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What is IAS exams procedure?

The IAS Exam is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission in a three stage process which lasts close to one year.

The first stage of the exam is an objective type examination consisting of two papers. The first paper is called General Studies while the second paper is called CSAT (Civil Service Aptitude Test). CSAT examination is purely qualifying while the marks of the GS paper is used to rank you and select your eligibility to appear for the Mains examination.

The Mains Examination consists of 9 papers. It is the second stage of the examination. The papers are General Essay, English Language, Indian Language, GS -I, GS- II, GS- III and GS IV, and 2 optional papers. This is the stage of the exam that carries maximum marks. All the papers except Indian Language paper and the English language paper are marked. These two papers are simply qualifying in nature. The mains examination is descriptive in nature.

If you score enough marks in the mains exam to clear the cut off, you are called for the interview. You have to realise that the marks of the mains examination and the interview combined together is considered for your final rank. This means that you have only a fair chance of clearing the exam if you are called for the interview. I have seen and also am personally aware that getting an interview call doesn’t guarantee a place in the final list.

Once you clear the exam and is recommended by the UPSC for appointment into the civil services, the exam phase is over and Department of Personnel and Training takes over the further procedures.

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