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Thursday, January 1, 2009

UPSC Prelims 2009 : Countdown Begins !!!!

First of all, i (Abhishek, www.upsc-prelims.blogspot.com) would like to wish all the civil services aspirants a very happy and successful year ahead.So,finally we are in January and this leaves us with precisely 4 months- January,February ,March and April for UPSC prelims preparation.From now on, time is going to be even more precious a commodity for all serious aspirants.Whatever people may say ,but based on my experience i definitely feel that 4 months is quite sufficient for prelims preparation. If i was writing prelims this time this is what i would have been doing as first priority :
Reading 'The Hindu' daily and making notes for current affairs.Reading newspaper is well worth the effort and time that goes into it ,but i remember that in my first attempt i could hardly find any time to read the newspaper regularly or makes notes from it.I was attending classes from 11 am to 1:30 pm (GS) and then again from 2pm to 4:30 pm(Psychology mains) ,and on certain days there used to be the psychology prelims classes as well (5:30 to 8:00 pm).After all this,newspaper used to be the farthest thing from my mind.But i had to compensate for not reading the newspaper regularly by putting in much more effort on current affairs at the time of exam.Next attempt onwards ,i made daily notes from newspaper and it saved a lot of time and effort ,which i could devote to other not so strong areas.
Many aspirants are confused as to what actually they should be noting down from newspapers and in what way.There is no hard and fast rule but taking todays's 'The Hindu'(1st Jan 2009) as example ,this is what i feel one should at least note down :

Kalpana Chawla - Columbia Space Shuttle(2003)
National Security Guards (HQ is in Manesar which can be asked or may become apart of matching type question;info not given but you need to pick out areas from where questions might be framed,so it is essential to practice or at least go through previous years upsc question papers).
Bangladesh has a new PM in Sheikh Hasina (Awami League)(look up Bangladesh in Atlas and see which are the Indian states that border Bangladesh and if tropic of cancer cuts it or not )The idea is not to read facts in isolation,relate them to what you already know and what you want to know.This way reading newspaper would become a more enriching exercise rather than merely a ritual.
Former Davis Cup Player(Tennis) Premjit Lall has passed away.Just remember the name and the sport with which he was associated.You can also look up the countries that have won the recent Davis Cup(men), Federation Cup(Women) and Hopman Cup(Mixed).Whenever there is mention of a tennis player in newspaper ,note down his/her country of origin as well.UPSC paper setters have a liking for tennis :)
Netazi Subhash Bose Airport is in Kolkata,fair enough but try and find out where some other well known airports are located .For instance Raja Sansi Airport is in ....? I hope the point is understood.
Look up SriLanka and Cuba in Atlas,their locations,neigbouring countries and whether they are being cut by any tropic of cancer/capricorn or equator etc.
Look up China in Atlas and important cities like Shanghai,Beijing,Lhasa,Gunagzhou,Hong Kong,Macau etc and their ordering from left to right ,north to south etc.
A word of caution ,some of my posts have been taken by other sites without my permission and aspirants have posted their queries on those sites which have remained unanswered or worse answered by someone who does not have much idea.so please do check whether you are reading it in my blog www.upsc-prelims.blogspot.com,if not please visit my blog and read all articles.You are welcome to post your queries which i will be personally answering.
Coral reefs - can look up something on it (refer www.wikipedia.com).
Satyam Computers ,Chairman - B.Ramalinga Raju.
Chris Hoy - Cyclist(triple gold medallist at Beijing Olympics)
All the very best !!!

20 comments:

vandna said...

hi..
your suggestions n strategy hav been really helpful in my prepratn...thnx a lot..
however i have a doubt regardin note-makin from the hindu...goin thru d paper takes me an hour whole...includin d writin part...bt discluding d editorials...well im not sure if i shud be goin thru d state news...r they relevant for UPSC xam? it eats up a lot of time n i havnt really seen questions from those minimal areas...although i am coverin those also till now...bt jus tel me if its really reqd...like new state projects...or minor awards at state level n conferences...n then the snippets in d business section...abt mergers...joint ventures n new CEOs...?

thnx..

Abhishek said...

@ vandana ... no you can leave out the state specific info unless it has national ramifications ,secondly hindu editorials can be skipped for now , CEO of big comapnaies u can note down coz they can come in handy to solve matching type questions ... anything quite important will keep reappearing ,just set a time limit for reading newspaper .... but the time spent reading newspaper productively will pay u well in exam ,guaranteed ...all d best :)

Vandna said...

hi abhishek..
thnx a lot!
ive been preparin news notes since May 2008...n wen i look at it now..i jus gasp..although ive categorised it all..bt i guess being specific shud make d task easier now...i was confused abt d state news n business sectn...so thank u v much for d help.. :)

Anonymous said...

