UPSC CSE Syllabus-Preliminary, Mains and Interview

The UPSC examination, officially known as the UPSC; Civil Services Examination (CSE), is operated by the Union Public Service Commission annually and is a common exam to recruit candidates for top Government Services. The UPSC examination syllabus is consisting three stages of the exam – Preliminary, Mains and Interview. Check the UPSC Syllabus of Preliminary,  Mains and Interview in 99notes.

Preliminary Syllabus

Download the Prelims syllabus to know the Prelims consist of 2 papers- General Studies-I which is a part of the General Ability Test and General Studies -II which is the Civil Service Aptitude Test (CSAT ).

General Studies-I

  • Current events of National & international importance.
  • History of India & Indian National Movement
  • Indian and World Geography
  • Indian Polity and Governance.
  • Economic & Social Development
  • General issues on Environmental ecology, bio-diversity and Climate change General Science

General Studies – II

  • Understanding of Data
  • Comprehension of Interpersonal skills like communication
  • Rational reasoning and analytical skill
  • The skill of making decisions and solving problems
  • Illustrate cognitive skill
  • Fundamental Mathematics

Mains Syllabus

Download the Mains syllabus to know the Mains has 9 papers. Among them, 7 papers are Merit-Based which are Paper-1, Paper-2, Paper-3, Paper-4, Paper-5, Paper-6, and Paper-7 and 2 papers which are Paper- A and Paper- B are Qualifying-Based.


In this paper, candidates have to choose any one Indian Language which is included in the 8th section of the Constitution.

Paper- B

This paper is for the English Language test.


This paper included Essay Writing. Candidates are needed to compose essays on numerous topics. They will be predicted to keep close to the subject of the essay to arrange their views in an orderly manner and to write concisely. The marks will be given for compelling and precise articulation.


This paper consists of the syllabus of General Studies-I.


It includes Ancient India, Medieval India, Modern India, World History, Indian Heritage and Culture, Post-Independence India.


It has Fundamental Physical Geography, Fundamental Human Geography, Indian Physical Geography, and Indian Human Geography.


It includes Salient Features of Indian Society,

Population, Social Empowerment, Poverty and Development, Urbanisation, Globalization, Communalism Regionalism and Secularism.


It includes the syllabus of  General Studies-II

Indian Governance

It has the topic of Important Aspects of Governance, Role Of Civil Services, Government Policies & Development Processes, Vulnerable Sections.

Indian Polity

It includes Indian Constitution, Legislature, Executive, Judiciary,  Statutory and Non-Statutory Bodies, Pressure Groups and Associations.

International Relations

It consists of India and Its Neighbourhood, Bilateral Relations and Agreements, Indian Diaspora, and Important International Institutions.


It includes the syllabus of  General Studies-III

Indian Economy

It has topics like Government Budgeting and Planning, Banking, Liberalization, Privatisation and Globalisation, Inclusive Growth and Employment, Investment, Development of Industries, Infrastructure


It contains Major Crops and Irrigation Systems, Agricultural Industries and Marketing, Government Schemes and Their Impact, Technology in Agriculture, Animal Husbandry, Land Reforms in India; Science & Technology- Basic Science, Applications in Everyday Life, Achievements of Indian Science and Tech, Intellectual Property Rights, Emerging Technologies


It included Vegetation and Wildlife Conservation, Environment Pollution, Disaster Management, Environment Impact Assessment

Internal Security

It consists of Terrorism, Extremism and Organized Crime, Border Security, External State and Non-State Actors, Cyber Security, and Security Forces of India.


It includes the syllabus of General Studies-IV

It has Ethics & Human Interface Indian Economy, Attitude, Aptitude For Civil Services, Emotional Intelligence, Moral Thinkers & Philosophers, Civil Service Values, Ethical Issues in International Relations, Corporate Governance, Probity in Governance, and Case Study on the above Issues.


It consists of an Optional Subject which is a part of Paper 1.


It consists of an  Optional Subject which is a part of Paper 2.

Interview Syllabus

Visit to know the syllabus of the Interview which is also known as the Personality Test. Only the candidates who cleared the Mains can able to sit in the Interview. The interviewer Panel will ask practical questions, regarding personal development. There isn’t any fixed syllabus for the UPSC Interview. The interviewing panel will ask the qualified candidates about their abilities and practical mindset about how much they can take on the responsibilities of a civil servant.

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