All About UPSC Civil Services Exam: Preparation Guide

Union Public Service Commission examinations is being organized every academic year to choose the eligible candidates for various public service postings. Union Public Service Commission is a combined constitutional body for both state and central government of India. So, the Service Commission Exams will be conducted for both central and state government postings. If you want to know more about UPSC civil services notification details, the read the complete article or go through the link given below to jump to the information you want.

All About UPSC Civil Services Exam

Table of Contents

UPSC CSE Online Application UPSC CSE Application Form
UPSC CSE Time Table UPSC CSE Eligibility Criteria
UPSC CSE Preliminary Exam UPSC CSE Mains Exam
UPSC CSE Pattern UPSC CSE Syllabus
UPSC CSE Preparation Material UPSC CSE Preparation Books
UPSC CSE Previous Question Papers UPSC CSE Sample-Model Papers
UPSC CSE Interview Questions UPSC CSE best Coaching
UPSC CSE Admit Card UPSC CSE Answer Key
UPSC CSE Results UPSC CSE Cut Off Marks
UPSC CSE Previous Years Toppers UPSC CSE Official Website

UPSC Civil Services Online Application

The applicants should fill the application form to register for the civil service examination. The online mode is the only way to fill the UPSC Civil Services exam application form. The candidates should be clear about the details that are needed to fill the application form before filling it. For knowing the details that are required to fill the application form, the applicants can visit the official UPSC website.

The final date to fill the application form for CSE examination is 20th May, 2016. The application form should be filled inside the last date. The application form that is submitted after this date will not be taken for consideration. In addition to that, the UPSC CSE application form should be filled without any mistakes. The candidates should provide the original and sole details to fill the application form.

UPSC Civil Services Application Form

Union Public Service Commission of India conducts CSE examinations every year. The civil service exam will be hosted for many postings including IPS, IFS and more. Candidates can get the application form in online website. The candidates should fill the CSE application form in online mode.

How to Fill the Online Application Form

  • The candidates who belong to unreserved category should pay Rs.100 for getting the application form. Female candidates belong to SC or ST or PH are not necessary to pay any fee for getting the application.
  • The application cost can be paid in State Bank of India by cash or net banking or other modes of online payment. The applicants should attach the details of payment while filling the application form.
  • The candidates should go to the official website of UPSC and then click the link of civil service examination 2016. The candidates will then be directed to the registration page and can find two registration portion namely part 1 and 2. Applicants should fill both the parts with all the required details.
  • Candidates should upload their passport size photo and signature if needed. Take a print out copy of the application form since you need to take that to your examination hall.

UPSC Civil Services Important Dates (Time Table)

The civil service examination is considered to be difficult while comparing to other competitive exams. Since, the candidates have to clear the preliminary and main exam to get through the CSE exam. The UPSC Civil Services exam dates for both main and preliminary exams have been declared a while before. With the declaration of exam dates, the candidates are speeding up their preparations.

The mode of CSE examination is completely online. So, applicants should fill the application form in online. Application fee can be paid via online. The other details about the examination can also be viewed in online as well. In order to get through the CSE examination, the candidates have to pass several levels including written and interview.

The Time Table – Important Dates for the CSE examination are as follows,

Date Subject
23rd April, 2016 Date of Notification
20th May, 2016 Last date to fill application form
20th May, 2016 Last date to pay application fee
July, 2016 Admit cards will be issued
7th August, 2016 Preliminary exam date
3rd December, 2016 Main exam date

Candidates should give attention to the dates, which are above-mentioned while doing anything with respect to the CSE exam. Also, remember the dates of preliminary and main examination as both are important to follow.

UPSC Civil Services Eligibility Criteria

The Civil service examinations will be organized every year for various postings in central and state government of India. Applicants who are willing to get job in such postings can apply for this examination. But, candidates cannot apply for this examination just like that. Rather, they have to make sure whether or not they are eligible to apply this CSE examination. The UPSC Civil Services eligibility criteria for this UPSC CSE exam is as follows,

  • Nationality – The candidates should be from India or Nepal or Bhutan. The Candidates who belong to other nationalities such as Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, Zambia, Vietnam, Kenya, Ethiopia, Tibet and more can apply for this exam only when they have the intention of completely settling in India in future.
  • Education Qualification – Candidates who are willing to apply for this exam should have a relevant degree from any recognized university or institute. Candidates who are in final year now may also apply for this exam.
  • Age Limitation – Generally, the candidates who are applying for this civil service examination should be inside 21 to 30 years of age. Further age relaxation will be given as per the norms of the Indian government.

