How to prepare General Studies(GS) for UPPSC Mains Examination 2020

If you wish to slay the UPPSC Mains Examination 2020, you must have a stronghold on all the GS papers with complete conceptual clarity and an ability to analyze questions asked. A basic understanding of the topics can be achieved after reading the subject multiple times and to obtain a clear opinion & analysis of the issues, you must practice answer writing for all the four GS subjects regularly.

To help you accomplish your target result successfully, we have provided paper wise strategy for all the GS Papers. Along with the approach mentioned, you should go through the UPPSC Mains syllabus 2020 thoroughly to have a clear understanding of the clarity depth required in each subject.

Let’s have a look at the paper-wise strategy for General Studies papers


This paper majorly includes History, Geography, and Human Geography. Under History, topics like  Ancient History, Art and Culture, Modern Indian History(freedom struggle), post-independence India, World History, Medieval History with a specific focus on Uttar Pradesh.

Geography includes Physical Geography, Climatology, Population, Oceanography, etc.

  • You should maintain notes for History as you have to refer to various sources to consolidate the syllabus appropriately.
  • Try and focus on topics which include the U.P. State and memorize the timeline of events.
  • Current affairs should be regularly referred to as news like artefacts discoveries, various festivals, events anniversary and for geography, western disturbances, El-Nino, etc. are important.
  • Learn to correlate topics like society and globalization and understand the difference between communalism & regionalism.
  • Do not read the same topic again and again from different sources; it leads to confusion and hampers your ability to comprehend the topic properly. Read and revise from a single source to enhance retention and understanding.
  • Your preparation is incomplete without answer writing practice therefore, to begin with solve previous year papers and move on to test series. It enhances your ability to consolidate and put down the relevant data within the time limit as the answer.
  • For the Geography section, learn to make Atlas and mapping your best friend. Draw diagrams in your answers for a better presentation. Also, focus on various models in Human Geography along with the graphs.


GS II includes topics under Polity, Governance, International Relations, Government Policies and other instruments of the Government. Current affairs play a crucial role in this section as you have to update your static portion with the current events regularly.

  • Begin your preparation with NCERTs and the standard books that you choose to refer to like Laxminakant or D D Basu. You must go through the book to understand every concept and functionality in detail and memorize the same.
  • You must keep a critical and analytical mindset while preparing for this paper. The questions asked are contemporary in nature and also demand reference to the static portion.
  • Keep a lookout for all the important reports and publications by the Government and go through them to add value to your preparation. Reports like ARC, NITI Aaayog and RPA acts, etc. should not be skipped.
  • Practice and write answers for all the previous year questions. You may also practice writing analysis for all the important current events happening across the country. Have an opinion about all the important affairs but maintain an objective point of view without being too aggressive.


GS III paper includes topic from Economics, Planning, Agriculture, Industry, Growth & Development, Infrastructure, etc. Also includes Science & Tech, Environment, Security and Disaster Management. Similar to GS II, this paper also requires thorough and continuous reading of the newspaper as the topics are varied and contemporary in nature.

  • For Indian Economy, refer to the Economy book by Ramesh Singh. The book explains all the important topics clearly and in a lucid language. Once you have completed the book, you will be better equipped to analyze and understand the current events like inflation and monetary policies.
  • Union budget and the Economic Survey are the most important documents for this paper. Do not just memorize the stated things in the documents, also understand the effect of policy changes and budget variations.
  • For topics like Agriculture, Irrigation, Education, Food Security, etc. update your notes with the India Year Book and Yojna Magazine. They are dependable sources for the current schemes of the Government.
  • For Science and Tech, do not miss the Sunday edition of the Hindu Newspaper.


This section is newly introduced and you shall either find it the easiest or the most difficult of all the papers. GS IV paper is Ethics paper. Keep the syllabus with you while prepping for this paper.

GS Paper 4 Question paper shall have questions on theory and case studies. Theory can be completed using the chosen booklist; the only thing you must focus on is regular revision as the theories need good memorization and retention. They are also used in the case studies questions as after giving your perception, you may quote the thinkers & theories to support your opinion.

Practice the past year questions and various mock tests to have a stronghold on the subject.

Follow the tips mentioned above to level up your GS preparation and score the maximum to qualify UPPSC Mains Examination 2020 and face the interview.


All the Best.

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