TNPSC Group 1 Exam Pattern

The Tamil Nadu Public Service Commission (TNPSC) is a constitutional body which assists the state government in matters of recruitment, transfers and disciplinary actions.

The TNPSC conducts recruitment exams (competitive, departmental) for filling up vacancies in the state administration.

The patterns/schemes of all the TNPSC exams can be found on the official website of the commission.

The Combined Civil Services Examination – I (CCS-I), conducted by the TNPSC, is the common entry point for Group 1 Services in Tamil Nadu.


  • Due to the change in the scheme of TNPSC Group 1 Exam, the Mains 2019 has been rescheduled for the following dates – July 12, 13 and 14, 2019.
  • Candidates who cleared the Prelims stage, need to submit the application fee for Mains and upload the scanned documents between April 10 – April 20, 2019.

The TNPSC Group 1 Exam is modelled on the lines of the UPSC Civil Service Exam.

Candidates can refer the IAS Syllabus for UPSC related exam details.

The TNPSC Group 1 Exam is conducted in three stages:

  1. Prelims
  2. Mains
  3. Interview

The revised exam pattern is discussed in detail below.

TNPSC Group 1 Exam Pattern

The following exam pattern is common for all Group 1 services in the Tamil Nadu state administration.

The different posts for which recruitment is done via TNPSC Group I exam include Deputy Collector, Deputy Superintendent of Police, Assistant Commissioner, District Officer etc.

The first stage of the TNPSC Group 1 exam is the Prelims. It is only a screening test before the Main stage of the exam.

Unlike the UPSC Prelims, the TNPSC Group 1 Prelims Exam consists of only one paper and no negative marking.

TNPSC Group 1 Prelims

The Prelims Exam Pattern is given below:

Name of Exam

Combined Civil Services – I (Group -1 Services Preliminary Examination)

Number of Papers


Number of Questions


Total Marks


Nature of Questions

Objective Type (MCQs)

Negative Marking



  • General Studies – 150 questions

(Degree Standard)

  • Aptitude & Mental Ability – 50 questions

(SSLC Standard)

Get TNPSC Study Material here

Minimum Qualifying Marks

  • OC: 120
  • Other than Open Category: 90


3 hours

The Prelims Syllabus is given in brief below:

  1. General Science
  2. Current Events
  3. Geography
  4. History and Indian Culture
  5. Indian Polity
  6. Indian Economy
  7. Indian National Movement
  8. Aptitude and Mental Ability Tests & Logical Reasoning

Read/download the revised and detailed TNPSC Group 1 Syllabus For Prelims and Mains 2019 at the linked page.

Out of the candidates who give the Prelims exam, the TNPSC selects the candidates in the approximate ratio of 1:50 for the Mains stage

TNPSC Group 1 Mains

As per the TNPSC Group 1 Exam Pattern for Mains, there are three descriptive-type papers for a total of 750 marks.

Unlike the UPSC Mains, there are no optional subjects in the TNPSC Group 1 exam.

The Mains Exam Pattern is given below.

Name of Exam

Combined Civil Services – I

Group -1 Services Main Written Examination

Number of Papers


Total Marks

  • Paper 1 – 250
  • Paper 2 – 250
  • Paper 3 – 250

Total: 750 + Interview (100 marks) = 850

Nature of Questions


Minimum Qualifying Marks

  • OC: 340
  • Other than Open Category: 255


3 hours for each paper

The syllabus of TNPSC Group 1 Mains Exam is given in brief below:

Paper 1

Paper 2

Paper 3

  • Modern Indian History and Indian Culture
  • Social Issues – India and Tamil Nadu
  • General Aptitude & Mental Ability (SSLC Standard)
  • Indian Polity and Emerging Political Trends across the world affecting India
  • Role and Impact of Science and Technology in the Indian development
  • Tamil Society – Culture and Heritage
  • Indian Geography – special reference to Tamil Nadu
  • Biodiversity, Disaster Management and Environment
  • Indian Economy – Current trends and Impact of the global economy on India

An Oral Test/Interview for 100 marks is conducted by a TNPSC board to assess the candidate’s suitability to a career in administration.

Check the TNPSC Group 1 Eligibility Criteria here.

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