How to clear IAS: Strategy and Books for beginners

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The Civil Services Examination (CSE) conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is regarded as the mother of all examination. Even though the exam is considered to be one of the toughest examinations in the country, with the right strategy, it is possible to crack the exam in the very first attempt. It is natural for the beginners to have many questions like “Which are the books to be referred to?”, “How long does it take to cover the syllabus?”, “What is an ideal strategy to clear the examination?” etc. To know more about the strategy and books for UPSC CSE preparation read on.

How to clear IAS: Strategy and Books for beginnersMany aspirants could have a misconception that all the toppers follow one single strategy to clear the examination. But one must understand that the UPSC exam preparation differs from person to person. What is important is, to create a strategy that suits your timings, comfort level in various subjects etc. You must plan out your own study schedule and stick to it till the end.




Here are a few tips for designing a good strategy for UPSC preparation:

  • Take tips from successful candidates, toppers, mentors etc. but make sure you formulate a strategy that suits you the best. Do not blindly follow a topper’s strategy as it might not work for you.
  • Read Newspaper on a daily basis. The questions from current affairs section have seen an increasing trend in the recent IAS papers.
  • Integrate your Prelims and Mains preparation, as there are a lot of topics in the Prelims syllabus that overlaps with the Mains syllabus. It also becomes very difficult to cover the mains syllabus if you start your preparation for mains after the prelims results.
  • Cover two subjects simultaneously. This will make sure that your preparation is not monotonous. You can switch between the two subjects when you get bored with the other.
  • Make it a point to make adequate room for optional subject preparation as it constitutes a major chunk of your marks in UPSC Mains.
  • Do not set unrealistic targets and rush through the books just in order to meet the targets. You must be able to understand and remember what you study.
  • Make sure that your strategy is neither too rigid nor too flexible. Make changes as and when necessary but stick to the plan. Be consistent and study on a regular basis.





Though there is no set list of IAS preparation books, beginners can follow these standard books to cover the UPSC Syllabus:

For tips & tricks to crack the Civil Services Examination and for Current Affairs preparation, subscribe to Byju’s YouTube Channel

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