Understand the value of all Papers of General Studies

In the new-format for Main Examination with the changes in domain of General Studies, it gets the might it deserved. While framing the new syllabus, UPSC has gone a step ahead and come out with highly structured syllabus defining it in detail. Some of the topics in General Studies syllabus are new; but, major portion is facets that are newly re-defined. Yes, GS Paper IV is new addition.
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General Studies has become the "worthy" from the "Less worthy" and all attention seems to be shifting towards it. While framing the new syllabus, UPSC has gone a step ahead and come out with highly structured syllabus defining it in detail for all four GS Papers.

A glance over the syllabus for Paper I, II and III gives a feel that UPSC has blended two different themes traditional as well as dynamic in such a way that it would require a candidate to be well informed.

In shape of Paper IV, candidates are going to face something new. A glance at the syllabus for this paper clearly reflects the present theme where we are witnessing rapid changes due to liberalization and globalization. The role of the Government is more of a facilitator than a regulator.

With an aim to recruit the right person for the right job, UPSC is looking out for candidates possessing effective qualities to perform the task for carrying forward the complex and diverse agenda to meet challenges that arise in front of a ‘Civil Servant’.

But, when it comes to preparation, sometime candidates get carried away and focus more on some specific subjects/topics/issues at the expense of other important areas that deserve equal attention.

General Studies Paper 4 is just one part of the picture
As most of the energy is being diverted towards General Studies Paper 4 (Ethics, integrity and Aptitude), some of the candidates are ignoring other papers that can really contribute.

Something similar is being witnessed with some candidates focusing maximum attention on preparing some constituents like History, Geography and Sociology. What they forget is that these all are part of General Studies Paper I and there are other areas also to cover.

For Paper II, social justice and international relations are in focus in addition to governance, constitution and polity. Most of these topics are interrelated so candidates with conceptual clarity, thoughtful and practical approach will have upper hand.

When I see the approach towards Paper III, the way economy and even, science & technology is being viewed, it requires a much upgraded way of looking at these. Even, topics like internal security and disaster management are very important from examination point of view.

Adopt a balanced approach
The new format for Main Examination is really diverse and has made preparation more challenging for the candidates facing it for the first time.

As the pattern is new, it surrounds a lot of apprehensions and to overcome this, candidates will have to understand the importance of all the constituents listed the syllabus for each paper.

Special care is needed as you will have to make special efforts to keep your preparation as close to the UPSC examiners’ expectations as you can.

On Sunday 29th December 2013     

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