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UPSC Exam: Everything You Need to Know (FAQ)

UPSC stands for the Union Public Service Commission. It is a constitutional body that conducts various examinations.

What is UPSC?

UPSC stands for the Union Public Service Commission. It is a constitutional body that conducts various examinations.

The UPSC conducts the Civil Services Examination (CSE), which is also known as the IAS exam. Under the CSE, the UPSC conducts the following services exams:

Indian Administrative Service (IAS)

Indian Police Service (IPS)

Indian Foreign Service (IFS)

Indian Revenue Service (IRS)

Indian Information Service (IIS)

Indian Trade Service (ITS)

Indian Defence Accounts Service (IDAS)

Indian Postal Service (IPoS)

Indian Audit and Accounts Service (IAAS)

Indian Civil Accounts Service (ICAS)

Indian Railway Traffic Service (IRTS)

Indian Railway Accounts Service (IRAS)

Indian Railway Personnel Service (IRPS)

Indian Defence Estates Service (IDES)

Indian Ordnance Factories Service (IOFS)

Indian Corporate Law Service (ICLS)

Indian Cost Accounts Service (ICoAS)

Indian Civil Services (Group A)

Pondicherry Civil Services (Group B)

What are the eligibility criteria for appearing in the UPSC exam?

  • The eligibility criteria for the UPSC exam include:
  • The candidate must be a citizen of India.
  • The candidate must have a minimum age of 21 years as of 1st August of the year of examination.
  • The candidate must have a bachelor’s degree from a recognized university.

What is the exam pattern of the UPSC exam?

The UPSC exam comprises three stages:

Preliminary Exam: The preliminary exam consists of two objective type papers of 200 marks each. Paper-I is General Studies, and Paper-II is the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT). Both papers have multiple-choice questions (MCQs). The duration of each paper is two hours.

Main Exam: The main exam is a descriptive type exam consisting of nine papers. The papers are essay, general studies I, II, III, and IV, and two papers of any one optional subject chosen by the candidate. Each paper is of 250 marks, except for the English language paper, which is of 300 marks. The total marks of the main exam are 1750.

Personality Test (Interview): The personality test or interview is the final stage of the UPSC exam. It is conducted for candidates who qualify the main exam. The interview carries 275 marks.

The final selection of the candidate is based on the marks obtained in the main exam and the interview. The preliminary exam is a screening test, and its marks are not counted for final selection.

What is the syllabus of the UPSC exam?

The syllabus of the UPSC exam includes subjects like History, Geography, Indian Polity, Indian Economy, General Science, Current Affairs, and others. The syllabus is vast and requires thorough preparation.

How can I prepare for the UPSC exam?

To prepare for the UPSC exam, candidates can follow a structured study plan, read standard textbooks, take mock tests, and stay updated with current affairs. Coaching institutes and online resources can also help in preparation.

How many attempts are allowed for the UPSC exam?

The number of attempts for the UPSC exam varies depending on the category of the candidate. For General category candidates, six attempts are allowed, while for OBC candidates, the number of attempts is nine. There is no limit on the number of attempts for SC/ST candidates.

What is the age limit for the UPSC exam?

The age limit for the UPSC exam varies depending on the category of the candidate. For General category candidates, the upper age limit is 32 years, while for OBC candidates, it is 35 years. For SC/ST candidates, the upper age limit is 37 years.

What is the salary of an IAS officer?

The salary of an IAS officer varies depending on the level of the post. The starting salary of an entry-level officer is around Rs. 56,100, while the highest salary can go up to Rs. 2,50,000.

Can a foreigner appear for the UPSC exam?

No, only Indian citizens are eligible to appear for the UPSC exam.

What is the role of UPSC in the selection process?

UPSC is responsible for conducting the UPSC exam, evaluating the performance of candidates, and recommending the most suitable candidates for various civil services to the Government of India.

How to fill UPSC Form?

To fill the UPSC form, candidates need to follow the steps given below:

Visit the official website of UPSC, i.e.,

Click on the link “Online Application for Various Examinations of UPSC” under the “What’s New” section on the home page.

Read the instructions carefully and click on the “Part-I Registration” link.

Fill in the personal details, communication details, and educational qualifications.

Upload the scanned images of your photograph and signature in the prescribed format and size.

Pay the application fee through online or offline mode.

After successful payment of the fee, proceed to Part-II registration.

Fill in the examination centre preferences, optional subject, and other details.

Review the application form and submit it.

Take a printout of the application form and keep it safe for future reference.

Candidates must ensure that all the details filled in the application form are correct and accurate. Any discrepancy in the application form can lead to rejection of the candidature.

how to know about cutoff for UPSC-CSE exam?

The UPSC releases the cut-off marks for the Civil Services Examination (CSE) after the completion of the exam. The cut-off marks vary every year and depend on various factors such as the number of vacancies, the number of candidates appeared for the exam, difficulty level of the paper, etc.

To know the cutoff for the UPSC CSE exam, follow the steps given below:

Visit the official website of UPSC, i.e.,

Click on the “Examinations” tab on the home page.

Click on the “Cut-Off Marks” link.

Select the year of the CSE exam for which you want to check the cut-off marks.

The cut-off marks will be displayed on the screen in the PDF format.

Candidates can also check the previous year’s cut-off marks to get an idea about the expected cutoff for the current year. The cut-off marks for each stage of the exam, i.e., prelims, mains, and final, are different, and candidates need to clear the cutoff for each stage to qualify for the next stage.

Read Also: UPSC IAS 2023: How to stay motivated during the year long journey of UPSC preparation?

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