsc?

Pankhuri Kumari 1st Apr, 2020
Hii Sridhar!
You don't need to join civil ourses in order to clear UPSC and become an IAS.  You can join any bachelor's course of your choice and prepare for UPSC by yourself. The eligibility criteria to become and IAS states that the candidate must have completed graduation from a recognised university in any subject stream. So Yes, you can take admissions in BA and like courses and self prepare for UPSC.
Hope this helps.
Good luck!

which courses available after becoming ias officer?can government give permission any ias officer to continue study?please give me detail information

Harshita Sharan Srivastava Student Expert 31st Mar, 2020

Hello Aspirant,

Yes, you can study even after becoming IAS officer. Also, IAS officers are allowed from six months to two years of paid leave to pursue higher studies. You can go for any course of your choice after becoming an IAS. Few of which are as follows:

  • Ph.D
  • MS
  • MBA
  • Acturial Science

Good Luck


how clear upsc exa in 2 years ??????

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 30th Mar, 2020

UPSC Civil Service Exam consists of three level-


Preliminary numbers are not added in the final list, you just need to score the required cut offs against your category.It mainly consists of GS Paper-I consists of the following topic such as History of India and Indian national movement, Indian and World geography, Economic and social development- sustainable development, poverty,inclusion demographics, social sector initiatives etc,Indian polity and governance-constitution,political system,Current Events nationally and Internationally,
General Science,General Issues on environmental ecology,biodiversity and climate change.

and CSAT includes topics such as basic numeracy, comprehension, logical reasoning and analytical ability, general mental ability, decision making and problem solving, interpersonal skills including communication skills. Both consists of 200 marks, MCQs based. Prelims is mcq based, but still it requires knowledge coupled with speed.

Mains is more of a subjective type, one needs to write answer for Four General Studies Paper(GS-I includes Indian Heritage and Culture,History and Geography of the World and Society, GS-II includes Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International Relations, GS-III includes Technology, Economic Development, Bio-Diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management, GS-IV includes Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude),Two Optionals, One Essay, two language paper, there are total nine papers here. 250 marks for each paper, total is 1750 marks followed by Personality Test of 275 marks.

Now, coming to your question preparation for UPSC anyway takes two years, that's one year of preparing for the exam and another year of appearing for Prelims, Mains and Interview.

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

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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