Tips To Avoid Negative Marks in UPSC Civil Services Prelims

Tips To Avoid Negative Marks in UPSC Civil Services Prelims

UPSC civil services prelims examination comprises of two papers namely paper I and paper II, consisting of multiple-choice questions. In GS paper I, there are 100 questions, each carrying 2 marks. In GS paper II, there are 80 questions, each carrying 2.5 marks. There is 1/3rd negative marking for each wrong answer. 

  • General Studies Paper I(General Awareness): 100 Questions carrying 200 marks
  • General Studies Paper-II(CSAT): 80 Questions carrying 200 marks

Paper I is all about Indian national movement, polity and governance, economic and social development of India, environment and ecology, science & technology, current affairs etc.

Paper-II is all about arithmetic, reasoning, numerical problems, reading comprehension, analytical ability etc. It has 80 questions for 200 marks and each question carrying 2.5 marks. The same negative marking rule is applied here too.

So, we can see how the overall performance decreases due to the particular rule. So, now here are some suggestions to let you know how you can avoid negative marks in UPSC civil service prelims.

Since there are options available, many candidates’ tend to guess the answer blindly and deliver incorrect answer thus their marks get deducted. So, try applying the technique mentioned below:

100-50-33-25 per cent technique:

  • In the first round, go for the questions you are hundred per cent sure about. The questions carry four options. If you are able to eliminate three of them confidently, then you have found out the correct one.
  • In the second round, answer the questions that you are 50% sure about. If you can eliminate two incorrect options out of four, then you have two other options and there is a 50% chance that you would answer it correctly.
  • When you have been capable to omit only one incorrect option, there is a 33% chance of answering it correctly. We would suggest you take a risk in few such questions and answer them.
  • No matter how hard you have studied, there would be around 10 questions you don’t have any idea about. There would be a probability of 25% for them getting correct. Try to avoid them since negative marking can affect your score.

Here are a few additional things to remember:

  • Mark your answers properly otherwise your answer may not be considered. Do not use a pencil for marking your answer.
  • If you mark two answers and one of them is correct, still, you will be penalised with the negative marking. So, do not answer questions without sincere thinking. Because you get only one chance to deliver the correct answer.

No penalty for the non-answered questions. The negative marking system is applicable only if you answer it incorrectly.