Syllabus Of IAS (Preliminary Exam)

Phase 1: Preliminary Examination – CSAT Syllabus:

CSAT or Civil Services Aptitude Test is the first phase of preliminary examination of UPSC. This test is intended to assess the aptitude of examinees in solving the ‘Reasoning and Analytical’ questions.

IAS prelims exam consists of two papers of objective type, each of 200 marks (total of 400 marks) and two hours of duration and candidates must take both the papers.

The preliminary examination is meant for screening the candidate and the marks obtained by a candidate in the prelims who qualifies to the mains exam will not be be taken in account to determine their final merit. 


● 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

  • 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)

Note 1 : Questions relating to English language Comprehension skills of Class x level (last item in
the Syllabus of Paper II) will be tested through passages from English language only without
providing Hindi translation thereof in the question paper.
Note 2 : The questions will be of multiple choices, objective type. One - third marks will be
deducted for every wrong answer.
Note 3 : The preliminary examination is meant to serve as a screening test only. The marks obtained
in the prelims exam will not be counted for determining their final order of merit. It is
eligibility test for admission to the main examination.
Note 4 : Examination (Prelims) conducts in the month of May every year. But in 2014 the Prelims
Exam will be held in the month of August.
Note 5 : Result comes in October first Week. The number of total candidates to be declare qualified
in this (Pre) exam will be about ten to twelve (10-12) times the total approximate number of
vacancies to be filled in that particular year.