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How to Improve Marks in CSAT?

Feb 16, 2022

How to Improve Marks in CSAT?

CSAT paper is becoming a tough nut to crack. Previously, students used to not even read for this paper as it was just qualifying in nature. However, UPSC has its own plans. From the past three years, the toughness of CSAT Paper has increased exponentially. Hence, it should be covered adequately during the UPSC exam preparation. 

The situation has reached such proportions that many students are able to clear the cutoff of GS Paper I yet because of non-qualification in Paper II, they are denied the opportunity to write the Mains exam. Therefore, improving marks in CSAT papers has become a necessity.

Now, the Difficult Question is How?

Cracking the nut of CSAT requires planning at two levels: Before Exam and During exam day.

Strategy for CSAT Before The Exam

One of the reasons for low marks in CSAT is that students do not read for CSAT. They just feel that there is no need for that. At the same time, they leave it for the last days before the exam. However, just before the exam, they feel that revising the current affairs would be more beneficial than CSAT. So, in order to prevent themselves from falling into this trap, students should make a smart strategy.


  • First of all, finish the CSAT syllabus till March (by going through PrepLadder CSAT Videos).
  • Secondly, practice at least 4-5 years of PYQ (Given in Past Exams in PrepLadder App)
  • Thirdly, make crisp notes containing formulas and tricks after reading and practicing (Go through PrepLadder CSAT Treasures)
  • Fourthly, understand the tricky nature of comprehension and practice it.

Also read: Role of CSAT in UPSC Civil Services Prelims

Strategy for The Exam Day

  • Have Handy notes of CSAT for revision.
  • Start the exam with energy as it’s very difficult to attempt the complete CSAT paper due to the paucity of time.
  • Try to attempt as many questions as possible. In order to do that follow simple principles:

o Firstly, don’t be emotional about Maths questions. If you are not able to get the answer in one go just move on, never ever keep trying multiple complex equations and calculations.

o Secondly, read the comprehension at a fast pace and understand the gist of it. Based on that answer the question.

o Thirdly, attempt more and more reasoning questions.

o Finally have clarity of thinking.

By following the above-mentioned strategies, students can improve their marks in CSAT papers.

Also, watch the Preparation Strategy for the 2023 UPSC exam by Vivek Singh Sir, one of our educators of the UPSC DREAM TEAM:

Download the PrepLadder app to get access to the most comprehensive resource for UPSC CSE preparation and to study with the DREAM TEAM comprising India’s leading UPSC faculty. 

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