UPSC Syllabus 2023 & Civil Services Exam Pattern PDF for Prelims, Mains and Interview


UPSC Syllabus 2023 & Civil Services Exam Pattern PDF for Prelims, Mains: The UPSC Civil Services Exam 2023 will be conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to recruit eligible candidates for various Grade-A positions in the government sector. Moreover, aspirants need to plan a proper strategy for their preparation as only 3-4 months are left after the Prelims to prepare for the Mains Exam. Also, solve more UPSC Civil Services Previous Year Papers to get the clear view of the test paper. To crack the cut-off list and secure a prestigious job in the Government Sector, it is crucial to have a proper understanding of the UPSC CSE Syllabus 2023. In this article, we have provided a detailed UPSC Syllabus 2023 PDF for Prelims, Mains, and Interview, along with the UPSC Exam Pattern 2023. Go through the below sections to get the UPSC Civil Services Syllabus 2023.

UPSC Syllabus 2023

The UPSC syllabus is an essential guide for candidates to prepare for the exam in the right direction. To revise effectively for the UPSC Civil Services Exam, it is advisable to follow the topics listed in the UPSC syllabus. Even if you are starting your preparation for the UPSC 2023 Exam, you should bookmark this page and keep a track of your preparation progress using the official UPSC Syllabus 2023 provided here.

Moreover, it is important to note that the selection process, exam pattern, and syllabus for various services such as Indian Administrative Service, Indian Foreign Service, Indian Police Service, Indian Revenue Service, and other civil services remain the same. Therefore, candidates are advised to go through the article carefully to understand the UPSC Civil Services Selection Process 2023, exam pattern, and syllabus for each stage in detail.

UPSC Syllabus 2023 Overview

Organization Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)
Exam Name UPSC Civil Services Exam
Exam Level National
Exam Mode Offline
Category Syllabus
Exam Stages Prelims, Main Exam, Interview
Education Qualification Graduates or Relevant Degrees
Age Limit 21 years to 32 years
Exam Frequency Once in a Year
UPSC Official Website

UPSC CSE Syllabus 2023

The UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) Prelims exam serves as the first stage of the examination and its purpose is to qualify candidates for the next stage, which is the Mains exam. In order to qualify, candidates must score a minimum of 33% marks, in addition to the marks above the cut-off as decided by UPSC. The UPSC syllabus for the Prelims exam consists of two papers: General Studies and CSAT (Civil Services Aptitude Test). These papers are designed to shortlist limited candidates for the Mains exam.

UPSC Syllabus

UPSC Prelims Exam Pattern 2023

It is important for candidates to have a clear understanding of the exam pattern for the UPSC CSE (Civil Service Examination) before checking the UPSC Syllabus 2023.

Paper Subjects Marks No. of Question Duration
I General Studies (GS) 200 100 2 hours
II CSAT 200 80 2 hours

Important Points

There are specific rules for marking in the UPSC Civil Service Examination. A penalty of 1/3rd of the total mark will be levied for every incorrect answer, while no marks will be deducted for unanswered questions. In General Studies (Paper I), each question carries 2 marks, and there is a negative marking of 0.66 marks for incorrect answers. Similarly, in CSAT (Paper-II), each question carries 2.5 marks, and 0.833 marks will be deducted for each incorrect answer. It’s important to note that the marks obtained in the prelims won’t be considered in the final merit list. Additionally, Paper II of the Civil Services (Preliminary) Examination is a qualifying paper with a minimum qualifying mark set at 33%.

UPSC Syllabus 2023 for Prelims Exam

Below, you can find the comprehensive syllabus for the UPSC Prelims Exam 2023. This includes the UPSC Civil Services Syllabus 2023 for General Studies (Paper I), which is an important part of the Prelims examination and the CSAT (Paper II). Candidates can refer to this syllabus to start their preparation for the UPSC CSE 2023.

UPSC Prelims Syllabus for General Studies (Paper I)

1. Current Affairs (Events) of national and international importance.

2. History of India and Indian National Movement.

3. Indian and World Geography-Physical, Social, and Economic Geography of India and the World.

4. Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.

5. Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc.

6. General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity and Climate Change: that do not require subject specialization.

7. General Science

UPSC IAS Prelims Syllabus for CSAT (Paper-II)

1. Comprehension

2. Interpersonal skills including communication skills

3. Logical reasoning and analytical ability

4. Decision-making and problem solving

5. General mental ability

6. Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. – Class X level).

