Why read NCERT Books for UPSC IAS Exams?

Why read NCERT Books for UPSC IAS Exams

When you took the decision of starting the preparation for IAS, civil services the very first advice from the selected or other aspiring candidates would have been to go through NCERT Books.

The Question must have come to your mind:

  • Why do I have to read the school books again?

  • Isn’t it time to read books of famed and critically acclaimed authors?

  • Why not read the bulkier books?

The answer lies in the subjects clubbed under the title of ‘General studies’ which itself suggests that a candidate must have the general idea about all the topics mentioned under the syllabus.

NCERT Textbooks help in getting a general idea in the following ways:

  • They have been written for the school kids and are therefore very easily intelligible.

  • They cover all the related dimensions of any issues e.g. study of environment cover all the social, economic and political dimension at a very basic level

  • It is free of any political bias, a basic value that must reflect in all your answers

  • NCERT Books cover all the basics related to topics given in the syllabus (except those from the current affairs, for instance, latest developments in S&T)

NCERTs thus create a strong foundation for further studies based on newspaper and reference books without which the knowledge will remain superficial and create many challenges as you move ahead with your IAS Exam preparations.

Download NCERT PDF Books in English Medium

(डाउनलोड) एनसीईआरटी बुक (NCERT Books PDF in Hindi)

Download OLD NCERT PDF E-Books

Click Here for PRINT COPY of OLD & NEW NCERT Compilation for UPSC Exams

Following is the exhaustive list of NCERT Books for UPSC Exams:


List of NCERTs

Ancient History

Old: India's Ancient Past: RS Sharma

Medieval History

Old: A History of Medieval India: Satish Chandra

Modern History

Old: History of Modern India: Bipan Chandra

World History

Old: History of the World: Arjun Dev (Part I and Part II)

Art & Culture

Class XI – An Introduction to Indian Art

Class XI – Living Craft Traditions of India (Chapters 9 & 10)


Class VI – The Earth Our Habitat

Class VII – Our Environment

Class VIII – Resource and Development

Class IX – Contemporary India – I

Class X – Contemporary India – II

Class XI – Fundamentals of Physical Geography

Class XI – India –  Physical Environment

Class XII – Fundamentals of Human Geography

Class XII – India – People and Economy


Class IX – Political Science: Democratic Politics Part – I

Class X – Political Science: Democratic Politics Part – II

Class XI – Political Science: Indian Constitution at Work

Class XI – Political Science: Political Theory

Class XII – Political Science I: Contemporary World Politics

Class XII – Political Science II: Politics in India since Independence


Class VI-X - Science

Class XI – Chemistry: Unit 14 & Biology: Units 4 & 5

Class XII – Chemistry: Unit 16 & Biology: Units 8, 9 & 10


Class XII – Biology: last four Chapters (13 to 16)


Class IX – Economics: Economics

Class X – Understanding Economic Development

Class XI – Indian Economic Development

Class XII – Introductory Microeconomics

Class XII – Introductory Macroeconomics

Indian Society

Class VI – Social Science: Social & Political Life I

Class VII – Social Science: Social & Political Life II

Class VIII – Social Science: Social & Political Life III

Class XI – Sociology: Understanding Society

Class XII – Indian Society

Class XII – Social Change and Development in India


Click on the link below to download Free NCERT Books in PDF Format:

Click Here for New NCERT Books PDF

Click Here for Old NCERT Books PDF

Click Here for PRINT COPY of OLD & NEW NCERT Compilation for UPSC Exams


To conclude, as has been recommended by many selected candidates in the past, an aspirant must read only limited books and must read them over and over. It is thus necessary to choose the NCERTs smartly that will help one to build strong foundations. Old NCERTs for the static subjects like History and new NCERT books with updated information for dynamic part such as economy will help an aspirant to get a good grasp on the basics.

Best Wishes for your IAS Preparations


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