Candidates have to choose UPSC optional subjects for writing the last two papers of the main examination. Candidates must select the optional subjects based on their interests because it can secure good marks for them which can increase their chances of selection. There are two papers for optional subjects that are optional paper I and optional paper II. The exam is conducted for 250 marks each. Candidates should prepare the subject in a good manner so that they can score maximum marks out of 500 marks.
Candidates can choose an optional subject out of the total of 48 optional subjects. It incorporates general subjects such as Agriculture, Philosophy, Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science, Anthropology, Botany, Physics, Political Science & International Relations, Chemistry, Medical Science, Commerce & Accountancy, Economics, Civil Engineering, Geography, Geology, History, Public Administration, Sociology, Statistics, Law, Management, Mathematics, Mechanical Engineering, Electrical Engineering, Psychology, and Zoology. The literature subjects that are available for the optional paper are Malayalam, Sanskrit, Santhali, Assamese, Gujarati, Hindi, Manipuri, Marathi, Nepali, Bodo, Dogri, Sindhi, Tamil, Telugu, Urdu, Oriya, Punjabi, Kannada, Kashmiri, Konkani, Maithili, Bengali, and English.
For appearing in the main examination, candidates have to qualify the prelims examination. There are three stages in the civil service examination: preliminary examination, main examination, and interview. The prelims examination comprises two papers namely General Studies Paper I and General Studies Paper II which is also known as Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT). The prelims examination is conducted for 400 marks wherein the CSAT paper is qualifying in nature. Both the papers in the prelims examination are conducted for two hours each. Only objective-type questions are asked in the preliminary examination in both papers. In CSAT, candidates have to score only 33% marks to qualify the examination.
Why Preparation of Current Affairs is Important?
Now a days, the pattern of questions in the competitive examination has changed. Now, most of the questions are based on current affairs. Hence, candidates should prepare for it in a good manner so that they can attempt maximum questions in the examination. Earlier, the questions were asked from the static GK part. But as the level of competition is increasing day by day, the exam conducting authority has started asking questions based on the latest developments in India and around the world. So, there is a need for proactiveness in the candidate’s preparation in order to ace the examination.
Candidates who keep awareness about the daily happenings related to the polity, economy, society, etc. can score good marks in the examination as most of the questions are asked from these sections. Candidates can prepare by using online as well as offline study materials. These days, there is a huge demand for online study materials as they can be easily accessed, notes of best teachers can be availed, can ask doubts, etc. On the other hand, offline materials are still followed by a few students which shows not everyone is relying on online study materials. You can choose according to your convenience. The main motive is to crack the examination by gaining good marks.
Current affairs can be prepared by making notes that can be revised from time to time. Yes, timely revision is very much important so that candidates can recall the things in the examination. Without revision, it is difficult to remember each and everything that has been studied by a candidate. Hence, they should allocate some time for revision on daily basis or on weekly basis.