How to Prepare for IAS After 12th Board Exams?

“The secret to getting ahead is getting started.” – Mark Twain

The minimum educational qualification required to take on the IAS exam is graduation. You have to have a degree from a recognized university to attempt the IAS exam conducted by the UPSC every year. So does that mean you start preparing for the IAS exam only after your graduation? Absolutely not! If you have just finished your schooling, and are certain of your ambition to become an IAS/IPS officer and serve the nation, our advice is, start your IAS preparation right now! Don’t wait till you turn 21 or get a degree. Preparation for after 12th is a good decision if you are inclined towards becoming a civil servant. If you start your IAS preparation early, you stand a chance to clear the IAS exam and start your civil services career early. This will take you a long way in your career and you may even become the Cabinet Secretary (which is the highest IAS post in India) depending on your caliber of course. The question now is “What is the strategy for preparation of ias after 12th”. This article gives you a few tips on how to prepare for UPSC after 12th standard.

What should you do after 12th to prepare for the IAS exam?

  • Read more about the civil services. Find out about the life of a civil servant or a diplomat. If possible, talk to an IAS officer and get to know about ground realities straight from the horse’s mouth. Ask yourself is this what you truly want? If your answer is ‘yes’, read on…
  • Take up a graduation course that involves history and polity. These subjects are of immense importance to the UPSC syllabus.
  • During your graduation, study these subjects really well keeping in mind the UPSC syllabus.
  • If you would acquire a level of mastery in these subjects, you can also opt one of them as your optional subject.
  • Also, start reading public administration, economics, etc. You can even study these subjects as your main subject, all depending on your interests and aptitude.
  • Don’t lose touch with basic maths that you learned in school. This is needed for the CSAT paper in the IAS Prelims. Read more about IAS exam pattern.
  • Remember to study like an IAS aspirant and not a bunking college student.
  • Make use of your college library. Read as many relevant books as possible.
  • Inculcate the habit of reading the daily newspaper and keep abreast of the latest happenings in the country and the world.
  • Work on your interpersonal skills and communication skills. Try to develop a good personality that would help you in the IAS interview later.
  • Don’t throw away your school NCERT textbooks. These are the basic books to study for the UPSC exam. 
  • Learn how to make notes and start doing the same.
  • Practice previous years IAS question papers.

The best course after 12th for IAS exam is BYJU’S IAS Coaching. Read more.

For more information on how to read newspaper for IAS preparation, how to clear the IAS exam Prelims and Mains, and how to ace the UPSC Interview, log on to

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