Just check yourself whether or not you have these qualifications to apply for this civil service exam.

UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam

The exam date for the Union Public Service Commission Civil Service examination has been announced a while before. Candidates are just speeding up their exam preparations. Candidate who wants to enter into the main examination should clear the preliminary examination. The UPSC CSE preliminary examination date is scheduled on 7th August, 2016. Preliminary exam contains two papers for 200 marks each. Totally, candidates will be writing for 400 marks. Candidates will be given 2 hours for each paper. To clear the preliminary exam, candidates have to get at least 33% of marks.

The Preliminary exam syllabus is as follows,

Syllabus for Paper 1

  • Current Events – national and international
  • History of India and world
  • Indian national movement
  • Social, Economics and Geography of India and World.
  • Indian Politics and Governance – political system, right issues, public policy
  • Economic and social development – poverty, inclusion, sustainable development, social sector initiatives
  • General issues on climate change, bio-diversity and ecology

Syllabus for Paper 2

  • Comprehension
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills
  • General mental ability
  • Decision making skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • Basic math skills

Applicants who pass the preliminary exam will be eligible to appear for the main exam of that particular year alone.

UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam

So, you have cleared the CSE preliminary examination now. Civil service main examination and preliminary examination have some differences regarding number of papers. Main exam is not just limited to two papers. Rather, you have to clear 9 papers to pass the main exam. The UPSC CSE mains exam is exclusively conducted to examine the academic talent of the candidate along with his or her knowledge and skills to check whether or not he or she is eligible for the relevant posting. Totally, the candidates will be writing for 2025 marks including 4 general studies and two optional papers and 275 marks for interview/personality test.

Mains Exam Syllabus

  • Paper A – Language – 300 marks
  • Paper B – Language – 300 marks
  • Paper I – Essay – 250 marks
  • Paper II – General studies I – 250 marks
  • Paper III – General studies II – 250 marks
  • Paper IV – General studies III – 250 marks
  • Paper V – General Studies IV – 250 marks
  • Paper VI – optional Paper I – 250 marks
  • Paper VII – optional Paper II – 250 marks
  • Interview/personality test – 275 marks

The marks obtained in paper A and B are not counted since that are only for qualifying purpose. General studies will cover governance, Indian history, geography, social, economics and politics.

UPSC Civil Services exam Pattern

CSE examination is slightly different while comparing to other competitive exams. So, the candidates should be aware of the UPSC CSE exam pattern. The CSE exam contains two faces which are preliminary exam and main exam. A candidate should clear the preliminary exam to enter into main exam. The patterns for both the preliminary and main exams are as follows,

Civil Services Preliminary Exam Pattern

Exam Type Marks Duration
Paper I (General Studies) 200 Marks 2 hours
Paper II (Aptitude) 200 Marks 2 Hours

Civil Services Main Exam Pattern

Paper A

Candidates can select any one of the Indian languages from the languages that are scheduled on the Eighth constitution. The language papers will be evaluated for 300 marks but that will not be counted in your grand total. The language paper is just for qualifying purpose.

Paper B

Paper Subject Maximum Marks
Paper I Essay 250 Marks
Paper II General Studies I (Indian Heritage) 250 Marks
Paper III General Studies II (Governance, social justice, international relations) 250 Marks
Paper IV General Studies III (Environment, bio-diversity, technology, economic, disaster management) 250 Marks
Paper V General Studies IV (Aptitude, Ethics, integrity) 250 Marks
Paper I Optional subject I 250 Marks
Paper II Optional subject II 250 Marks
Personality Test 275 Marks
Grand Total 2025 marks

UPSC Civil Services exam Syllabus

The syllabus for CSE exam is very crucial to deem. There are two faces in CSE exam, which are preliminary exam and mains exam. Preliminary face contains two papers, which are paper 1 and paper 2. The main face contains totally 9 papers including written and interview.

