In India, The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is India’s central agency authorized to conduct the Civil Service Examination (CSE),Indian forest service examination (IFS), Indian Economic Service(IES) exam, Indian Statistical Service(ISS) exam, Engineering Services Exam, Combined Medical Services Exam, Combined Defense Services Exam, National Defense Academy(NDA) Exams, Naval Academy Exam, Special Class Railway Apprentice(SCRA), Combined Geoscientist and Geologist Exam, and Central Armed Police Forces (Assistant Commandant) exam.

Selection Process

  • Preliminary Examination (Objective Type)
  • Main Examination (Objective/Written Type)
  • Personality Test(Interview)

UPSC Exam Eligibility

  • For the IAS, IFS & IPS, a candidate must be a citizen of India.

  • For the IRS and other services, a candidate must be one of the following:

    • A citizen of India

    • A subject of Bhutan

    • A subject of Nepal

    • Refugee of Tibet who came in India before 1st Jan 1962 to permanently settle in India.

    • a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri Lanka, Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia or Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.

Educational Qualification for UPSC

All candidates must have as a minimum one of the following educational qualifications to appear in UPSC Exam.

  • There is no minimum Pass percentage but must be a graduate.

  • A degree from a Central, State or Deemed university

  • A degree received through correspondence or distance education is valid

  • A degree from an open University is also valid

  • A qualification recognized by Govt. of India as being equivalent to one of the above

  • Candidates who are in last Semester or in Last year of any degree.

UPSC Exam Age Limit

  • A candidate must have attained the age of 21 years (Twenty one) and must not have attained the age of 32 years on August 1st of the year of exam.

  • For OBC the upper age limit is 35, and for SC and ST the limit is (37) thirty seven years.

  • The minimum age limit for candidates is 21 years

  • The maximum age limit is 32 years.

  • The upper age limit is further relaxed by (5) Five years and 3 years for candidates belonging to SC/ST and OBC categories respectively.

  • up to a maximum of 10 years in the case of blind, deaf-mute and Orthopedically
    handicapped persons.

UPSC Age Limit & UPSC Attempt Limit

Age 32

Age 35

Age 37

Age 42

Additional 5 years

6 attempts

9 attempts

Unlimited attempts

9 attempts

Depend upon category

General & Creamy OBC

Non-creamy OBC


Physically Handicapped (Gen / OBC)

J&k and Ex-serviceman

UPSC Civil Services Exam Pattern & Syllabus for Preliminary Exam

UPSC Prelims Exam

Mode – The Union Public Service Commission Civil Services Prelims 2019 will be administered offline in the month of June of every year.

Number of Papers – UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2019 will have (2) two papers. The Paper (one) 1 will be General Studies I (GS I) comprising many sections including Geography, Economics, Political Science, and Science, and the Paper two (2) is known as General Studies II (GS II) which will test the aptitude of UPSC IAS aspirants for Civil Services exam. The GS II paper is also called CSAT (Civil Services Aptitude Test).

Number of Questions – Each of the papers will comprise 200 questions each.

Total Marks – The UPSC Civil Services Prelims exam will carry a total mark of 400, where each paper will carry 200 marks. So Total marks for Prelims exam is 200+200=400 marks.

Prelims Exam Duration – The candidates will be allowed to attempt each of the papers-General Studies I and General Studies II (Civil Services Aptitude Test/ CSAT) in a time duration of (2 hrs.) two hours each. Moreover, candidates will be given a 3 hrs. (Three hours) break in between each of the papers.

Marking Scheme – UPSC follows a negative marking policy. Following the marking scheme of UPSC Civil Services Prelims exam, candidates will be awarded one mark if attempting a question correctly and 1/3rd (one-third) of the marks allotted to the question will be deducted from the total scored marks, if the attempt for that question is wrong. No marks will be deducted for any question left un-attempted.

UPSC Civil Services Syllabus for Preliminary Exam

UPSC Civil Service Prelims Syllabus & Topics

UPSC Civil Services Paper I – General Studies

  • Current events of national and international importance

  • History of India and Indian National Movement

  • Indian and World Geography – Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World

  • Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc

  • Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc

  • General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity and Climate Change – that do not require subject specialization

  • General Science

UPSC Civil Services Paper II – General Studies

  • Comprehension

  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills

  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability

  • Decision-making and problem solving

  • General mental ability

  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. Class X level)

Check UPSC Civil Service Mains Syllabus & Topics

Paper A and Paper B of UPSC Civil Services Mains 2018 are qualifying in nature papers and the score secured in these papers is not considered while counting the candidates’ ranking. However, only those aspirants, who obtain at least 25% twenty five percent in Paper A and 25% in Paper B, will be taken into consideration while making of rank list on the basis of General Studies and Optional Subjects papers.

Papers qualifying in nature:

  • Paper A – An Indian language selected by the candidates

  • Paper B – English

Papers to be counted for merit:

  • Essay (Paper I)

  • General Studies (Paper II-V)

  • Optional Subjects (Paper VI-VII)

Candidates appearing in the UPSC Civil Services Mains must check the detailed exam pattern & syllabus given below.

Papers qualifying in nature



Paper A: An Indian Language

300 Marks

Paper B: English

300 Marks

UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam Pattern



Paper I: Essay


Paper II: General Studies-I

(Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society)


Paper III: General Studies-II

(Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)


Paper IV: General Studies-III

(Technology, Economic Development, Biodiversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management)


Paper V: General Studies-IV

(Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude)


Paper VI: Optional Subject-Paper1


Paper-VII: Optional Subject-Paper 2


Sub Total (Written test)


Personality Test


Grand Total


Personality Test/ Interview

The maximum marks for interview is 275 marks. The candidate will be interviewed by a Board of competent and unbiased observers who will have before them a record of his/ her career. The object of the Interview is to assess the personal suitability of the candidate for the Service. The candidate will be expected to have taken an intelligent interest not only in his/ her subjects of academic study but also in events which are happening around him/ her both within and outside his/ her own state or country, as well as in modem currents of thought and in new discoveries which should rouse the curiosity of well educated youth.