UPSC Civil Services Exam 2022

  • Also known as IAS Exam, Civil Services Examination is conducted by UPSC to recruit suitable candidates into Civil Services including IAS, IPS, IFS and other allied services.
  • The IAS Exam is held in three stages namely Preliminary Examination, Mains Exam and Personality Test or Interview.
  • In order to have an edge over your peers, it is important to have a robust preparation strategy that requires a detailed understanding of the UPSC syllabus.

Download UPSC Preparation Guide Worth Rs 599 For Free

UPSC Exam 2022 | Important Dates, Syllabus & Exam Pattern For UPSC 2022

Also known as UPSC Exam or IAS Exam, the Civil Services Examination(CSE) is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission to recruit candidates into civil services of India including IAS, IPS, IFS, and other allied services. The UPSC exam is conducted in three phases. These are UPSC Prelims, UPSC Main, and the Personality Test (also known as UPSC Interview).

The first phase of the IAS Exam is the Preliminary Examination which is the screening test. It is thus qualifying in nature. The score obtained in the UPSC Prelims exam is not calculated in the final merit. But, the score in GS Paper-I is essential to determine the cutoff of the UPSC Prelims Exam. The IAS Prelims Exam paper consists of two papers that are objective-type MCQ-based as opposed to UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam. The UPSC Mains Exam is a descriptive exam consisting of nine papers.

Here, we will discuss Important UPSC 2022 Dates, UPSC Eligibility as well as paper pattern & exam syllabus.

UPSC Exam Important Dates | UPSC 2022

UPSC releases the official notification for IAS Exam in February and the UPSC Exam is mostly scheduled on the first Sunday of June. The commission has already released the exam schedule for UPSC Exam 2022. Take a look at the important dates for UPSC 2022:

Event Date
Release of Notification - UPSC CSE 2022 02.02.2022
UPSC Online Registration for UPSC CSE 2022 (Begins on) 02.02.2022
Deadline to Apply For UPSC CSE 2022 22.02.2022
UPSC CSE Prelims 2022 Exam 05.06.2022 (Sunday)
UPSC CSE Prelims 2022  Result July
UPSC CSE Mains 2022 Exam 16.09.2022

UPSC Exam Eligibility Criteria

UPSC releases the official Eligibility criteria in the UPSC notification. Broadly, you need to qualify the below-mentioned parameters in order to apply for the IAS Exam or the UPSC Civil Services Examination.

IAS Age Limit 21 to 32 years
Age relaxation As per category (mentioned below)
Educational qualification for UPSC Civil Services Graduation from any recognized university
Nationality Indian

For more details regarding IAS Exam age relaxations for special categories, read about UPSC Exam Eligibility Criteria in detail.

UPSC 2022 Exam Pattern

The IAS exam pattern for UPSC Civil Services Exam for Prelims and Mains is tabulated below:

UPSC Exam Pattern For UPSC Prelims Exam

Name of the Paper No of Questions Marks Allotted Time Allotted Nature of Exam
Paper I: General Studies (Objective-type) 100 200 2 hours The score will be considered for Cut-off
Paper-II: General Studies-II (CSAT) (Objective-Type) 80 200 2 hours Qualifying Nature- Candidates will have to score 33% to qualify CSAT.

UPSC Exam Pattern For UPSC Mains Exam

Paper Subject Duration Total marks Nature of paper Type of Paper
Paper A Compulsory Indian language 3 hours 300 Qualifying Descriptive
Paper B English 3 hours 300 Qualifying Descriptive
Paper I Essay 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper-II General Studies I 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper III General Studies II 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper IV General Studies III 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper V General Studies IV 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper VI Optional I 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive
Paper VII Optional II 3 hours 250 Merit Descriptive

You can read about the UPSC Exam Pattern in detail in the linked article.

UPSC 2022 Exam Syllabus

UPSC Exam follows an extensive syllabus for the papers included in UPSC Prelims and UPSC Mains. Make sure to download the micro list for the UPSC syllabus for better IAS Exam syllabus coverage.

UPSC Exam Syllabus for Prelims

General Studies Paper-I

The IAS Syllabus for UPSC Prelims Exam includes the following topics:

  • Current Events of National and International Importance.
  • History of India and Indian National Movement.
  • Indian and World Geography - Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World.
  • Indian Polity and Governance - Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
  • Economic and Social Development - Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
  • General Issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialization General Science

Also Read | How to prepare IAS Syllabus for GS-I in UPSC Prelims

General Studies Paper-II

The GS-II in UPSC Prelims is also known as CSAT or Civil Services Aptitude Test. The following topics are included in the IAS syllabus for this paper:

  • Comprehension
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills
  • Logica l reasoning and analytical ability
  • Decision-making and problem solving
  • General mental ability
  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc., - Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency, etc., - Class X level)

Also Read | How to prepare for CSAT for UPSC Prelims

UPSC Exam Syllabus For Main Examination

PAPER-I Essay:

Candidates may be required to write essays on multiple topics. They will be expected to arrange their ideas in an orderly fashion and write concisely. Credit will be given for effective and exact expression.

