UPSC Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Q.1. Why IAS is considered to be the BEST job in the country?

Ans. IAS gets huge authority just after cracking the exam. No other exam in the country gives so much influence immediately after selection. Most brilliant students of best colleges of the country even after high paying jobs keep trying for Civil Services.

Q.2. Why IAS preparation is not only important but extremely essential?

Ans. IAS preparation improves personality and enriches knowledge of everything around us so much that this knowledge becomes handy in any other exams like CAT, NDA, SSC etc.

Q.3. When IAS preparation should be started?

Ans. IAS preparation takes at least 1.5 years’ time and many people from good colleges like IIT, IIM, AIIMS, SRCC opt for job and even after cracking other good exams like CAT, GMAT, IES start UPSC preparation at the age of 25-27 and clear at the age of 28-30. So, it's always advisable that one should start as early as possible.

Q.4. Is IAS exam really difficult?

Ans. People who could not clear this exam call it impossible. Some call it 'Mother of All Exams'. But there are people who clear it at the age of 21 in the very first attempt with very good rank. It means if students follow right direction and approach, anyone (even from not very bright academic background) can crack it easily.

Q.5. How can it be prepared?

Ans. Step by step approach is the key. There are mainly 8 areas (like Polity, Economy). Best standard book of each subject should be read, understood and revised. Previous years questions and test series should be done after one reading of these. Current affairs and newspaper should be started once one is comfortable with the static part in the first 6 months.

Q.6. My English is not good, can I crack it?

Ans. If you watch videos of many IAS toppers, you will realise that many toppers have poor communication skills and still they crack it easily because this exam requires analytical skills rather than mere good language skills.

Q.7. My current affairs and GK are not good. Can I crack it?

Ans. Every year more than 50% officers are from engineering background who have poor GK in the beginning but just after preparing for 1 year, they learn the art to crack this exam.

Q.8. Why to waste fee of around 2 lakhs?

Ans. Annual fee of this course is not at all high, especially when these days, fee of School education is even much higher.

Q.9. How can someone train us for the toughest exam like UPSC, When they themselves have not cracked Pre?

Ans. ENSURE IAS is aventure of an IRS officer of 2016 Batch who cracked civil services multiple times. In fact under his guidance, his own brother also cracked civil services multiple times and currently he is also an IPS officer. In ENSURE IAS, many selected officers & highly experienced teachers teach the students.

Q.10. Why some students start preparing after leaving huge salary packages?

Ans. After job, the true reality comes into picture. When high salary people compare their own college friends in IAS with huge authority, then they take decision of leaving high salary jobs and start UPSC preparation.

Q.11. Should we take Engineering subject as an optional?

Ans. Every year more than 300 Engineers crack civil services but not even 50 students crack with engineering subjects. Public administration and some other humanities subjects are one of the best subjects to take.

Q.12. Can one prepare for UPSC through YouTube?

Ans. YouTube videos are random so it takes huge time to find good video for any topic. YouTube videos are not complete. There are only some free videos from every institute just to attract students for full paid course.

Q.13. Is IAS officer a VIP?

Ans. To a great extent, yes. Because the privileges and responsibility one has as an IAS Officer, make her/him an important person.

The perception of the service being VIP has been for a long time. During colonial years, the Collector would travel on elephants, horses along with all his staff- cook, helper, orderly, etc. This created a perception among people that IAS (or more commonly, the Collector), is a VIP. Even now, when collector (DM) visits anywhere in the district, the entourage of people/ officials along with him/her give the impression of collector being an important person.

Of late, times have changed. They are more Accessible now. Most Collectors/Offices have citizen charters through which a complainant can directly get a response from concerned department. There are weekly public grievance redressal days. WhatsApp groups, Twitter account has increased direct communication between public and an IAS.

Many a time people give special reverence, particularly when their lingering problems are resolved swiftly .In any case, a person is important only when one’s work shows the importance. It is said that an IAS has the power to iempower the people. So, we can say an IAS is a VIP. The special kind of respect the instituition commands can not be obliterated.

Q.14. What is the lowest rank in IAS?

Ans. Usually the first posting is as Sub Divisional Magistrate (SDM).

Q.15. Is IAS a stressful job?

Ans. One experiences stress when one has to face large number of uncertainties and a constantly changing work environment. Stress also accrues if your ability to control external variations is very low.

An IAS may experience stress, when one is low in the hierarchy but Stress reduces as one climbs up the ladder.

