Expert Advice On How To Crack Civil Services Prelim Examinations conducts Civil Service exam every year to select officers for Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS) and Indian Police Service (IPS), among others.
There is no perfect or a single answer to the question “how to prepare for UPSC Civil Services (Prelim) Examinations”, but let us try. Here in this article we try to get as close as possible to perfectly answer this question, so let’s start.
The exam held in three stages – Preliminary, Mains and Interview. Not surprisingly, the prelims draw a horde of candidates, making this stage the most competitive and tricky one
Given below are some Expert Advice On How To Crack Civil Services Prelim Examinations
1. Know what to study
First step with starting the preparation of Civil Services (Prelims) Examinations will be thorough understanding of the exam pattern and syllabus. There is a myth that you need to know everything under the SUN, it’s not true.
This is important because, syllabus lets you understand the area of coverage and previous year question papers give you the direction of the coverage i.e. which topics are important, and which are not.
One of the universal advice’s to clear Civil Services (Prelims) Examinations which is given by every UPSC topper is that “it is very important to know what not to read”. Time is a very crucial factor in the preparation. We cannot afford to lose any amount of time reading things which are not important from exam point of view.
2. Know from where to study
Choice of books for every subject is very crucial as question asked in Civil Services (Prelim) Examination don’t require expert knowledge but basics of every topics and this exam is all about your study and its perfect retention.
The options given are so close sometimes that you may end up marking wrong answer costing negative marking. So, keep one formula in mind
“Minimum Sources and Maximum Revisions”
Here is a list of basic and important reference book list
Start with the basic NCERT first along with daily newspaper, and then move to the reference books.
Now that you know how to and from where to study, it is now time to plan. Planning can be done according to your strong and weak areas, but making a timetable and adhering to it is a must in your preparation strategy.
4. Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) practice
As per your daily plan it is important to solve daily MCQ based on what you have studied for that day. It help in retention for a long term memory and analyze how well you have understood the topic. Based on those question you can decide on how much time is to be distributed for each topic you feel necessary and also allocate time for its revision.
5. Join a Mock test series
Practicing a mock in an exam condition scenario will help you with
A. Time management
Civil Services (Prelim) Examinations of 2019 was little bit lengthy, time management in this case is very important. If not managed properly you may end up not completing your paper. And not completing a prelims paper is a sin. Time management strategy only be built in a test environment, with perfect calculation of time per question, first reading, OMR marking, form filling in those 2 hours.
B. Question solving strategy
Strategy to solve questions, some start from the first question and continue in a linear fashion, some may prefer starting from the end on from middle. As every set of question paper randomly distributed, you may find difficult questions at first. If found so what would be the plan needs to be decided. This can be done in the mock tests.
6. Analysis of the given mock tests
Just checking the score of the test taken and feeling good if scored high marks and saddened when getting less marks will not help improve your performance.
You need to analyze what went wrong.
Was it the subject knowledge that you lacked or you messed up the time management, you need to work upon it, consciously work upon your unconscious weakness.
Plot graphs for your scores, see if it is growing. Check if you are getting less scores for a particular subject question, work upon that area.
Civil Services (Prelim) Examinations game of those two hours, your preparation of years judged on the basis of performance in those two hours. Anxiety, stress is normal, every serious candidate who dreams of becoming an IAS officer will feel that pressure. But only those who are able to manage those two hours under pressure are the real winners.
7. Mental preparation
Civil Services (Prelim) Examinations game of those two hours, your preparation of years judged on the basis of performance in those two hours.
Anxiety, stress is normal, every serious candidate who dreams of becoming an IAS officer will feel that pressure. But only those who are able to manage those two hours under pressure are the real winners. And managing this is not a one-day gimmick which you can do it in the final exam hall.
Preparing oneself for stressful condition is also a part of this journey, you can do it by doing Yoga, Meditation, etc.
Well planned and disciplined approach towards preparation with sincerity and hard work, will surely help you sail your ship through these tough waters of UPSC. Believe in yourself and your passion to serve, you will definitely achieve it
For more details of UPSC Notes, Materials & Tests.