Easiest Way to Prepare Psychology - IAS Mains Optional Subject

If looking back at the statistics, Psychology is one of the popular optional subjects in the IAS exam. You need to select two optional subjects for IAS Mains exam. There are many options available to choose from and the choice is really tough. From past records, the success rate of Psychology as an optional subject in the IAS Mains exam is quite high. Although not as compared to that of History and Public administration yet  it is a scoring subject.

If you think, Psychology is the right subject for you, here we are sharing some secrets of preparing the Psychology subject in the easiest manner so that you can score good marks in it.

Before we start, let’s talk about a bit of Psychology subject of UPSC.

What Covers in Psychology?

Studying Psychology trains the human mind to study the behavior of human beings and animals. It is a very interesting subject that helps you everywhere, be it personal or professional life. It is suggested to choose as an optional subject because it is simple and descriptive in nature. Moreover, it is interesting as well! As has been said before also, that hard work is not enough, you need to act smart. Choosing such a subject which is elaborative in nature and fetches your interest also is a wise choice. Candidates also select Psychology as it gives limited courses and enough gaps for its preparation.

Take Motivational Tonic

Self-motivation is the best motivation ever. Whatever subject you choose, stay motivated towards it and believe in your decision. It is a very common proverb that “Nothing is Impossible but the word Impossible itself conveys the message that “I-M-Possible”. It is a well-versed fact that negative minds can never let you taste success. Positive minds have the power to change destiny and negativity kills creativity. So, it is very important that your mindset should be such that you feel determined to achieve your goals. No matter what the situation is, you always be ready to face things.

Check Out Your Syllabus

First and foremost get yourself acquainted with the syllabus of Psychology and plan your schedule accordingly. Visit the official website of UPSC and verify which topics are applicable and if there any topics which are excluded from the syllabus. Keep yourself update with the changes in the syllabus if any. The following are the topics covered in Psychology Paper I and II.

Psychology Paper I

  • Foundation of Psychology
  • Methods of Psychology
  • Research Methods
  • Development of human behavior.
  • Sensation, Attention, and Perception.
  • Learning
  • Memory
  • Thinking and problem solving
  • Motivation and emotion
  • Intelligence and aptitude
  • Personality
  • Attitudes, values, and interests.
  • Language and communication.
  • Issues and perspectives in Modern contemporary Psychology.

Psychology Paper-II

  • Psychological Measurement of Individual Differences
  • Psychological well being and Mental Disorders
  • Therapeutic Approaches
  • Work Psychology and Organisational Behaviour
  • Application of Psychology to Educational Field
  • Community Psychology
  • Rehabilitation Psychology
  • Application of Psychology to disadvantaged groups
  • Psychological problems of social integration
  • Application of Psychology in Information Technology and Mass Media
  • Psychology and Economic development
  • Application of psychology to the environment and related fields
  • Application of psychology in other fields
  • Psychology of Gender

Select Best Books For Reference

There are hundreds of thousands of books available online and offline for preparing the subject of Psychology. Make a list of all the books available and then select the 2 or 3 out of them. Remember that selecting too many books will not help. For a quick help, we are here giving you the best-recommended books for UPSC Psychology exam.

Books Recommended for Psychology

  • NCERT Books of Psychology for XI and XII Standard.
  • Statistics for Psychology by Aron.
  • Systems & Theories of Psychology Krawiec & Chaplin
  • Social Psychology Baron & Byrne
  • The Psychology of Small Groups Shaw

Make a Proper Study Plan

Plan your studies well before exams. Note down how many number of working days till exams are left with you and divide them into the number of chapters or topics to prepare. Further, divide the full plan into the daily schedule so that you know your deadlines. You should set the deadlines for yourself otherwise the level of efficiency will constantly fall down.

List out the Important Topics

We have talked about smart work earlier also. If there is a 100% syllabus, you can skip topics that haven’t asked in exams for long. Make a list of topics weightage and priority wise. Meaning the topics which are more important put them on the top while the topics which are relatively less important put them beneath. Also, it is suggested by exam experts that candidates should prepare for the crucial topics at the last so that they can easily retain them till exams.

Analyze Yourself Taking Mock Test

The practice is very important and Psychology is a theory subject so you should have the habit of writing more words in lesser time. The more you practice, the more you become perfect. The best way to practice is by solving past year’s question papers.