With less than 100 days left for the UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam 2015, candidates are anxious and looking for 2 months fast-track preparation strategies and last minute revision tips. The 1st timers have an additional pressure on their head that they must clear the CSE Prelims in the first attempt. 2 months prior to the exam, students are in frenzy and questions like
"What more do I read?
How many hours of study is enough?
Do I remember what I have already covered?
What new will happen this time in the Prelims?", keep haunting them.
So now it becomes a two fold task i.e. to keep on preparing well and to learn to overcome the anxiety and low-confidence.
Use the 60:40 approach for GS and CSAT in 2015:
Effective time management is the key to efficient preparation for the civil services Prelims exam. The syllabus is vast and the time in hand is less than 100 days. There is no fixed formula that can guide you how much time must be spent on each subject.
Your time distribution of remaining 100 days should be according to your own strengths and weaknesses. While dividing your time take into account:
- How much you have already studied
- Whether this is your first attempt or there have been earlier attempts
Focus your time and energy on both GS and CSAT. So, Roughly your time allocation should be 60:40 between GS and CSAT. CSAT is going to be the game changer in CSE Prelims 2015, so do not ignore it.
|Subjects||Days to be allocated|
|Indian Polity and Governance||10|
|Science & Technology||15|
|Ecology & Biodiversity||10|
Solve previous year papers
Solve last 2-3 years questions paper of civil services Prelims exam. This is a very important last 2 month preparation strategy of CSE Prelims that most students forget (especially 1st timers).
Do not panic if you can’t solve them correctly but attempting them would help you overcome your anxiety. You will get more familiar with the exam pattern and know if you have cleared your concepts.
Identify the trend:
When solving previous year CSE Prelims question papers, try to map a pattern in the topics being focused on by UPSC. This way you can emphasise more on topics which are more expected to be asked in the Prelims 2015. Those who clear UPSC Prelims in the first attempt always prepare with a definite game plan in mind. Else the Prelims syllabus is so vast that preparing well for it is next to impossible.
Prepare with the help of test series
The biggest hurdle in clearing the CSE Prelims exam is solving questions from diverse subjects in a time bound manner. Even when you know the answer, the anxiety of the exam makes you underperform. The only solution to this problem is to train your mind for the exam environment.
Joining a regular test series can help you get into the habit of solving questions in a fixed time frame. When you decide to join a test series for CSE Prelims, here are some rules you must follow:
- Take the tests with a fresh mind. Attempt at least 2 tests in a week.
- A day after the test, pick the paper and answer key and try attempting again the questions you were unable to answer or answered incorrectly. Also mark your weak areas.
- The next time you study, try to cover those weak topics.
- Try attempting similar questions on the same topic so that you can be sure you now know the topic thoroughly.
Which test series to join?
- It should allow you to schedule your preparation anytime.
- A good number of students must be enrolled in the test series so that you can get a fair idea of your relative performance.
- You must be able to track improvement in your performance.
- They should give detailed analysis of the each paper.
Work on your weaknesses:
Just browsing through study material or taking tests of various institutes is not enough. After every study session you must be able to infer your weak areas. After you take a test you must mark the topics which you were not able to answer correctly. In your next revision try focusing on those topics. Leaving loopholes in a topic that you have already covered is not a good way to go.
If you make a habit of doing that, you’ll start building enough confidence and will automatically overcome your anxiety and will be able to prepare and attempt the exam with a peaceful mind.