UPSC CSE Preliminary Syllabus

Syllabus for Paper 1

  • Current Events – both national and international
  • History of India
  • Indian national movement
  • Social, Economics and Geography of India and as well as World.
  • Indian Politics and Governance – political system, right issues, public policy
  • Economic and social development – poverty, inclusion, sustainable development, social sector initiatives, demographics
  • General issues on climate change, bio-diversity and ecology

Syllabus for Paper 2

  • Comprehension
  • Logical reasoning
  • communication skills
  • General mental ability
  • Decision making skills
  • Problem solving skills
  • Basic math skills

UPSC CSE Main Exam Syllabus

  • Paper A – Language – 300 marks
  • Paper B – Language – 300 marks
  • Paper I – Essay – 250 marks
  • Paper II – General studies I – 250 marks
  • Paper III – General studies II – 250 marks
  • Paper IV – General studies III – 250 marks
  • Paper V – General Studies IV – 250 marks
  • Paper VI – optional Paper I – 250 marks
  • Paper VII – optional Paper II – 250 marks
  • Interview/personality test – 275 marks

UPSC Civil Services exam Preparation Material

A candidate should pay attention to the preparation material, which he or she has while preparing for a competitive examination. Since, the material that you used to study matters a lot. Do not waste your time in studying some unnecessary or unwanted materials. You should go through the materials, which remains important to prepare for CSE exam. As you all know that, for the CSE exam, you will be asked questions from general studies and aptitude. So, your study material should contain something relevant to your syllabus. Preparing on relevant syllabus will help you clear the CSE test easily.

Check whether or not your study material contains the following portions,

General Studies

  • Social development
  • History of India
  • Environment
  • Indian and world politics
  • Governance methods
  • Economical growth of India and world
  • Public policy
  • Bio-diversity

Aptitude Test

  • Basic calculation tips
  • Menstruation
  • Algebra
  • Probability
  • Arithmetic calculation
  • Data interpretation
  • Date sufficiency

Proficiency and Reasoning

  • Speech
  • Voices
  • Tenses
  • Punctuations
  • Articles
  • Usage errors, sentence corrections
  • Fill in the blanks
  • Idioms and phrases
  • Verbal test
  • Vocabulary
  • Non-verbal test
  • Comprehension
  • Rearrangement of words
  • Essay writing

UPSC Civil Services Preparation Books

Preparation materials are very important for a candidate to check for while she or he is about to prepare for CSE examination. The preparation materials can be found in online. Added to that, you can use your 9th, 10th, 11th and 12th standard Geography, History, Civics books. But those things alone are not sufficient to prepare for the CSE examination. It is mandatory to consider the books that are solely designed for CSE exam preparation. Since the books, which are solely designed for CSE exam will assist you to pass the exam.

Having a book, which covers all the portions of CSE is always better than having bunch of books for each topic. At times, you might get confused regarding which book to refer and which to not. So, use the reference books or study books that are designed for CSE examination. Consider the below given books which will help you to prepare for CSE examination in a better way.

  • 21 Years CSE General Studies IAS prelims Topic Wise Solved Papers – 6th Edition – English
  • General Studies – 2016 – Paper I – English – 1st Edition
  • Indian Polity – 4th Edition – English
  • Indian Economics and Democracy – 4th Edition – English

Besides preparation, these books will help you crack the examination easily.

UPSC Civil Services Exam Previous Question Papers

So, preparations are done for the CSE exam – right? The next would be that, you have to revise the portions that you have studied so far. Rather simply recalling or revising the portions in words, you can consider solvingprevious Question papers. Solving previous papers will not only help you to gear up for the examinations, but also it will lift your confidence level.

Solving the problems and questions in the previous paper will assist you clear the preliminary and mains exam easily. This is why you are asked to practice the previous paper. You would come to know about the frequently asked questions if you refer the previous year papers. If you know the frequently asked questions or type of questions that are asked generally, you can prepare for your exam according to the previous question paper.

Rather preparing randomly, preparation based on previous year question papers will help you clear the CSE examination. You can get the UPSC Civil Services exam previous question papers on various online websites and offline stores too. You can either download it from the website or purchase it from any store. If it is possible, solve a previous year question paper daily. If you do, sure you can score good marks in your final exam.

UPSC Civil Services Sample-Model Papers

The UPSC CSE examination for the academic year 2016 is only few days left. So, prepare for your examinations without wasting your time. If you are done with your syllabus preparation and studies, just solve the UPSC Civil Services exam model papers of CSE. The model question papers help you knowing the exact pattern of the CSE examination. Rather studying the portions again and again, you can solve the model question papers. Solving the model question papers will help you increase your answering speed.

