Union Public Services Commission conducts examination for recruitment for the Central Services and All India Services. Preparing for the civil services examination is challenging but at the same time is a deeply enriching experience. Though it is regarded as one of the toughest examinations, with the right approach and strategy, it can be cracked in the very first attempt.
If you are a beginner and are looking for some tips and tricks to ace the prestigious IAS exam, here are a few:
- Learn about the exam:
The first step, before you start preparing for the Civil Services IAS Exam is to understand the pattern and requirements of the exam. The IAS eligibility, number of attempts, educational qualification required can be read and understood from the UPSC’s official website.
- Know the exam dates:
Civil services examination is held once in a year and the UPSC notification is out in the month of February. Keep a track of the registration and exam dates. A missed date could cost you one precious year of your life.
- Understand the UPSC Syllabus:
The syllabus for civil services preliminary and mains examination can be found on the UPSC website. Before you start your preparation, you must go through the whole syllabus thoroughly for both the Prelims as well as the UPSC Mains. It is very important to understand that the syllabus is indicative and not exhaustive. It is important to keep your preparation well within the boundaries of the syllabus to avoid wasting time on irrelevant topics.
- Curate your own booklist:
A plethora of options are available when it comes to the selection of books for the IAS exam preparation. But it is essential to choose the right set of books as per your comfort level with the subjects and follow the same throughout your preparations. Revising from the same book over and over again will prove to be more beneficial than reading the same topic from multiple books.
- Prioritize your time:
The UPSC syllabus is vast and comprehensive and hence it is important for you to prioritise your time in such a manner that you turn your weak points into strengths. Don’t be overwhelmed by the syllabus. Cover the 4 core subjects Polity, Economy, History and Geography thoroughly and build on it according to the current happenings. Allocating a good chunk of your time for optional subject preparation is also essential as it can decide your ranking in the final list.
- Current affairs Preparation
UPSC exam preparation is incomplete without newspaper reading. NEWSPAPER reading is a must. Choose a newspaper of your choice and read it thoroughly every single day. It is advisable to make notes from the newspaper as it becomes easy to revise right before the exams. Moreover, lately, UPSC questions are mostly current affairs based. Regular current affairs preparation will definitely help you score well in the exam.
- Choose the Optional subject wisely
UPSC mains exam comprises of 2 Optional subject papers that are to be chosen by the aspirant himself/herself. Therefore it is important to choose the optional paper wisely. Make sure you choose the subject as per your interest. Also consider various factors such as the availability of materials, coaching institutes, the vastness of the syllabus, your time availability etc.
- Test yourself regularly
The importance of practice cannot be emphasized enough. To test if your preparation is going to yield results, you need to give mock tests. Make sure that the mock tests you take are from reputed institutes because, here, quality of questions matter more than the number of questions you solve. Time management is another aspect you learn when you give mock tests.
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