Clear IAS Exam : Strategy for beginners

Beginners are often confused about from where should they start the UPSC preparation. With mushrooming coaching institutes and plethora of materials available online and offline, their worries are only compounded. It is very important to address the basic queries of all freshers. outlines below the ideal steps and strategies to be followed by a serious aspirant who begin IAS preparation.

Learn the requirements of the UPSC Civil Services Exam!

No. You don’t need to know everything under the Sun to clear this exam. That’s the first thing to get into your head. There is a prescribed syllabus by UPSC for the three stages of this 1 year long exam, ie Prelims, Mains and Interview. A good understanding of UPSC syllabus and exam pattern is the first step for all freshers.

Buy some essential books to get the stone rolling!

We recommend buying some basic books including NCERT books. List of essential books for IAS preparation is compiled in this website, taking inputs from many toppers. Aspirants can buy these books online at discounted prices. Order a few basic books from the list today itself, so that you will feel that you are into it. PS : Also make newspaper reading a habit.

Read free-online study materials from

Yes; there is such thing as a free lunch. We call it Free Online Study materials from Clear IAS™. We write articles regularly on many topics, on which aspirants find it tough to find the right materials. We publish study materials for every subject in Prelims and Mains like History, Geography, Economics, Polity etc. Our readers are free to print the online materials in PDF form or even in paper form, except for commercial circulation.

Get right guidance; follow our articles on UPSC Civil Services Exam guidance

Requirements for each stages of the UPSC exam, ie Prelims, Mains and Interview are different. But there are many things in common too. Hence follows Prelims-cum-Mains Integrated approach, which is a fast and smooth approach to clear IAS. You may read our guidance articles for Prelims, Mains and Interviews. Always get inspiration and right guidance from thetopper’s interviews published in the website. Also keep in touch with mock questions and previous year question papers so that you won’t read wild things, and stay focused.

Stay away from low quality IAS Coaching Centers

We are not against any class room IAS Coaching centers. There are many good, reputed centers, but at the same time there are many others which don’t provide any service even after charging lakhs of rupees as fees from the candidates. The ‘bad guys’ often misguide with advertisements and out-dated notes. Understand the very need of attending a coaching institute, if any, is for right guidance, and not knowledge. In this online age, knowledge is available at mouse-click. If you are misguided in this highly competitive exam, you are ruined! So reduce your dependency on spoon-feeding by coaching institutes and build your analytical abilities. And for right guidance, you can always refer the unedited interviews by toppers in websites like

Stop worrying too much; just do it!

Well, why are you still reading this article? Why don’t do get your feet wet? You have nothing to lose. But you will be a totally different person, well aware of our nation and things around you, once you step in. Don’t worry about your age, financial background, lack of time or any other usual excuses. You are never late. Get involved. Just jump in and do it! Understand that a journey of thousand miles start with a single step. All the best!