UPSC syllabus and pattern


Welcome to UPSCIAS exam! On this page you have complete information of IAS exam syllabus and pattern of UPSC. You will also find a full list of subjects for the Civil Services Examination, which is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) based on the UPSC syllabus.

The Civil Services Examination is extensively considered as one of the toughest and the most prestigious examinations conducted in India.

To properly understand the IAS exam syllabus and pattern of the exam, candidate needs to understand the requirement of UPSC first. This will help to eliminate wasteful efforts like reading unnecessary topics, which can lead to a loss of time, and keeps the candidate strictly aligned to the expectations of the UPSC from day one. So, come on friends let’s understand the syllabus and pattern of UPSC.

The UPSC Civil Service Exam is conducted in three phases.

  1. Civil Services Examination (Preliminary - Objective Type)
  2. Civil Services Examination (Mains - Descriptive Type)
  3. Personal Interview (Personality Test)

 

  • Important points to keep in mind:

Paper

1

2

Subjects

General Studies (GS)

CSAT

Marks

200

200

Time

2 hours

2 hours

 

  • The General Studies paper consists of 100 questions, whereas the CSAT paper consists of 80 questions. Both papers have negative marks for wrong answers, which is 1/3rd of the total marks assigned to that question.
  • To understand it easily, each correct answer in GS will be awarded 2 marks. So, 0.66 marks will be deducted from the total of every question which is marked incorrectly.
  • Same as in the CSAT, in this exam there will be 80 questions and 200 marks. It means the weightage of each question is 2.5 mark each, while every wrong answer will give the penalty of 0.833 mark from the total.
  • The questions will be of multiple choice and objective types. The marks in prelims will not be considered for final ranking, but will be considered for qualification for the main exam.
  • No negative marking will be there for not attempted questions.

 

 

 

Phase 1 – Civil Service Preliminary Examination.

As we have seen above that, in phase one there are mainly two papers 1) General Studies and     2) Civil Service Aptitude Test (CSAT)

  1. The General Studies test is the first paper of the preliminary examination. This test has been designed to test the general awareness of a candidate in a wide range of subjects which include: Indian Polity, Geography, History, Indian Economy, Science and Technology, Environment and Ecology, International Relations and associated current affairs.
  2. Civil Service Aptitude Test:
  • This test has been designed to check the aptitude of the candidate in solving ‘Reasoning and Analytical’ questions, except that ‘Reading Comprehension’ and sometimes asked ‘Decision Making’ questions.
  • This test is only designed for screening a candidate for the upcoming stages of the exam.

Syllabus of GS Paper (Prelims Paper I)

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

 

Syllabus for CSAT Paper (Prelims Paper II)

  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. - Class X level)
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability
  • General mental ability
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills
  • Decision-making and problem solving
  • Comprehension

 

 

Phase 2 – Civil Service Mains Examination

The second phase of the Civil Service Examination is the Mains Examination. Only those candidate are eligible who have successfully qualify the preliminary exam. The mains examination has been designed to test candidate’s academic talent in depth and candidate’s ability to present their understanding as per the question in time.

  • The Civil Services Mains examination consists of nine papers out of which 7 papers will be counted for the final merit ranking. For the remaining two papers candidates should secure minimum marks prescribed by the UPSC each year.

Papers to be considered for merit ranking:

  1. PaperI Essay – Syllabus. 250 Marks.
  2. PaperII General Studies – I – Syllabus. 250Marks. (Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society).
  3. PaperIII General Studies –II – Syllabus. 250 Marks. (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations).
  4. PaperIV General Studies –III – Syllabus. 250 Marks. (Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management).
  5. PaperV General Studies –IV – Syllabus. 250 Marks. (Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude).
  6. PaperVI Optional Subject – Paper 1 – 250 Marks.
  7. PaperVII Optional Subject – Paper 2 – 250 Marks.

 

Candidate may select any of the optional subjects from the list given below:

  1. History Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  2. Geography Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  3. Economics Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  4. Sociology Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  5. Public Administration Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  6. Philosophy Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  7. Psychology Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  8. Political Science Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  9. Agriculture Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  10. Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  11. Anthropology Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  12. Botany Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  13. Chemistry Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  14. Civil Engineering Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  15. Commerce Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  16. Electrical Engineering Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  17. Geology Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  18. Law Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  19. Mathematics Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  20. Management Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  21. Mechanical Engineering Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  22. Medical Science Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  23. Physics Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  24. Statistics Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  25. Zoology Syllabus – Civil Services Mains Exam UPSC.
  26. Literature of any one of the following:

Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Oriya, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santhali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu and English.

 

Phase 3 – Personal Interview

  • The candidate will be interviewed by the Board appointed by the UPSC. Candidate will be asked questions on matters of general interest.
  • The purpose of this interview is to examine the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in the civil services by a board of competent and unbiased observers.
  • As per the broad, this is actually an assessment of not only candidate’s intellectual qualities but also social traits and candidate’s interest in current affairs. Other qualities to be judged are ability for social cohesion and leadership, mental alertness, clear and logical exposition, critical powers of assimilation, balance of judgement, variety and depth of interest, intellectual and moral integrity.
  • The interview is not that much difficult or a strict cross-examination but of a natural, though directed and purposive conversation which is Contemplated to assert the mental qualities of the candidate.
  • The interview has not been designed to check either of the specialized or general knowledge of the candidates, this has been examined during the written examination.
  • intelligent interest has been expected from the candidate not only in their personal subjects of academic study but also in the events which are happening around them both national and international and new discoveries which should rouse the curiosity of well-educated youth.

So, this is the complete IAS exam syllabus and pattern. Now here you have the weightage given to the particular test and the total marks of all three phases.

Written test - 1750 marks

Interview (personality test) - 250 marks

Grand total - 2025 marks