Strategic Tips for Cracking the UPSC Mains Exam

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Once the Prelims stage of the UPSC exams has been cleared, it is time to face the UPSC Mains Exams. There are multiple strategies and tips on how the UPSC Mains exam can be cracked. This article will highlight some of the tried and tested methods for cracking the exam.

UPSC Mains Syllabus

The first step in cracking the UPSC Mains Exams understands the exam pattern. Once familiar with the pattern, candidates can better prepare for any form of UPSC question that will come their way. A detailed table regarding the same is given below:

Tried and Tested Methods for Cracking UPSC Mains

  1. Be the early bird: The eligibility criteria for a UPSC exam is 21 years of age and a graduation degree in any subject. Many candidates miss this early stage of opportunity and come into the preparation field late. If one starts early, it will offer many added advantages.
  1. Prioritize time: Those preparing for UPSC while in college or as working professionals, time will be a constraint. By being thorough with the previous years UPSC question papers and syllabus, candidates can prioritize their time accordingly.
  1. Keep taking mock tests: Taking a mock test is the best method through which candidates may assess their strengths and weaknesses. A low score in mock tests should not be a deterrent as it is an opportunity for further learning and improvement.
  1. Read newspapers and magazines: Just like the Prelims, the UPSC Mains will contain a wide array of current-affairs related topics. Thus, it is extremely important to read newspapers and magazines. The Hindu or Indian Express is recommended for quality articles while EPW – Economic and Political Weekly – is good among magazines.
  1. Improve your writing skills: The Mains is all about writing. The UPSC questions at this stage are asked in a manner to test the thought process, strategic acumen and logical reasoning of the candidate. Writing letters to editors of leading publications and participating in essay competitions, in case of students, are some of the tips suggested to improve writing skills.

Practising with previous years UPSC question paper is a good method to identify one’s core strength and weakness. Candidates can visit BYJU’S for more UPSC related source materials in order to enhance their preparation strategy.