Like other subjects Philosophy also have two papers. Each paper consists of two parts - Section A & Section B. In every section first question is a short notes which is compulsory also. One has to strictly obey the words limitation.
SECTION-A : WESTERN PHILOSOPHY
On the basis of the development of thoughts this can be divided in 3 stages :
(1) Greek Philosophy - Here Plato and Aristotle is studied. Only four questions can be made from this portion. Every year one full question or one short notes is asked from this portion.
(2) Modern Western Philosophy - Here lies a total number of seven Philosophers from Decart and Kant, Hume is also a important for examination point of view.
(3) Contemporary Western Philosophy - In this portion there are seven chapters. Every year at least one question or some time two full questions are asked from this portion.
This first part of the first paper is comparatively large in size but selective study can be made here. If at least only five chapters are well prepared from this portion then one would not feel difficulty in answering full length questions. These five chapters are - Hume, Kant, Moore, Ruslle and logical positivism. At least one or some time two full questions are asked from these ports and this trend is not only for U.P.S.C. but for the state Public Service Commissions too.
SECTION-B : INDIAN PHILOSOPHY
In this part three heterodox philosophical schools like Charvaka, Budha and Jaina are to be studied. Among the orthodox philosophy Samkhya, Nyaya-Vaisesika, mimansa and Vedanta are prescribed in the syllabus. The trend of asking one full length question from heterodox school and two full length questions from orthodox philosophy is observed regularly. Among these Nyaya-Vaisesika and Vedanta is more important.
Along with the separate analysis of each philosophy, comparative study of few theories and facts is also necessary in this portion. There are mainly six topics where you will have to prepare a comparative study. There are - theory of causation, theories of error, pramanyavada, atma and kiksha, pratyaksa & anumana.
In mains exam every year at least one full length question is surely asked from this portion. Same fact is true for state public service commission examinations.
SECTION-A : SOCIAL POLITICAL PHILOSOPHY
This portion has a total of twelve chapters. This part is very simple and liking. Here political ideas like equality, independence, justice, sovereignty, democracy, Marxism, humanism, secularism, individual and state relations, theories of punishment, sarvodaya, co-existence, violence gender equality, scientific temperament and progress and philosophy of ecology is to be studied. While in one hand long questions have been frequently asked from the first six chapters, on the other hand last six chapters are important from the point of view of short notes. This portion is specially important from the essays point of view.
SECTION-B : PHILOSOPHY OF RELIGION
This portion is not large in comparison with section A. It consists of eight chapters only. Here, nature of God, proofs of the existence of God. Immortality of soul, moksha/liberation, problem of evil, bases of religious knowledge, religion and morality and religion without God are the topics to be studied.
This portion is deeply related with both Indian and Western Philosophies viz. existence of God, immortality of soul etc. are the topics which are also prescribed in first paper. As far as answering full length questions are concerned, four chapters of this portion are mainly important from this point. There are liberation, God, problem of evil and religious knowledge.