Examination Pattern of UPSC Civil Services IAS Examinations

UPSC Exam Pattern
UPSC Exam Pattern

Union Public Service Commission (or UPSC for short) conducts one of the toughest examinations of the nation. The examination is know as IAS examination. Each year, lakhs of young men and women appear for the examination. However, very few get clear for the next step. we will discuss the UPSC exam pattern and syllabus of the examination for the current year

The UPSC CSE Examinations

Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) conducts the Civil Services Examinations (CSE) every year. The purpose of the examination is recruitment for the various plum positions of the government. The top prestigious and administrative positions are filled through the process. 

The article aims to provide the readers with an overview of the UPSC IAS examination. Further, we will discuss the examination pattern and syllabus of the examination for the current year. 

The Ever-Popular Civil Services Sector –

The UPSC CSE Examinations are commonly known as the UPSC IAS examinations. This is because of the high popularity of IAS officers in society. The examination brings high popularity and visibility for the successful candidates. However, the examination is one of the toughest one in the nation. It requires dedication and hard work to get the top spot. 

The IAS examinations carry vast syllabus and vast competition. The examination pattern for the examination is also complicated. It requires dedicated study for at least one year. Likewise, a typical examination cycle lasts for a year or so. Hence, many simultaneously prepare for both the next round as well as the preliminary examination to get the best results.

UPSC Civil Services Examinations Pattern and Syllabus

UPSC  Syllabus

The UPSC IAS examination is conducted in the following stages – 

  • Preliminary Examinations
  • UPSC Mains examinations
  • Personality interview

The first two rounds are written examinations while the last one is an interview-style one. 

As per the IAS examination pattern, candidates who are able to qualify for the first round can write the second round. This process is followed up till the last stage. Hence, if you are not able to clear the first round, you will not be called for the second one. 

Due to the lower number of posts available and the cut-throat competition, many aspirants feel dejected and quit. Despite this, few make it to the plush offices of the cadre and contribute to social development.

The IAS examination schedule for the current year

IAS examination

The IAS and UPSC examination pattern for the year is the same as the previous years. The date for the prelims examination is 31 May. Visit our dedicated blogs to get the best guidance and mentorship for the UPSC prelims examination 2020. 

  • The preliminary examination

UPSC IAS examination for the preliminary examination consists of two examinations. These are held over the period of a day itself. 

The examination consists of objective type question paper pattern. You get questions with multiple choice answers. 

Remember – The preliminary examination is a qualifying exam. The idea is to sort candidates for the next level. However, the marks of this are not counter for the final merit list. 

However, the cut-off for the preliminary examination is volatile. Hence, you need to deliver your best in the examination. This depends on your preparation for the process. Note – Each year, the cut-off for the purpose is rising.  

The Details of UPSC Prelims Examination for the Present Year is given below – 

IAS Examination Pattern for UPSC – CSE Examinations

UPSC Prelims Examination

IAS Examination pattern for UPSC mains examination is very vast. 

It consists of 9 exam papers. These are conducted over a period of 5 to 7 days. 

However, only the eligible candidates who have secured the minimum cut-off marks are eligible for the examination. 

Similarly, the candidates must secure at least 33 percent marks in the General Studies Examination – II of the preliminary examination to appear in the final stages. 

  • Nature of Examination

The exam pattern of UPSC mains Examination consists of descriptive questions. Thus, one needs to write a detailed answer. 

The Details of the Same are Given Below – 

All of the IAS examinations – mains examination papers consists of merit-based ranking. However, this is not true for language papers – A and B. These two are of merely qualifying nature. Thus, if you have 25 percent marks. Similarly, the other examination papers are given equal weightage. 

Contrarily, paper A is not mandatory. This is for the candidates from the following States – 

  • Arunachal Pradesh
  • Mizoram
  • Meghalaya
  • Nagaland
  • Sikkim
  • Manipur

Further, candidates with hearing issues are also exempted. However, such candidates need to prove that they have been exempted from language courses by their concerned examination board previously. 

Likewise, the Indian language examination consists of all languages. Such languages should be the part of the 8th schedule of the Constitution of India. 

List of Subjects that are Covered By the General Studies Examination Papers for Mains Examination are as Follows –

Similarly, the Optional Subjects For Examination Papers VI and VII Include Any of the following Subjects –

Thus, all the examination papers except the Indian language papers A and B can be attempted in any language. Although a large number of candidates attempt the same in English yet the same can be taken in any language (as mentioned in 8th Schedule of Constitution).

Moreover, the optional papers can be attempted in English. This can be done even if other examinations have been attempted in any language as mentioned in 8th Schedule of Constitution of India.

UPSC Interview – The Final Step 

UPSC Interview

This is the final step in the IAS examination. This is the final selection criteria before the final results are declared. It is also called as the Interview/ Personality Test. Lastly, it is an important aspect of the final version of the examination.

As per the IAS exam pattern, the same is the part of the UPSC board assessment criteria. It judges the candidate on the basis suitability for the final selection round and the job profile. 

Apart from the above, the round assesses the students on the basis of mental and personality traits to get the final outcomes. The final judgement is on the basis of the following points –

  • Mental alertness
  • Assimilation powers
  • Logical reasoning
  • Balance of judgement
  • Social outcomes
  • Degree of interest in the job
  • Moral integrity
  • Leadership skills
  • Intellectual capacities

Maximum Marks

Maximum Marks in UPSC

The maximum marks for the interview round are 275.  As a result, total marks of the whole examination are 2025. 

The complete pattern of the UPSC – IAS exam is extensive and the competition is strong. One should begin making in-depth preparation as the CSE examination process continues for nearly a year. Similarly, not securing the cut-off means beginning from zero next year.

Above all, interested candidates should review the UPSC announcement for the year 2020 for more details about the examination.

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