UPSC Civil Services Exam: IAS, IPS, IFS and other services - a guide for exam preparation

Prepare for the Civil Services Exam: Strategy, tips and resources

GS prelims syllabus

GS mains syllabus

List of optionals - Prelims

List of optionals -Mains

The Services

GS prelims previous years questions

Negative Marking / Penalty for wrong answers

GS mains previous years questions

Optional Geography syllabus prelims

Geography syllabus mains

Indian History syllabus prelims

History syllabus mains

Psychology syllabus prelims

Psychology syllabus mains

Sociology syllabus prelims

Sociology syllabus mains

Economics syllabus prelims

Economics syllabus mains

Public Administration syllabus prelims

Public Administration syllabus mains

Psychology book list

History book list

Pol Science book list

Q & A

This is a No-Nonsense guide for  Civil Services Exam preparation. The Examination has three stages- Preliminary, Mains and the Interview.

IAS Exam 2010 Preparation Schedule


The preliminary exam will be replaced by Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) from 2011. More details:

Search Site

More on strategy

Personality attributes UPSC is looking for

Answer writing tips

Tips on IAS Coaching

State wise analysis of census

Indian History Who is Who

Indian Geography useful notes

World Geography useful notes

Sources of the Indian Constitution

Ancient Indian History Notes

IAS Mains Exam 

Scheme of the examination:

Paper-I: One of the Indian Languages to be selected by the candidate from the 18 languages included in the VIIIth Schedule to the Constitution   (Qualifying Paper)      300 Marks

Paper-II: English   (Qualifying Paper)    300 Marks

Paper-III: Essay

200 Marks

Papers IV & V: General Studies  (300 Marks for each paper)

600 Marks

Papers VI, VII, VIII & IX: Any two subjects (each having 2 papers) to be selected from the prescribed optional subjects (300 marks for each paper)

1200 Marks

Total Marks for Written Examination

2000 Marks

Interview Test    300 Marks

Grand Total     2300 Marks

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Essential Reading (General Studies):

Introduction to the Constitution of India - D.D.Basu

Indian Economy- Dutt and Sundaram

Geography of India - D.R.Khullar

India's struggle for independence- Bipan Chandra

Modern India - Bipan Chandra

Our Constitution- Subhash Kashyap

NCERT Text Books

India Year Book

Economic Survey of India

Oxford Atlas India

Newspaper - The Hindu

Periodicals - Frontline



World Focus

Tata McGraw Hill General Studies Manual

Indian Economy- Mishra and  Puri

Certificate Physical and Human Geography - Goh Cheng Leong

Human Geography - Majid Hussain

Indian Economy- Uma Kapila

Our Parliament - Subhash Kashyap


IAS Exam Preparation