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20 Tips on How to prepare for Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam | UPSC 2024

20 Tips on How to prepare for Current Affairs for UPSC Civil Services Exam | UPSC 2024

Current Affairs is an integral part of your UPSC CSE preparation. It is included in the syllabus of Prelims under the title, “Issues of national and international importance”. Although it is not explicitly mentioned in the syllabus of the UPSC CS (Main) Examination, descriptive questions on recent events are often asked in the examination.

Moreover, it has been observed that aspirants who supplement their descriptive answers with recent pointers score higher than others. Hence, it is imperative for Civil Services aspirants to develop a habit of reading up on current affairs on a daily basis. But one question that frequently arises in aspirants’ minds is- “How to prepare for Current affairs for UPSC”.

It should be noted that, unlike other examinations, UPSC generally does not ask for fact-based current affairs. On the contrary, questions are more in-depth. For instance, mere knowledge of the complete name of a scheme and the related ministry might not suffice. You should also be well-versed in the offerings of the scheme, its probable impact, and budget allocation. We also publish daily current affairs to ease the preparation. If you want to quickly revise and do a yearly roundup of current affairs, you can join our Current Affairs Programme.

  • The Hindu newspaper
  • Indian Express Explained (Website)
  • PIB website
  • Daily and monthly compilation of Current Affairs by Career Launcher
  • Yojana Magazine
  • Kurukshetra Magazine
  • Pratiyogita Darpan
  • Other government publications, like India Year Book and Economic Survey
  • Audio and Video resources: RSTV channel, All India Radio Spotlight discussion

Read Also: UPSC Full Form, Strategy, Prelims & Mains Pattern

How to Prepare Current Affairs for UPSC?

Aspirants should develop the habit of reading newspapers, and make it a routine to dedicate an hour to study the newspaper thoroughly. That, however, does not mean reading all newspapers! Let us look at the important principles to follow while preparing for current affairs in order to prepare current affairs effectively:

Know your Syllabus

While reading the newspaper make sure you keep track of news headlines that are relevant to the UPSC Syllabus. That’s why it is important to have a complete idea of the Syllabus first and keep a list of current affairs topics mentioned in the syllabus at your desk.

Limit your Sources

While preparing for the current affairs section, you shouldn’t follow too many sources otherwise you will end up feeling confused and overwhelmed. Above we have mentioned enough sources that would help you get enough information required. Limiting your sources would allow you to invest more bandwidth on other topics of the syllabus.

Sources to Prepare Current Affairs for UPSC

Only reading newspapers won’t be sufficient for the preparation of current affairs. Below we have listed some very useful resources that candidates can refer to for the preparation of current affairs. It is crucial to read and analyze current affairs regularly to stay updated and gain an edge in the UPSC exam.

  • India Year Book
  • Economic Survey 2022
  • Mathrubhumi Yearbook
  • Current Affairs Topics – Arihant
  • Newspaper- The Hindu, Indian Express
  • Economic Survey 2023
  • Government Schemes
  • Yojana Magazine
  • Kurukshetra Magazine
  • Pratiyogita Darpan Magazine
  • Manorama Yearbook

Read Also: Strategy to prepare for UPSC

Notes to Prepare for Current Affairs for UPSC

There is no defined current affairs syllabus for UPSC. However, candidates need to know about some common areas from where questions can be asked. Below we have mentioned some important current affairs notes for UPSC Exam.

  • National- National Issues, Science and Technology, States, Social Schemes, Indian Economy,
  • Important Summits and Conferences – 13th Brics Summit, Rio Earth Summit 
  • International Awards, International Reports, International leadership, First in the world
  • Environment and Ecology
  • Government Schemes
  • Indian Polity
  • Social Issues
  • Indian Judiciary

Know What Not To Read

It is very important to figure out what you do not have to study when preparing for current affairs for UPSC. not everything in the newspaper is worth current affairs for UPSC. You can refer to our previous year current affairs questions to better understand what needs to be studied.

Read Government Reports

Go through important government reports like the Economic Survey, the Budget, and the India Yearbook to stay updated on the government’s policies and initiatives.


