IAS Syllabus and Paper Pattern for 2021 – Check Here

IAS 2018 ExamThis post will give you an overview of the complete IAS Syllabus and Paper Pattern which is officially released by UPSC.

UPSC conducts written as well as interview exams. These exams act as a base for selecting eligible candidates for the position of IAS.

A detailed look throughout the syllabus is necessary, especially for those who are going to appear IAS for the first time UPSC IAS exam includes three levels:

After completing and clearing these three levels by the candidates, the candidates will be eligible for the post of IAS.

Preliminary Exam

Basic info about the preliminary exam:

  • Marks of the preliminary exam are not counted for final marks.
  • Candidates should attempt two papers(paper 1 & paper 2) which are compulsory.
  • Both the papers are of 200 marks.
  • The questions will be of multiple choice.
  • The questions will be objective type.
  • It is necessary for a candidate to score a minimum of 33% in paper 2 if fails to score minimum marks than the candidate won’t be able to attempt
  • for its main
  • Both the paper will be of two hours duration.
  • There is Negative Marking in the prelims and 1/3rd of marks allotted for every question is reduced from your score if you get it wrong.

Examination syllabus:

Syllabus of Paper I –

  1. Current events of national and international importance.
  2. History of India and Indian National Movement.
  3. Indian and World Geography – Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World.
  4. Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
  5. Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc.
  6. General issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change – that do not require subject specialization
  7. General Science.

Syllabus for Paper II –

  1. Comprehension
  2. Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
  3. Logical reasoning and analytical ability
  4. Decision-making and problem-solving
  5. General mental ability
  6. Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data
  7. sufficiency etc. – Class X level)

Main exam

Basic info about the Main exam:

  • Your main exam will consist of 9 papers.
  • You will have Two qualifying papers of 300 marks each.
  • Marks of qualifying paper will not be considered or counted.
  • The rest of the other 7 subjects will be of 250 marks each.

Syllabus for the Mains exam:

Qualifying papers-

Paper 1 –  One of the Indian language to be selected by the candidate

Paper 2 – English

Rest papers-

1) Essay

2) General Studies 1 (Indian heritage/culture, world history & geography)

3) General Studies 2(governance, constitution, polity, social justice and

4) General studies3(technology, economic development, biodiversity, international relations) environment, security & disaster management)

5)General Studies 4(ethics, integrity & aptitude)

6)Optional 1 (of your choice)

7)Optional 2 (of your choice) Candidate is allowed to take up literature as an optional subject “without the conditionality of having to do his/her graduation in that language’s literature.

Candidates may choose any ONE optional subject from amongst the list of subjects are given below:

  1. Agriculture
  2. Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science
  3. Anthropology
  4. Botany
  5. Chemistry
  6. Civil Engineering
  7. Commerce and Accountancy
  8. Economics
  9. Electrical Engineering
  10. Geography
  11. Geology
  12. History
  13. Law
  14. Management
  15. Mathematics
  16. Mechanical Engineering
  17. Medical Science
  18. Philosophy
  19. Physics
  20. Political Science and International Relations
  21. Psychology
  22. Public Administration
  23. Sociology
  24. Statistics
  25. Zoology

The literature of any one of the following languages:

  1. Assamese
  2. Bengali
  3. Bodo
  4. Dogri
  5. Gujarati
  6. Hindi
  7. Kannada
  8. Kashmiri
  9. Konkani
  10. Maithili
  11. Malayalam
  12. Manipuri
  13. Marathi
  14. Nepali
  15. Oriya
  16. Punjabi
  17. Sanskrit
  18. Santhali
  19. Sindhi
  20. Tamil
  21. Telugu
  22. Urdu
  23. English

Get complete details about the syllabus just Click here.


This is a vocal one and candidates have the option to choose the desired medium of communication.

For any other queries about IAS Syllabus and Paper Pattern, you can leave your queries below in the comment box.

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  1. Neha biswakarma says:

    Hi…I am neha Biswakarma and i am from sikkim and my dreams is to become a IAS officer….So i dont have any idea to prepare upsc exam so humble request to sir to give a best guidance please sir

  2. Hello sir I am neha biswakarma and i am from sikkim m a collge student and my dreams is to become IAS officer..So i dont have any idea to prepare upsc exam so its my humble requst to sir give a best guidance please sir

    • Pritam Singh says:

      firstly you have to know about the whole syllabus of upsc afterthat u have to read ncert from 6 to 10.
      its just the beginning so do it first then see for relevant books.

  3. Seema Sharma says:

    I want the whole details for applying. I completed my MBA I want to go for IAS… So plz can I get it

  4. Seema Sharma says:

    Procedure for applying and preparation for that time for IAS studies

  5. Thomas says:

    Great post! Have nice day ! 🙂 niygk

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