Civil Services Exam (CSE): Know the popular ‘IAS Exam’

  1. About Civil Services
    1. Types of Civil Services in India
  2. Civil Service Examination
    1. Civil Service Prelims Examination
    2. Civil Service Main Examination
    3. Civil Service Interview
  3. Civil Services Exam Eligibility
  4. Civil Service Exam Syllabus
  5. Civil Service Exam Preparation
  6. Civil Service Exam Books

About Civil Services

Civil Services are jobs directly related with public service and are widely considered prestigious in India. UPSC conducts Civil Service Exams for Central Government job vacancies while PSC in each state fills the State Government job vacancies. There are about 24 services which come under the Civil Services Exam conducted by UPSC every year. These services include IAS, IFS, IPS etc.

Types of Civil Services in India

Civil Services in India - IAS, IFS, IPS etc.

(i)Indian Administrative Service.
(ii) Indian Foreign Service.
(iii) Indian Police Service.
(iv) Indian P & T Accounts & Finance Service, Group ‘A’.
(v) Indian Audit and Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
(vi) Indian Revenue Service (Customs and Central Excise), Group ‘A’.
(vii) Indian Defence Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
(viii) Indian Revenue Service (I.T.), Group ‘A’.
(ix) Indian Ordnance Factories Service, Group ‘A’ (Assistant Works Manager, Administration).
(x) Indian Postal Service, Group ‘A’.
(xi) Indian Civil Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
(xii) Indian Railway Traffic Service, Group ‘A’.
(xiii) Indian Railway Accounts Service, Group ‘A’.
(xiv) Indian Railway Personnel Service, Group ‘A’.
(xv) Post of Assistant Security Commissioner in Railway Protection Force, Group ‘A’
(xvi) Indian Defence Estates Service, Group ‘A’.
(xvii) Indian Information Service (Junior Grade), Group ‘A’.
(xviii) Indian Trade Service, Group ‘A’ (Gr. III).
(xix) Indian Corporate Law Service, Group “A”.
(xx) Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Service, Group ‘B’ (Section Officer’s Grade).
(xxi) Delhi, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Civil Service, Group ‘B’.
(xxii) Delhi, Andaman & Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Police Service, Group ‘B’.
(xxiii) Pondicherry Civil Service, Group ‘B’.
(xxiv) Pondicherry Police Service, Group ‘B’.

Civil Service Examination (CSE)

Though popularly known as ‘IAS exam’, the official name of the exam is UPSC Civil Services Exam. There are many who consider this exam as the toughest exam in India (and even at the world-stage!). The exam is attempted by around 5 Lakh candidates each year. UPSC Civil Services exam is conducted in 3 phases: 1) Prelims and 2) Mains 3) Interview. The exam window extends over an year (from August month of an year to June month next year when the results are announced).

Civil Service Prelims Examination

There are two papers in Civil Service Prelims Examination. The questions are objective in nature.

  1. General Studies Paper 1 [which deals with subjects like History, Polity, Economics etc.]
  2. General Studies Paper 2 [which deals with subjects like Mental Ability, English Comprehension etc. This paper is popularly known as CSAT – Civil Services Aptitude Test).

IAS Preliminary Exam Date:

  • Date of Notification of Civil Services Prelims : May/June.
  • Date of UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam : August.

Preliminary Examination is mainly an elimination test and hence its marks are not considered for final ranking. Syllabus for UPSC Civil Services Preliminary and Main Exam is given in this website. For more details on the preliminary exam, refer : “how to clear Civil Services prelims?“.

As you may know, only when tested in an exam atmosphere with negative marking, you can improve the ability to deliver in the actual exam hall. Try for free the UPSC Prelims online mock exams by ClearIAS – in the new innovative platform which integrates learning with test-taking. You would be surprised to find how fast you can learn!

Civil Service Main Examination

The mains stage is subjective in nature as the answers have to be written on paper. The papers in Civil Service Mains as per revised syllabus are as below.

UPSC Civil Services Main Examination as per revised syllabus consists of 9 papers. Marks of 7 out of these 9 papers will be counted for final ranking, while 2 papers will be of qualifying nature.

Mark-Counted Papers in UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam
  • 1 paper on essay. (250 marks x 1)
  • 4 papers on from General Studies ( which covers topics like History, Geography  Economics, Polity, Technology, Ecology, Ethics etc). (250 marks x 4)
  • 2 papers on one Optional subject – which can be from selected from 25 subjects and 22 languages. (250 marks x 2)
Qualifying Papers in UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam
  • 1 English Language Paper (Comprehension, Precis Writing etc).
  • 1 Regional Language Paper (Comprehension, Precis Writing, Translation etc).

The Civil Service Main Exam marks are calculated out of 1750.

IAS Mains Exam Dates:

  • Date of Notification of UPSC Civil Services Mains : Sep/Oct.
  • Date of UPSC Civil Services Main Exam : December.

For more details on the topic “how to clear Civil Services mains?” – refer the link.

Civil Service Interview

Interview is a face to face process which evaluates a candidate’s potential and commitment to the society. Interview is out of 275 marks.
Final ranks are calculated by adding Mains (Out of 1750) and Interview marks (Out of 275) and the rank list will be prepared based on marks scored out of 2025.

IAS Interview Dates:

  • Date of Notification of UPSC Civil Services Interview : February/March.
  • Date of UPSC Civil Services Interview : April-May.

For more details on the topic “how to clear Civil Services interview?” – refer the link.

Civil Service Exam Eligibility Criteria

Click to know about the eligibility criteria for IAS exam. Details about the number of attempts and age limits in UPSC Civil Services Exam is available in the link given.

Civil Service Exam Syllabus

ias books buy online Scheme and Subjects for UPSC Civil Services Exam is provided in this website. In addition to this, the detailed syllabus of Civil Service Prelims as well as Mains Exam (subject wise) is also given. You can also refer the UPSC Civil Service Notification.

Civil Service Exam Preparation

Civil Service Preparation guidance and strategies for prelims, mains and interview along with necessary UPSC study materials are regularly updated in this website.

Civil Service Exam Books

Links are given in this website about the recommended books needed for civil service exams.

Other details:

Last modified on June 5th, 2016 at 4:36 pm.

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