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UPSC Exam Pattern 2022

The UPSC Exam is divided into three levels in order to get to the real deal. The Prelims round, according to the test structure, is essentially an elimination round aimed to weed out the majority of unsuitable candidates.

Then comes the second phase, often known as the Mains round, which is the heart of the UPSC Exam and the most critical step in the selection process.

Finally, the Personal interview round, which is designed to examine your personality and bureaucratic acumen, is the third level of the examination pattern. We’ll go through each step in great detail.

IAS Exam Pattern for UPSC Prelims

The Prelims’ stage of IAS exam pattern 2022 consists of 2 papers, both conducted on the same day. The question type in both papers is objective with one right answer out of several multiple choices.

Exam Pattern for UPSC CSE Prelims

To explain the above image of UPSC Exam Pattern Prelims, let us look at the table and the subsequent points provided below:

IAS Prelims Exam Pattern Summary

Paper Subjects Total Marks Duration
1 General Studies (GS) 200 2 hours (9:30 AM to 11:30 AM)
2 CSAT 200 2 hours (2:30 PM to 4:30 PM)

Assuming that the chart above adequately informs you about the total marks and time period of the two papers of the Prelims exams, I’d like to add a few essential points. However, before I go into detail about it, I’d want to note out that the following points apply to UPSC Exam Pattern 2022, in case you were wondering.

  • Paper 1 or the GS paper contains 100 questions with negative marking. Every right answer will fetch you 2 marks and every wrong one will cost you 1/3rd of that or .66 marks. Questions that you choose to leave unanswered will not fetch you or cost you any mark.
  • Paper 2 or the CSAT paper contains 80 questions, most of them with negative marking. Every right answer will fetch you 2.5 marks, and wrongly answering a question with negative marking will cost you 1/3rd of that or .83 marks. Certain questions designed to test your decision-making skills will not cost you any marks if answered wrongly. Also, questions left unanswered will not fetch or cost you any marks.

IAS Exam Pattern for UPSC Mains

The UPSC Mains examination consists of nine papers that are administered over a period of 5-7 days. If and only if you pass the UPSC Prelims tests, you will be eligible to take the UPSC Mains exam. Only if you passed the prelims exam can you sit for the IAS Mains.

This entails obtaining more than the specified cut-off marks in Paper 1 and a minimum of 33% in Paper 2 of the Prelims test.

Having said that it should be duly noted that, unlike the Prelims exam, the UPSC Mains exam consists of only Descriptive/subjective type questions of a total of 1750 marks, meaning you’d have to elaborately write your answers instead of choosing the right ones from among a host of choices.

Assuming you understood the table, here are some important points I’d like to add:

  • Out of the 9 papers of the UPSC Mains exam, 2 are qualifying language papers, i.e., English and, any other Indian language. Both language papers hold a maximum mark of 300 each. The minimum qualifying marks in these 2 papers is 25%. The marks obtained in these papers will not be counted for ranking.
  • Both language papers have 100 marks worth of essay questions, 60 marks worth of reading comprehension questions, 60 marks worth precis writing, 40 worth translation-based questions, and finally another 40, worth grammar-based questions.
  • If you’re unable to secure the minimum 25% of the total 300 marks in the 2 language papers, the rest of your mains papers will not be considered for further evaluation by UPSC etc.

Also Check: UPSC Exam


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