UPSC IAS Syllabus :Preliminary and Main

UPSC IAS Syllabus:The Civil Services Examination will consist of two successive stages:

  • Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination (Objective type) for the selection of candidates for the Main Examination; and
  • Civil Services (Main) Examination (Written and Interview) for the selection of candidates for the various Services.

The various Services are:

  1. Indian Administrative Service.
  2. Indian Police Service.
  3. Group ‘A’ Indian P & T Accounts & Finance Service.
  4. Indian Audit and Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
  5. Indian Revenue Service (Customs and Central Excise), Group ‘A’.
  6. Group ‘A’ Indian Defence Accounts Service.
  7. Indian Revenue Service (I.T.), Group ‘A’.
  8. Indian Ordnance Factories Service, Group ‘A’ (Assistant Works Manager,Administration).
  9. Group ‘A’ Indian Postal Service.
  10. Indian Civil Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
  11. Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Service, Group ‘B’ (Section Officer’s Grade).
  12. Indian Foreign Service.
  13. Indian Railway Traffic Service, Group ‘A’.
  14. Group ‘A’ Indian Railway Accounts Service.
  15. Indian Railway Personnel Service, Group ‘A’.
  16. Post of Assistant Security Commissioner in Railway Protection Force, Group ‘A’
  17. Indian Defence Estates Service, Group ‘A’.
  18. Pondicherry Civil Service, Group ‘B’.
  19. Indian Information Service (Junior Grade), Group ‘A’.
  20. Indian Trade Service, Group ‘A’.
  21. Pondicherry Police Service, Group ‘B’.
  22. Indian Corporate Law Service, Group ‘A’.
  23. Delhi, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Civil Service, Group ‘B’.
  24. Delhi, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Police Service, Group ‘B’.

UPSC IAS Syllabus for the Preliminary Examination

The Preliminary Examination will consist of two papers of Objective type (multiple choice questions) and carry a maximum of 400 marks.

Paper I – (200 marks) (Duration: Two hours)

  • Current events of national and international importance.
  • History of India and Indian National Movement.
  • Indian and World Geography-Physical, Social, 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.

Paper II-(200 marks) (Duration : Two hours)

  • Comprehension;
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability;
  • Decision making and problem solving;
  • General mental ability;
  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. — Class X level);

Note 1 : Paper-II of the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination will be a qualifying paper with minimum qualifying marks fixed at 33%.

Note 2 : The questions will be of multiple choice, objective type.

Note 3 : It is mandatory for the candidate to appear in both the Papers of Civil Services (Prelim) Examination for the purpose of evaluation. A candidate will be disqualified in case he/she does not appear in both the papers of Civil Services (Prelim) Examination.

UPSC IAS Syllabus For Main Examination

The upsc ias syllabus for Main Examination will consist of written examination and an interview test. The written examination will consist of 9 papers of conventional essay type.The written examination will consist of the following papers :

Qualifying Papers :

Paper-A

(One of the Indian Language to be selected by the candidate from the Languages included in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution) -300 Marks

Paper-B

English -300 Marks

Papers To Be Counted For Merit

Paper-I  

Essay (250 Marks)

Paper-II 

General Studies-I (250 Marks) 

(Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society)

Paper-III  

General Studies -II (250 Marks) 

(Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)

Paper-IV 

General Studies -III (250 Marks)

(Technology, Economic Development,Biodiversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management)

Paper-V

General Studies -IV (250 Marks)

(Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude)

Paper-VI

Optional Subject – Paper 1 (250 Marks)

Paper-VII

Optional Subject – Paper 2 (250 Marks)

Sub Total (Written test)   : 1750 Marks

Personality Test   : :   275 Marks

Grand Total                    : 2025 Marks

UPSC IAS Syllabus for the Main Examination

  • The upsc ias syllabus for main Examination is intended to assess the overall intellectual traits and depth of understanding of candidates rather than merely the range of their information and memory.

QUALIFYING PAPERS ON INDIAN LANGUAGES AND ENGLISH

  • The aim of the paper is to test the candidates’ ability to read and understand serious discursive prose, and to express his ideas clearly and correctly, in English(Paper-B) and Indian language(Paper-A ) concerned.
  • The papers on Indian languages and English (Paper A and paper B) will be of Matriculation or equivalent standard and will be of qualifying nature.
  • The marks obtained in these papers will not be counted for ranking.

IAS Test Series

The pattern of questions would be broadly as follows :

  • Comprehension of given passages.
  • Précis Writing.
  • Usage and Vocabulary.
  • Short Essays.

Indian Languages:

  • comprehension of given passages.
  • Précis Writing.
  • Usage and Vocabulary.
  • Short Essays.
  • Translation from English to the Indian Language and vice-versa.

Note 1: The papers on Indian Languages and English will be of Matriculation or equivalent standard and will be of qualifying nature only. The marks obtained in these papers will not be counted for ranking.

