Are you looking for a detailed UPSC syllabus? Then here is the detailed information on UPSC Syllabus. It includes the paper, subjects, and chapters included. Keep reading the article to know the complete syllabus in detail.

If you want to become a District Magistrate or become a collector, then you need to crack the UPSC’s Civil Service Exam(CSE). UPSC is the National Level Exam. This article is a must-read for candidates aspiring for how to become DM.


The full form of UPSC is Union Service Public Commission, which is also an authorized body that conducts the IAS Exam (Indian Administrative Service). The other name for UPSC is the Civil Services Examination.

UPSC Syllabus – IAS Exam Pattern

The UPSC Exam takes place in 3 parts. Once you have qualified for one exam you go for the next exam. To become an IAS officer you need to qualify all the 3 rounds. When you become an IAS Officer and get 2-3 promotions you become a District Magistrate.

The process for the UPSC exam is as follows-

  • Preliminary exam
  • Mains exam
  • Interview process

Let us understand each stage more in details one by one and the subjects included. Also, hereby I have explained the detailed syllabus of each paper.

1. Preliminary Exam

This exam is also known as the CSAT exam. The full form of the CSAT exam is the Civil Services Aptitude Test. This is the qualifying exam for UPSC.

Syllabus for the Preliminary Exam – Paper 1

  • Indian History
  • General Science
  • Indian Politics
  • General Issues
  • Indian Geography
  • World Geography
  • Social Development
  • Economic Development

Syllabus for the Preliminary Exam – Paper 2

  • Communicational Skills
  • Intrapersonal Skills
  • English Skills
  • English Comprehension
  • Language skill is chosen by the candidate
  • Decision-making skills
  • Problem-solving ability
  • Mental Ability
  • Basic Numeracy

Indian History

  • Ancient Indian history
  • Prehistoric cultures in India
  • Indus valley civilization
  • Geographical distribution
  • Vedic society
  • Vedic society religion
  • Formation of state
  • Urbanization
  • Buddhism and Jainism
  • The Mauryan empire
  • Sangam texts
  • Indo-greeks
  • Different religions
  • The Guptas
  • Literature
  • Medieval Indian history
  • Early medieval history
  • Cultural trends
  • 13th and 14th centuries
  • 15th and 16th century
  • The Mughal Empire
  • The decline of the Mughal Empire
  • Modern India
  • British extension
  • The economic impact of the British Raj
  • Social changes and cultural encounter
  • Confrontation to British rule
  • Indian freedom struggle
  • Thoughts of Gandhiji
  • Moments in Indian politics
  • Indian independence

Indian Geography

  • Indian geography
  • Geography of India
  • Location
  • Latitude
  • Longitude
  • Time zone
  • Neighbouring countries
  • States and its positions
  • Physical features of India
  • The Himalayas
  • The great North Indian plains
  • Peninsular plateau
  • Indian desert
  • Peninsular plateau
  • Geological formation
  • Deccan plateau
  • Central highlands
  • Western and eastern ghats
  • Socio-economic issues
  • Indian desert
  • Coastal plains and Islands
  • River systems
  • Climate in India
  • Mineral industries
  • Agriculture
  • Natural vegetation
  • Economic infrastructure

World Geography

  • World geography
  • Universe
  • Earth
  • Interior of Earth
  • Moments of landforms, erosions, and deposits
  • Climatology
  • The hydrosphere
  • Biosphere
  • Economic geography

Indian polity and governance

  • Preamble
  • Schedules
  • Institution of India
  • Union and union territories
  • Citizenship
  • Fundamental rights
  • Fundamental duties
  • Principle of State policy
  • Union
  • Judiciary
  • State government
  • Emergency provisions
  • Panchayat Raj and municipalities
  • Constitutional bodies
  • Non-constitutional bodies

See Also: Capital Smart City

Indian economy

  • Social and economic development
  • Economic growth and development
  • Poverty
  • Demographics
  • Fiscal policy

Current Affairs

Current Affairs form an important part of the UPSC exam. You need to gain current knowledge by reading a newspaper. To enhance your current knowledge you can prefer reading the following –

  • The Hindu
  • The India Express
  • Economic Times
  • Yojana Magzine

2. Mains Exam

After qualifying for the preliminary exam the candidates are eligible for the second round that is the mains exam.

