Build the momentum

With just one month to go for the UPSC Prelims, here are some tips for the preparation in the time left.

Updated - September 09, 2021 07:52 pm IST

Published - September 09, 2021 10:17 am IST

A file photo of candiates writing in the UPSC Preliminary exam.

A file photo of candiates writing in the UPSC Preliminary exam.

The UPSC CSE Prelims are just a month away and a good revision plan is crucial to build the momentum so that students peak at the right time. However, many aspirants tend to be more casual in their approach towards the end. This leads to a loss of focus. Here are some tips that will help plan the last month’s revision.

Schedule: Focus on revision for most of the day. This should include reading the newspaper, updates on current affairs and revising the static content. In addition, practise mock tests everyday. Invest extra time in solving test papers, as these help improve speed.

Subject management: Read books that are in short-notes format and align the static and current subjects. For example, if your timetable for the day has Economics, divide the time equally between the current and static parts. Additionally, it is best to revise what you have been studying through the year. Do not pick something new at the last minute in an attempt to ensure that you cover everything. One requires a certain level of preparedness to be able to attempt this exam. This cannot be achieved by last-minute reading.

Focus on CSAT: Sometimes students underestimate the Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT). Many aspirants clear the General Studies cut-off but miss out on the CSAT. Take a couple of mock tests and revise topics like ratio, percentage and others from where questions almost always tend to be asked.

Test and analysis: Do not postpone mock tests for the last week. You should have begun practising mock tests by now. Aim to solve as many as possible, since there is no other way to know if you have understanding and recall are good. Also mock tests are an excellent way to practise answer-elimination techniques and intelligent guessing. If you are trying to play safe by attempting only those questions that you know the answers to, you could jeopardise your attempt. Spend time on post-test analysis to keep track of your accuracy. Don’t just check the right answer to one that you got wrong; see if you understood the concept properly and get more clarity wherever required.

In the last week: Keep a list of what you need to revise, brush up on factual data and do not attempt too many tests. Make quick revision notes for topics you consider high priority and those that you tend to forget.

Apart from following these tips, make sure you stay in the right frame of mind. Take breaks and keep yourself physically active and indulge in activities that induce positive thoughts and help keep negativity at bay.

The writer is the founder of Civilsdaily, a mentoring platform for government exams

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