Are Old NCERTs Important for UPSC Prelims and Mains?

If you want to be a civil servant, NCERT textbooks are your best friends. Yes, NCERT textbooks are vital not only for school exams, but they may also help you perform well in the country’s most difficult examination. However, aspirants are frequently puzzled as to whether they should read the new NCERTs or the old ones, if the old NCERT textbooks are useful for the exam in the prelims or the mains, and how to study the NCERT textbooks. In this blog, we will look at the importance of the old NCERT books in the Prelims and Mains stages of the IAS exam.

Check out the resources below to allay any questions you may have about reading the NCERTs for UPSC Preparation:


Importance of Old NCERTs for the UPSC Exam

  • There is no doubt that NCERT books are a treasure trove of information; they include pertinent topics that are part of the UPSC syllabus. They are among the most reputable publications that must be studied for UPSC preparation, assisting UPSC candidates in learning significant themes.
  • NCERT authors have included everything important in their texts, from biodiversity to geography, and from thousand-year-hand history to present politics.
  • The material of Old NCERT books is easy to understand and extremely dependable. The wording of the books makes it so much easier to remember and provides extensive information on a variety of critical topics, thus assisting in the formation of a solid foundation.
  • It is recommended that novices begin with these books before moving on to the conventional sources. Most IAS toppers and tutors see these books as essential for preparing for the UPSC test.
  • The NCERT books do not cover the whole civil service syllabus, but they do cover most of the fundamentals. The themes in the old NCERT are well discussed, and after reading them, you should have a good comprehension of the ideas.
  • Because the Old NCERTS are more factual, pictorial representations are given less weight.
  • Old NCERT books are written in a factual and plain way, which aids readers in retaining concepts and information more quickly.
  • Old NCERTs are packed with information. In addition, the chronological order of events is better presented in older NCERTs.
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Importance of Old NCERTs in Prelims and Mains

After reading this, you should have a good idea that NCERT books are not designed to cover the complete syllabus for the UPSC CSE Exam, but rather to serve as a resource to help newcomers in the UPSC journey familiarise themselves with the many topics to be covered along the process. Now we will cover how you can use these books to your advantage in the Prelims and the Mains stage of the exam.

Importance in Prelims Stage

  • The old NCERTs can be useful to cover several key definitions, as these concepts are sometimes directly asked in the Prelims stage. For example, in UPSC CSE 2016, a straight question about Banjaras appeared in the Prelims, which was pulled directly from the geography NCERT.
  • Old NCERTs include a lot of information that must be memorised and updated if necessary, as UPSC typically asks questions about trends in the facts.
  • Textbook maps and diagrams are also highly useful.

Importance in Mains Stage

It should be noted that old NCERTs are not very useful for the mains exam, but you may always utilise the book’s data, maps, and illustrations to enhance your answers.

I hope the above article dispelled any questions you had concerning the significance of the Old NCERTs for the UPSC Exam. Follow BYJU’S for more similar updates.

Here are a few more relevant resources and articles for the UPSC Exam to help you with your IAS preparation.

UPSC Prelims UPSC Mains
UPSC Exam Pattern UPSC CSE Syllabus
UPSC Previous Year Question Papers IAS Current Affairs
IAS Topper UPSC Admit Card
UPSC Books Daily News Analysis for UPSC


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