Geography Syllabus For IAS Exam 2020

Geography Syllabus For IAS Exam 2020 (Prelims, Mains And Optional)

Geography is always a favourite subject for both the science and arts background students due to its rational nature and scoring ability. It is quite a famous and popular subject in UPSC examination too. The UPSC examination has three parts including prelims, mains and interview. Geography is included as a subject in this syllabus for both prelims and mains.

In the mains examination, you can select geography as an optional subject too. However, even if you are not that much confident in geography, still you have no option to skip it. It is because the prelims include geography as a compulsory part. So, it is rather a better idea to take up geography as an optional since it is already a compulsory part of prelims. So, preparing for geography in the prelims examination ensures halfway mains syllabus completion.

Now let’s take a look into the IAS geography syllabus before gearing up for the preparation. Go through it thoroughly so that you can have an idea about how should be your technique to complete it in time.

If you consider seeing it in a single line, the syllabus would say, the physical, social and economic geography of India and the world as well.

Now, let’s break it into some small segments to know precisely what all you need to go through -

  • Indian Geography and its basic concepts:

This segment is all about the basic concepts that we mostly already know. But here some detailing and clarity of knowledge is required. The basic concepts regarding the location, latitude, longitude, time zone of India and its neighbours, some important straits, the states and their position as well as the states with international boundaries are included in the syllabus.

  •  Physical geography of India:

  1. The Himalayas and its geological formation. The climate, vegetation, soil, biodiversity as well as the physiographic divisions, major passes, significance of the Himalayas.
  2. The Great North Indian Plains and its geological formation, physiographic divisions. The climate and seasons, vegetation, soil and its features, biodiversity and its significance are important.
  3. Peninsular Plateau and its geological formation. The Central Highlands, Deccan Plateau, Western Ghats, Eastern Ghats etc. The climate, geographic formation, soil and biodiversity of the same places are important.
  4. Indian Desert and its significance.
  5. Coastal plains and islands and their geographical formation. Biodiversity, aquatic lives, climate change.
  • River systems

This segment is all about the Indian rivers and their routes.

  1. Himalayan rivers and their variations
  2. Peninsular rivers
  3. River basins and riverbed
  4. Regional development of riverside and planning and its implementations
  5. Hydropower projects, major dams over the rivers and their contributions
  6. West-flowing and east-flowing rivers and their tributary
  7. Interlinking of rivers and their routes
  • Climate

  1. Monsoons – the driving mechanism, El Nino, La Nina
  2. Different seasons of India and the climate change
  3. Cyclones- the source, the previous cyclones hit and their names
  • Minerals and industries – the mineral distribution and industrial policies regarding that, the location and their classification as per the availability.

  • Agriculture of India:

  1. Land utilisation to for the development of agriculture
  2. Types of agricultural practices and their implementation and the effect on the yields
  3. Green revolution and its history
  4. Soils and crops and the interrelationship
  5. Irrigation and the modern techniques introduced
  6. Land reforms to maximize the yield
  7. Animal husbandry and the techniques
  8. Government schemes and the benefits
  • Natural vegetation and fauna

  1. Classification of natural vegetation and their salient features
  2. Rainfall distribution and the yearly studies
  3. Biosphere reserves, national parks, sanctuaries etc.
  4. Red-listed species and the extinct ones
  • Economic infrastructure

  1. Transportation including the highways, inland waterways, etc. and their names
  2. Power and energy sector and their policies
  3. Conventional and non-conventional sources of energy and the interrelationship between them
  4. Energy conservation and its utilities
  • Human Geography

  1. Demographics
  2. Recent census
  3. Vital statistics
  4. Demographic dividend
  5. Mortality rate and morbidity rate etc.
  • World geography:

  1. Major natural regions
  2. Regional geography of developed and developing countries
  • Physical Geography

  • Geomorphology

    1. Origin of the earth and the interior of the earth
    2. Types and characteristics of rocks
    3. Folding and Faulting
    4. Volcanoes, earthquakes
    5. Weather and its changes
    6. Landforms formed by different natural actions including fluvial, glacial actions
  • Climatology

    1. The atmosphere and its structure and composition
    2. Temperature and Pressure belts
    3. Wind systems, Clouds and types of rainfall
    4. Cyclones and anti-cyclones
    5. Major climatic types and characteristics
  • Oceanography

    1. Ocean relief and the Temperature, salinity
    2. Ocean deposits and currents
    3. El Nino and La Nina
    4. Waves and tides
  • Biogeography

    1. Soil – origin and types
    2. Major biomes of the world
    3. Ecosystem, food chain, biodiversity
    4. Environmental degradation and conservation

Human Geography

  1. Man & environment and their interrelationship and the growth and development
  2. Population, tribes, migration
  3. Economic activities – agriculture, manufacturing, industries, tertiary activities
  4. Settlements
  5. urbanisation
  6. functional classification of towns