Scheme of Exam & Syllabus
The Indian Civil Services examination is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) every year. The examination schedule is announced during January - February after which the selection is done in 3 stages. Candidates are filtered at every stage through a process of elimination.
The competitive examination comprises of three successive stages :
- Civil Services - Preliminary Examination - Objective Type (Qualifier)
- Civil Services - Main Examination - Written Test
- Interview / Personality Test
The Prelims are held in May-June and the results are announced in July-August. The Main examination is held in October-November and the candidates who qualify at this stage are invited to the interview in March-April next. The final recruitment and posting of candidates depends on their ranking and the available vacancies for different posts to be filled during that particular year.
Students need to first apply for the Preliminary Examination only. Candidates who are declared by the Commission to have qualified for admission to the Main Examination will have to apply again, in the Detailed Application Form which would be supplied to them.
The Preliminary Examination will consist of two papers of objective type (multiple choice questions) and carry a maximum of 400 marks. This examination is meant to serve as a screening test only.
- Only those candidates who are declared by the Commission to have qualified in the Preliminary Examination in the year will be eligible for admission to the Main Examination of that year provided they are otherwise eligible for admission to the Main Examination.
- The marks obtained in the Preliminary Examination Examination by the candidates who are declared qualified for admission to the Main Examination will not be counted for determining their final order of merit.
- The number of candidates to be admitted to the Main Examination will be about twelve to thirteen times the total approximate number of vacancies to be filled in the year for various Services and Posts.
- Announcement / Notification - March
- Last date for the receipt of applications - The Online Applications can be filled up to April after which the link will be disabled.
- Examination Date - May
- Results - Only the candidates who qualify in the Preliminary Examination would be sent the detailed application form to apply for the Main Examination.
PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION SUMMARY
- The Preliminary Examination shall comprise two compulsory papers of 200 marks each.
- Both the question papers will be of the objective type (multiple choice questions).
- The question papers will be set both in Hindi and English.
- However, questions relating to English Language Comprehension skills of Class X level will be tested through passages from English Language only without providing Hindi translation thereof in the question paper.
- Each paper will be of two hours duration.
- Blind candidates will however, be allowed an extra time of twenty minutes at each paper.
PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION - PAPER I - OBJECTIVE TYPE (Marks: 200 Duration: 2 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, Bio-diversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialisation.
- General Science.
PRELIMINARY EXAMINATION - PAPER II - OBJECTIVE TYPE (Marks: 200 Duration: 2 hours)
- 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).
- English Language Comprehension skills (Class X level).
Note 1: Questions relating to English Language Comprehension skills of Class X level (last item in the Syllabus of Paper- II) will be tested through passages from English language only without providing Hindi translation thereof in the question paper.
Note 2: All the questions will be of Objective Type (Multiple Choice Questions).
Note 3: It is mandatory for the candidate to appear in both the papers of Civil Services (Prelims) Examination for the purpose of evaluation. Therefore a candidate will be disqualified in case he/she does not appear in both the papers of Civil Services (Prelims) Examination.