How do I start to prepare for UPSC exams?

By November 24, 2021 No Comments

I. Pre- preparation stage

First of all, before starting actual preparation for the exam, you have to indulge yourself mentally and physically to get familiar with the exams. Work out a schedule. Your time management has to be spot-on. Set the goals and devote your time effectively.

Secondly, you must get the dates, at least the tentative dates of the UPSE exams. Watch out for the UPSE notifications that are released every year.
The third step is to go through the UPSC exam format and pattern. As it already said, it has three stages.

Stage 1 – Preliminary Exam:

The two MCQ-based exams happen on the same day. It is General studies paper-1 and paper-2.
Paper- 1 syllabus includes Geography, Polity, History, Economics, current affairs, etc. It is a relative paper. The cut-off depends on the number of students, vacancies, the score of others, etc.
Paper- 2 syllabus includes Logical reasoning, Comprehension, General maths, etc.
you must get minimum 33% to qualify this exam.
GS paper is commonly known as CSAT.

Stage 2 – Mains Exam:

It is a subjective exam with nine exams conducted over five days (excluding gaps).
Paper A – Compulsory Indian Language (It is a qualifying exam)
a. Paper B – English. (It is a qualifying exam)
b. Paper 1 – Essay
c. Paper 2 – General Studies 1
d. Paper 3 – General Studies 2
e. Paper 4 – General Studies 3
f. Paper 5 – General Studies 4
g. Paper 6 – Optional Subject
h. Paper 7 – Optional Subject

Stage 3 – Interview Round:

A panel conducts the interview of the mains qualified candidates and gives them marks according to their judgment on various parameters such as personality, expression, clarity of ideas, character, ability to face pressure, knowledge, etc.

In the fourth step, you must read and know the UPSC exams syllabus thoroughly. Many things depend on your understanding of the syllabus.

II. Preparation stage for CSE exam.

It depends on various factors.

Stage of preparation

Beginner – students who have just initiated preparation for the examination can start with the following steps.
· Read basic NCERT books for XI-XII for Geography, Shankar IAS Environment, Spectrum’s Modern India, Mrinal’s videos for Economics,
· Laxmi Kant’s Polity, etc.
· Read leading newspapers for just half an hour daily such as The Hindu or Indian Express.
· Go through UPSC previous five years question paper
· Choose your optional subject by going through previous years’ papers of the subject. It is a must to consider your interest, availability of study material, length of the syllabus, etc.


Once you are complete with all the beginner-level preparation, do the following.

· Prepare your optional subject
· Start making your short notes
· Start with one/two test series for prelims.
· Attempt previous year paper for both prelims and mains
· Go through toppers copies available on various websites for answers.


You must have analysed your strengths and weakness by now .so,
· Start appearing in any test series / mock tests for both mains and prelims regularly
· Revise the basic books multiple times
· Frequently revise and test.

CSE exam demands time sacrifices as it is a challenging exam. One must know and mentally prepare that the failure rate is high in this exam. Maintaining physical health is also the key during the preparation of the exam. Start yoga or meditation to increase your concentration. The three weapons to overcome the failures in this exam are determination, discipline, and resilience.

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