Things to Keep in Mind While Choosing Optional Paper for IAS Exam

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Every year lakhs of aspirants appear for the prestigious Civil Services Examination which is conducted by UPSC Board and there are three stages, 1st one is Prelims, 2nd one is Mains and finally the Interview. Earlier there used to be 2 optional subjects, but now as per the latest syllabus you have to deal with only one. Selecting optional paper for IAS Exam is most important part but aspirants are still confused if they are making right choice or not.

The decision of selecting optional paper for IAS Exam is very crucial. If you are so strong in all your GS papers with consistent newspaper reading and note making habits, the decision of IAS Mains optional might not play a big difference in your results.

Here are some practical tips which will help you to decide optional paper for IAS Exam:

Familiarity with the subject

You need select an optional paper for IAS Exam in which you are comfortable to score high. The level of comfortness depends on many factors like – familiarity of the subject, availability of faculty, scope of peer discussion, recent trends of marks, and previous question papers etc. If the subject you took for graduation is available in the list of subjects given, in most cases the same option will turn out as a comfortable option. You may choose a subject, which you have already studied in school or college, as it will be easier for you to complete and score good marks.

Also Read: How to Write Essay for IAS Exam?

Liking for the Subject

Optional paper for IAS Exam are those which you have to study for couple of years during your preparation for this exam. So, if you don’t like the optional subjects, or if you have selected the subject only for scoring purpose, you won’t be comfortable in studying them. It should be based on your liking for the subject as the interest in the subject has to be carried till the time you clear the exam.

Familiarity with the syllabus

First before choosing the subject you have to see the entire syllabus of the all the optional subjects as there are many optional subjects given by the Civil Services Examination. Although you have already studied the subject in school or college, but it is also necessary to consider the syllabus, as state universities syllabus are totally different from national universities, and UPSC syllabus are based on national universities’ s syllabus. So when you select the optional subject, Be Clear & Go Through the Syllabus.

Easy Availability of Books and Materials

If you are considering a subject, which is easily not available in the market than you have to work harder for preparing the content. The advantages of available books and materials are that, it is prepared by expert and they have already invested their mind and time into it, so with that accumulated work you can easily finish your syllabus.

Must Read: How to Prepare General Studies for Preliminary Exam?

Dedicated friends’ study circle

Its advantageous to have group of people doing with same optional subject, not only it will make learning better but also reduce preparation time.

Overlap and utility in GS and Essay

Selecting optional paper for IAS Exam is covering the subject of GS and also helpful for essay than its a bumper choice, as it will improve you writing and essay skill simultaneously.

Conceptual subject

The benefit of conceptual subject is that, they are scoring, scientific and are not superfluous in nature. Even with decent preparation you can score better marks.

Contemporary nature

With the increase of current affairs portion in examination, it has become compulsory to integrate current and static topics of subjects, if your optional is like that, than some how it will prove advantageous for you.

Don’t care marks trends

Lastly don’t go with mark trends, it might have proved advantageous for some aspirants, but you have to do justice with your likes and preferences. Now a days questions are conceptual not factual and concept can be developed only with dedication in subject. So always choose a subject upon which you can invest your 100% dedication.

Writing Practice

Writing practice is very important and it is “Recommended” in Civil Services examination, because even if you know lot about the subject and if you are not able to complete the paper, it is not going to work. So, instead of reading more actually you have to Write & Practice more, and this is the Key of Success in Mains Examination. By writing more you improve your language, you learn time management and you also improve you handwriting if your handwriting is not good.

Don’t Miss: How to Improve your Reading Speed?

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