Analysing Prelims GS Paper-I

Analysing Prelims GS Paper-I

More number of candidates had appeared for the Civil Services Preliminary Exam conducted by UPSC on August 7, 2016 Compared to 2015. 

More number of candidates had appeared for the Civil Services Preliminary Exam conducted by UPSC on August 7, 2016 Compared to 2015.

This year General Studies Paper I had more analytical and observational questions. Beating all the odds, certain traditional topics like polity, history (modern) had significantly lower share than expected.

Current affairs reined the paper outright from the very beginning to very end. From 2011, when the new syllabus format started UPSC has a distributed pattern of question paper where every subject and topic has its share, but this time it’s been a different perspective.

International Relations and Environment and Ecology dominated the paper. The idea that current affairs meant the news of the previous one year has also been smashed with this year’s paper digging current affairs as old as 2014.

The paper seems easy in the first look but as one starts with attempting the options rather than questions seem to be confusing and tricky.

The justification that more number of mock tests needed to be attempted before the exam has been proven right with the paper. The trick in 2016 paper is not to select the right answer but to eliminate the wrong answer. This can only be done efficiently after attempting mock tests consistently.

Polity, this time around has focused on non-core polity i.e there were noting really from core polity topics like Fundamental rights and DPSP. The focus was on non-traditional topics like Chief Secretary and State Government.

This clearly implies that UPSC is expecting the aspirant to be thorough with the subject rather than preparation for an exam. Economy too has a similar trend. Economy however was more or less collaborated with International affairs. The focus wasn’t much on the conceptual aspect of economy.

Environment and biodiversity stood as an outright favourite in the paper. Significant number of question were from Environment. India currently is just reeling itself from drought conditions, linking this with environment, Prelims 2016 asked questions on REDD+ and Drought management.

Numerically speaking International affairs accounted to 20 questions, of these international institutions of finance and economy were a major contributor. Science and Technology had 13 questions which were primarily from the current affairs angle. The most interesting change has been the 10 questions which came from the Ancient and Medieval India part.

Ancient and Medieval Indian history never really had such large focus, especially in the new exam pattern. Art and Culture from 2011 always had been part of the prelims paper.

This year however Art and Culture almost had no questions, whatever was asked was from dynamic Art and Culture which is also part of Ancient Indian History . Overall 70 -80 per cent of the paper was of moderate to high difficulty level and hence these will be the key determinant of cut off.

On the whole the trend is very clear. UPSC expects the aspirant to have his plate full with plenty from Newspaper. While the static syllabus must be prepared, ignoring newspaper might end up being a bad gamble!!!!!

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