It is my pleasure to share whatever little I have and opine that the purpose is served if it helps the aspirants to whatever extent possible.
Before starting the preparation, it is very important to have a complete understanding about the exam process, its structure and the various aspects related to the preparation.
The following points should be kept in mind while doing preparation:
- The focus should be on gaining basic clarity in each topic, which will come only through lot of logical questioning. This is most important for clearing the prelims stage.
- For any topic, try to do a horizontal and vertical reading of all the related topics which will definitely help to cover any topic holistically.
- A thorough analysis of the previous year’s question papers and the recent trends so that one is in tune with UPSC recent trends.
- Discussing elaborately with teachers, successful candidates and seniors so that one is on track during preparations.
General Studies – Newspapers, Magazines, Journals, Internet (Most Important), and books of general reading. NCERT school books of history, geography, polity, economics, sociology and all humanities and arts (excluding languages, mathematics and science) from class 7th to 12th. Science NCERT school books of only class 9th and 10th.
History – NCERT textbooks, history of modern India – Bipin Chandra and Spectrum publications and any other books on Indian history of general interest.
Geography – NCERT textbooks of class 11th and 12th, physical geography by Go Cheng Leong and an ATLAS. Referring maps is very important.
Polity – Indian Constitution by Laxmikanth or D.D.Basu, NCERT school texts.
Science and Technology – The Hindu S&T page (weekly), Science Reporter by C.S.I.R., What, How & Why by C.S.I.R., Internet, NCERT 8th to 12th science textbooks.
Economics – NCERT 10th, 11th & 12th texts, Economic Survey, Indian Budget, Sriram Class notes, Mrunal.org, Pratyogita Darpan special edition on Indian economy and any business daily.
General Knowledge – India year book, Manorama year book (Not to concentrate on unnecessary details).
Current Affairs – The Hindu, A business daily, InsightsonIndia, Mrunal.org, Gktoday website, Frontline, Yojana, Any competitive magazine, Websites – India.gov.in, India development gateway, Pib.nic.in, UNO website, Ministry websites, RBI, SEBI, etc websites, Indian Embassy websites and whatever other sites you can source authentic and concise information from.
Make use of Google Documents, Google Reader, News and such other internet tools to prepare notes online and for greater, better and easy accessibility. Making notes online helps in cutting down time and must be done on a regular basis without fail.
Let’s take a look at the mains strategy in the coming blog posts. Let me know of any doubts, concerns. Would be glad to help.