While preparing for the competitive examination, having a glance on model papers will help you prepare better. By solving the sample papers regularly, you can surely increase your speed, answering skills and you can be aware be of the questions. Solving sample papers will help you increase your progress of preparation.

The ideal idea is that, you have to practice sample question papers at regular interval of time to check your ability of solving the questions. Also, by solving the sample question papers, you will get an idea about what kind of questions will be asked frequently. Prepare the frequently asked questions very well while comparing to other normal questions. Once you are familiar with the frequently asked questions, you can crack the CSE test.

UPSC Civil Services Interview Questions

Candidates are speeding up their CSE exam preparation as only few days are left for that exam. The exam pattern includes preliminary test, main test and personal interview. For entering into interview section, a candidate should clear the preliminary and main test. Remember, the marks that you are scored in preliminary and mains exam will not taken into consideration in your interview panel. Since, personal interview is just to check your presence of mind, character, behavior and personality.

The way you answer your questions will be considered in your interview section. If you know any person who have already went though the CSE interview section, you can take reference from him or her. You can discuss with them regarding what kind of UPSC Civil Services interview questions will be asked generally. Mostly, you will not be asked any tough questions in your interview.

As I said, interviewer will not check the marks you have got in preliminary and mains test and your answering skill. Your answering method and at times your patience will be examined. You can also explore the interviews questions in online websites. Added to that, you should be aware of the dos and don’ts of the interview before heading up for it. Your mannerism will also be examined.

UPSC Civil Services best Coaching

The civil service examination is difficult to clear as it contains two faces which are preliminary examination and main examination. The preliminary examination should be cleared by the candidate to get admittance to the main examination. Then a candidate should clear the main test which contains written and personal interview. Sufficient training and practice are required to clear all those levels of CSE exam.

Coaching classes are something that a candidate may consider for CSE exam preparation. Yes, it is a wise option to go with. You can find several institutions in online and offline that afford efficient civil service coaching. You can experience more than 150 hours of class room training, revision section, doubt clearing classes, problem solving classes and several other sections in a coaching class.

Addition to touting the portions, the coaching classes will supply the necessary study materials and books that are needed to prepare for CSE examination. A candidate can either choose short term training classes or long term training classes as per his needs and demands. The coaching centers will also issue the model question papers and previous year question papers to their students to prepare well. By that, you will get some idea about the questions that will be asked this year.

UPSC Civil Services exam Admit Card

The admission cards are now ready for the candidates who all are applied for the CSE exam 2016. The UPSC CSE admit card is nothing but an entrance card or permission card or simply a hall ticket. Candidates can download their admit cards in the official website of union public service commission. I know, your next question would be how to download the card – right? The downloading procedure is given below, just have a glance on it.

  • The candidates should visit the official website of CSE.
  • Then click on the link of Admit Card.
  • The link will navigate the candidates to the login page.
  • The candidates should login with their registration id and password.
  • Then, the candidates can download their admit card and save it.

Do not download the admit card more than once. If you do, your admit card will be blocked. So, do it carefully without making any mistakes. Once you have downloaded the card, you have to take a print out copy of your admission card. You have to take that print out admit card to your exam hall. The candidates will be permitted to enter into the examination hall if they have admission card with them. Otherwise, their entrance to the exam hall will be banned.

UPSC Civil Services exam Answer Key

Finally, the CSE examinations are over now. Still, the candidates cannot relax themselves as they have been waiting for their results. As you all know that, the examination was conducted in the month of December, so probably the results will be published in the year 2017. But waiting for the results will be frustrating – right?  At least, it would be better if you can know how much you can score in your exam.

If that is the case with you, you can refer UPSC CSE answer key that is available on the website. The answer key contains the marking scheme of each and every question. In short, it contains the system of mark allotment. So, by referring the answer key, you can estimate your approximate marks. Remember, you cannot predict the exact marks what you get in your exam. Just you can calculate your approximate total.

Various sites will be publishing answer key according to their pattern and answering steps. Among the different sites, you can choose any one site that you feel is polite. And you can download or save the answer key from that website. And then, you can cross check your answers with the answers that are given in the answer key. By that, you can roughly estimate how much you can score.

