Interested in cracking the civil service examination? Here are the tricks.

I want to appear for Civil Services Examination. I want to sharpen my skills to clear the Civil Services Test. Is it necessary to take coaching or can I prepare by referring to some books? Which institutes offer coaching for Civil Services Examination?

Every year the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) conducts Civil Services Exam to recruit candidates to fill various posts in departments like IAS (Indian Administrative Service), IFS (Indian Foreign Service), IPS (Indian Police Service), IRS (Indian Revenue Service) and so on.

The Civil Services Examination comprises:

(i) Civil Service Aptitude Test (CSAT)

(ii) Civil Services Main Examination

(iii) Personality Test

Civil Service Aptitude Test consists of two papers. Each paper carries a maximum of 200 marks. Questions are objective type. The syllabus includes subjects like Current Events of National and International, History of India, Geography, Economic and Social Development, general issues on Environmental Ecology, General Science, Logical Reasoning and Analytical Ability and English Language Comprehension skills.

Once you qualify the Civil Service Aptitude Test, you are eligible to take the Main Examination.

Civil Services Main Examination consists of nine papers. All the papers are of descriptive type. These papers are intended to assess the overall intellectual abilities and knowledge of the candidates.

The Personality Test is an interview conducted to assess the candidate's personality in terms of his intelligence, abilities, traits and values.

Civil Services Examination is one of the toughest competitive examinations in India. So, if you are aspiring for the Civil Services, you have to be persistent and hard working. You should update yourself with developments across the world.

You have to read magazines that can help you improve your knowledge and aptitude. Practising with model question papers will help you pick up speed.

Coming to whether you should seek coaching or not, time and again, Civil Services aspirants have proved that it is an individual choice. Several Civil Services aspirants have cracked the Civil Services Examination in a single attempt without taking any coaching. It was possible because of their confidence, self-motivation, determination and persistence.

So, if you have a track record of achieving your goals without much external support, you may try taking Civil Services Examination without any coaching. In case you fail to clear it or realise that you cannot make it on your own, you can opt for coaching and reappear for the examinations.

If you attend a coaching centre, you can interact with like-minded people, understand their perspectives, take tips from their learning styles, improve your knowledge and be abreast with latest updates.

The competitive environment will keep up your motivation levels. Inputs from faculty will help grasp more knowledge within limited period of time. Taking tests that they conduct regularly will help you improve your speed and ability to handle different types of questions.

On the other hand, if you are preparing on your own, you have the privilege to study at a time convenient to you. You can schedule your preparation according to your priorities.

You can avoid losing time from travelling between home, college and coaching centres.

Some of the institutes offering Civil Services Examination in Delhi are listed below:

Classic IAS Academy, New Delhi: If you are willing to take an admission in this academy, you have to appear for a 20-minute Screening Test/ Counselling Session before taking the admission. Through this process, they detect your potential so that they can guide you according to your level. For further details, please visit http://www.classiciasacademy.com/

Geographia, New Delhi. For further details, please visit www.geographia.in

ETEN IAS Academy, New Delhi. For further details, please visit www.etenias.com

Royal IAS Academy, New Delhi. For further details, please visit www.royalias.com

Some of the institutes offering Civil Services Examination in Hyderabad are:

Analog IAS Institute, Hyderabad. For further details, please visit www.analogeducation.in

Some of the institutes offering Civil Services Examination in Chennai are:

Indian IAS Academy, Chennai. For further details, please visit www.indianiasacademy.com

Success IAS Academy, Chennai. You will be given discounts in the fee structure based on the tests conducted at the academy.

If you want to take counselling before taking admission, you need to take prior appointments. For further details, please visit www.successiasacademy.com

The author is from TMI e2E Academy

(Queries for this column can be sent to collegian@thehindu.co.in)

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