The UPSC IAS Prelims is scheduled to be held on May 31, 2020. The candidates must be already knee-deep in their UPSC IAS preparation 2020. About 12 lakhs apply for UPSC IAS exam, but vacancies are just around 1000 in number every year. While every candidate studies and puts in efforts to cover the vast syllabus of UPSC IAS 2020, the success rate of clearing UPSC IAS exam to be less than 0.01%. It is evident that it is not easy to clear the UPSC civil service exam (CSE). Ultimately, it is the strategy on how to prepare for UPSC IAS 2020 that makes a huge difference in the candidate's success rate. One important factor that determines the quality of preparation is the best books for UPSC IAS 2020 that must be referred by aspirants for right guidance.

UPSC IAS 2020 Prelims Exam is to be Conducted on May 31; Check Best Books to Prepare for Civil Services Exam

How to start UPSC IAS preparation 2020?

The candidates should start with NCERT books that explains the concepts in simple yet clear terms. The candidates can refer the NCERT books from class 6 to Class 12.

As per the exam pattern of UPSC IAS 2020, civil service exam will be conducted in three stages - Prelims, Mains and Interview. The UPSC IAS exam date for Mains stage is from September 18 -23, 2020.

Best Books for UPSC IAS 2020

Here is a list of best books for IAS 2020 for Prelims stage for General Studies Paper 1.




  1. Facets of Indian Culture – Spectrum

  2. India’s Struggle for Independence – Bipan Chandra

  3. Indian Art & Culture - Nitin Singhania


Indian Polity – M Laxmikanth


  1. Certificate Physical Geography – G C Leong

  2. World Atlas


  1. The Indian Economy – Sanjiv Verma

  2. Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh


Environment by Shankar IAS Academy

For General Studies paper 2/ CSAT, the candidates can refer the following books:

  1. Tata McGraw Hill CSAT Manual

  2. Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning – R S Aggarwal

  3. CSAT II – Arihant

  4. Cracking the CSAT Civil Services Aptitude Test with Solved Papers

The second stage is Mains and it requires in depth study within the defined syllabus of UPSC IAS 2020. The candidate should click on best books for UPSC IAS 2020 - Mains to know which books to refer for various General Study subjects and optional subjects.

UPSC Civil Services Exam Updates and Articles

Questions related to UPSC Civil Services Exam

Showing 1144 out of 1144 Questions

i want to be an ias with a backup plan what should I choose ba or bsc

chinmayi 28th Mar, 2020


All The Best as you have a dream to become an IAS  . I suggest you to take B.Sc as there is science stream in your class 11 and 12 . You have many opportunities as you can do M.Sc or PhD after doing B.Sc . You have an opportunity if you fail to achieve your dream of an IAS officer . If you don't get selected for IAS then you have a chance of becoming professor .

Dream to become an IAS but have an other option also in your career . You should work very hard to become an IAS . But concentrate on your degree as Degree is most crucial to become an IAS as without a degree you are not supposed to write the prelims exam .

Hope this helps you .


if agri is the correct graduation for IAS /

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 28th Mar, 2020

First of all,according to eligibility criteria for UPSC,candidates need to pass graduation in any discipline and attained 21 years age, you can appear even in your final year,there isn't any best course or correct course in this matter, the sole reason being UPSC doesn't discriminate among aspirants and hence allow people from all background to appear for this exam. As per previous year trends also,people from different backgrounds like engineering, medical etc too have succeeded, what eventually matters is planning and strategy in this exam.

what are the groups in intermediate which is best for ias?

Megha 28th Mar, 2020

Hello Aspirant !

I will suggest you to first choose wisely your undergraduate and start preparing from starting itself.

Then , choose your subjects according to your preparation and interest that what subject you will take as an optional subject in your exams

Many people go for subjects in ART stream like bachelor of art with subject like geography , history , political science etc according to your interest .

Also , you can try for humanities.

Hope it helps , if you have further query please feel free to ask !


i want to become an after finishing my hsc second year which is the better course for my brightfull future?

Papeya Dubey Student Expert 28th Mar, 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.

See, it's important to understand where your interest lies, and accordingly choose career path. As UPSC is more humanities oriented, it's becomes comparatively easier for arts students to prepare for this exam as they're already well acquainted with this syllabus while science students didn't have any of these subjects at +2 level. But, let me tell you as per previous year trends, many people belonging to engineering and medical too have succeeded, and the only reason being eventually it's the planning and strategy that matters. So, think out clearly about your areas of interest, if you're absolutely clear about UPSC and have liking for any arts subject such as law, political science, history, economics etc you may go ahead, secondly if you're not sure, go with your choice it may be medical, management, engineering or anything else, even if you later feel like giving UPSC,  you can definitely go ahead after gaining some experiences in your related career field like so many successful candidates have done in the past.


I want to start my IAS preparation from home other than going to coaching centers.i want to write this exam in the year 2023 as I was born in march 2002,is it right?..which books help me for write the preliminary & mains better.i want to study in a smart way rather than spending a lot of time in it.

Aditi Amrendra Student Expert 26th Mar, 2020

The eligibility criteria for appearing in UPSC civil services examination is to have a graduate degree and age above 21.First of all you should start studying newspapers daily either The Hindu or The Indian Express.
Every topper recommends that your resources should be limited because there are tonnes of materials in the market and indulging in each one of them will waste your time and you will get confused ending up in messing everything.
There are few standard books recommended by toppers,these are :
  • NCERT books from 6 to 12.
  • Laxmikant for Polity
  • Spectrum fo Modern India
  • Tamil Nadu board book of class 11th for Ancient and Medieval india
  • Shankar IAS book for Environment
  • GC Leong for Gerography
  • Ramesh Singh for Economy.
  • Nitin Singhnia for Art and Culture
Apart from that keep and eye on everything happening around world and be curious.
For Mains,GS 1,2,3 above books and current affairs and for GS 4 you should study Lexicon.Apart from that you should study ARC Reports,NITI Ayog action agenda,PIB,PRS,Indian year book,Budget and Economic survey(of the year in which you will appear in the exam)

Good Luck
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