When you start doing something which gives you a feeling of self-actualization, satisfaction and fulfilment, you will never realize the fatigue or stress. Rather you enjoy your job.

In IAS, you ask others to work i.e. you supervise and direct. So, you can not say that being an IAS is stressful.

Q.16. Does IAS have family life?

Ans. There cannot be absolute yes or no to this question.

Along with personal choice, it is also the nature of posting that determines the availability of personal time. In districts posting as collector or sub collector, one is hard pressed for time. While in Secretariat postings, one can have relatively more time.  

The family life of civil servants often gets affected due to frequent transfer and postings. If both the spouses are working then the matter become even more complex.

Q.17. Which rank of IAS is best?

Ans. Of course the highest rank in IAS should be the best. Thus the post of Cabinet Secretary should be the best position.

Q.18. What is the highest salary of IAS?

Ans. In India, the salary of an Indian Administrative Service (IAS) officer varies depending on their job level and years of service. Since the Cabinet secretary is the highest post, he must get the highest salary. His Base salary as per 7th Pay Commission (Per month) is ₹250,000 (US$3,100). In the Pay matrix he is at level 18.

Additionally, IAS officers may receive extra allowances and benefits based on their posting location and personal circumstances. It’s important to note that these salary details might change due to government updates.

Q.19. What are the 24 posts in UPSC/ civil services?

Ans.  As per the notification of CSE 20224, the following services are there in civil services:

(i) Indian Administrative Service

 (ii) Indian Foreign Service

 (iii) Indian Police Service

 (iv) Indian Audit and Accounts Service, Group ‘A’

 (v) Indian Civil Accounts Service, Group ‘A’

 (vi) Indian Corporate Law Service, Group ‘A’

 (vii) Indian Defence Accounts Service, Group ‘A’

 (viii) Indian Defence Estates Service, Group ‘A’

(ix) Indian Information Service, Group ‘A’

 (x) Indian Postal Service, Group ‘A’

 (xi) Indian P&T Accounts and Finance Service, Group ‘A’

 (xii) Indian Railway Protection Force Service, Group ‘A’

 (xiii) Indian Revenue Service (Customs & Indirect Taxes) Group ‘A’

 (xiv) Indian Revenue Service (Income Tax) Group ‘A’

 (xv) Indian Trade Service, Group ‘A’ (Grade III)

 (xvi) Indian Railway Management Service, Group ‘A’

 (xvii) Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Service, Group ‘B’ (Section Officer’s Grade)

 (xviii) Delhi, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Civil Service (DANICS), Group ‘B’

 (xix) Delhi, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Lakshadweep, Daman & Diu and Dadra & Nagar Haveli Police Service (DANIPS), Group ‘B’

 (xx) Pondicherry Civil Service (PONDICS), Group ‘B’

 (xxi) Pondicherry Police Service (PONDIPS), Group ‘B’

Some of the other sevices are Indian Ordnance Factories Service (IOFS). Earlier instead of IRMS (Indian Railway Management Service) it used to be IRTS, IRPS and IRAS. But now all these have been merged into IRMS.

Q.20. Which UPSC exam is easy?

Ans. No specific UPSC civil services exam can be labelled as the "easiest" as the difficulty level can vary depending on individual strengths, preparation, and the overall competitiveness of each year's examination.

A candidate, who has the knack for solving objective-type questions may find the Preliminary Examination easier compared to the subjective nature of the Main Examination.

Q.21. How many marks required for IAS?

Ans. It being a competitive examination, nothing is fixed. Qualifying marks for the preliminary exam hovers around 50% of the total marks in GS. To be in the IAS one needs to be in the upper bracket of the merit list.

Q.22. Which BA is best for UPSC?

Ans. There is no absolute answer to this. The one, which you like the most is best for you. Yes, there are some popular and easy subjects like public administration, Political Science and International Relations, Sociology, geography, History and Anthropology.

Q.23. What is the Salary of IAS, IPS, and IRS?

Ans. The starting salary of an IAS, IPS and IRS officer is Rs. 56,100 per month (Level 10 pay scale).

Q.24. Who is the director of ENSURE IAS?

Ans. Mr. Sachin Jain an IRS officer of 2016 batch is the Director of ENSURE IAS.

Q.25. Who is Sachin Jain, IRS?

Ans. He was an IRS officer of 2016 batch and is the Director of ENSURE IAS.by education, he is an engineering graduate from IET, Lucknow. A prolific public speaker and very good strategist, Mr. Sachin has cleared the exam finally twice and helped many to ace the IAS exam.