Read more | Best strategy for essay writing for UPSC Mains

PAPER-II General Studies-I: Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society.
  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature & Architecture from ancient to modern times.
  • Modern Indian History from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.
  • The Freedom Struggle - its various stages and important contributors /contributions from different parts of the country.
  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
  • History of the World will include events from the 18th century, such as Industrial Revolution, World Wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism, etc., - their forms and effects on the society.
  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India. Role of women and women's organizations, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies. Effects of globalization on Indian society - Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.
  • Salient features of world's physical geography.
  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian sub-continent); factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India); Important Geophysical phenomena, such as earthquakes, tsunami, volcanic activity, cyclones, etc., geographical features and their location - changes in critical geographical features (including waterbodies and ice caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

Read more | How to prepare for General Studies-I

PAPER-III General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International Relations.
  • Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions, and basic structure.
  • Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  • Separation of powers between various organs,dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions.
  • Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries, Parliament and State Legislatures - structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  • Structure, organization, and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary, Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  • Salient features of the Representation of People's Act.
  • Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions, and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  • Statutory, regulatory, and various quasi-judicial bodies, Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation.
  • Development processes and the development industry - the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders.
  • Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Center and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections.
  • Issues related to development and management of Social Sector/Services in the field of Health, Education, Human Resources.
  • Issues related to poverty and hunger.
  • Important aspects of governance, transparency, and accountability, e-governance - applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures.
  • Role of Civil Services in a democracy.
  • India and its neighborhood - relations. Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India's interests Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India's interests, Indian diaspora.
  • Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure, mandate.

Read more | How to prepare for General Studies-II

PAPER-IV General Studies-III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management.
  • Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment. Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.
  • Government Budgeting. Major crops cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints;
  • E-technology in the aid of farmers Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices;
  • Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions; economics of animal-rearing.
  • Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.
  • Land reforms in India. Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.
  • Investment models. Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievement of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.
  • Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment Disaster and disaster management.
  • Linkages between development and spread of extremism.
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.
  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks, role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention.
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate

Read more | How to prepare for General Studies-III

PAPER-V General Studies- IV: Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude

This paper will include questions to test the candidates' attitude and approach to issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and his problem solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by him in dealing with society. Questions may utilize the case study approach to determine these aspects.

The following broad areas will be covered. Ethics and Human Interface: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships.

  • Human Values - lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values.
  • Attitude: content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behavior; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion.
  • Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service , integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections.
  • Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance. Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and world.
  • Public/Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration: Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.
  • Probity in Governance: Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity;
  • Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen's Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption. Case Studies on above issues.

Read more | How to prepare for General Studies Paper-IV

Paper-VI and VII : Optional Paper-I and Optional Paper-II
  • Optional Subject -Paper I and Paper-II (250 Marks Each)

List of Optional Subject for UPSC Exam (Mains)

Optional Subjects are extremely important for UPSC Exam because they account for 500 marks out of a total of 1750 marks in UPSC Main Examination. There are 45+ options for optional subject including various Literature subject options in the IAS Exam. Here’s the list of all optional subjects available for UPSC Exam.

Agriculture Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science Anthropology Botany Chemistry
Civil Engineering Commerce and Accountancy Economics Electrical Engineering Geography
Geology History Law Management Mathematics
Mechanical Engineering Medical Science Philosophy Physics Political Science and International Relations
Psychology Public Administration Sociology Statistics Zoology

Literature of the following languages are also a part of the UPSC optional subjects for UPSC Mains exam from which you can choose your best suited optional subject for UPSC Exam:

Assamese Bengali Bodo Dogri Gujarati
Hindi Kannada Kashmiri Konkani Maithali
Malayalam Manipuri Marathi Nepali Odia
Punjabi Sanskrit Santhali Sindhi Tamil
Telugu Urdu English    

Also Read | How to choose optional subjects for UPSC Exam

Interview/Personality Test (275 Marks)

  • Candidates who are selected after the UPSC Mains Exam move to the next and final phase of IAS Exam called Personality Test/Interview. Here, the candidates are interviewed by a competent and unbiased board. This board will have the candidate's DAF (Detail Application Form) with them.
  • The interview round is held to assess the candidate's social traits and his interest in current affairs. The motive of the board is to analyze the personal aptness of the candidate for a career in public service
  • Candidates can give interviews in their preferred language as UPSC will make arrangements for the translators.

Read More | Preparation Tips For UPSC Interview

UPSC Exam 2022 Preparation Strategy

IAS Exam is one of the toughest exams in India owing to the vast UPSC syllabus and cut-throat competition. However, with structured preparation and the right guidance, you can clear the UPSC exam right in the first attempt. We’ve chalked out a step-by-step preparation strategy on how to prepare for UPSC Exam. This will also provide an answer to how to crack UPSC exam in the first attempt. Let’s look at the step-by-step preparation strategy for UPSC Exam.

Step 1: Know the exam well
  • Read the UPSC notification thoroughly. Check out the UPSC Exam pattern and Exam syllabus.
  • Go through the previous year papers to have a fair understanding of the type of questions asked in the exam.
Step 2: Strengthen your foundation
  • Start with NCERTs. Download the relevant titles from the official website of NCERT for free. Check out how to prepare NCERTs in the linked article.
  • Read them at least twice before making notes, and then read our NCERT compilations.
Step 3: Upgrade Your Knowledge with standard books
  • Get the entire booklist for UPSC preparation in the linked article.
  • Read the books at least twice and then make your handwritten notes to be used for answer-writing practice at the later stage!
Step 4: Practice Answer Writing + Revision
  • Once about 60-70% syllabus is completed from standard books, start practicing answer-writing.
  • Keep your weekends free for a dedicated revision of whatever new you’ve learned during the week.
Step 5: Mock-Test Based Learning Approach
  • Sit for an actual exam-like mock test at the same time and then analyze your performance.
  • Check your weak areas and brush up on the concepts that require revision.

Get Free UPSC Exam Micro Topics Syllabus PDF worth Rs. 299 (Link Form)

The first step to ace the UPSC Exam is getting the syllabus right! Hence, download the UPSC Exam syllabus to get yourself started. Career Launcher has various GS-focussed courses that will equip you with the best content and understanding. Check out our GS foundation courses and get in touch with our course counsellors to know more about the courses