An increase in the number of seats for IAS and the allied services this year is good news for serious candidates who want to make it to the All India Services this year. IAS has been one of the dream jobs for many in the country ever since the services were created by the British Raj in the nineteenth century. At that time, the nomenclature was different, and the services were referred to as the Imperial Civil Services. The Indian government retained the system of administration, even after Independence, although it made some changes to the pattern of selection. The civil servants were given tremendous power and facilities, which made the services all the more attractive. Every year lakhs of candidates sit for the selection tests but few get lucky enough to crack the exam. Preparation for the exam is nothing less than a grueling exercise, what with the exam being conducted in three stages and each successive stage tougher than the previous one. However, increase in the seats is a relief for those category of candidates who although manage to score the desired cutoff, but are unable to make it to the final list because of less number of seats.
In 2008 the number of seats was 650, in 2009 it increased to around 800, and in 2010 it became 965 which happened for the first time in 20 years. This year the number of seats has increased upto 1037. What makes the IAS exam all the more special is that not only will it feature the new CSAT syllabus introduced from 2011 onwards but also the pattern will be different from the 2011 IAS exam.
The 2012 IAS Prelims: What You Need to Know
Some basic and important information about the Prelims -:
- Most questions carry a negative penalty or negative marking of 0.33 marks for each wrong answer
- Each paper will be of 200 marks each and 2 hours in duration. The number of questions in each paper is not fixed and can vary every year
2012 Prelims Syllabus
The new CSAT or Prelims syllabus was introduced from the 2011 exam and is as follows.
(Paper 1) (200 marks) – Duration: Two hrs
- Current events of national and international importance
- History of India and Indian national movement
- Indian and World Geography- physical, social, economic geography of India and the world
- Indian Polity and governance constitution, political system, panchayati raj, public policy, Rights issues, etc.
- Economic and social development sustainable development, poverty, inclusion, demographics, social sector initiatives etc.
- General issues on environmental ecology, bio-diversity and climate change-that do not require subject specialization
- General science.
- (Paper II) (200 marks) Duration : Two hrs
- Interpersonal skills including communication skills
- Logical reasoning and analytical ability
- Decision making and problem solving
- General mental ability
- Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude etc. (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. Class X level)
- English language comprehension skills (Class X level)
- Questions relating to English Language Comprehension skills of Class X level (last item in the Syllabus of Paper-II) will be tested through passages from English language only without providing Hindi translation thereof in the question paper.
- The questions will be of multiple choice, objective type.
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