UPSC Mains Exam Pattern 2023

The UPSC Civil Services Mains Exam comprises 9 papers and candidates have to score minimum qualifying marks in each subject. Moreover, the papers are of qualifying marks and the rest of the papers will be scored.

Qualifying Papers (Non-Ranking)
Paper A One of the Indian languages to be selected by the candidate from the languages included in the Eighth Schedule to the Constitution. 300 Marks
Paper B English 300 Marks
Papers to be Counted for Merit (Ranking)
Paper I Essay 250 Marks
Paper-II General Studies I (Indian Heritage and Culture, History, and Geography of the World and Society) 250 Marks
Paper III General Studies II (Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice, and International relations) 250 Marks
Paper IV General Studies III (Technology, Economic Development, Bio-diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management) 250 Marks
Paper V General Studies IV (Ethics, Integrity, and Aptitude) 250 Marks
Paper VI Optional Subject- Paper 1 250 Marks
Paper VII Optional Subject- Paper 2 250 Marks
For the optional papers in the Main Examination, UPSC has a list of about twenty-six subjects out of which anyone subject has to be selected by the candidate.
Subtotal (Written Test) 1750 Marks
Personality Test (Interview) 275 Marks
Grand Total 2025 Marks

UPSC Syllabus 2023 for Mains Exam

Once the candidates qualify for the prelims exam, they become eligible to appear for the Mains exam. This stage of the exam is crucial for scoring and determining the rank of the candidates, as they need to qualify for each paper. The Mains exam focuses on assessing the academic knowledge and the candidate’s ability to present their understanding of the subject matter in a timely and concise manner. The UPSC CSE Mains Syllabus 2023 for the Mains exam is provided below.

Subject Wise UPSC IAS Syllabus – Mains Exam

Structure of the Language Papers

Below is a table that outlines the structure of the language papers, namely “Paper A” and “Paper B”. Candidates are required to choose any one language from the Eighth Schedule of the Indian Constitution, which is listed in the table. The second language paper is always English, and candidates must use the corresponding script for the chosen language as specified in the table.

Languages And Script
Language Script Language Script
Assamese Assamese Bengali Bengali
Gujarati Gujarati Hindi Devanagari
Kannada Kannada Kashmiri Persian
Bodo Devanagari Konkani Devanagari
Malayalam Malayalam Manipuri Bengali
Marathi Devanagari Nepali Devanagari
Odia Odia Punjabi Gurumukhi
Sanskrit Devanagari Tamil Tamil
Sindhi Devanagari or Arabic Telugu Telugu
Urdu Persian Maithilli Devanagari
Santhali Devanagari or Olchiki Dogri Devanagari

Note: For the Santhali language, the question paper will be printed in the Devanagari script, but the candidates are free to answer either in the Devanagari script or in Olchiki.

UPSC IAS Syllabus Questions asked in both language papers are:

1. Essay – 100 marks

2. Reading comprehension – 60 marks

3. Precis Writing – 60 marks

4. Translation:

(a) English to compulsory language (e.g. Hindi) – 20 marks

(b) Compulsory language to English – 20 marks

5. Grammar and basic language usage – 40 marks

In order to prepare for the UPSC IAS Exam, candidates should familiarize themselves with the syllabus for each General Studies paper. The syllabus provides an overview of what topics to focus on and what to avoid. There are four General Studies papers, each worth 250 marks out of a total of 1750. The General Studies papers hold a total of 1000 marks, making them a crucial part of the final merit list. It is important for candidates to prepare well for these papers to maximize their chances of success.

UPSC Mains General Studies I Syllabus

This is the first General Studies paper. This paper is all about the History, Heritage, Geography and Culture of the World and Society. Candidates can check the main points of the General Studies I syllabus below as described by the commission.

Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society:

1. Indian culture covers the salient features of Literature, Art Forms, and Architecture from ancient to modern times.

2. Modern Indian history include the significant events, personalities, issues during the middle of the eighteenth century until the present

3. Various stages and important contributors and contributions from different parts of the country in ‘The Freedom Struggle’

4. Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country

5. History of the world includes events, forms and effects on the society from the 18th century like world wars, the industrial revolution, colonization, redraw of national boundaries, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.

6. Salient aspects of Diversity of India and Indian Society

7. Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and remedies

8. Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism

9. Distribution of key natural resources across the world including South Asia and the Indian sub-continent; factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world including India

10. Effects of globalization on Indian society

11. Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes

12. Salient features of world’s physical geography.

UPSC Mains General Studies II Syllabus

The Mains General Studies II papers have questions related to the Polity, Governance, Constitution, Social Justice and Interrelations. Candidates can check the syllabus below.

Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International relations:

1. Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure

2. Functions and responsibilities of the Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein

3. Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries

4. Separation of powers between various organs dispute redressal mechanisms and institutions

5. Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these

6. Appointment to various Constitutional posts, powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies

7. Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity

8. Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act

9. Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation

10. Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies

11. Welfare schemes for vulnerable sections of the population by the Centre and States and the performance of these schemes; mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for the protection and betterment of these vulnerable sections

12. Development processes and the development industry the role of NGOs, SHGs, various groups and associations, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders

13. Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector/Services relating to Health, Education, Human Resources

14. Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, e-governance- applications, models, successes, limitations, and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures

15. Issues relating to poverty and hunger

16. Role of civil services in a democracy

17. Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests

18. India and its neighborhood- relations

19. Important International institutions, agencies and fora, their structure, mandate

20. Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian diaspora

UPSC Mains General Studies III Syllabus

UPSC Mains General Studies III is all about the Science, Technology, Economics, Defense, Disaster Management and Nature. This paper can ask questions from every aspects of life, new development in any sphere of life.

Technology, Economic Development, Bio-diversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management:

1. Indian Economy and issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment.

2.Development, Biodiversity, Environment, Security and Disaster Management.

3.Government Budgeting.

4. Inclusive growth and issues arising from it.

5. Major crops cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce and issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers

6. Economics of animal-rearing.

7. Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management.

8. Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Public Distribution System objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security; Technology missions

9. Land reforms in India.

10. Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.

11. Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc.

12. Investment models.

13. Science and Technology- developments and their applications and effects in everyday life Achievements of Indians in science and technology;

14. Indigenisation of technology and developing new technology.

15. Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, environmental impact assessment

16. Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nano-technology, bio-technology and issues relating to intellectual property rights.

17. Disaster and disaster management.

18. Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security.

19. Linkages between development and spread of extremism.

20. Challenges to internal security through communication networks, the role of media and social networking sites in internal security challenges, basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention

21. Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate

22. Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism

UPSC Mains General Studies IV Syllabus

Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude: This paper includes questions to check the candidate’s attitude and approach towards the issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and their problem-solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by them while dealing with society. Questions may utilize the case study approach to determine these aspects and cover area

1. Ethics and Human Interface- Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships

2. Human Values- lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers and administrators; role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values

3. Attitude- content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behaviour; moral and political attitudes; social influence and persuasion

4. Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker-sections

5. Emotional intelligence concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance

6. Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and the world

7. Public/ Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration- Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance

8. Probity in Governance- Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information; sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption

9. Case Studies on the above issues.

UPSC Civil Services Optional Subjects

  • Sociology
  • Geography
  • Economics
  • Anthropology
  • Agriculture
  • Animal Husbandry

UPSC IAS Interview Test

Those who qualify in the UPSC Mains Exam 2023, will only be called for the Interview round.

  • During the interview round, the candidate’s career and interests will be evaluated based on the Detailed Application Form (DAF).
  • Candidates must have knowledge of current affairs within and outside their state or country, in addition to academic study.
  • The interview is a purposive conversation to explore the candidate’s mental qualities and analytical ability.
  • The board conducting the interview will assess the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in civil services, using competent and unbiased observers.
  • The Interview test carries 275 marks and the written examination carries 1750 marks. The total marks, 2025, are used to prepare the final merit list.

UPSC CSE Syllabus 2023 PDF Download Link

UPSC Exam Syllabus 2023 – Important Links
To Check & Download UPSC Civil Services Syllabus 2023 and Exam Pattern PDF (Prelims, Mains) Click Here
Aview Home Page

UPSC Syllabus 2023 – Frequently Asked Questions

How can I download the UPSC Syllabus 2023 PDF?

Candidates can download the UPSC Syllabus 2023 PDF through the official portal or through the direct link attached above.

What are the UPSC Civil Services Options Subjects?

Sociology, Geography, Economics, Anthropology, Agriculture, Animal Husbandry are the UPSC CSE Optional Subjects.

What is the language of the UPSC Civil Services Question Paper?

The UPSC Civil Services Question Paper will be given in bilingual i.e. Hindi and English only.

For how many marks, will the UPSC CSE Prelims Exam be conducted?

The UPSC CSE Prelims Exam will be conducted for 200 marks.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here