Updated By Tiyasa Khanra on 09 Jan, 2024 12:53
Get UPSC Civil Services Sample Papers For Free
The UPSC CSE Selection Process 2024 includes three stages- Preliminary Exam, Mains Exam, and Interview-cum-Personality Test. Candidates who are preparing for the UPSC CSE 2024 must qualify for all three stages to achieve success in UPSC CSE. The UPSC CSE 2024 Preliminary Exam will be conducted on May 26, 2024. The subsequent Civil Services Mains examination will be held in September 2024.
The prelims exam acts as the screening exam for UPSC CSE. It is an objective type paper, which is important to qualify. The examination has objective-type or multiple-choice questions. The marks secured in this paper are not counted for the final merit. The paper includes two stages, General Studies Paper 1 and 2. GS Paper 1 is subject-specific and GS Paper 2 is CSAT, which is a qualifying paper (minimum 33% score required). Candidates must not forget that there is a negative marking of one-third (0.33) of the marks assigned to the question. The marks are deducted for every wrong answer in both Paper 1 and Paper 2.
UPSC Mains exam is subject-specific. In this exam, candidates are tested on different grounds. The exam helps the commission filter out the candidates who are apt for the post. In the UPSC CSE mains exam paper, candidates have to work on various things such as essay writing, General Studies, English, and an optional subject. UPSC interview round tests the real potential of candidates. To clear this round, aspirants need dynamic knowledge. The questions can be asked from anywhere to check the candidate’s critical thinking.
The UPSC CSE exam has a limited number of attempts for some candidates. The number of attempts differs according to the category, for instance, General category candidates have 6 attempts, OBC has 9, and for SC/ST there are unlimited attempts. Candidates appearing for the UPSC CSE 2024 exam can find complete details about the UPSC CSE Selection Process 2024 provided on this page.
Check the highlights of the UPSC Civil Services Selection Process 2024 provided below.
The first stage of the UPSC CSE exam is Prelims.
The candidates who pass the Prelims exam have to appear for the UPSC CSE Mains exam.
The UPSC Mains exam is the second stage of the Civil Services Examination. IAS aspirants who clear the Prelims i.e. those who score above the cutoff in General Studies Paper I and more than 33% marks in General Studies Paper-II (CSAT) become eligible to appear for the UPSC Mains.
Candidates who qualify Mains exam have to appear for Personality Tests/Interview Process.
The results for the UPSC Civil Services exam are declared within a week after the interviews, i.e. between April-June. After the candidates receive the allocation letter, they are given fundamental training at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration in Mussoorie for 15 weeks.
Civil Services (Preliminary) exam is the first stage to shortlist candidates for the Mains exam. This examination is conducted just as a screening test to shortlist eligible applicants for the Mains exam. Candidates who qualify for the preliminary exam will be eligible to take part in the Civil Services (Main) exam. The marks obtained in Civil Services (Preliminary) exam will not be considered in the final merit list. Paper II i.e. CSAT will only be qualifying in nature. This means the candidates will only have to acquire 33% marks in the CSAT exam to pass Paper II.
Duration of examination
2 hours (120 minutes, extra time of 20 minutes for blind candidates)
Total Number of Questions
Types of Questions
Mode of Examination
Hindi and English
Also Read: UPSC CSE Prelims Passing Marks 2024
The second stage of the IAS Exam is called the Mains Exam. It is a descriptive examination, which consists of 9 papers. The 9 papers in UPSC CSE (Mains) include: Paper-A (Compulsory Indian Language); Paper –B (English) which are qualifying in nature, while the other papers like Essay, General Studies Papers I, II, III, and IV, and optional papers I and II are considered for the final ranking.
UPSC Mains Paper
Name of the Paper
Nature of the Paper
Duration of the Exam
Paper – A
Compulsory Indian Language
Paper – B
Paper – I
MERIT RANKING NATURE
Paper – II
General Studies I
Paper – III
General Studies II
Paper – IV
General Studies III
Paper – V
General Studies IV
Paper – VI
Optional Paper I
Paper – VII
Optional Paper II
Interview or Personality Test
The candidates can select Hindi or English medium to write the UPSC Civil Services IAS Mains Exam. They can also choose any other language listed in the 8th Schedule of the Indian Constitution.
The Indian Languages included in the UPSC CSE are according to the languages listed in the 8th Schedule of the Indian Constitution.
Also Read: UPSC CSE Mains Passing Marks 2024
The last stage in the selection for UPSC Civil Services is the Personality Test, which is taken by a panel of UPSC Commission members. The following components of the UPSC interview must be kept in mind.
The interview session is conducted for 275 marks.
No minimum qualifying marks have been prescribed by the commission for the interview.
The skills presented in the career profile must be shown in front of the board members to secure good marks in the personality test.
The final selection will be based on the main examination and Interview session marks combined together.
After the candidates receive the allocation letter, they are given fundamental training at Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration in Mussoorie for 15 weeks.
The marks obtained in the Civil Services Mains exam and in the Interview Test are added up for UPSC CSE final merit list. The top 980 students are allotted a post in the Service or Cadre in order of availability and preference for the same. Thus, the top-ranked candidate will get his/her post of first preference, while the last candidate will get what is remaining.
The Previous Year UPSC CSE Cutoff 2024 for Prelims and Mains has been given below for different categories of candidates:
UPSC Cut Off - Prelims
UPSC Cutoff- Mains
Also Read: UPSC CSE Prelims Subject-Wise Weightage 2024
UPSC Civil Services Selection Process takes place in 3 phases, UPSC CSE exam for Prelims, UPSC CSE exams for Mains and Personal Interviews. Candidates who qualify for all the 3 phases get shortlisted for posts available in UPSC civil services. Candidates planning to appear for UPSC exam must check out the below-mentioned articles to get a clearer perspective of UPSC CSE.
Want to know more about UPSC Civil Services
No, for the selection process, it is mandatory for the candidates to qualify in both Prelims as well as in the Main exam.
The number of vacancies is reported by Union Public Service Commission in its advertisement/notification for the exam. The number of vacancies varies every year. The number of vacancies per year in the last 4 years has varied between 1000 and 1200.
No change in preferences of services once indicated by a candidate is permitted.
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