Ultimate guide to prepare for Civil Services

Adorned with status, prestige and power, the demand for a career in Civil Services has always been prominent among highly ambitious aspirants. It is not only one of the most prestigious examinations in India, but also one of the most sought-after career options among youngsters in the country. Despite, the popularity of Software and IT careers, it has not lost its charm.

The examination is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) and it is the most tough entrance test in the country. It encompasses Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Police Service (IPS), Indian Revenue Service (IRS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), Indian Trade Service (ITS) and other services under its aegis.

All about UPSC Civil Services Examination

Civil Services Examination is conducted once in a year in two phases: UPSC Prelims and UPSC Mains.

The application form for Prelims comes out in the month of February or March every year.

The successful candidates having cleared UPSC Prelims move on to attempt UPSC Mains.

After being successful in Mains, the candidates have to go through one of the toughest interviews of the country.

But before all these hurdles in achieving your dreams, there are some points that an applicant of IAS exam must adhere to.

What subjects to focus on?

UPSC Prelims consists of two papers, each of 200 marks. Paper I comprises of General Knowledge questions which include sections from History, Geography, Civics, Economic and Social Development, Environmental Ecology, Climate Change, General Science and Current Affairs. Paper II consists of aptitude question.

For UPSC Mains, the aspirants selected through Prelims need to choose an optional subject from a list of 26 subjects offered by the UPSC. The Mains examination consists of 9 papers of conventional essay type.

Candidates qualifying Mains examination are only summoned for an interview or a Personality Test. So, the marks obtained in Mains and interview are taken into account to determine the final list of successful candidates.

Thus, candidates are allotted services or posts on the basis of their ranks in the final list of selection. Candidates with higher ranks are given preference while choosing the services or posts.

What strategy to adopt while preparing?

Civil Services examination requires determination, discipline and time management.

To achieve the above points, develop a routine.

Start with basics. NCERT books are a good start to take hold of basic knowledge.

Since the syllabus is vast, keep notes on every thing you read and revise the topics on regular basis so that you do not forget as you move on in your preparation.

Make a group of serious IAS aspirants and have regular discussion with them on various subjects. Verbal discussion helps to things intact in your memory.

Also, subscribe to a magazine that keeps track of current affairs.

You should be also follow news regularly.

Join a test series that will help you test how syllabus you have covered and what else you need to work on.

And last but not the least, patience is the virtue you need to practice if you really want to qualify for IAS.