How to Pass the UPSC Mains Exam?

The Union Public Service Commission is one of the most difficult entrance exams in India. If you are an aspirant looking to prepare for the UPSC exams, there are simple strategies that you can use to better prepare yourself.

Below are some of the steps that you can take to learn and pass the UPSC exam.

Preparing Early

UPSC exams cover a wide variety of topics, so it is better to start preparing at least 6 months before the exams. Math, politics, English, and science are among the subjects covered.

You can download the UPSC exam syllabus from the official website to decide where you want to focus more.

Practice Test Papers:

You can find previous test papers on the UPSC website that you can take to your website. Though you won’t find the same questions on your exam, you will get an idea of how the tests will be formatted.

Find sample papers for your subjects and practice them to test your abilities. Keep a timer and follow the same time limitation as your exams, which is 3 hours.

Gain Experience For The Personality Test

Your UPSC interview includes a personality test, which is also a part of the interview. The personality test alone is worth 100 points, while the written test is 250 points.

You can improve your personality by socializing in a professional manner. During the interview, you will be judged on your ability to lead, your social skills, your critical thinking, your ability to make decisions, and your initiative.

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Carefully read the Instructions

Before you start answering the questions in the exam, you need to make sure that you have gone through the instructions carefully.

This is very important because you need to identify the directive and the topic of the questions and avoid answering them incorrectly. Some questions may have more than one directive.

Providing Quality Answers

Do not mix languages while answering. You can choose either English or Hindi to write your answers. Do not make the mistake of using both languages while answering the questions.

Every question comes with a designated box within which you have to answer the question. Do not write outside this box to extend your answer beyond the edge of the box. Doing so will cost you points.

There is also a word limit for every section that you have to keep in mind while answering. This will usually be between 150 and 200 words. Even if you know a lot about the subject, don’t try to answer more than what is asked.

Wherever applicable, include a diagram or chart in your answers. Some questions may specifically ask you to include a diagram or chart in the answer.

If you feel that the answer you have written is incorrect or needs a change, you need to strike the answer and write “cancelled” over the stroke. Since you get a limited box to answer the questions, try to be extra careful when you answer a question.

Tips To Tackle Specific Questions

If a question asks you to enumerate, it means that you have to use numbers in your answer. Do not try to overthink it; just provide a straightforward answer.

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You need to use chronological order if a question asks you to narrate a historical event. Use words like first, second, next, etc. to narrate the flow of the event that occurred.

When a question asks you to define, then you need to use words and phrases to explain the term from the actual definition. You need to memorize important terms and definitions of your subject for this.

If a question asks you to analyze, then you need to provide your opinion based on facts and not blindly state your opinion. You need to make sure that you are explaining both sides of the situation and keep your answers optimistic. Avoid using unpopular or controversial opinions.

If you come across a question that asks you to critically examine, it means that you have to provide positives and negatives with a thorough comparison. Once you are done explaining the pros and cons, you need to provide a conclusion.

There are many such directives you may encounter in the questions, like elaborate, examine, discuss, expand, etc., and it is very important that you are aware of these directives and their meanings.