Featured Post

Magazine For IAS/UPSC Civil Services Exam Preparation : Civil Services Synopsis

A very common query of civil services examination aspirants is which magazine should be read for comprehensive preparation. The answer to ...

Saturday, November 15, 2008

General Knowledge for UPSC Prelims -1

GK is a tough nut to crack for UPSC prelims because there is no beginning and no end.One should therefore try and prioritize areas from where questions are most likely to be asked. I am sharing with you what all I prepared for GK in these four years and I hope that it would at least give you a fair idea as to what one must read as part of GK preparation for prelims.I would be covering GK portion in several posts over a period of time and this is the first one in the series.

Important Inventions/Discoveries ---------- Scientist

1.Oxygen ----------- Joseph Priestly
2.Positron ----------- Anderson
3.Dual nature of electron --------De Broglie
4.Photo-electric effect-----------Einstein
6.Tuberculosis causing bacteria-----Robert Koch
7.Atom Bomb------Oppenheimer
8.Atomic Numbers-------Moseley
9.Atomic Theory-------Dalton
11.Cloning------Ian Wilmut
12.DNA structure-------Watson & Crick
14.Fax machine---------Alexander Bain
15.Fountain Pen--------L.E.Waterman
19.Lightning Conductor-------Benjamin Franklin
22.Optical Fiber------Narinder Kapany
23.Periodic Table------Mendeleyev
24.Printing Press-------Gutenberg
26. Quantum Theory-----Planck
27.Radio Telegraphy-----Marconi
28.Telegraph Code------Morse
31.Uranium Fission------Fermi
32.X-ray ------Wilhelm Roentgen
34.Cholera,T.B germs-------Robert Koch
35.Circulation of blood -------William Harvey
36.Leprosy Bacillus--------Hansen
37.Penicillin-------Alexander Fleming
38.Rabies vaccine-----Louis Pasteur
39.Rh-factor--------Karl Landsteiner
40.Vaccination-------Edward Jenner

Now this list is by no means comprehensive,but the point in GS preparation for prelims is that if you will keep reading without discriminating important from less important,you will end up reading a lot but remembering very less.....which would be a recipe for disaster.One can look up the inventions and discoveries from Manorama Yearbook or any other source,but learn to discriminate.Happy studying !!!


Unknown said...

ThnX Abhishek Ji for ur efforts. Hope to benefit from ur guidance in time to come as well.


Abhishek said...

@Ashish ... u r most welcome ,plz feel free to post your queries ...

akshata said...

hi Abhishek,
evn i m an engg-cs student.
can u prescribe some text books for GS. nd i ve chosen zoology as an optional.
plz reply on my id viz akshata.10287@gmail.com
thank u

Abhishek said...

@akshata...i am answering ur query here itself as even others can read it and might be helpful for them as well.
First of all ,no single book or a list of books can cover gs in its entirety.What one can do and must do is read what all is highly probable of being asked in exam.For instance in general science, generally questions are asked from biology portion and very infrequently from physics and chemistry.Similarly in history ,modern India figures more than medieval or ancient India.The point is to prioritize ur areas in gs.
1.History-Spectrum's Modern India
Class-8,9 social studies book(NCERT)only history portion
2.Geography-get a really good idea of locations of important places.Ensemble's Geography through Maps is a gem of a book and a must read,very enjoyable too !
3.General Science-Read biology part from wizard's special supplement for prelims or Vajiram notes.
4.Polity-Subhash Kashyap's constitution and our parliament plus laxmikant's polity or vajiram notes.
5.Current Affairs - The Hindu plus spectrum or wizard current affairs digest when it comes out in April.
6.GMA-practice directly those questions which have come previously to understand ur level of comfort and then plan accordingly.
7.Practice previous year's UPSC test papers,very helpful in analysing ur strengths n weaknesses and also to get the fear of exam out of ur mind.
Hope it was useful ...all the best !!!

MBA student you can learn from said...

Hi Abhishek sir,
I'm a 19 y o aspirant pursuing graduation(B.Sc with Microbiology, Genetics and Chemistry). My query is about the choice of optionals. I've chosen Anthropology because of the primary reason that I'm interested in learning about evolution, religion and social development of humankind. But I'm confused about the first optional for both Prelims and Mains. I'm considering Public Administration because of statistical prevalence of the subject, material is easily available and coaching is also available in Hyderabad.
As you suggested Braintree material for prelims Q&A, I suppose you're at Hyderabad too. And if you're using orkut please visit my profile at http://www.orkut.co.in/Main#Profile.aspx?rl=fpp&uid=6573694426619930973 and post a scrap, comment about me...

mazak said...

@ Ram ... nice to hear frm u ...so u r planning to write with Anthropology as second optional and little confused about first optional ...PA is a very gud choice if u have interest in it or feel that u will like to read it again and again as then only clarity will come ...other optionals u can consider are - geography/political science/chemistry/botany/psychology and sociology ... geography because most students with science background opt for it,chemistry/botany if their syllabus matches with what u r studying as part of ur bsc. and psychology/sociology can be taken up if u feel interested.In the end,decision has to be made by you. Ram evaluate all these optionals and then go with ur interest....look up their syllabus at www.upsc.gov.in ....i m in delhi at present :) and u can reach me thru my blog ...
all the very best and keep ur queries coming ....

nukathoti said...

Hi I am cse student of JNTU,KAKINADA.
I dont know about optional subjects and main subjects or atleast about the prilims. can u narrate about the whole procedure to become an IAS officer.

Abhishek said...

@nukathoti ...u can plz refer my post abt "understanding the nature of UPSC prelims" .... this exam is conducted by UPSC every year in three stages - Prelims,Mains and Interview .... if u clear all three stages with a really good rank (this year my friend dr.madhu was the final candidate to get IAS at 78th rank )then u get IAS ...

Unknown said...

abhishek ji,
The articles are very helpful.could you tell the probable cutoffs for gs prelims 2008, or what one should aim for.

Abhishek said...

@ Asish ... thanks :)
Its really difficult to pin point a figure as probable cut-off ,but in my view anything over 60 would have been a decent score in 2008 Prelims GS paper as the paper was more general knowledge than general studies ,the idea shouldbe to score really well in one's optional and at least a decent performance in GS ..gud luck :)

Anonymous said...

this is helpful for GS preparation
waiting for second series

Anonymous said...

hi sir ., I am jeevan and doing final year B.E,EEE .I have selected Psychology as optional and general studies ,is it correct .first of all i dont know how to access blog to get ur valuable ideas can u help me

Unknown said...

hey dude nic effort....i appretiate ur concern for ias aspirants ... wel even i m pursuing comp sci. n eng. n even i m an aspirant for ias ......
i shall be takin chem as my optional subject so could u plz tel me the probable cut off marks n valuebale tips to get through this exam....
i shall be greatful....
tc n hv fun...
abhi_nk18@yahoo.com is my id.

Anonymous said...


Anonymous said...

M presently doin bds n eyin 4 upsc 2010 wid sociology n public administration as optionals.pls pls refer the buks

Anonymous said...

hi abhishek ...........
can u plz chat wid me coz m i need ur help ...........
plzzzzzzzzzzzzzzzz sir
my id bhawnadrmz@gmail.com...........
waitng 4 ur reply sir on my id

Anonymous said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.