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Sunday, March 14, 2010

How to face the UPSC Interview Board

Well for any first timer, the interview call letter of civil services brings immense joy and apprehension of what will happen in interview.What kind of questions will be asked and will I be able to answer those queries confidently and convincingly.
I have given interview twice in 2008 and 2009 and scored 180 and 159 in two contrasting experiences.So , first of all my heartiest congratulations to those who have got the interview calls.I would like to share certain points which i feel can help in getting a grip over the interview process.
First and foremost candidates should work on their Mains application form, which will be the first point of reference for the interview panel and from which the questions are most expected.Every single place, person, thing etc mentioned in the application form needs to be well prepared with background information.For instance I had done my education from northeast and many question were directed towards the problems facing North east. Also, I was quizzed on my hometown and why it was famous etc. So , the point is to be very well prepared with your bio-data. While the interview panel is not looking for people who know everything, but they are definitely impressed with candidates who show good understanding of themselves and their surroundings.
Another important point that I observed is being honest with the Board.Never try to bluff and take the Board for a ride ,because they are very experienced people and if your untruth is caught, you are going to be definitely out.So be honest , even if you are unable to answer a very simple question in the interview, say "i dont know" with a smile and that will have a much better impact than a mumbo-jumbo type answer.Not knowing is not a crime and they also don't expect the candidates to answer all their questions.
Keep your confidence going by being truthful and honest with your answers. Don't take extreme stands unless the Board is asking your opinion on issues like corruption, patriotism , constitution, democracy , secularism etc.
Its important to give few mock interviews to get a feel of the interview type situation, but don't let your performances in them to affect your morale. The mock interviews are designed to point your flaws and learn from them.
I would recommend taking mocks in any two from Vajiram, Sriram and Chanakya.Also few mocks from Samkalp would be handy for the candidates.
Final piece of advice from my end would be to take interview as a converstaion with a friend of your father, with whom you would be confident yet little formal while interacting and this is what is required in UPSC interview.
All the very best !!!


Pavan said...

Hello Abhishek,

Your blog is absolutely great and a great way ahead for us aspirants....

Just wanted to learn from you, what are the options available for those who could not make it through the UPSC after utilising their attempts.

Will be kind of you. Thanks again.


Ashish Anand said...


i m Ashish, age-23, from engineering background. I don't have luxury to quit my job and devote myself entirely into preparation. I m new to CSE and have shortlisted few subjects like history, geography, polity, psychology and Pub Ad as optional (i like all these subjects).

Now Considering
1. my educational background,
2. the fact that i can't join any classroom coaching
3. I am into 9 hrs/day job
4. I prefer self study

Plz give ur opinion and help me select the optional and plz suggest how to start with.


Anonymous said...

Hi Abhishek,
Your blog is very helpful. I am also an electrical engineer from IIT(K) and working as a senior software engineer. I am also preparing for IAS with PubAd and Soc as optionals, 2010 will be my 2nd attempt. My preparation is going fine but not very well because of my job. I was planning to quit my job and then prepare full time. What do u think I should do.. i m sure u must have also gone thru this dilemma. Please advice me how should an aspirant who is working should study and manage his time.
Thanking u in advance.

Abhishek said...

@Pavan ... well there is the option of trying for state civil services or else one has to start afresh in the corportae world, though there are other central and state services but it depends on the individual's choice ... i didnt attempt the state services and continued with the corportae job that i had joined after my 3rd attempt ...all d best !!!

@Ashi ...u acn take any of these subjects, but as these subjects will be new to u , either u should join coaching or devote urself at least one year for preparation ... otherwise its going to be a tough ask as other candidates r preparing day n night for this exam and the competition is ultimate here ... so think deeply before plunging into this ....gud luck

@Anonymous...If u r really serious about this and to me it appears u are , so my advice would be to go full throttle for this exam , u shud take a break from job and fully devote urself for one attempt...i gave my final attempt while working but it was somewhat easier for me as previous three attempts were full time ...so give ur best shot and a full time job wud not allow u that luxury ...all d very best !!!

Anonymous said...

Hello Friends, Blog is really qualitative for all students and i think UPSC Prelim Papers are really helpful.

