The mother of all examinations, Civil Service examination is conducted by UPSC, the main regulating body of India. Cracking this, one of the most prestigious examinations in the country, is a dream come true for all aspirants. However, there are no silver bullets to its success. Hence, the preparation part is of core importance for anyone who is looking to come out with flying colors.
Here are a few preparation tips that you could follow that would fetch you sure results:
- Be Confident and Work on Your Weak Points
First and foremost rule is, to be confident in your strength. The preparation starts from within. You might have faced many failures in life. This must be your second, third or fourth attempt. But this doesn’t mean, that’s the end.
Trust in yourself. Understand your strengths and weaknesses. One must be good at Arithmetic or English Comprehension and not in Geography, Polity or Science part of the General Studies. Therefore, identifying your potential and weaknesses far ahead of time, to prepare for your exams with full confidence.
2. Understand the Syllabus
Candidates for the UPSC exam have to appear for the Prelims first and then the Mains. This is generally said to be a ‘curriculum heavy’ examination. For the freshers, as you start off preparations for these, find out which all subjects you would have to appear for.
For the Prelims, you would have to appear for 2 papers which includes General Studies in Paper I, and English Comprehension, Logical Reasoning and Arithmetics which constitute Paper II.
And the written examination for Mains include 9 Papers, out of which the marks of 7 Papers will be considered for the final results. And the remaining 2 – the language Papers, one should secure at least the minimum score prescribed by the UPSC.
Papers I – V includes:
- General Studies I (Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society)
- General Studies II (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)
- General Studies III (Technology, Economic Development, Bio‐diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management)
- General Studies IV (Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude).
And Paper VI and VII includes the Optional Subjects, which you are free to choose out of your personal interest.
3. Learn from the Masters!
There are many who had cracked the UPSC exams successfully. Even, at the first attempt! Learn new and useful tips from the pioneers in this field. Find out which all resources they utilized and how they managed to work on it for their success. There are many online sources available as well, for the better preparation this exam. Check out which all sources helped out them.
4. Familiarize Yourself
Once you are ready with the syllabus and curriculum, get to know what exactly you have to learn from each subject. Working out a few previous question papers may help you with this. Though UPSC don’t repeat the questions asked in the previous years, it is always good to attempt a few of those to familiarise with the exam pattern. Simulating the examination hall in your mind, take a few question papers from the previous years and try attempting it.
Besides, always keep in mind that Prelims is all about understanding the concepts. Hence, once you are set to study a topic, learn all sides, understanding the real context of each. And Mains is all about writing skills. As a Civil Service Officer, one would have to spend most his time in writing. This is the reason for which the writing skills of the candidates are mainly tested for the UPSC exams.
And finally, keep the ‘fire’ burning. Never let anything keep you from reaching your goal. Sky is the limit!