Now, UPSC has given Civil Services Examination a completely new look and it has been dynamically redefined.
To counter the challenges you need resource for covering Current Affairs and Contemporary developments.
In the new environment, your entire performance is greatly influenced by your information and awareness level. Intent of UPSC is clear; as this examination becomes creative and innovative, being abreast with the latest is going to be the key to success.
Be it Preliminary or Main Examination, your strong foundation (conceptual clarity) and up-to-date knowledge base is at work. And, the coverage is so wide and deep that you cannot rely on a single source for efficient coverage of current affairs.
Some of the successful candidates in recent Civil Services Examination went on to say that now, it has become ‘Book-Less Examination’.
The recent changes brought in domain of General Studies have reinforced the effectiveness of newspaper reading and role of magazines and internet.
Read: Aiming Civil Services Examination: How to prepare current affairs?
You should pick at least two newspapers for preparation. ‘The Hindu’ is known as the most effective source and is very popular among CSE aspirants. ‘Indian Express’ is also very good newspaper and can prove to be helpful in preparation.
But, a lot of candidates find it difficult to get these as these are not available all across India. On other hand, not everyone has access to internet; that makes it difficult for them.
It is not that you cannot do without these newspapers. You can read the national newspapers that are available in your area or any one published from your state like Times of India, The Hindustan Times, DNA, Tribune, Deccan Chronicle, Deccan Herald, The Telegraph…
You should also read one regional paper for local news which can be of great help during interview.
Make newspaper reading a habit and devote around half an hour daily for scanning important and relevant information.
Read: For a beginner, how to read a news paper, which areas to concentrate more?
How to make best use of Newspaper from CSE preparation standpoint
Now, with smartphones in hand, access to internet has given you opportunity to make an effective use in preparation. It can be of great help in making preparation strategy, clarifying doubts, getting motivation and even in updating your information horizon.
Now, all leading newspapers have e-paper (Internet Editions) and besides these, you can use it effectively for gaining consciousness about preparation.
The biggest advantage is On-line Testing and tutorials that help in better understanding and saves lot of time.
Read: IAS Preparation: Harness the strength of Internet for your benefit
Magazines & other resources
A large section of aspirants depend on competition magazines to gain knowledge about current affairs and preparation strategies. Magazines are compact resource for current affairs coverage and provide useful insights relating to examination preparations.
These magazines supplement your newspaper study as most of the important and relevant news-items find place in crisp and constructive format. Any good magazine covers these analytically and presentation helps in gaining insights about important news, events and happenings.
Pick any one whichever you like from competition magazines like Pratiyogita Darpan, Civil Services Chronicle, Current Affairs Today, Competition Wizard, and Civil Services Times are some prominent magazines.
In addition, Frontline, Yojna, Kurukshetra, Economic & Political Weekly, Down to Earth, The Economist etc. are quite useful.
INDIA 2018 (Publication Division, Govt. of India) is another important resource for an effective preparation.