Samiksha said...

Hello sir your blog ia great .. its a boon to the preparing ones !
I have completed my 12th boards with PCM and is looking forward for graduation with engineering and hence waiting for the counselling procedure to be completed.I wanted to look up for Civil services and wanted to serve my nation. Sir please guide me the way how could i cope up with my graduation and carry out my IAS preparation as well. I kep my self updated for current affairs as well. Sir, i would be obliged to get a feedback from you and which subject should i look forward for the optional exams??

Anonymous said...

UPSC Declared Civil Services Prelims 2010 results
Details here : http://upsc-results-2010-2011.blogspot.com

upsc civil service exam said...

Nice Blog to get the informations and relevant about UPSC, anh here UPSC student can get all brain storming question's solutions.

Unknown said...

hello sir,
i am doing b.e. in electronics n communication. presently in 2nd year. i want to start preparing for cs...i read 'the tribune' newspaper daily n csr magazine. but i dont know from where to start with to 've proper knowledge.sir, please suggest me which kind of books to follow n which subjects to opt for as optionals.. i will be very thankful to get a reply from you sir..
neha (neham612@gmail.com)

IAS 2010 Aspirant in Real, Loser in Practical said...

Hi Abhishek
Amazing piece of work you have done. I would be obliged if you see through this blog padupsc2010.blogspot.com and let us know how the discrepancy in the results of UPSC be highlighted and what more we can do about it.

Test said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Anonymous said...

Hello Abhishek.... i hav read many blogs by those who hav faced d personality test.... but ur blog is very different.. its honest, straight forward and covers almost all the aspects of d personality test.... and ur last line.. about takin d whole thing as talking to one's father's friend really impressed me alot....

thanks for the honest n immensely helpful blog...

Shubhashree N S said...

Recently I came across your blog..
The blog is truly helpful!

Could u please guide with a few tips for the new pattern of prelims..

Awaiting reply..


Anonymous said...

HI M ABHISHEK FRM THANE N M DOING BMS i.e Bachlour of managements studies and i want to ask u dat is my degree is eligiblr for giving upsc exam its my dream to give upsc exam n to become ias plz help me out. BMS is graduation degree from mumbai university.plz help me out plzzzzz.

just tweet it!! said...

hello sir,

Iam Abishek.I aspire to become an IAS officer in future.Your inspiration through your blog is highly thankful.Please let me know about optionals.Iam a polytechnical diploma student in electronics and comunication engineering.

Also kindly let me know the theme of preparation for UPSC.

Thank you a lot sir.

Akshay said...

Hi sir this is Akshay ..... i completed my 2nd PU and now i joined to engineer ... my aim is to become IAS so plz suggest about optional subjects for prelim's and now on which i should concentrate more plz reply me m waiting

Thanking you
email id -akshaysachin93@gmail.com

Whispers in Tamil Nadu said...

log on to www.whispersintamilnadu.com

Anonymous said...


neha said...

i feel it as a farce on al civil's aspirants that upsc came out with a limited ips examination..it is a cruel joke on all students who are working so hard day and night and there seats are being transferred to those who are already having a well established job..i wish all aspirants come out strongly against it..

More Entertainment said...

hii.. Nice Post Great job.

Thanks for sharing.

Best Regarding.

More Entertainment

Anonymous said...

In my opinion the best way to crack UPSC Exam is to read more. I suggest IAS Aspirants to discuss about their study plans/exam techniques on timesfeed.com. Interact with other IAS Aspirants like me. Also they should read newspaper like Hindu and The Statesman. wHAT SAY?

Facebook Covers said...

Great of an article, can let a person will have insight some life philosophy. Content is good rich logical, description with humor, let a person look at a comfortable happy. I’ll read again a few times, or let oneself know more.

Anonymous said...

Wonderful words. Wisdom examplified. I am bookmarking this. Please keep posting such nice thoughts.

Best Regards,

SMS Messages said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Haider said...

Great post

Unknown said...

Nice Blog, Containing very useful and Important information about ias exam. Waiting to get some more useful content about ias.

Anonymous said...

Indeed very practical suggestions and tips for serious aspirants..