Q.26. Why ENSURE IAS coaching is so popular among students?

Ans. ENSURE IAS is popular because of its succinct teaching, methodical planning, timely and regular delivery of tests and results and 24x7 availability of a topper in the form of a director in the institute, who gives the first-hand experience of both the examination and services.

Q.27. Why Sachin Jain Sir is so popular among students?

Ans. Because he knows the tricks of the trade .This is the only institute where book-based teaching is done and it is his brain- child. There are many facets of his planning which can only be witnessed, when one is under his mentorship. When it comes to preparation, he knows no nonsense. This makes him popular among students.

Q.28. How Sachin Jain Sir Cracked IAS Exam multiple times?

Ans. His persistent effort, executing his plan, learning from the right sources, note making, revision and regular test. All these made him clear the exam many times.

Which subject (optional) is best for IAS UPSC exam?

Selecting the right optional subject for UPSC plays a significant role in shaping an aspirant's strategy and performance in the examination.

There are 48 Optional Subjects in UPSC.

Below is the list of 48 UPSC Optional Subjects that you can choose from.

  1. Agriculture
  2. Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science
  3. Anthropology
  4. Botany
  5. Chemistry
  6. Civil Engineering
  7. Commerce and Accountancy
  8. Economics
  9. Electrical Engineering
  10. Geography
  11. Geology
  12. History
  13. Law
  14. Management
  15. Mathematics
  16. Mechanical Engineering
  17. Medical Science
  18. Philosophy
  19. Physics
  20. Political Science and International Relations
  21. Psychology
  22. Public Administration
  23. Sociology
  24. Statistics
  25. Zoology
  26. Assamese
  27. Bengali
  28. Bodo
  29. Dogri
  30. Gujarati
  31. Hindi
  32. Kannada
  33. Kashmiri
  34. Konkani
  35. Maithili
  36. Malayalam
  37. Manipuri
  38. Marathi
  39. Nepali
  40. Odia
  41. Punjabi
  42. Sanskrit
  43. Santhali
  44. Sindhi
  45. Tamil
  46. Telugu
  47. Urdu
  48. English

Choosing the best optional subject for the UPSC CSE exam can greatly impact your performance.

Although, there is no absolute answer to which one is the best but the one, which you like the most is best for you. Yes, there are some popular and easy subjects like public administration, Political Science and International Relations, Sociology, geography, History and Anthropology.

Q.29. How to prepare for the UPSC CSE Exam from the Zero Level?

Ans. UPSC Civil Services Examination (CSE) requires smart work, good planning, and disciplined study.

Some of the methods to prepare for this exam are as under:

  1. Exam Pattern: Ensure IAS will help you understand UPSC CSE exam pattern. It consists of three stages:
  • Preliminary Examination
  • Main Examination
  • Personality Test
  1. Study Material: Ensure IAS gives you study material such as NCERT books, standard books, Current Affairs Total (CAT) Monthly Magazines, and newspapers.
  2. NCERT Books: you should read NCERT subjects such as History, Geography, Polity, Economics, and Science from class 6 to 12.
  3. Newspaper: Start reading newspapers such as 'The Indian Express' or 'The Hindu' and make it a habit.
  4. Make Notes: Summarize key points, facts and concepts in your own words for quick revision.
  5. Practice Previous Year Papers: Solve previous years' question papers to understand the exam pattern, types of questions and time management.
  6. Tests and Practice: Ensure IAS provides you regular test series and practice answer writing for Mains.
  7. Revision: Revise your notes regularly.

Q.30. How to prepare for UPSC after the 12th?

Ans. Just after class 12th, one needs to be under the expert hands. As students are immature, a course modeled on that pattern is needed.  UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) exam after the 12th with the help of coaching institutes requires a planned approach and dedication. ENSURE IAS has been pioneer in this field.

Ensure IAS provides some methods to prepare for this exam:

  1. Understand the Exam Pattern: Ensure IAS helps you to understand this exam pattern. It has three stages:
  • Preliminary Examination
  • Main Examination
  • Personality Test
  1. Select the Right Coaching Institute: Ensure IAS is the best coaching institute in Delhi that produces successful UPSC candidates.
  • Why Ensure IAS is best?
  • Selected officers teach.
  • Only UPSC is run to have a focused approach.
  • Personality Development classes are taken by Toppers.
  1. Syllabus: Ensure IAS provides you with a detailed syllabus for the UPSC CSE exam so that you can understand it easily.
  2. Study Material:  Ensure IAS gives study material that is specially designed for the exam.