Syllabus for Mains Exam

This exam includes a total of 9 papers namely –

  1. Essay 

Essay on any Topic

2. General studies 1

Indian Heritage, Culture, Geography

3. General studies 2

Constitution, Governance, Social Justice

4. General studies 3

Technology, Environment, Disaster Management

5. General studies 4

Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude

6. General studies 5

7. Optional subject 1

Indian Language (Anyone of the language)

6. Optional subject 2

English language


UPSC’s main exam does not have any prescribed format. You have options to choose from you can pick your option and write on the same.

GS Paper 1 – Indian culture

Aspects of art forms, literature, and architecture from ancient as well as modern Times.

Indian history

  • Events great personalities 18th century till present
  • The freedom struggle
  • Post-independence Indian history
  • History of the world
  • World war
  • Industrial revolution
  • Capitalism and socialism


  • Indian society
  • Diversity
  • Social empowerment
  • Women’s organizations
  • Poverty issues
  • Urbanization
  • Globalization and its effect on Indian society


  • Distribution of natural resources
  • Geographical phenomena like earthquake Tsunami volcano cyclone
  • Features of geographical locations
  • World physical geography

GS -Paper 2 – Indian constitution

  • Amendments
  • Significant provisions
  • Indian constitutional scheme
  • Parliament and state legislatures
  • Redressal mechanism and institutions
  • Responsibility of union and States
  • Poverty and hunger-related issues
  • Importance of civil services in a democracy
  • International rights
  • Parliament state legislature
  • Related to poverty and hunger
  • Role of civil services in a democracy


  • Indian economy and related issues
  • Government budgeting
  • Effects of liberalization
  • Infrastructure
  • Investment models

Science and technology

  • Recent development’s
  • Achievements
  • New technology
  • General awareness
  • Intellectual property rights


  • Conservation
  • Environmental Pollution

Disaster management

  • Causes
  • Effects


  • Internal security
  • Basics of cybersecurity
  • Security challenges

GS Paper 4 – Ethics and human interference

  • Ethics in human interaction
  • Dimension of ethics
  • Human values
  • Role of family and other institutions


  • Function of attitude
  • Influence of attitude
  • Relation of attitude
  • Political attitudes
  • Social influence and persuasions


  • Aptitude
  • Integrity
  • Impartiality
  • Empathy tolerance and compassion towards a weaker section of the society

Emotional intelligence

  • Emotional intelligence
  • Application of emotional intelligence in administration

Values and ethics in public administration

  • Status
  • Ethical concerns
  • Accountability
  • Ethical and moral values in governance
  • Corporate governance
  • Ethical issues

Probity in governance

  • Concept of public service
  • Right to information
  • Cause of ethics
  • Code of conducts
  • Work culture
  • The utilization of public funds
  • Challenges of corruption

Optional subjects (Two Subjects)

It is ok to choose any one optional subject from a list of 48 options. I will be a total of two papers for 500 marks. You have to choose the best option for yourself in the UPSC mains. You need to be very careful while taking the decision.

  1. Interview Process

The last and qualifying round to become IAS is the interview process. To crack the interview process the candidate should also excel in soft skills. At the same time enhance current affairs and knowledge at the national and international levels.

Some common questions asked for the interview are –

Introduction Questions

  • Introduce Yourself
  • Tell in detail about your hometown
  • About Family Background

Educational Questions

  • Mention your favourite subject
  • Projects you have worked on
  • Tell about your school or college

Current Affair Questions

  • Headlines and details
  • Why you want to become an IAS Officer

Optional Subjects Questions

  • Why did you choose a particular optional Subject?
  • Which subject was your graduation optional subject


To sum up, this was all about UPSC Syllabus. Hope the information was relevant and detailed to answer all your questions. If you have liked the article do not forget to share it with your friends.






Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here