You will find so many newspapers in the market, but it is important to choose the Best Newspaper for UPSC current affairs preparation. Newspapers with socialites and gossip wont help you to clear the IAS exam. You need one newspaper because your preparation will be more focused, and you can save a lot of time. The Hindu is one of the highly recommended newspapers for UPSC aspirants because it provides excellent editorials concerning every topic.

  • Tips to read newspaper for UPSC
  • Newspapers during freedom struggle

Read Also: How Can Students Prepare For IAS Exam along with College

Focus on the Important Events

Aspirants should prioritize the important events and issues that have a direct impact on the country’s governance, economy, and society. They should also keep an eye on the major global developments and their implications for India.


Making notes on the analysis of the topics is crucial. Ensure that you have written the analysis properly. Notes will help you immensely in the advanced state of the UPSC preparation close to your exam.

  • Tips to make notes for UPSC
  • NCERT Notes for UPSC

Revise Consistently

Make sure that you revise the topics you have covered consistently. This will help you to retain the vast amount of information that is required for UPSC. Revise the notes regularly, as it helps in connecting different topics as you gather more relevant knowledge and information. Additionally, you can also spend your time watching current affairs videos daily for a fixed time

Check Time Allocation

You must read only the relevant news articles thoroughly. However, while doing so, make sure you are not spending more than an hour reading newspapers. You should finish reading daily current affairs within 2 hours. Freshers may take a bit longer in the beginning. However, make sure you limit the time to two hours per day during the weekdays. During the weekend, make sure you revise your notes at least once! And then, at the end of the month, go through the monthly compilation of Career Launcher for a quick revision.

Leverage online tools to make notes

While it is advisable to make small handwritten notes from important editorials for answer-writing, you should avoid doing so for all the current affairs as it is extremely time-consuming. However, you can leverage the benefits of online tools like Evernote, google docs, etc to prepare notes online. All you need to do is copy the content from the website and paste it into your doc. Make sure you organize the content according to the subject so that it is convenient to look for them when in need.

Keep Revising the Current Affairs

Revision is extremely important when it comes to current affairs. While the static portion of the syllabus is limited, current affairs get piled up by the day. Hence, if you haven’t indulged in constant revision, it will be extremely difficult for you at the end to look up the current affairs for an entire year. Hence, keep revising the current affairs constantly so that you never lose a track of it. Incorporate them in answer-writing and keep referring to the current affairs even while preparing the static topics.

Importance of Current Affairs in UPSC

Every year about 15-20 questions are asked directly from Current Affairs in the Prelims exam. However, they may not be direct fact-based questions, such as “Who is the first Lokpal of India?” Instead, questions concerning the Lokpal Bill might be asked.

Moreover, it has been observed that 60-70% of the questions asked in UPSC CSE Prelims are related to current events in some way. For example, if some bilateral dispute of the river is in the news, static questions concerning the river or the states involved can be asked in the GS paper. Logically, it can be said that it does not directly belong to the current affairs section, but the inspiration to ask such questions is undoubtedly taken from the contemporary event.

Hence, it is important to study Current Affairs thoroughly for the UPSC examination for all three stages. Further, in UPSC Main, it has been observed that answers with pointers from current events are marked higher, as it shows that the candidate is aware of the goings-on in society. So, a thorough understanding of current affairs is extremely important for UPSC aspirants to ensure they rank well in the questions that are asked from current affairs in the UPSC exam.

Some of the important areas in the current affairs portion from where questions are asked include central and state-sponsored schemes and policies, recent bills and acts passed in parliament, budget, economic survey report, international relations, science, and technology, etc.

Year Wise Weightage of Current Affairs in UPSC

YearNumber of Questions from Current Affairs

Prepare Current Affairs For UPSC With CL Experts

Join our Telegram group and other social media handles to get regular updates on current affairs. If you find reading too many sources overwhelming, you can also join our online Current Affairs Programme offering comprehensive coverage of multiple resources like The Hindu, Indian Express, India Year Book, Yojana, Kurukshetra, among others.

You can also check daily current affairs for UPSC under the free resources section on our UPSC website.

Should you need any further assistance with UPSC preparation, you can enrol yourself in our comprehensive online courses for the preparation of UPSC that will surely help you with having an edge over your peers. Get in touch with our course counsellors to get more information regarding our course deliverables.

Read Also: How to Prepare for Current Affairs for UPSC Exam?

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