UPSC 2019 Selection Procedure

UPSC 2019: Civil Service Selection Procedure

The Union Public Service Commission, commonly known as UPSC, introduced its Civil Service Examination to recruit meritorious candidates, for the various posts of Government officers including IAS, IFS, IPS, IRS, and various other groups A and Group B posts. UPSC Civil Service examination is considered one of the toughest competitive exams across the country. Every year the exam is concluded in three different stages which include the Preliminary Exam, Main Exam, and Interview Round. The article here will provide comprehensive details on the Civil Services Selection Procedure and also help the UPSC aspirants to crack this coveted exam without wasting several attempts allocated to any particular category for the exam.

UPSC Civil Services Selection Procedure

UPSC, the exam conducting body organizes Civil Services examination in three different stages i.e. Prelims, Mains, and Interview. Candidates who obtain great scores in prelims will be shortlisted to appear for the Mains. Qualifiers of both the rounds will be called for an interview round which will be conducted at the office of the Commission. However, one should note that, based on marks obtained in Mains and Interview, a final merit list is prepared with the name of the qualifying candidate who is eligible for recruitment under All India Services.

From the below-provided table, you will understand the complete details of the Civil Services Selection Procedure.

Stages of Examination

Examination Pattern

Other Details

UPSC Preliminary Examination

The Preliminary examination will comprise of two objective type papers of 200 marks each. Paper 1 will have 100 questions from various GS papers like History, Geography, Polity, Economics, Environment, etc of objective nature. Paper 2 will have 80 questions from topics like English Language, General mental ability, Reasoning, Numerical Aptitude, etc.

Question Paper Language: Hindi and English

Total Time Duration: 2 hours each. Qualifying Marks: 33% in Paper 2.

Note: Only Paper 1 marks are considered for merit.

Negative Marking Scheme: 1/3rd of the marks allocated to the question.

UPSC Main Examination

The Mains are only applicable to the students who have passed in the Prelims round. In this round, candidates will need to appear in the written exam (Conventional essay type questions) which shall consists of 9 papers out of which 2 are qualifying language papers and the other 2 are optional papers. The subjects included in Mains examination are Compulsory Indian Language (only qualifying), Compulsory English (only qualifying), Essay Paper, General Studies Paper 1, General Studies Paper 2, General Studies Paper 3, General Studies Paper 4 and 1 Optional Subject comprising of 2 Papers (Paper 1 & Paper 2)

Question Paper Language: Hindi and English.

Time Duration: 3 hours for each paper

Total Marks: 250 marks each, while for qualifying language papers it will be 300 marks.

Note: Those who qualify the UPSC Mains as per the cut off scores decided by the commission shall be called for the interview round.

Interview/ Personality Test

The Civil Service aspirant will be interviewed by a panel. However, before appearing for the interview session, shortlisted candidates need to fill the application form known as Detailed Application Form (DAF) through which the panel will ask questions just to ensure the candidate’s knowledge and skills.

Total Interview Marks: 275

Questions asked in the interview round generally consists of the following subjects:

  • Mental alertness
  • Critical powers of assimilation
  • Clear and logical exposition
  • Balance of judgment
  • Variety and depth of interest
  • Ability for social cohesion and leadership
  • Intellectual and moral integrity.


UPSC Civil Service Final Selection

Candidates who obtain qualifying marks in all the rounds will be allotted to the various services under UPSC keeping in view their obtained rank in the examination and the preferences expressed by them in their form.