Aiming for higher posts such as IAS and IPS requires you to clear the most prestigious civil services exam. The preparation does not require hard work but requires smart work. You need to properly channelize your time and effort for a fruitful future. One year is a good time for the preparation of UPSC exam. Here are some tips on how you can effectively utilize the time.
In the first month, study the syllabus and the pattern of the UPSC exam. If you think you cannot do self study better enroll yourself in a coaching centre. Start collecting the study material and it’s time to decide on your optional subject as well. Start reading newspaper daily preferably “The Hindu” or “Times of India”.
This is the time in which you should finish up with all the basic books such as NCERT. You have one year with you so start preparation for both prelims as well as mains. Attain better understanding of the concepts. Make notes which will ease out your revision process. Make sure not to mug up everything. Facts and figures hold a different scenario. If you feel difficulty in memorizing things then use mnemonics or make short forms. Make a separate notebook for current affairs. Don’t skip reading the newspaper at any cost.
Now it’s the time to move to some standard books such as Laxmikanth, NIOS Art and culture, GC leong etc. the syllabus for prelims should be finished by now. Join some mock test series online or at some coaching centers. Mock tests will help you to effectively perform in fixed time exam. Start focusing on your optional subject as well. Now the time has arrived for the prelims.
After the prelims is over, now focus on your writing skills and the optional subject. Continue the newspaper reading at a more focused level at this stage. You should not even skip the newspaper even on the day of your exam. Give equal share of pie to the optional subject. It can make or break your dream. This is the time when you should focus on opinions regarding the topic and not on the facts and figures. This can be achieved by reading magazines such as Yojana or the editorial sections of the newspapers.
Month 11 and 12
By this time you will be fully ready for the mains exam. To sharpen your skills, it is recommended to join a mains test series. This will help you in self evaluation and improvement. Mains is the original decider, Interviews just shuffle up the ranks.
Don’t let negativity creep in at any cost. Stay motivate and positive, your dream is about to turn into reality. Watch some motivational videos in case you feel de-motivated or low at times. Revision and exhaustive revision is the key and don’t miss out on it. Work smart and work hard, your dream boat will definitely sail high in the sea of UPSC.