UPSC Civil Service Examination(CSE) Syllabus

Upsc conducted exam in three phase:

  1. Preliminary exam
  2. Mains
  3. Interview/ Personal Test

Preliminary Exam

The examination shall comprise two compulsory papers CSAT I and CSAT II of 200 marks each.

Note: All questions will be of Multiple choice, Objective type. You have to select one right answer out of 4 options. Every question has 1/3rd negative marking for wrong answer.         (you will loose 0.33 marks for every wrong answer’s).


100 Questions, 200 marks, Duration: 2hr

  • Current events of national and international importance.
  • History of India and Indian National Movement, Arts & Culture.
  • Indian and world Geography (Physical, Social, Economic Geography).
  • Indian Polity and Governance- Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues.
  • Economic and Social Development Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics.
  • Social Sector initiatives etc.
  • General issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change. (Don’t require specialization on such topics).
  • General Science

Books For Csat-I

Current Affairs 2016 for Competitive Exams – UPSC/ State PCS/ SSC/ Banking/ Insurance/ Railways/ BBA/ MBA/ Defence
History of Modern India by BipinChandra
India’s Struggle for Independence
India’s Ancient Past
IAS (Pre.) Solved Papers General Studies
Objective Indian Polity: General Studies – Paper I

For more important Books Click here…


Aptitude type questions, UPSC made it qualifying paper only from 2015. You have to score 33% marks out of 200. It comprises 80 Questions, Duration 2hr.

  • Comprehension
  • 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.), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency, etc.)
  • English language Comprehension skills (this topic removed from question paper wef.2015)

Books For Csat-II

Cracking the CSAT Paper – 2 : Civil Services Aptitude Test (PB)
Cracking the CSAT Paper-2
A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning

For more Books Click here.. 


New Syllabus of UPSC


The main examination is intended to appraise the overall intellectual quality and deep knowledge of candidates from their information and memory.

Books for  IAS Mains General Studies Solved Papers 2015-1996

Before, General Papers you have to clear two qualifying paper’s. The marks obtained in this paper will not be counted for Merit list. 30% marks in Indian Language and 25% marks in English as minimum qualifying in these qualifying papers.

  1. English – (Compulsory, Duration: 3hr, Marks:300)

According to Paper-Pattern

  1. Short essay     50*2=100
  2. Unseen passage (Q & A)    10*5=50
  3. Precis (make it one-third of passage length)    60+40=100
  4. Make sentences     10*1=10
  5. Correct the sentence      1*10=100
  6. Grammar (FIB, opposite, etc.)    1*30=30
  1. Indian Languages– Any one language of Indian language

(Under schedule No.8)

  • Language                             Script
  1. Assamese                             Assamese
  2. Bengali                                  Bengali
  3. Gujarati                                 Gujarati
  4. Hindi                                     Devanagari
  5. Kannada                                Kannada
  6. Kashmiri                                Persian
  7. Konkani                                 Devanagari
  8. Malayalam                            Malayalam
  9. Manipuri                               Bengali
  10. Marathi                                 Devanagari
  11. Nepali                                   Devanagari
  12. Oriya                                     Oriya
  13. Punjabi                                 Gurumukhi
  14. Sanskrit                                 Devanagari
  15. Sindhi                                   Devanagari or Arabic
  16. Tamil                                    Tamil
  17. Telugu                                  Telugu
  18. Urdu                                     Persian
  19. Bodo                                    Devanagari
  20. Dogri                                     Devanagari
  21. Maithili                                 Devanagari
  22. Santhali                                 Devanagari or Olchiki

Note: Candidates are Eligible, if they Qualified in both qualifying paper which is compulsory (English and one Indian Language); then only their general studies paper will be checked.

The nature and standard of questions in the General studies papers (Paper II- Paper V). The question is likely to evaluate the candidates basic understanding of all relevant issues, and ability to analyze, and take a view on conflicting socio-economic goals, objectives and demands. The candidates must give relevant meaningful and concise answers.

The optional Subject papers is (paper VI & Paper VII) for the examination is broadly of the honours degree level.


PAPERTotal Marks
GS Paper I250
GS Paper II250
GS Paper III250
GS Paper IV250
Optional I250
Optional II250
Total Written1750


ESSAY  3hr, 250 marks: candidates will be required to write an essay on specific topic.      Marks will be given for effective and exact expression.

PAPER II Syllabus

General Studies- I: Indian Heritage and culture, History and Geography of the World and Society
Book:  General Studies – I: Civil Services (Main) Examination

  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of arts forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
  • Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present-significant events, personalities, issues.
  • The Freedom Struggle- its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country.
  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
  • History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redraw of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.- their forms and effect on the society.
  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
  • Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issue, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.
  • Effects of globalization on Indian society.
  • Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.
  • Salient features of world’s physical geography.
  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian subcontinent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India).
  • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including waterbodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

More Books For GS-I

 PAPER- III Syllabus

General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations.

  • Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
  • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  • Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries.
  • Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  • Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  • Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  • Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies.
  • Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • Development processes and the development industry- the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.
  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Center and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources.
  • Issues relating to poverty and hunger.
  • Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizen’s charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
  • Role of civil services in a democracy.
  • India and its neighborhood- relations.
  • Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests.
  • Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora.
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.


PAPER- IV Syllabus

General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management.

  • Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.
  • Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.
  • Government Budgeting.
  • Major crops cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers.
  • Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.
  • Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.
  • Land reforms in India.
  • Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
  • Investment models.
  • Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life.
  • Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment.
  • Disaster and disaster management.
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism.
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention.
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
  • Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.

PAPER- V Syllabus

General Studies- IV: Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude 

This paper will include questions to test the candidates’ attitude and approach to issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and his problem solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by him in dealing with society. Questions may utilize the case study approach to determine these aspects. The following broad areas will be covered.

  • Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values.
  • Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behavior; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.
  • Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker sections.
  • Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.
  • Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world.
  • Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.
  • Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.
  • Case Studies on above issues.

Books For: Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude for Civil Services Examination



You can choose any optional subject, according to your specialization. optional paper consists TWO paper 250 marks each.

  1. Agriculture
  2. Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science
  3. Anthropology
  4. Botany
  5. Chemistry
  6. Civil Engineering
  7. Commerce and Accountancy
  8. Economics
  9. Electrical Engineering
  10. Geography
  11. Geology
  12. History
  13. Law
  14. Management
  15. Mathematics
  16. Mechanical Engineering
  17. Medical Science
  18. Philosophy
  19. Physics
  20. Political Science and International Relations
  21. Psychology
  22. Public Administration
  23. Sociology
  24. Statistics
  25. Zoology


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