UPSC 101: Everything You Need to Know About UPSC

An all-encompassing guide answering your UPSC-related questions to help you #PrepareWell.

What is UPSC?

The Civil Services Examination (CSE), or popularly known as the UPSC exam, is a national competitive examination in India conducted by the Union Public Service Commission for recruitment to Civil Services of the Government of India, including the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), and Indian Police Service (IPS).

UPSC Exam Structure

It is conducted in 3 phases, namely:

1.     Preliminary examination (Prelims) - Consists of two papers (Paper I consisting of General Studies and Paper II, referred to as the Civil Service Aptitude Test or CSAT). The prelims are objective.

2.     Main examination (Mains) - Consists of four General Studies papers, two Optional papers, one Essay paper, one compulsory Indian Language paper, and one English Language paper. These are all subjective.

3.     Interview – A final personality test then follows the two phases.

Section-wise Syllabus Breakdown for UPSC 2024

Syllabus for GS Paper (Prelims Paper I)

·       Current events of national and international importance.

·       History of India and Indian National Movement.

·       Indian and World Geography-Physical, Social, and Economic Geography of India and the World.

·       Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.

·       Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc.

·       General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity, and Climate Change – that do not require subject specialization.

·       General Science

Syllabus for General Studies paper- II

·       Comprehension

·       Interpersonal skills including communication skills

·       Logical reasoning and analytical ability

·       Decision-making and problem solving

·       General mental ability

Paper               Subject Marks
Paper-I Essay (can be written in the medium of the candidate's choice) 250
Paper-II General Studies-I(Indian Heritage & Cultural, History & Geography of the World & Society) 250
Paper-III General Studies-II(Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice & International Relations) 250
Paper-IV General Studies-III(Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Security & Disaster Management) 250
Paper-V General Studies-IV(Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude) 250
Paper-VI Optional Subject - Paper I 250
Paper-VII Optional Subject - Paper II 250