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Securing a position in the UPSC examination is like a dream come true. People dream of cracking this prestigious exam. They want to be a reputed IAS, IPS, or any of the esteemed positions from Group A and Group B level of the Union Public Service Commission test. These are one of the topmost government positions, especially in the civil and defence sectors, that bring accountability, fame, and leverage together.

This commission is the most respected recruiting agency governed by the top-level central government in India. It offers bureaucratic vacancies to civilians who are interested in serving society.

Although Group C and Group D recruitments are also carried out, their examinations are conducted by other government agencies/commissions. 


As aforesaid, UPSC stands for Union Public Service Commission. It hosts examinations for civil services recruitments, which are called Civil Services Exam (CSE). This platform offers job roles in the top government services, like IAS, IPS, IFS, etc. The successful candidates are absorbed in the civil as well as defence services.

Exams Conducted by UPSC for Selection into Civil Services

Here are exams that come under civil services:

  • Civil Services Examination (CSE)
  • Combined Medical Services (CMS)
  • Engineering Services Examination (ESE)
  • Indian Forestry Services Examination (IFoS)
  • Special Class Railway Apprentices Exam (SCRA)
  • Central Armed Police Forces Examination (CAPF)
  • Combined Geo-Scientist and Geologist Examination
  • Indian Economic Service and Indian Statistical Service (IES/ISS)
  • Limited Departmental Competitive Examination for selection of Assistant Commandant. (Executive) in CISF

Exams Conducted by UPSC for Selection into Defence Services

  • Combined Defense Services Exam – CDS (I)
  • Combined Defense Services Exam – CDS (II)
  • National Defence Academy & Naval Academy Examination – NDA & NA (I)
  • National Defence Academy & Naval Academy Examination – NDA & NA (II)

How many examinations are there in the UPSC?

Civil Services Examination (CSE) is a destiny maker and known as one of the most popular exams that the Union Public Service Commission conducts. People call it the ‘IAS exam’. However, it is officially recognised as the CSE.  This is a common test conducted to hire candidates for nearly 24 top government job roles, including IAS, IPS, IFS, IRS, etc.

The CSE is mainly conducted in three different stages. These stages are here given:

  • Preliminary Exam (objective)
  • Main Exam (written)
  • Interview (personality test)

The process is simple. The official UPSC website publishes advertisements and the aspirants apply as per the given date. In all, the examination procedure is carried out around 10 -12 months.

How can you prepare for UPSC CSE?

However, it’s possible that you may pass through it by self-study. But in most cases, people require proper training and practice to ensure their success in this examination. 

This is a digital era where nobody can deny the power of the internet. So, aspirants have another platform to prepare themselves, which is through online applications and live IAS coaching classes in affordable fee. It lets you prepare for the test through online available mock-tests and study materials.

Besides, there are certain standards that ensure great chances of success. Here is an overview of these standards in the given points:

  • Join any reputed IAS coaching in Delhi or anywhere that charges an affordable fee. It enriches you to have detailed guidance and personalised experience in discovering all stages of UPSC preparation.
  • Join classes and prepare notes on the basis of lessons taught in coaching classes.
  • Self-study is matchless. Do stick to it and make it your habit. In addition to IAS notes, studying NCERT textbooks and standard textbooks is beneficial.
  • Go through IAS prelims online mock tests to test yourself.
  • For more refined writing skills, repeat preparing with mock tests.
  • You have to opt-in an optional subject. Prepare it also.
  • Once cleared mains and prelims, the interview would be your next acid test. Participate in IAS interview programs conducted in the IAS academy or coaching center to successfully appear in this one-on-one round.

UPSC Syllabus for Civil Services Exam

As above said, there are 3 stages in the UPSC Civil Services Exam that you need to pass through– (1) Preliminary Exam (Objective Test) (2) Main Exam (Written Test) (3) Personality Test (Interview).

  • Prelims

The Civil Services Preliminary exam offers you to pass through two compulsory papers. Each carries 200 marks, i.e. of General Studies Paper-I and General Studies Paper-II. In them, the questions will be objective type, which offers multiple choices. However, your score in prelims will be excluded when it comes to counting for the final ranking. In short, it is required for qualifying for the main exam.

  • Mains

This is a written examination that includes descriptive writing. It consists of nine papers, but only 7 papers would be considered for measuring the final merit ranking. The rest two papers require you to secure at least the minimum passing marks prescribed by the commission each year. 

  • Interview

This is an interview round wherein the board is there. Each of the members asks questions on different topics, subjects, or current affairs to take your opinion on the matter of general interest.

It’s already informed that the score of the preliminary examination is not summed up for the final ranking, It is just for screening the candidate to select for the main examination.

The final score is calculated on the marks secured in the Main examination and the Interview. As far as the marks are concerned, the Main is scored from 1750 marks and the Interview carries 275 marks. The total score is 2025. 

As being prestigious and many people try their luck, the preliminary examination is hard to crack through. You need to prepare via excellent IAS coaching and self-study. The UPSC finalises only the top 3 out of 100 candidates to appear in the Main exam.

UPSC age limit for the IAS Exam

This test is for the ones who have surpassed 21 years of age. The upper limit of this age is 32 for the General category, 35 for the backward classes (OBC), and 37 for Scheduled Classes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST). However, there are some additional relaxations for special cases.

Educational requirement to attempt the UPSC CSE

Any graduate can appear in the UPSC Civil Services examination. There is no bar for streams. The grad can be from any stream. The degree can be obtained from a regular college or distance education.


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