Road Map For IAS Preliminary (CSAT) Exam by UPSC


Road Map For UPSC IAS Pre. Exam

Dear Students,

As the Civil Services exam, not mearly test your knowledge but it also tests your ability to deliver within a limited time frame. In this regard you need to have a proper planning, proper strategy and a clear road map, where you can monitor your own progress, and if necessary you can change your strategy. In this background suggesting few things which I hope will help you in your planning. Here, We are only presenting the General Studies Paper-I by keeping in mind that you are going to prepare the CSAT paper in according to your own convenience.

Before making actual planning you must be aware of what to read, and from where to read in first stage, In second stage you must be aware of how to read, And in third stage you need to have a personal road map where you can implement the above 2 stages. This road map should be individual specific, because needs and awareness are different for different people.

Now let us discuss the first stage that is what to read and from where to read. For traditional area we are suggesting these following books which are sufficient to qualify P.T.

Books are:




  • XI, XII NCERT (New)
  • Read current affair with Atlas, locate each & everything which are in news.
  • Thoroughly use your Atlas

And following chapters of India Year Book:

  1. Land & The people.
  2. Agriculture.
  3. Energy.
  4. Environment.
  5. Water Resources.
  6. States & Union Territories



  • Clear your basic concepts of Economics with any book.
  • Current Affair of Economics
  • Economic Survey  -summery of each chapter which is given in the last page. And see the boxes given in every chapter.

And following chapters of India Year Book:

  1. Agriculture.
  2. Basic Economic Data.
  3. Commerce.
  4. Communication.
  5. Education.
  6. Finance.
  7. Corporate Affairs.
  8. Food & Civil Supplier.
  9. Health & Family Welfare.
  10. Housing.
  11. Industry.
  12. Labour.
  13. Mass Communication.
  14. Planning.
  15. Rural development.
  16. Transport.
  17. Welfare.
  18. Youth Affair & Sports.



Current Affairs

This is the most important section of this paper. After analyzing the recent question paper it is necessary for every aspirant that he/she should give more attention to those traditional area which are in news.

For Example:

(a) India’s Fast Breeder Reactor has achieved certain milestone or

(b) The launch of cryogenic technology had failed recently; in this respect you must be aware with the traditional portion of these areas, these includes:

  • What is Cryogenic technology?
  • When India started to develop this technology?
  • How many countries poses this technology? etc.

In the same manner:

  • What is India’s Nuclear programme?
  • When India started the programme?
  • How many stages are there in India’s Nuclear Programme?
  • In which Generation the Fast Breeder Reactor comes?
  • What are its major use /Advantages? etc.

In Short you should change your traditional way of preparation and mould it with the present trend. The present trend is that you need to prepare your traditional area through current affair. That is whatever is in news you must have the awareness of its traditional background & its concept, Now the next question comes in your mind is that, how one can achieve this?

In this background we suggest you to follow these steps :

  1. You need to have a sound knowledge of current affair and the traditional portion of your G.S. paper.
  2. Read traditional area, historical background and constitutional provision (if necessary) to each topic which is in news.

For example In polity section what ever is in news try to connect that with the constitutional provision, and its political history. Suppose government has recently amended the constitution and provided 50% reservation for women in panchayat, so in this case you should read the constitutional provision of panchayat, its political history in India, that is from ancient India to till date. In this way you can prepare your traditional area with the current affairs. To achieve this you do not have to do any research because the above mention books are written in such a manner that you can find the historical background with its concept, in one place, you have to just update that with your current affair.

At the same time, with in the Current Affair section there are some special areas where you should have a good command because questions are asked directly from those areas.

They are:

I hope now you are familiar with what to read and from where to read. Then the next question comes how to read.

How to read?

what ever you read you must solve the multiple choice questions.
Make your own point wise notes (if necessary) revise your notes again and again.
If possible make your own multiple choice questions with the help of previous year question papers.

  • Clear your concepts from NCERT Books.
  • Think and analyze those concepts again and again.
  • Revise again and again, and no need to mug up the factual information, try to remember only important facts and figures so that you can utilize those, in your mains exam as well.
  • From, May solve the question papers in strictly exam like condition. That is with in the 2 hour time frame at morning and evening season.

The Road Map:

Now lets discuss about the roadmap, well road map should be individual specific. A general road map will not provide any fruitful results because candidates awareness and needs are different from person to person, But there are some specific guide lines which one need to follow while making his/her road map. Those points we have already discussed in what to read & how to read section.

Here we would only suggest that according to your convenience make your own road map, at this you are now aware of what to read & How to read, the only thing you have to make is that when you are going to study. To qualify the P.T. you must have to revise the whole thing more than twice, So keep this in your mind before making your own road map.

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Dear Sir,
I appreciate the simplistic yet very effective explanation and your wonderful guidance.
But, I am still apprehensive in the sense that, are these much books really more than enough?
For e.g, certain books like -
DD Basu - polity; Bipan Chandra's India's struggle for independence + Spectrum - modern history;
Spectrum - science etc etc. are suggested by many as indispensable.

Thanks & Regards

Dear Kapil, In this changing scenario you must stick with the NCERT books and read them several times rather than reading voluminous books single time. The Books you mentioned here, are for UPSC MAINS Examination; whereas This roadmap is to guide aspirants for UPSC PRELIMINARY Examination.

Dear Sir,
A heartfelt thanks.
So, I ought to understand that, the books which I mentioned are must for mains,
but can be left for prelims now.
Aren't the books which you mentioned enough for mains as well ?


dear sir, i would like to know if the above mentioned books suggested by you, are sufficient for a new aspirant to crack the G.S part of the pre exam, without taking up Coaching classes? Also, is it wise to have a job first and go for the civil service exams, since it is very unpredictable. kindly help...thank you.

a very very thank you sir ,,,by your very good thinking many students get benifited by your support , so that they can over comes the difficulties major due to economicallly as created by private institutions.
Again a very very very thank you sir....

sir for statistics-main exam -from where to solve and practise. as this part for me goes a bit hard.
and even give what topics asked in main exam.

advice about Current affairs is useful.

Nice information..I am starting the preparation and I think I have a less time to crack the civils.