Do's and Dont's for UPSC

Do's and Dont's for UPSC

1. Do's


a. Aspects

(1) Read the syllabus - Syllabus of UPSC is an important document. Reading and remembering it thoroughly is crucial. Every news or event must knock in your mind the entry in the syllabus it is related to. It will help you understand the context of any information.

(2) Read NCERT - Read NCERT again, then Again, Again and Again - NCERTs form the most fundamental component of preparation. Being thorough with NCERTs is essential to crack UPSC. To rephrase Rumi - UPSC preparation is like making dough, you keep doing the same thing again and again until you realize that it done.

(3) Read newspaper - Newspaper reading daily may seem like a monotonous exercise. But reading newspaper smartly (to have read the syllabus will help you filter out irrelevant content) is essential.

(4) Basics of all subjects are important - UPSC is dynamic, questions asked cover a whole gamut of subjects. No one or two topics alone will let you crack the exam. So, you need to understand the basics of each subject. Standard texts must be referred here.

(5) Analysis, Correlation and Linkages - UPSC syllabus is designed to provide you an understanding of how the world, the society, the State works. So, studying any subject in isolation leaves your understanding superficial and incomplete. Try to link and correlate what you study in books with the events in the news and daily life.

(6) Example - For example, corona virus scare can be linked to several subjects of study from the syllabus - biology and science & technology, economy, globalisation, security issues, public health infrastructure, disaster management, etc. It provides a ready template to cover any topic. Reading the basics from the standard will make the foundations of your understanding sound.

2. Dont's


a. Studying for 16 hours - NO - 16 hours cannot be sustained for weeks, months. This approach is not sustainable and leads to frustration after you start missing targets. It can also negatively impact your health. It is strictly not recommended.

b. Check for new materials in the market - Markets are full of material of dubious quality. So, consult your teachers and mentors to select the right material. Time is too precious to waste it on poor material and find it out for yourself that it should not be done.

c. Doing tests without analysis - Doing tests mechanically without analysing for your weaknesses, mistakes, gaps is a colossal waste of time. Each test is an opportunity to improve and learn and must be taken accordingly.

d. Reading too much without reflection - Reading out too much content without internalising or reflecting on it is a bad strategy any day. Reading limited material but developing ability to "produce your knowledge in examination environment in a structured manner" - is what is required. Reading too much can easily give a "feel good" without improving your real performance.

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