UPSC Syllabus for Civil Services Prelims, Mains and Interview

UPSC Syllabus - Prelims and MainsThe Civil Service Examination examination is considered as one of the toughest exams in India. Every year UPSC conducts IAS exam under prescribed syllabus. Having a clear idea of the UPSC syllabus (IAS Syllabus) and proper methodology of study will help aspirants to tackle the dream of clearing Civil Service Examination. Here is the list of the syllabus as per UPSC.

UPSC Syllabus for Civil Service Prelims

Firstly, Preliminary exam comprises of two papers and both are compulsory.  Each paper consists of 200 marks and of two hours duration. Both these papers are objective type and it will be in two sets [English and Hindi].

These papers are considered as general studies-1 and general studies-2. General studies paper -2 is only qualifying paper also known as CSAT, aspirants should obtain 33%of marks.

UPSC Syllabus for prelims General Studies Paper -1

  1. Current affairs: This includes matters relating to current events, both national and international importance.
  2. History: It consists of Indian national movement and history of India.
  3. Geography [Indian and world]: It comprises physical, social, economic geography.
  4. Environment: Aspirants should include environmental ecology, biodiversity and general issues on climatic change and general science.
  5. Indian polity and governance: Constitution of India, political system, Panchayati Raj etc.
  6. Economics: It consists of social sector initiatives, sustainable development, inclusion, demographics poverty etc.
  7. General Science

Duration is of two hours and marks out of 200.

Also read: IAS Books for Civil Services Exam Preparation

 UPSC syllabus for prelims General Studies Paper-2 ( CSAT )UPSC Syllabus - CSAT

  1. Problem- solving and decision- making
  2. General mental ability
  3. Comprehension
  4. Analytical and logical reasoning
  5. Data Interpretation.
  6. Interpersonal skills including communication skill.

Duration is of two hours and marks out of 200. Presently, this paper will not consider passing prelims but u have to secure a  minimum of 33% of 200 marks, ie 66 marks.

Also read: IAS Exam Pattern, Eligibility, Attempt and Age Limit

IASSolution Prelims Mock Test Series

Simply reading standard books and materials will not help you to perform in real UPSC Exam. Firstly, you need to identify your weak area and then try to improve it. You can improve your ability to perform in actual exam only when tested in exam atmosphere with negative marking. Take free UPSC Prelims Online Mock Tests by IASSolution to find where you stand, what are the weak and strong areas in our artificial intelligence enabled exam platform. Happy learning!

UPSC Syllabus for Civil Service Mains Exam

The marks you score for mains examination and interview session will decide your ranking. The UPSC mains consist of 1750 marks and interview consists of 275 marks. UPSC mains consists of nine papers out of which seven are count for final ranking. The rest two are language papers in which aspirants should secure minimum marks prescribed by UPSC every year. However, there is an exception for candidates residing in northeastern states. They only have to attempt English language only.

Paper –A(Indian Language) 

Candidates should select any one of the Indian languages included in the eighth schedule of Indian constitution. This paper is not compulsory for candidates coming from the states of Mizoram, Arunachal Pradesh, Sikkim, Meghalaya, Manipur, Nagaland.300 marks.

Paper-B: English language -syllabus

Also check: Best IAS Books for Civil Services Prelims and Mains Exam Preparation

Papers counted for Final Ranking

PaperSubject & ContentMarks
Paper 1Essay250
Paper 2GS 1-Syllabus: Culture and Indian Heritage, History, and Geography of world250
Paper 3GS 2-Syllabus: Constitution, Governance, polity, social justice and international relations250
Paper 4GS 3-Syllabus: Economic development, Technology, Environment and biodiversity, Disaster management and security.250
Paper 5GS 4-Syllabus: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude250
Paper 6Optional subject 1250
Paper 7Optional subject 2250

Syllabus for Optional Subjects


Optional SubjectsLiterature Optionals
Agriculture SyllabusAssamese Syllabus
Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science SyllabusBengali  Syllabus
Anthropology SyllabusBodo Syllabus
Botany SyllabusDogri Syllabus
Chemistry SyllabusGujarati Syllabus
Civil Engineering SyllabusHindi Syllabus
Commerce and Accountancy SyllabusKannada Syllabus
Economics SyllabusKashmiri Syllabus
Electrical Engineering SyllabusKonkani Syllabus
Geography SyllabusMaithili Syllabus
Geology SyllabusMalayalam Syllabus
History SyllabusManipuri  Syllabus
Law SyllabusMarathi Syllabus
Management SyllabusNepali Syllabus
Mathematics SyllabusOriya Syllabus
Mechanical Engineering SyllabusPunjabi -Syllabus
Medical Science SyllabusSanskrit Syllabus
Philosophy SyllabusSanthali Syllabus
Physics  SyllabusSindhi Syllabus
Political Science and International Relations SyllabusTamil Syllabus
Psychology SyllabusTelugu Syllabus
Public Administration SyllabusUrdu Syllabus
Sociology SyllabusEnglish Syllabus
Statistics Syllabus
Zoology SyllabusEssay Syllabus

UPSC Syllabus for Civil Services Interview

  1. The shortlisted candidate will be examined by an interview Board who will have before them a bio-data. He/she will be asked questions/opinions on matters of general interest. The aim of the interview is to examine the personal suitability of the aspirant for a career in public service by a Board of competent and unbiased examiners. The personality test is meant to identify the mental caliber of a candidate. In broad terms, this is really an assessment of not only candidate’s intellectual qualities but also social traits and his/her interest in current affairs. Some of the qualities to be judged are mental alertness, critical powers of assimilation, clear and logical exposition, a balance of judgment, variety, and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, intellectual and moral integrity.
  2. The technique of the personality test is not that of a strict cross-examination but of a natural, though directed and purposive conversation which aims to identify the mental qualities of the candidate.
  3. The personality test is not intended to be a test either of the specialized or general knowledge of the candidates which has been already tested through their mains written papers. Also, aspirants 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.

Subtotal [Mains written test]:1750 marks

Interview test: 275 marks

Grand total: 2025 marks

Recommended list of Books for UPSC Preparation

UPSC Book List

We have prepared essential book list for IAS Preparation as per the suggestion of many toppers. Links are provided to buy books online at an offer price.

Also read: How to select Optional Subject for IAS Exam?

Important updates and other information

  1. IAS Exam Pattern
  2. IAS Exam Eligibility
  3. UPSC Age Limit
  4. New IAS/IPS Allocation Policy Proposal
  5. IASSolution Prelims Online Test Series
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