Hi Abhishek,

Had asked u regd. preparation for history optional, for which ur friend had given a very concise and useful reply. Still have some queries - the textbooks that he refers to are NCERT textbooks, right? If yes, which standard? Would 11th and 12th suffice? Secondly, is there any site from where we can download the other books like Krishna Reddy, Satish Chandra, etc; mentioned, since it is not possible literally to buy all the books for study? Would be great if your friend could actually help out with some sites for reference.

Meenakshi.

Abhishek said...

@ Meenakshi... 11 n 12 std NCERT books are a must read, but still i wud get ur query answered from my friend Trilochan and post a response very soon ... :)

Abhishek said...

@ Meenakshi ...here is what my friend Trilochan suggests ... "for prelims optional there is no limit for books,,,ncerts will help in knowing the limits,,, all books right from the 6th class to 12 th one must read ,,,one has to see the diagrams in all these books ,, becoz if we see 2007 and 2008 prelims there are 2 questions are there which can be answered only when we see the diagram ,,
downloading the text books i dont know ,,,i never tried that ,,, these books are available every where ,,, so better try to get these books and study "...

Anonymous said...

Hello Abhishek,

I will be writing UPSC Prelims for the first time this year. I am a computer engineer, and to be frank, all the subjects listed in the CPS are history to me. But have taken Indian History as the my optional. :-)

Can you please let me know where to start with, and how to proceed?

Cheers,
Anil

Abhishek said...

@ Anil ... welcome to d club :)
u can refer my friend Trilochan's article on how to prepare history optional for prelims and go through my blog archive to get at least some idea about what needs to be done for various areas of GS ...afterwards u r most welcome to post ur queries ...all d best to u !!!

vandna said...

hi abhishek..how r u doin..
well...its abt d Hindu news coverage i wana ask...
till wen should i continue this...as in...in coachin center they said its ok till feb end or mid march...
its takin up a lot of time lately i duno y...
nvrmind...so for this yr's exam...june 2008-march 2009 coverage wud be fine? or shud i scan evn b4 dat...say current affairs from january, 2008 onwards...d only source right now i hav for that is chronicles..n year books...

Abhishek said...

@ vandna ... gud to hear frm u once again :) june 2008 - march 2009 shud be fine in my opinion though u cant take UPSC for granted ;) anyway d idea is taht any important information wud rarely appear only once in newspaper ,it will get repeated at least for some time ,so if one is thorough with newspaper reading then current affairs shud not pose any problem ...all d best !!!

Vandna said...

thnx abhishek.. :)
dat wud help..coz now its like arnd jus 80 days at hand so im concentratin more on my optional n current affairs...conventional GS parts r a lil laid back right now..

ashirvad said...

abhishek which magazines u used to read for gs? also tell me whats the cutoff in gs as coaching centres i think fool us by setting it at 70.i think it is 85.

radhika said...

hi abhishek,
i am just a beginner.. have just started to prepare for UPSC exam and would appear in 2011.. but i m really worried if the time i have is sufficient with no prior preparation at all.. please help me.. i am v confused and feel totally lost at times

thank u
radhika

radhika said...

i am sorry, typo mistake.. i will appear in 2010 for prelims
radhika

Anonymous said...

Hi All,

Why don't we start to put here notes taken by all of us who are "The Hindu" reader, I think this way we can share knowledge in the best manner.

Thanks

Ishrat said...

Hi Abhishek. Your contribution is really worth while. please also logon to www.civilserviceindia.com and guide the students through the discussion forum and also if you could tell us where we may further improve in helping students we would be grateful. Mail me at webmaster@thisismyindia.com so we may discuss more about helping ias aspirants.

Ishrat Akhter

Anonymous said...

hi..
your suggestions r very helpful, thank u...
im going to give my attempt in 2010. regarding news paper, from when(month) to when should i concentrate more. i mean will the exam be given regarding current affairs for that particular year n consider the rest as general knowlege. plz reply

Anonymous said...

Sir,
can u please let me know- 1. what score should v b targetting in Psy and GS for getting thru in pre?
2.has there been a syllabus change post 2008?
3. and wud Baron & Morgan/King wud be sufficient?
Thanks a lot
Gaurav

Abhishek said...

Thanks Abhishek for te blog

Deepak Yadav (Yadavd) said...

you can see the upsc information like result,model papers,question papers,current affairs,letest updates in upsc.....etc.....
upsc question paper with answers