UPSC Civil Services exam Results

The results for the CSE examination 2016 are out now. The candidates who were eagerly waiting for their results can check their CSE results now. Finally, the results have been published by the UPSC. The result lines will remain open for the candidates for some days. You can check your UPSC CSE results in the official website of UPSC. You have to follow the steps for checking your results.

  • Visit the official website of UPSC CSE.
  • Click on any one of the results links that are given.
  • The link will direct you to the login page.
  • Login with your registration id and password.
  • Results will be displayed then.

Are you satisfied with your result? Have you got what you have expected? No matter, either you fail or pass, but you have to accept your results. Do not take anything close to your heart. The candidates who have passed should wait for further process. The candidates who have lost this exam can still apply for CSE again. You still have chance and eligibility. You have to repeat the process from first. I know, it will take some time. Okay, let it be. Rather simply worrying about your results, attempting it for another time would be a better option to go with.

UPSC Civil Services Cut Off Marks

For clearing any competitive exams, the candidates have to meet the cut off marks that are required. Likewise, you have to score the UPSC CSE cut off marks for clearing the CSE examination. Cut off mark is actually a fixed or default mark that an applicant should score to clear the examination. The cut off marks will be varied according to the caste of a candidate. For clearing the CSE test, candidates have to be aware of the cut off marks for both preliminary and main exam. The cut off marks for various castes are as follows as,

CSE Preliminary Exam – Qualifying Scores

·         General – 195+
·         OBC – 180+
·         SC – 165+
·         ST – 150+

CSE Main examination – Cut-off Scores for Interview Call

·         General  980+
·         OBC  960+
·         SC  950+
·         ST  920+

CSE – Final Scores – Cut-off Marks for Final Selection

·         General  1200+
·         OBC  1175+
·         SC  1150+
·         ST  1120+

CSE – Final Scores – Based on Ranking

·         Top 20 ranks  1300+
·         Top 50 ranks  1280+
·         Top 100 ranks  1250+
·         Top 200 ranks  1225+

Ranking status can be checked by the candidate in the official website of UPSC. If the needed be, they can download the ranking page for their reference.

UPSC Civil Services Previous Years Toppers

The UPSC CSE 2016 examinations are on the way. Candidates are seriously preparing for their examinations to score decent marks. The CSE exam contains two portions which are preliminary and main exam. A candidate should clear both the faces step by step to get his desired job. Rather just preparing for their exam, some candidates have some persons as their role models or icons.

Mostly, the role models would be the persons who have scored good marks and ranks in the previous academic test. Some candidates will check the how the previous year’s toppers have prepared for the CSE exam, in websites. For that, a candidate should know the name of toppers.

The toppers list of the previous year CSE exam is as follows,

Name of the Candidate Position
Ira Singhal Rank 1
Renu Raj Rank 2
Nidhi Gupta Rank 3
Vandana Rao Rank 4
Suharsha Bhagat Rank 5
Charusree T Rank 6
Lok Bandhu Rank 7
Nitish K Rank 8
Ashish Kumar Rank 9
Arvind Singh Rank 10

These are the candidates who have scored top 10 ranks for the previous year CSE examination. You can check their sectional marks and cut off marks in the official website of UPSC CSE. Their preparation tips and their speech for candidates have been displayed in the official website.

UPSC Civil Services exam Official Website

The Union Public Service Commission organizes CSE examination every academic year to recruit the eligible and talented candidates for various postings. But the condition that is required to apply and clear the examination is not naturally known. For that, the candidates have to visit the official website of CSE. By referring the official CSE website, the candidates will come to know the crucial details with respect to the CSE 2016 examinations. By visiting the official website, the candidates can know about the following details,

  • Date of CSE exam announcement
  • Details about application form
  • Eligibility criteria for CSE exam
  • Important dates of the CSE examination
  • Application form fee details
  • Procedure to fill the application form
  • Downloading links for admit card
  • Procedure to download the card
  • Details of mock test
  • Exam date for preliminary
  • Exam date for main exam
  • Cut off mark details
  • Date of result announcement
  • Exam Analysis
  • Exam pattern
  • Previous year question papers

Added to that, candidates can be updated with the recent information and news about the CSE examinations by checking the official website. The candidates can also find the preparation materials and other booklets for preparing the CSE examination.

Official website