How to start preparing for UPSC?

UPSC for Beginners

We often hear that nothing comes easy in life. You have to work hard with grit and determination to attain success. ‘UPSC‘ is that particular word that makes these thoughts resonate in your head. It requires constant focus and persistence for an individual to clear the Civil Services Examination. Considered as one of the toughest competitive exams in the world, thousands of people apply for this every year. UPSC, which stands for the Union Public Service Commission, is considered a portal to exams for All India Services and both Group A and Group B of Central Services.

Opdemy has designed several courses that would help you sail smoothly through the examination preparations. They are framed with complete precision, keeping in mind the students’ needs. If you’re a beginner, “Aarambh” is a well-off course that will orient you with all the concepts. In case you’re already familiar with the basics, you may decide to join “Siddha” as it covers everything you may need to know. Opdemy strikes the match that is required for you to light your conviction up. With expert help and well-curated lessons, you will have a guide to rely upon throughout your path towards success.

Now we arrive at the main question. 


How to start preparing for the UPSC CSE?

For starters, and this is important for any exam you intend to write, do not stress yourself out too much. A limited amount of stress is necessary for a little performance boost but, remember, do not stress yourself out to the point that it starts messing with your focus. You could be crystal clear with every concept and have exceptional writing skills, but if you are unable to keep your calm and falter while performing because you are too worried or stressed, it could be a problem for you.

Now, the CSE takes place in 3 stages:

  1. Preliminary Exam (Includes objective-based questions, MCQs.)
  2. Mains Exam (Includes subjective-type written answers)
  3. Personal Interview


If you’re wondering where to start from, get your hands on all the gold NCERT books that you can. You will need all the necessary knowledge about History, Geography, Economics, and Political Science. So carefully check out the official Civil Services syllabus, and gather the required material you will need to start.

Opdemy also provides you with a detailed syllabus which is available on the website, but paper-based material is very important to keep. Now write down the syllabus and divide it into parts, so that you get clarity of the sections. Make a note of the content you will focus on first, and plan the rest accordingly.

It’s important to have a fixed schedule for yourself and how you intend to proceed with your preparation. Chart out the details and devote a certain number of hours in a day only to learning. Make sure you maintain a balance between the number of hours you study and carry out the rest of the activities. Do not overburden yourself with everything. Take small, steady steps, and proceed subsequently.

  • Let’s start with Preliminary Exams which comprise of two papers: Paper 1 is General Studies, called ‘Prelims GS1’ with a total of 100 multiple choice questions that is worth 200 marks. It will involve general matters and current affairs knowledge. Paper 2 is an Aptitude Test, called ‘CSAT’ (Civil Services Aptitude Test) with a total of 80 multiple choice questions that are also worth 200 marks. It involves questions that evaluate your reasoning, aptitude, comprehension, decision-making, etc.


  • It’s crucial to score exceptionally well in this stage as it poses as a qualifying stage for the Mains. Prelims test your lucidity of concepts, how efficiently you retain information, and your ability to select the right option. It’s significant how swiftly and accurately you can perform in this stage, so read the questions carefully. During the preparation, attempt practice papers of the previous years for improving your speed and accuracy. You’ll easily come across these on the Opdemy website.


  • Next, we come to Mains that is a subjective, written based exam. There will be a total of 9 exams which you will write. Out of these, 7 exams will be considered for the marking. This makes up a total of 1750 marks. It is not sufficient to cover the syllabus for this part because skillful writing is the main essence required here. You must exercise the answer/essay writing every day so that you can frame presentable answers. Ask an expert to review them for you. This will help you in recognizing your weak areas. Make it a necessity to read well-known newspapers every day and keep yourself up to date with recent news. Opdemy provides you with an ‘Important Articles’ option that presents information on topics beneficial for you.

The personal interview is considered the most important ‘rank deciding’ factor and is worth 275 marks. Candidates who perform remarkably in this stage are noticed to have achieved a better rank. During the interview, you must learn to stay calm and confident. To prepare for this stage, you will need to work on your body language, conversational abilities, and mannerisms. Keep practicing till you get a good grasp on your diction and knowledge about current affairs. Your non-verbal communication skills should be smooth, and for the verbal part, use appropriate and professional language. Dress up neatly, and make sure you do not seem casual in your appearance. Opdemy has a special course

A large number of students shift to a different city to enroll in coachings that will help them. Coachings can hone a student well for the exam but not everyone finds true satisfaction. So it’s crucial to know what fits your studying pattern best and then choose. Begin with self-study, see what fits your routine and then select the most appropriate option. Opdemy provides special outlined courses for all your requirements for this exam training. With all the material available, you can prepare at ease without the need to travel anywhere.

Picking out your optional subjects wisely should be a priority. Go through all the options available, see what aligns with your interest, examine the available study material, and then make a decision. Both the options will account for 250 marks each, so your preferred subjects should be those you’re familiar with and can present well. Make proper notes for yourself while you’re preparing and refer to them during revision.
UPSC CSE is no easy task and will take up all the dedication that you can devote. Set your goals, take proper measures to achieve them, and do not let any distractions drive you away. Be regular with your self-assessment, practice mock tests so you know where you stand. Identify your areas of strengths and weaknesses, and make sure you work on them. 

Opdemy is ready to tutor and guide you towards the right track for your plan. We offer you structured courses to assist you at every step and polish your skills. You will also find complete packages of full-fledged courses for your convenience on the website. These will lend you a hand in studying smartly without wasting much of your time. Our team of professional educators will provide you the right direction and information that is needed.

With a firm commitment towards your excellence, keep steadily moving forward until and unless you prosper. Your self-discipline and determination will help you in the long run, and you will eventually reap what you sowed. Our meticulously designed courses aim to uplift civil service aspirants towards their ambition with perseverance.

This digital learning platform will serve your every need and ease all the difficulties you face during preparations. From popular courses, live interactions, free mock tests, answer writing sessions to mentorship opportunities, Opdemy has you completely covered. So take a deep breath, hold on hope, and rise till you ascend to the top.

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