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Monday, June 29, 2009

Strategy For General Studies in UPSC(Mains)

Many readers of this blog have repeatedly requested that this effort should not just be limited to prelims and should also give some pointers on mains preparation. So here is a first hand account by my friend Umesh Agarwal , AIR-237, who has been a driving force behind this blog.

I (Umesh Agarwal)could score only 309 in 2007 mains where average GS score was around 330 ,though I got the interview Call .While preparing for my 2008 attempt I met Mr Ajit Sinha of Expert Brains and he advised me to follow the guidelines as prescribed by their Experts.

I judiciously followed the guidelines as prescribed by their Experts keeping in mind the concept of bounded rationality and by the grace of god , I scored 172 in paper 1 and 173 in paper 2 i.e., 345 ( highest - 353 ) ,where average GS score in 2008 mains was around 285.

My strategy in a nutshell :


I studied from Spectrum and Class 12th NCERT and for 2-markers i referred 'Up to the mark' and 2-markers given in the test series.


I studied from the Vajiram ' Yellow Book and supplemented it from class 12th NCERT i.e., democracy at work.

National Issues and Social Issues

I referred last one year Yojna , one year chronicle and Vajiram 'class notes


I didn't prepare at all.

International Relations

I referred one year chronicle and supplemented it with vajiram'class notes.


I referred India Year Book , Economic Survey,Uma Kapila ,and Vajiram class notes .

Science & Technology

I didn't study S&T and lost some marks in this section , hence i am unable to guide you for this section.


I studied from S K Manocha's book and I practiced it in the same way as I would have to appear in my Mains keeping the time and graph paper along with the question papers.

With warm regards

Umesh Agarwal (AIR -237)

Tuesday, June 16, 2009

Frequently Asked Questions ...

The UPSC final results came on 4th May,2009 and many friends made it through to the coveted list, two of whom have contributed to this blog as well.Friends who have made it are Umesh, SB, Arun, Rohan,Nitu,Sandeep, Mashhood,Diwakar,Anish, Shankesh,Sharanappa,Pritam.My heartiest congratulations to all of them for getting through this mother of all exams. As for me, I did not make it to the final list of selected candidates.I am glad that I could pursue what interested me for so long and as long as I was competing I was in with a good chance.Now, I need to find new challenges in life and I am looking forward to the journey ahead.
Coming back to the purpose of this blog which is to help the newcomers in getting to understand the nature of prelims and sharing of experience by aspirants who have been successful in cracking the various stages of this exam.Since many of the queries by aspirants are of repetitive nature, it is not humanly possible to answer all of them , so my request would be to go through the various articles as well as the comments section before posting your query.
Another query which gets repeated quite often is regarding selection of optionals, I have written a separate post on it ,which can be referred.
I am thankful to Umesh and Saurabh for their continued support in keeping this blog alive and look forward to their cooperation in future too.