Study Plan for UPSC 2018

The UPSC civil services exam is targeted by lakhs of people across the country to get into the prestigious Indian civil services. The exam is held in three stages and has a rather abysmal pass rate of less than 0.1%. This exam is highly competitive and is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) every year. The calendar for the 2019 UPSC CSE is out and the prelims exam is scheduled to be held on 2nd June 2019. In this article, we give you a study plan for UPSC 2019. This plan is meant to be directive and candidates should ideally tweak it adequately to suit their personal needs and capabilities.

Take a look at the following table for the dates of the various stages of the exam:


Exam type

Exam dates



2nd June 2019



Starts from 20th September (5 days)

Personality test


March – April 2020

Based on the UPSC 2019 calendar, a timeline is devised for the same:



February 2019

UPSC notification

March – May 2019


June 2019

UPSC Prelims exam

July 2019

Prelims result

August – September 2019


October 2019

UPSC Mains exam

November 2019 – January 2020


February 2020

Mains result

March 2020


April 2020

Personality Test

May 2020

Final result

The first step in going about the UPSC exam is to understand the UPSC syllabus thoroughly. You can check the complete IAS Syllabus here.

After this, you should identify the common portions in the UPSC prelims and the mains. There is a lot of overlap in the two exams and you should start your preparation with these topics. If you wish to take the UPSC exam 2019, you should have already started your IAS preparation. In case you have not, you still can take the plunge. Given below is a study plan for the 2019 IAS exam.

How to prepare for IAS 2018/How To Start IAS Preparation At Home For 2019?(h2)

Stage 1: November 2018 – February 2019(h2)

Start with the basic books like NCERTs. By the end of the year, you should have finished them in subjects like history, polity, economics, geography, science and environment. Starting next year, you should read the other standard textbooks for each subject. In the meantime, you should also read the daily newspaper and make notes for current affairs. You can also check BYJU’S Comprehensive News Analysis (CNA) for regular daily updates on current affairs prepared by experts.

Periodically, you should try to solve the previous years’ UPSC question papers both for the prelims and the mains so that you know whether you are going in the right track or not. At this stage, it is okay if you do not know all the answers. You should just make sure that you know where to get the answers and how to write the answers (i.e., understand what the question is actually asking of you).

Stage 2: March 2019 – April 2019(h2)

During this stage enrol in a good test programme like BYJU’S Prelims Test Series and get as much test practice as possible. Practice is of utmost importance in the UPSC CSE and this is the only way you will be able to finish the papers. Your preparation for the CSAT would depend on your ease and comfort with the CSAT syllabus. If you are confident in it, don’t spend too much time on it. Remember, CSAT is only a qualifier. You should also start with your optional preparation at this stage.

Stage 3: April 2019 – Prelims Exam(h2)

During this time, you should dedicate your IAS preparation exclusively to the prelims exam. You should also indulge in revision of what you have learnt for the IAS prelims exam. Continue with test practice.

Stage 4: June 2019 – August 2019(h2)

Now, you must focus solely on your mains exam. First, cover all the areas that you did not cover before the prelims exam. You should also start answer writing practice for the mains. In the meantime, continue visiting BYJU’S free IAS prep for daily current affairs updates – CNA, PIB, Yojana.

Stage 5: September 2019 – Mains Exam(h2)

At this stage, you should revise the mains syllabus.

Stage 6: March 2020 – Interview(h2)

After the mains exam, do not relax for too long! You should prepare for the personality test and also start preparing for the UPSC 2019 prelims (just in case).

All the Best!

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