Q.31. How much rank is required for IAS?

Ans. Rank for the Indian Administrative Service (IAS) depends on various factors:   

  • Number of vacancies
  • The performance of the candidates in the Civil Services Examination (CSE).
  • Category of the students.

Generally, a candidates who gets a rank in the top 100 have a good chance to become an IAS if one is in general category. But, it is important to note that the competition is very tough, and relies on factors such as reservation categories and vacancies in different cadres, candidates with lower ranks can also get the IAS.

Q.32. What is the age limit for UPSC?

Ans. The age limit for UPSC CSE:

  1. General Category (Unreserved):
  • Attempts = 6
  • Age = 32 years.
  1. OBC (Other Backward Class):
  • Attempts = 9
  • Age = 35 years.
  1. SC/ST (Schedule Caste/Schedule Tribe):
  • Unlimited attempts
  • Age = 37 years
  1. Persons with Benchmark Disability (PwBD):
  • Attempts = 9
  • Age = 42 years
  1. EWS:
  • Attempts = 6
  • Age = 32 years.

Q.33. How many hours should I study to crack UPSC in 1 year?

Ans. This is one of the most important questions that comes in the mind of a UPSC aspirant. One should be consistent enough and if a student devotes 8-10 hours a day, one can see oneself in the merit list.

Q.34. Do questions get repeated in UPSC Prelims?

Ans. Yes, it has been observed that sometimes UPSC repeats few of its previous year's questions in Prelims exam.

Q.35. How many months are required for UPSC preparation?

Ans. On an average, individuals take 15 months to prepare thoroughly for the exam. But, some UPSC toppers have cleared the exam in just 10 months based on their learning power and ability. Many factors play a major role in determining the preparation time for different candidates.

Q.36. When to Start Preparing for UPSC?

Ans. Every UPSC topper belongs to a different age group and has a different preparation strategy. However, the right age to start UPSC preparation is generally considered to be 18-23 years. To increase your chances of success, you can start preparing for UPSC right from your college days.

Q.37. Can I clear UPSC in 1 year?    

Ans. Yes, with the help of Ensure IAS, you can crack the UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) exam in one year and many of our candidates have achieved success.

Here's how Ensure IAS institutes can help you in your UPSC preparation within a year:

  1. Structured Guidance: Ensure IAS provides a structured approach to UPSC CSE preparation, with study plans, full syllabus coverage and expert faculty members to guide you through this process.
  2. Specialized Coaching: Ensure IAS provides specialized coaching for each stage of the UPSC CSE exam - Prelims, Mains, and Interview. We provide expert guidance to the needs of each stage, helping you to address the difficulties of the exam effectively.
  3. Study Material: Ensure IAS Institute provides study material such as class notes, reference books, online resources, and tests, which are specifically designed to cover the UPSC syllabus.
  4. Regular Tests: Tests are an integral part of UPSC preparation, and Ensure IAS institute conducts regular tests to check your progress, identify strengths and weaknesses, and improve your preparation strategy accordingly.
  5. Personalized Attention: Ensure IAS Institute provides personal attention to candidates, one-on-one doubt-solving sessions, personalized feedback on answer writing and guidance (mentorship) to address your specific query.
  6. Motivation and Support: Director Sachin Sir provides the necessary motivation, encouragement and support to keep you focused and motivated during your preparation journey.
  7. Expert Guidance for Interview Preparation: Ensure IAS provides guidance and mock interview sessions by retired officers to prepare you for the UPSC interview stage.

Q.38. How to Prepare for the UPSC CSAT (Civil Services Aptitude Test) Exam?

Ans. Even if you crack General Studies Paper 1 of UPSC Prelims and score above the cutoff if you fail in the CSAT paper, your application will still be rejected. This shows how important CSAT is. So make sure you follow a solid strategy for UPSC CSAT preparation that will help you crack the exam with ease.

