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UPSC Exams

Civil Services Examination

Civil Service Examination Pattern

The pattern of Civil services examination has been designed to test the academic expertise of a candidate and that candidate's ability to present himself/herself in a systematic and coherent manner. The examination pattern intends to assess the overall intellectual traits and understanding level of the candidates.

The UPSC Civil Services Exam is conducted in two stages namely, Prelims and Mains, which are then followed by an interview.  

Scheme and subjects for the Preliminary and Main Examinations are as follows:

  1. Preliminary Examination (400 Marks)

(This is also called Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) and is a common test for all applicants)

  • The Prelims consists of two papers of 200 marks each
  • Both the question papers are of the objective type (multiple choice questions) of two hours each
  • The question papers will be set in both Hindi and English. However, questions related to English Language Comprehension skills would be provided only in English.
  • Blind candidates would be allowed an extra 20 minutes of time for each paper 
  1. Main Examination (2075 Marks)

  • Candidates who qualify Preliminary exam are called for Main exam and on the basis of marks secured in Main exam, they will be called for Interview
  • The total marks of Main exam and Interview sum up to produce final result

The written examination consists of the following papers:    

  • Qualifying Papers 

Paper I (Marks 300)
One of the Indian Languages to be selected by the candidates from the Languages included in the eighth schedule of the constitution

Paper II (Marks 300)
English

  • Paper to be counted or merits

(Technology, Economic Development,  Bio-diversity, Environment, Security  and Disaster Management)​

 Paper   Subject   Marks
  Paper III   Essay (Section 1)   200 Marks
 English Comprehension  and English Précis (Section 2)  100 Marks
   (The level of paper would be Matriculation/10th standard  level)  
 Paper IV  General Studies-I  250 Marks
  (Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World  and Society)   
 Paper V  General Studies-II  250 Marks
   (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations)  
 Paper VI  General Studies-III   250 Marks
   (Technology, Economic Development,  Bio-diversity, Environment, Security  and Disaster Management)  
 Paper VII  General Studies-IV  250 Marks
   (Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude)   
 Paper VIII  Optional Subject-Paper I  250 Marks
 Paper IX  Optional Subject-Paper II  250 Marks
 Personality Test (Interview)   275 Marks
 Grand Total   2075 Marks