Civil Services are jobs directly related to public service and are widely considered prestigious in India. UPSC conducts Civil Service Exams for Central Government job vacancies while PSC in each state fills the State Government job vacancies. There are about 24 services which come under the Civil Services Exam conducted by UPSC every year. These services include IAS, IFS, IPS etc.
Note: You may also read about the classification of services based on Civil Services Exam (CSE) into Technical Services and Non-Technical Services.
Though popularly known as ‘IAS exam’, the official name of the exam is UPSC Civil Services Exam. There are many who consider this exam as the toughest exam in India (and even at the world-stage!). The exam is attempted by around 5 Lakh candidates each year. UPSC Civil Services exam is conducted in 3 phases: 1) Prelims and 2) Mains 3) Interview. The exam window extends over a year (from June month of a year to June month next year when the results are announced).
There are two papers in Civil Service Prelims Examination. The questions are objective in nature.
General Studies Paper 1 which deals with subjects like History, Polity, Economics etc.
General Studies Paper 2 which deals with subjects like Mental Ability, English Comprehension etc. This paper is popularly known as CSAT – Civil Services Aptitude Test.
Date of Notification of Civil Services Prelims: February.
Date of UPSC Civil Services Preliminary Exam: June.
Preliminary Examination is mainly an elimination test and hence its marks are not considered for final ranking. Syllabus for UPSC Civil Services Preliminary and Main Exam is given in this website. For more details on the preliminary exam, refer: “how to clear Civil Services prelims?“.
As you may know, only when tested in an exam atmosphere with negative marking, you can improve the ability to deliver in the actual exam hall. Try for free the Xcellence Prelims 2019 open tests – in the new innovative platform which integrates learning with test-taking. You would be surprised to find how fast you can learn!
The mains stage is subjective in nature as the answers have to be written on paper. The papers in Civil Service Mains as per revised syllabus are as below.
UPSC Civil Services Main Examination as per revised syllabus consists of 9 papers. Marks of 7 out of these 9 papers will be counted for final ranking, while 2 papers will be of qualifying nature.
1 paper on the essay. (250 marks x 1)
4 papers on General Studies ( which covers topics like History, Geography Economics, Polity, Technology, Ecology, Ethics etc). (250 marks x 4)
2 papers on one Optional subject – which can be from selected from 25 subjects and 22 languages. (250 marks x 2)
Qualifying Papers in UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam
1 English Language Paper (Comprehension, Precis Writing etc).
1 Regional Language Paper (Comprehension, Precis Writing, Translation etc).
The Civil Service Main Exam marks are calculated out of 1750.
Date of Notification of UPSC Civil Services Mains: August.
Date of UPSC Civil Services Main Exam: October.
The interview is a face to face process which evaluates a candidate’s potential and commitment to the society. The interview is out of 275 marks.
Final ranks are calculated by adding Mains (Out of 1750) and Interview marks (Out of 275) and the rank list will be prepared based on marks scored out of 2025.
IAS Exam eligibility as per the latest notification of UPSC (Union Public Services Commission) is discussed in this article. We hope this post to clear all doubts regarding the number of attempts, age limits, educational qualification etc permitted for UPSC Civil Services Exam (popularly known as IAS exam).
Any degree (graduation).
any of the Universities incorporated by an Act of the Central or State Legislature in India.
or other educational institutions established by an Act of Parliament.
or declared to be deemed as a University Under Section-3 of the University Grants Commission Act, 1956.
or possess an equivalent qualification.
Note: Final year students can also apply.
The minimum age to appear for IAS Exam is 21 years. This means that the candidate must have at least 21 years of age on 1st August of that given year when the exam is held. For example, if the candidate is appearing for 2019 prelims, he/she should be above 21 years of age by Aug 1, 2019.
Upper age limit to appear for UPSC IAS Exam | IAS Exam Eligibility
Upper age limit is also calculated on the date Aug 1. This means if the candidate is appearing for 2019 prelims, he/she should be below the mentioned maximum limit by Aug 1, 2019. Upper age limit is fixed different for different categories, which is as given below.
Upper age limit for General category: 32 years.
Upper age limit for OBC: 35 years.
Upper age limit for SC/ST: 37 Years.
Upper age limit for Defense Services personnel disabled in operations during hostilities with any foreign country or in a disturbed area and released as a consequence thereof: 35 years.
Upper age limit for Ex-servicemen including Commissioned Officers and ECOs/SSCOs who have rendered at least five years Military Service: 37 years.
Upper age limit for blind, deaf-mute and Orthopaedically handicapped persons (general category): 42 years.
Apart from the mentioned limits, OBC/ SC/ ST candidates will get the benefit of cumulative age relaxation. This means age relaxations gets added in special cases, say, for example, if the person is OBC + Ex-service men, he will get an extension of 5 + 7 = 12 years, ie his upper age limit now stands at 42 years.
A general category candidate has an age limit of 32 years, but that doesn’t mean that he can write this exam as many times as he wishes. There are some restrictions on the number of times this exam can be taken, which again is different for different categories. The number of attempts for IAS exam: General Category: 6 attempts till 32 years of age. The number of attempts for IAS exam: OBC: 9 attempts till 35 years of age. The number of attempts for IAS exam: SC/ST: unlimited attempts till 37 years of age. NB: Physically Handicapped /disabled candidates belonging to General category will get the benefit of 9 attempts till the age prescribed by UPSC – 42 years.
If you appear for any of the papers of the Civil Services Preliminary Exam, your attempt is counted. If you filled up the UPSC application form but didn’t go to take the Preliminary Exam, your attempt will NOT BE COUNTED.
At Xcellence we always recommend aspirants to clarify your queries regarding IAS/IPS exam eligibility from the official UPSC Civil Services Exam notification.
The UPSC CSE Exam notification has all the details you are looking for. This includes further details of relaxation, medical requirements for various services like IAS, IPS, IFS, IRS etc, and even the entire UPSC syllabus.
If you are unable to find it from the UPSC website, don’t worry. Just download the ‘Beginner’s Guide to Success in UPSC Civil Services Exam‘. The latest UPSC notification is added towards the end.