Your Ultimate UPSC Study Material To Crack IAS Exam

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How to Crack the UPSC Exam in the First Attempt?

Jul 14, 2021

Strategy to crack the upsc exam in first attempt/ PrepLadder

Civil Services Examination (CSE) conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is considered the toughest examination in India.

The exam is conducted in three phases- Preliminary Examination or Prelims consisting of two objective type papers (General Studies Paper-I and General Studies Paper-II also known as Civil Services Aptitude Test or CSAT), Main Examination (Consisting of nine papers of conventional essay type in which two papers are qualifying and marks of seven are counted) and Final Interview round or Personality Test.

The thought of cracking the UPSC exam in the first attempt often comes up in the mind of UPSC aspirants. Some lucky ones also clear the exam on their first click. But have you ever wondered what is the secret to crack the IAS exam in the very first attempt? What special effort does a candidate need to put into to secure the top rank in the first attempt and get the service of his choice?

Well, to answer all these questions, we have devised a seven-point strategy that will assist you in hitting the bull’s eye in the very first attempt. Let’s have a look at them.

Strategy to Crack UPSC Exam

#1 Divide the Syllabus

UPSC syllabus is vast and often creates fear among IAS aspirants. There is no denying it, but it is something that you have already studied before in your high school. Hence, you just need to give a quick revision to your past studies. Start by simply jotting down the entire syllabus into points and divide them into sections according to your strengths and weaknesses, and then proceed with designing a study plan. 

Though theory papers like History, Geography, Polity, Geography, Optional subjects demand a lot of your time. CSAT, an aptitude test, requires more of your intelligence and demands only a fragment of your time. Hence, bifurcate your syllabus in small sections that are easy to cover.

Also read: Common Mistakes to Avoid in UPSC Preparation

#2 Choose the Right Optional

Rather than regretting in the later years, choose the right optional subject during the UPSC preparation. Always keep three important points while choosing an optional subject. First, you should be passionate about the subject. A subject of disinterest will prove to be a burden during preparation and hence you won’t be able to perform better.

Second, once you have chosen a subject of your interest, make sure you have enough study material to accelerate your preparation.

Third, during the preparation, the scoring potential of the subject must be taken into consideration. The top five popular subjects in civil services exams are Geography, History, Public Administration, Philosophy, and Sociology. But the top five subjects in terms of success rate are Medical Science, Commerce, and Accountancy, Animal Husbandry, Economics, and Psychology. 

#3 Reanalyze the Syllabus and Previous Year Question Bank

You must always keep the syllabus and previous year question bank on your study table. They are holy books for UPSC aspirants. The syllabus tells you how to begin the preparation and how to end it, whereas the previous year’s question bank gives you an idea of the type of preparation you are expected to make while preparing for CSE.

#4 Make Notes During preparation

When revising on the last day before the UPSC exams, if you have an option to go through the entire book/syllabus or to refer to quick summary notes, what would you prefer? Smart UPSC aspirants will consider the latter.

The reason being, quick summary notes are convenient, easy, and less time-consuming to go through. Having self-prepared notes handy helps in focusing on important topics/questions without wasting much of your crucial time. Needless to say, note-making during your exam preparation helps in better retention of topics as it is your ultimate study guide. It boosts your confidence as well.

#5 Be Consistent with Newspaper Reading

A good newspaper like ‘The Hindu’ or ‘The Indian Express’ should be your learning partner before and after becoming a Civil Servant! The reason being, it gives you the required knowledge of the important current affairs of national and international events. However, while reading newspapers always focus on the analysis part as not all the information and news that is printed is important.

Also read: How to Prepare for UPSC 2021: Important Tips & Tricks

#6 Be Pro with Answer Writing

UPSC Mains examination is descriptive in nature and good answer writing is the key to score good marks in it. The only way to achieve expertise in answer writing is by regularly practicing it. Write at least two answers in a week- 10 in a month and get them checked by your teachers. A well-written answer not only reflects the knowledge of an aspirant but also his/her ability to tailor the content in a manner suited to meet the expectations of the question.

#7 Hard-work, consistency, and self-motivation 

“A dream doesn’t become reality through magic; It takes sweat, determination and hard work.”- Colin Powell

This phrase is apt for IAS aspirants. A successful UPSC exam preparation has three main ingredients: Hard-work, consistency, and self-motivation. In order to excel in CSE, you must have these qualities. One gets what he works for not what he wishes for. Hard work beats talent when talent doesn't work hard. Believe in yourself and give your 100 percent during the exam preparation and get the desired results.

If cracking the UPSC examination is your dream, PrepLadder will help you to fulfil it.

A name you can rely upon for the UPSC CSE preparation, PrepLadder has everything you need to ace CSE on one single platform. This includes concise, effective and well-planned video lectures by our Dream Team for CSE, a well-structured and high yield QBank, highly competitive PrepTests based on real exam patterns, and Previous Year Papers in the form of tests

The best part about the Dream Team is that you can carry it wherever you go and get anytime & anywhere access to well-researched study material.

All the best for your exams. Stay tuned for more updates.  

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Auther Details

Raminder Singh

Raminder is a Content Manager at PrepLadder. He has worked in several aspects of the education industry throughout his career and has assisted numerous candidates in cracking major competitive exams.


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