The Best Study Material for UPSC CSE

UPSC CSE is held every year to recruit for All India Services & other allied services. This Exam has three stages – Prelims, Mains & followed by Interviews.

Study Material for UPSC CSE Preliminary Examination & Mains Examination:

 Prelim is the first stage of UPSC CSE. The nature of Questions asked in Prelims is objective. The main objective of Prelims is to eliminate nonserious candidates from writing UPSC mains i.e., the second stage. Before discussing important Books for Prelims it would be good if we know the syllabus of Prelims first and accordingly, we could refer to Books. In addition to the Prelims syllabus, one must refer to 5-10 years of the previous year’s Question Paper of UPSC CSE (both Prelims & Mains) as well. Although the Pattern of Examination and the nature of Questions asked in Prelims & Mains are different but it would not be wise to Prepare Prelims and Mains separately. We must Prepare for both Prelims & Mains Simultaneously.

Ø  NCERT Books of classes 6-12 will help in getting the Basics right.

Ø  Notes of Coaching Classes

Ø  Study Material of Coaching Institutes

Ø  One News Paper & Current Affairs Magazine of any good Coaching Institute

Ø  Some Standard Reference Books

Ø  Books for Optional Subjects


 These Books help in building the foundation as it is based on fundamental themes.  NCERT has asked some factual questions. So, one must start with NCERT Books. Also, one may refer to these books to get clarity over some topics if required.

NCERT Books alone can not make one Qualify for this Exam.

Class Notes of Coaching Institutes

 Class notes are based on the UPSC CSE syllabus and the Pattern of Questions framed by UPSC. One must try to solve the Previous Year’s Questions after topics discussed in Class. The student may refer to class notes if they could not solve the previous year’s Question. If class notes are not sufficient to provide clarity about those Questions one may refer to Institute reference Books and some standard Books that we would discuss later.

 Study Material of Coaching Institutes

 The coaching materials are designed for the syllabus of UPSC CSE. Each Chapter has a practice question paper at the end. One may attempt those Questions.

GS Score has come up with study material for the Prelims & Mains Examination based on the UPSC CSE syllabus and the nature of Questions framed by the Board.

Complete UPSC Study Material & Notes, List of Books for UPSC Preparation

 News Paper & Current Affairs Magazine

 The importance of current affairs is significant in IAS Examination as it has its significance in Prelims, Mains & Interviews. It would be good if one develops the habit of reading Newspapers daily. Also, one good Magazine for any Civil Services Coaching must be read consistently.

One may refer to Magazine Prescribed by GS SCORE & Hindu Newspaper.

 Standard Books as Per advice of Faculty

 Some books are mentioned below that may be referred to when required. Some guidebooks are exclusively written for the IAS Exam like the Polity book of M. Laxmikant. People are not exclusively referring to the Indian Constitution of DD Basu but also to Standard Books. One may refer to these books as per the advice of the Faculty. There is no need to read the entire chapters of Books. General Studies Paper-2 (GS-2) in the UPSC Mains examination holds a place among other papers as it covers dynamic subjects of Polity & Constitution; Governance & Social Justice and International Relations.

 What Is General Studies Paper 2?

General Studies Paper 2 (GSP2) is the Essay Paper on the General Studies subject. It is important for all students who study General Studies.

The focus of GSP2 is on the critical analysis and evaluation of an issue, argument, or problem. You will be able required to read a type of text on the topic, and then write an essay in which you show your own point of view.

Your essay must include a clear thesis statement, well-structured paragraphs, and a strong conclusion. It is important to support your arguments with proof from the texts you have read.

Paper 2 Format

In order to ace General Studies Paper 2, you need to understand the format of the question paper.

The paper is divided into three sections:

In Section A: In This section mainly consists of objective-type questions with a single correct answer.

Section B: This section consists of short answer questions.

Section C: This section consists of essay questions.

In each section, the questions are usually arranged in order of increasing difficulty. Make sure you attempt all the questions, as there is no negative marking for incorrect answers.

Time Management in Paper 2

When it comes to General Studies Paper 2, time management is key. This is especially true if you’re aiming to score an A or a B.

Here are some tips to help you stay on track:

-Start by reading the question carefully and making sure you understand what’s being asked.

-Make a plan of how you’re going to answer the question and make sure your points are clear and organized.

-Leave yourself enough time to write a good essay. Don’t wait until the last minute to start writing!

-Proofread your essay before you submit it. Make sure there are no spelling mistakes or grammatical errors.

Question Types in Paper 2

In Paper 2, you’ll be answering questions on a variety of topics. There are three main types of questions you’ll be dealing with: factual, analytical, and evaluative.

Factual questions ask for specific information. 

Analytical questions ask you to interpret or analyze the data in the passage. This is where you need to use your critical thinking skills to come up with an answer.

Evaluative questions ask you to give your opinion on the data in the passage. This is where your personal judgment comes into play.

Tips and Tricks for Answering Questions in Paper 2

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you answer questions effectively in Paper 2:

  1. Carefully knowledgeable of all the previous year’s questions.
  2. Write your essay properly, and practice again and again.
  3. Use examples to illustrate your points.
  4. Write in clear, concise language.
  5. Check for spelling and grammar mistakes.
  6. Edit and proofread your work before submission.

Case Studies in General Studies Paper 2

When it comes to GS paper 2, case studies are your best friend. This is where you get to apply the knowledge and skills you’ve learned in class to real-world scenarios.

The best way to approach case studies is to read them thoroughly and then come up with a plan. Ensure the understanding of questions which you have the knowledge of the syllabus

 The more case studies you do, the better you’ll become at answering them. 

 Books for Optional Subjects

 UPSC CSE provides 26 subjects in their optional subjects list. CSE aspirants need to opt for one subject as an optional subject. Class notes and study material provided by Coaching are enough. One may refer to some standard Books as per the guidance of the Faculty and the subject opted.


In order to get a great score for General Paper 2, you need to first understand the question and then plan your answer. You also need to make sure you structure your answer well and use good grammar.

Remember, practice makes perfect, so if you can find someone to help you practice answering questions that will be a big help. Start by practicing on questions from the past papers, and then move on to more difficult questions.

Above all, stay calm and confident during the exam. You’ve prepared well, so just remember what you’ve learned and take your time when answering the questions. Good luck!

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