Note 2: The candidates will have to answer the English and Indian Languages papers in English and the respective Indian language (except where translation is involved).

PAPER-I( upsc ias syllabus )

  • Essay : Candidates may be required to write essays on multiple topics.
  • They will be expected to keep closely to the subject of the essay to arrange their ideas in orderly fashion, and to write concisely.
  • Credit will be given for effective and exact expression.

PAPER-II ( upsc ias syllabus )

General Studies-I :

  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
  • Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present significant events, personalities, issues.
  • The Freedom Struggle — its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country.
  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
  • History of the world will include events from the 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.— their forms and effect on the society.
  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
  • Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
  • Effects of globalization on Indian society.
  • Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.
  • Salient features of world’s physical geography.
  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian sub-continent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).
  • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location-changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

PAPER-III( upsc ias syllabus )

General Studies- II:

  • Indian Constitution—historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
  • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  • Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries.
  • Parliament and State legislatures—structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  • Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary—Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  • Salient features of the Representation of the People’s Act.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.
  • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • Development processes and the development industry —the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.
  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
  • Issues relating to poverty and hunger.
  • Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
  • Role of civil services in a democracy.
  • India and its neighborhood- relations.
  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests,Indian diaspora.
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.

PAPER-IV( upsc ias syllabus )

General Studies-III:

  • Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.
  • Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.
  • Government Budgeting.
  • Major crops-cropping patterns in various parts of the country, – different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers.
  • Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.
  • Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.
  • Land reforms in India.
  • Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
  • Investment models.
  • Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.
  • Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.
  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.
  • Disaster and disaster management.
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism.
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention.
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas – linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
  • Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

PAPER-V ( upsc ias syllabus )

General Studies- IV:

  • Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in-human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values -lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family society and educational institutions in inculcating values.
  • Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.
  • Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.
  • Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.
  • Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world.
  • Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance;strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.
  • Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.
  • Case Studies on above issues.

PAPER-VI & PAPER VII

Optional Subject

  • Agriculture
  • Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science
  • Anthropology
  • Botany
  • Chemistry
  • Civil Engineering
  • Commerce and Accountancy
  • Economics
  • Electrical Engineering
  • Geography
  • Geology
  • History
  • Law
  • Management
  • Mathematics
  • Mechanical Engineering
  • Medical Science
  • Philosophy
  • Physics
  • Political Science and International Relations
  • Psychology
  • Public Administration
  • Sociology
  • Statistics
  • Zoology
  • Literature of any one of the following languages: Assamese, Bengali, Bodo, Dogri, Gujarati, Hindi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili,Malayalam, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Odia, Punjabi, Sanskrit, Santhali, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu and English.

Interview Test

  1. The candidate will be interviewed by a Board who will have before them a record of his career.He will be asked questions on matters of general interest.
  2. The object of the interview is to assess the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in public service by a Board of competent and unbiased observers.
  3. The test is intended to judge the mental caliber of a candidate. In broad terms this is really an assessment of not only his intellectual qualities but also social traits and his interest in current affairs.
  4. Some of the qualities to be judged are mental alertness, critical powers of assimilation, clear and logical exposition, balance of judgement, variety and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, intellectual and moral integrity.
  5. The technique of the interview is not that of a strict cross-examination but of a natural, though directed and purposive conversation which is intended to reveal the mental qualities of the candidate.
  6. The interview test is not intended to be a test either of the specialised or general knowledge of the candidates which has been already tested through their written papers.
  7. Candidates are expected to have taken an intelligent interest not only in their special subjects of academic study but also in the events which are happening around them both within and outside their own State or Country as well as in modern currents of thought and in new discoveries which should rouse the curiosity of well educated youth.

Language medium/literature of languages

For the Language medium/literature of languages, the scripts to be used by the candidates will be as under :

Language                                 Script

  1. Assamese                              Assamese
  2. Bengali                                   Bengali
  3. Gujarati                                  Gujarati
  4. Hindi                                     Devanagari
  5. Kannada                               Kannada
  6. Kashmiri                               Persian
  7. Konkani                                Devanagari
  8. Malayalam                           Malayalam
  9. Manipuri                               Bengali
  10. Marathi                                 Devanagari
  11. Nepali                                   Devanagari
  12. Odia                                      Odia
  13. Punjabi                                Gurumukhi
  14. Sanskrit                               Devanagari
  15. Sindhi                                  Devanagari or Arabic
  16. Tamil                                  Tamil
  17. Telugu                                Telugu
  18. Urdu                                   Persian
  19. Bodo                                   Devanagari
  20. Dogri                                   Devanagari
  21. Maithili                               Devanagari
  22. Santhali                              Devanagari or Olchiki

Note: For Santhali language, question paper will be printed in Devanagari script; but candidates will be free to answer either in Devanagari script or in Olchiki.

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