UPPSC PCS Exam Preparation - Booklist, Strategies

Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission (UPPSC) conducts the Combined State / Upper Subordinate Services (PCS) exam. The three stages – Preliminary, Mains, and Interview have a defined syllabus. In this article, an aspirant will get to know a detailed UPPSC PCS exam preparation strategy and a comprehensive booklist for the ongoing PCS Mains 2019 and upcoming PCS Prelims 2020. There are a few books that will work for both UPPSC Prelims and Mains and then there are few that will exclusively work for each Exam.

For a quick recall, UPPSC PCS Prelims 2020 is on 11th October 2020 while the PCS Mains exam 2019 has started from 25th July 2020 onwards. Refer to the official website of the commission- http://uppsc.up.nic.in for more updates.

UPPSC PCS Booklist 2020:- Download PDF Here

Aspirants can check all the UPPSC PCS related links in the table below:

UPPSC PCS Preparation

The civil services examination is an eminent one and the standard of papers designed for it, are such that test analytical and conceptual clarity of the candidates.

Few tips that can help candidates track their preparation are:

  • Each topic that finds its place in UPPSC syllabus is important and an aspirant should never skip any of those.
  • For State Service Exams, a candidate should read the state board textbooks as these give pertinent information on various topics mentioned in the syllabus.
  • Each topic like History, Geography, Polity, etc. should also be read keeping in mind the state’s aspects.
  • Source of practice is past years’ question papers. Find those in the official websites.

UPPSC PCS Prelims has the following topics:

  1. Current events of National & International importance
  2. Indian History and National Movement
  3. Indian and World Geography
  4. Indian Governance and Polity
  5. Social and Economic Development
  6. Environmental Ecology, Climate Change, and Biodiversity
  7. General Science

The sources to prepare UPPSC Prelims 2020 are given in the table below:

UPPSC Prelims 2020 Subjects UPPSC Exam Preparation
Current events of National & International importance One newspaper will suffice
Indian History and National Movement History should be read as:

Indian and World Geography Indian geography should be read as:

  • Physical – School Textbooks (Standard 6-12)
  • Human – School Textbooks (Standard 6-12)
  • World – Newspaper and Atlas

Check NCERT Notes: Geography Notes in the linked article.

Indian Governance and Polity To understand the basics of Indian Polity, read school textbooks.

Reference book: Laxmikanth

Check Polity Notes in the linked article.

Social and Economic Development To understand the basics of Indian Economics, refer to school textbooks (Standard 9-12)

Check Economics Notes in the linked article.

Environmental Ecology, Climate Change, and Biodiversity Reference Book – PD Sharma

Check Environment Notes in the linked article.

General Science School textbooks from classes 6-12 should be read

Check Science & Technology Notes in the linked article.

For aptitude exam, i.e. UPPSC PCS Prelims Paper-II, aspirants should practise reading comprehensions, logical reasoning and English grammar more as questions from these sections are asked in aptitude exam in the majority. Some reference books for PCS Prelims Paper-II are:

  1. M.K Pandey’s Analytical Reasoning
  2. R.S Aggarwal’s Quantitative Aptitude
  3. For section, Reading Comprehensions, follow the previous year question papers.

Aspirants who are preparing for UPPSC PCS exams and also targeting for UPSC 2020 may check the linked article to align their preparation accordingly.

UPPSC Mains 2019 & 2020

The major topics given in UPPSC Syllabus are History, Geography, Polity, Economics and Current Affairs.

UPPSC Preparation books for Mains are:

  • History- Bipin Chandra
  • Polity- Laxmikant
  • Geography- Lexicon or Majid Hussain or G.C. Leong
  • Economy- School Textbooks or Ramesh Singh
  • Current Affairs- The Hindu/ Monthly Compilation of any good magazine

Apart from the books above, a few other recommended reading sources are:

  1. Budget and Economic Survey
  2. State Board books
  3. NCERT books – Download NCERT books PDF here (only English medium)
  4. For current affairs:
    1. PIB Summary
    2. Gist Of Yojana
    3. Gist of RSTV (Rajya Sabha TV)
    4. The Hindu Video Analysis
  5. To prepare for the compulsory paper number I and II where knowledge of Bengali language is significant, candidates should practice report-writing and translations from school textbooks and Bengali newspapers.

Some important points to keep in mind regarding UPPSC Exam Preparation:

  1. Practice previous years’ question papers
  2. Do MCQ solving practice for Prelims
  3. Do answer writing practice for Mains

For UPPSC PCS preparation, there are a few terms in many subjects that confuse aspirants. Hence, we have collated a list of 100 such differences between articles where you can understand the basics of important terms.

The PCS Exam is conducted annually or when announced by Uttar Pradesh Public Service Commission (UPPSC.) The vacancies are introduced under:

  • General recruitment
  • Special recruitment
  • Assistant Conservator of Forest
  • Range Forest Officer

For other PSC Exams and notifications regarding the same, an aspirant can check the below-mentioned articles:



  1. Hi,
    I am a 30 year old B. tech graduate in IT. Am I eligible to give UPPCS 2021 exams? I belong to UP.

    1. Yes, you can sit for UPPSC PCS 2021. Check UPPSC PCS related articles below:
      1. PCS Exam 2020
      2. PCS Exam Calendar 2020
      3. PCS Eligibility
      4. PCS Syllabus

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