Adapting to the changing requirements of UPSC

Wed,October 16, 2019 01:21 AM

- Aspirants, when they begin preparation for civil services, are generally confused and are unsure about how to start, where to start and what to study. IAS/IPS aspirants have numerous queries in their mind regarding exam eligibility, study material and exam structure, etc. Many are not sure if Coaching is essential or not. Their worries are not unfounded.

- Misguidance can cost any aspirant time, money and resources. Unfortunately, many coaching institutes are unsure about how to properly guide aspirants as per the latest requirements of UPSC examinations. There are coaching institutes which charge hefty fees but provide poor service and low-quality study materials. Whether you are a beginner in the arena of UPSC Civil Services exam preparation or an experienced candidate, knowledge about the changing requirements of the UPSC is essential for success.

- The UPSC has introduced changes in the exam pattern in recent years that were met with both resistance and appreciation. The most recent change was introduced in 2015 in the form of making the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) a qualifying paper after criticism from students as well academicians. Recently, UPSC, in its vision document, has recommended to the government to change the existing format of the preliminary examination and remove Paper-II, popularly known as CSAT, has been welcomed by the aspirants as they would have more time to prepare for Paper-I.

- But apart from these structural changes UPSC is approaching towards academic changes in which what matters now is not how knowledgeable you are, but how quickly can you process the information in your brain to present the different sides of a relevant issue.

- Unfortunately, many coaching institutes haven’t still understood this change. Many of them are still teaching a lot of junk facts to students. Students are overloaded with almost everything under the sun. However, in the exam hall, aspirants are unsure of what to do with this ‘junk’ information on questions which test their analytical skills in a short span of time.

- UPSC is no more looking at specialised knowledge or information; rather they are looking at your analytical skills. No coaching institutes can do the analysis for you. Only you can do it in the exam hall. For developing those analytical skills we provide extensive care.

- Does this mean the end of coaching institutes or mentors? No. We didn’t mean that. Nevertheless, if they don’t adapt to the changing requirements of UPSC, their methods won’t help candidates.

What should the ideal mentors of UPSC aspirants do now?
- They should guide aspirants on the right path and demonstrate the importance of cultivating analytical skills. Yes, analytical skills are becoming more and more important in UPSC CSE. Not just for Mains, but for Prelims and Interview as well.

- Aspirants should learn to analyse questions within a limited time. You won’t get specific questions where you can just repeat and reproduce what you have mugged up as you may see in other exams.

Follow the 7 point approach
1. Avoiding heavy reliance or expected questions from any test series.
2. Make sure that your basics are strong enough to tackle any static questions. One can bank on the core syllabus portions like geography, history, polity, economy, etc. as there is unpredictability of current affairs sections. But one must not avoid the new areas like security, environment, ethics and disaster management as UPSC is often asking questions from those.
3. Positive attitude towards the exam. Treat UPSC exam as one among the mock test that you are going to give.
4. Do multiple revisions, especially the subject which you feel I am weak in this subject
5. Don’t just focus on memorization of facts and approaches, develop analytical ability to be able to think and interconnect between what you know and what is asked. This will come with practice and multiple revisions only.
6. Read India specific sources on internet, there are many good foreign websites, which are good for understanding, but their data and examples are not Indian. That reduces their utility.
7. Develop Holistic preparation! Dont segregate prelims syllabus from main exam. Your approach may be different but the subjects are almost same.Focus on authentic sources. For example, budget, economic survey, yojana, year book and annual reports. These books are bulky but no need to read word by word just skim through and read exam relevant.

- Most importantly work on your mistakes and wrongs. Appear in test series. If you are able to rectify your mistakes and dont repeat them in next exam, your skills in tackling UPSC real exam will improve automatically.
- This is not at all easy for beginners. That is why you need to practise with the right kind of model questions. You need proper practise to think, analyse, understand, and present it on the exam sheet!
- As an online/offline UPSC coaching
institute, we at GS SCORE & IASSCORE. IN refrain from overloading our students with too much junk information. Rather our approach is to empower and guide students in the right direction so that aspirants can take care of the challenging nature of UPSC questions themselves.



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