Civil Services Preliminary Exam

What is Plan of Preliminary Exam?

The Preliminary Examination will consist of two papers of Objective type (multiple choice questions) and each carry a maximum of 200 marks.

Both the papers are compulsory to all the candidates. There is no choice of subjects.

This examination is meant to serve as a screening test only; the marks obtained in the Preliminary Examination by the candidates who are declared qualified for admission to the Main Examination will not be counted for determining their final order of merit.

What are the details of the two papers in the Preliminary Exam?

Paper I:
Current events of national and international importance. History of India and Indian National Movement. Indian and World Geography - Physical, Social, Economic Geography of India and the World. Indian Polity and Governance - Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc. Economic and Social Development - Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc. General issues on Environmental Ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change - that do not require subject specialisation General Science.

Paper II:
Comprehension Interpersonal skills including communication skills; Logical reasoning and analytical ability Decision-making and problem solving General mental ability Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. - Class X level) English Language Comprehension skills (Class X level).

What is the duration of the Preliminary Examination?

Each paper will be of two hours duration. Blind candidates will however, be allowed an extra time of twenty minutes at each paper.

In which language the Preliminary Exam questions will be provided?

The question papers will be set both in Hindi and English. However, questions relating to English Language Comprehension skills of Class X level will be tested through passages from English Language only without providing Hindi translation thereof in the question paper.

Can I write the Preliminary Examination in my mother tongue?

No, since the plan of the examination is multiple choice questions.

Is there any Negative Marking in Preliminary Examination?

Yes. There will be penalty (negative marking) for wrong answers marked by the candidate in the Preliminary Examination. There will be four alternatives for the answers to every question. For each question for which a candidate marks a wrong answer, "one third" (33%) of the marks assigned to that question will be deducted as penalty. However, there will be no penalty for the questions which the candidate has left unanswered. The questions in the Decision Making section in the Paper II (CSAT) will not carry any negative marking.

When will the Preliminary Examination be held?

Every year the Preliminary Examination will usually held on the Third Sunday of May or June.

When will the Results of Preliminary Examination be published?

Usually the results of the Preliminary Examination are published during the first week of August

Does UPSC provide any cut-off mark for qualifying Preliminary Exam?

No. The qualifying mark changes according to the overall performance of the candidates in that year of the examination. However, starting from 2012, UPSC has started indicating the qualifying cut off mark after the publication of the final result.

How can I apply for the Preliminary Exam?

After publication of the notification of the Civil Services Examination by UPSC in the Month of February/ March
Candidates have to apply online using the website http://www.upsconline.nic.in Detailed instructions for filling up online app l i c a t i o n s a r e a v a i l a b l e o n t h e abovementioned website.

Whether I have to provide all the necessary documents while applying for the Preliminary Examination?

No. The documents are to be provided only at the time of applying for main examination.

Whether I lose an attempt merely by applying for the examination?

No. An attempt at a Preliminary Examination shall be deemed to be an attempt at the Examination.
(ii) If a candidate actually appears in any one paper in the Preliminary Examination, he/she shall be deemed to have made an attempt at the Examination.
(iii) Notwithstanding the disqualification/cancellation of candidature, the fact of appearance of the candidate at the examination will count as an attempt.

What are centres in Tamil Nadu where the Preliminary examination is being conducted by UPSC?

Tamil Nadu has two centres for Preliminary Examination. Chennai and Madurai, nearby centre also exist in Puducherry. However for the Main Examination, Chennai is the only centre for both Tamil Nadu and Puducherry.