Steps on how to prepare for CSAT:

  1. Choose the Right Coaching Institute: Do your research and select a reputed coaching institute that has a track record of producing successful UPSC candidates. EnsureIAS is the best coaching institute in Delhi which produces successful UPSC candidates.
  2. CSAT Syllabus: Ensure IAS will provide you with a detailed syllabus for the UPSC CSE exam so that you can understand it easily.
  3. Study Material:  Ensure IAS gives study material that is specially designed for UPSC CSE preparation.
  4. Regular Tests: Tests are an integral part of UPSC preparation, and Ensure IAS institute conducts regular tests to check your progress, identify strengths and weaknesses, and improve your preparation strategy accordingly.
  5. Revision: Regularly revise what you have read to strengthen your understanding and memory. Make a revision schedule and stick to it.
  6. Motivation and Support: Ensure IAS Institute provides the necessary motivation, encouragement and support to keep you focused and motivated during your preparation journey.

Q.39. How to choose optional subject for UPSC?

Ans. UPSC Mains exam is a tough exam, and your choice of optional subject is one of the most important decisions of the exam. Optional Subject Paper 1 and Paper 2 in UPSC Mains exam carry up to 500 marks, so it is important to choose an optional subject that interests you and that you are confident you can score well.

  1. Self-Assessment: To choose optional for UPSC, start by evaluating your academic background, interests and strengths. Your familiarity with a particular subject can be a strong basis for choosing your optional subject. Check your aptitude, as some subjects require analytical skills while others require a broad understanding of concepts.
  2. Syllabus and Overlap: While choosing your optional subject, study the syllabus of each subject carefully. Look for overlap with General Studies papers as this may benefit you. Shared topics can streamline your preparation and save time.
  3. Interest and Passion: Choose a topic that really interests you. Enthusiasm will keep you motivated during your preparation journey. Passion for a subject can make learning enjoyable and contribute to better memory.
  4. Availability of Study Material: Consider the availability of quality study materials and resources for your chosen optional subject. Adequate study material can make your preparation more effective and efficient.
  5. Availability of Good Coaching Institute: Evaluate whether coaching for your preferred optional subject is available near you or online. Coaching can provide you with structured guidance, valuable insights, and a competitive edge.
  6. Scoring Ability: Some UPSC optional subjects have a reputation for being high-scoring, while others can be relatively challenging. Research the historical trends of performance and success rates of optional subjects to make an informed decision.

Q.40. Does handwriting matter in UPSC?

Ans. Handwriting remains a relevant aspect in the context of Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) examinations. While the trend in education and communication has shifted towards digital mediums, UPSC still values the candidate's ability to coherently express ideas through traditional handwritten responses. The handwritten format not only serves as a means of evaluating the candidate's clarity of thought and expression but also reflects the time management skills of the individual during the examination. Additionally, legible handwriting is essential for the examiners to understand and evaluate the answers correctly. Despite technological advances, UPSC retains the importance of this skill and emphasizes the need for candidates to maintain a neat and readable handwriting style in their examination papers. In short, writing remains a solid and important element in the UPSC evaluation process, underscoring the Commission's commitment to holistic assessment of candidates.

Q.41. Some tips from UPSC Toppers to crack the UPSC Civil Services.

Ans. UPSC Civil Services Exam toppers are considered experts in the field as they have not only cleared the exam but also scored remarkable marks and rankings.

Here are some reasons why you should follow tips from UPSC exam toppers:

  1. Experience: Toppers have gone through the same journey as the candidates, and their experience in cracking the exam can provide valuable insights into what works and what doesn't.
  2. Success-Driven Approach: Toppers have a success-driven approach to the exam, and their tips and tricks are based on what has worked for them in the past. By following their advice, candidates can develop a similar approach and increase their chances of success.
  3. Insider Knowledge: Toppers have an in-depth understanding of the exam, its pattern, syllabus and expectations of UPSC. They can provide valuable insights about the type of questions asked, areas of the syllabus that need more attention, etc.
  4. Motivation: Following the tips and success stories of toppers can be a source of inspiration for the candidates. This can encourage them and help them stay focused on their goals and strive towards success.
  5. UPSC Toppers' preparation tips can significantly enhance a candidate's chances of success and joining India's bureaucracy.


Q.42. Does IAS Family background matter in UPSC?

Ans. Not at all. From preparation perspective, one may have advantage because the candidate will be constantly under guidance and refrain from digressing from main track. Otherwise, family background has no say and in the recent past we have seen how students from economically and socially lower strata of the society are making it big.

Q.43. How Sachin Jain Sir Cracked IAS Exam multiple times?

Ans. His persistent effort, executing his plan, learning from the right sources, note making, revision and regular test. All these made him clear the exam many times.

Which subject (optional) is best for IAS UPSC exam?

Selecting the right optional subject for UPS