The most general query asked by youngsters whenever they choose to appear for IAS is “Is IAS difficult?”
Well, the response is, yes! It is is one of the most difficult competitive exams. And there is not only a single factor that makes it difficult but multiple factors contribute to make it a tough nut to crack. Here are a few factors because of which IAS is tagged as a difficult exam.
Is IAS Difficult? How difficult is it to become an IAS Officer?
- The Syllabus of the exam:
- The pattern of the exam
- The passing percentage of exam
- When should you give an attempt?
- Perceive knowledge about UPSC syllabus
- Finance in books
- Online study material
- Practicing mock test
- Seek for proper guidance
The Syllabus of the exam:
If you go through the syllabus of UPSC exams, you’ll realize that it includes diverse subjects, and the list of subjects is non-exhaustive. For clearing UPSC, one doesn’t need to be an expert in a few subjects but should be a master of all cards. The diversity of subjects adds to the preparation time, which again adds to the difficulty of aspirants as all of them can’t invest huge time in preparing for IAS.
The pattern of the exam
Apart from the syllabus, the pattern of IAS exams is also very lengthy and makes the task tedious for aspirants to clear all of them. Not one or two but UPSC consists of three stages – Prelims, Mains and lastly the interview. The candidate needs to crack all of them to clear UPSC. Prelims and Mains majorly check the knowledge of the candidate, whereas the last stage of the interview is mainly to gauge the personality of the candidate. The difficulty level of the exam multiplies with each passing stage. So the candidates need to be an all-rounder to clear the UPSC exam.
The passing percentage of exam
Out of all the applicants, only a handful clears all the three stages of UPSC exams. If you go by statistics, out of all the candidates, only 2 to 5 % clear the UPSC preliminary exam and qualify for the Mains. In Mains exam also, only the top 15% of candidates are selected for the final interview. And if one reaches the interview stage then they have a 50-50 chance of getting selected. And because of such a low passing percentage, UPSC becomes the toughest exams to crack
When should you give an attempt?
Now that you have understood how difficult is UPSC, there is quite a chance that you might be presuming of giving up your IAS dreams. Although the exam is difficult and the passing percentage is as low as 1%, it doesn’t mean that one can’t clear the IAS exam. If the right planning and strategies are designated at the right time then this journey can become easy. Here are a few tips to follow to crack this tough nut.
Perceive knowledge about UPSC syllabus
Before leaping onto the books and studying, the aspirant must examine what UPSC is all about. This is the first point because if you are not conscious of what basis you’ll be decided, you can’t prepare for it. So allocate enough amount of time understanding about UPSC, its exam pattern, syllabus, etc. This would help you to concentrate on the bullseye while preparing for the exam.
Finance in books
Books should be your best friend for one year. The aspirant must cultivate his interest in reading and grasping the knowledge if they want to clear the UPSC CSE exam. So, invest in some selective books to start your preparation. Go through the achievements of preceding toppers and make a list of books approved by them. Apart from these books, NCERT books would also be healthy to brush up the fundamentals before resorting to complex problems. Also, the aspirants must make a habit of reading financial and business newspapers and magazines to side-by-side prepare for current affairs that in itself is a huge subject.
Online study material
Apart from books, students have ample study materials available online that they can access and that too free of cost. This is most suitable for working professionals who don’t have time to attend proper coaching for IAS preparation. Such aspirants can also strive for online courses later on they can obtain their study material, educational videos and mock tests 24 × 7. Apart from this, YouTube videos can also be helpful for such aspirants as many YouTubers post videos regarding strategies to appear for the UPSC exam.
Even if you are attending proper coaching for the exam, it is advised to go through the study material, and practice questions available free of cost online.
Practicing mock test
This will be peak time and as a serious aspirant, you must not make the misconception of missing practice tests. If you believe that by only studying and learning you’ll be clearing the UPSC CSE exam then you are profoundly mistaken. In fact, you must set a destination of at least performing for 100 mocks before sitting for the main exam. This would not only highlight your strengths and weaknesses but also give you the confidence required for the exam.
You can avoid mock test in the initial few months of preparation, and merely opt for practicing problems. But once you cover 75% of the syllabus, one must start giving mocks once or twice in a week. Also, only appearing for mock tests won’t help you but you need to analyze it. You must learn from your mistakes and make an attempt to rectify and overcome them before you appear for the next mock.
Seek for proper guidance
Once you decide to appear for the UPSC CSE exam, you’ll start getting loads of guidance both offline and online. As an aspirant, you must not get influenced by anyone and should filter before taking any guidance.
Also, if you wish to join any coaching institute for preparation, measure the authenticity of the institute before investing your time and money there. The reason behind this is that there are many bogus institutes in the market who charge thousands of rupees from the aspirants. So pay outstanding heed to the studies and then choose the institute.
So, if one follows the above tips, your chances to clear UPSC increase. Also, make sure that you focus on the exam with a stress-free approach as stress can twine your planning and preparation. So prepare and appear for the exam with full determination and confidence.