CISF Syllabus & Exam Pattern

UPSC conducts the CAPF exam every year to recruit several aspirants for the post of Assistant Commandants in Central Industrial Security Forces (CISF).

This article will explain in detail the CISF syllabus specific information related to the UPSC CAPF.

The CISF syllabus and exam pattern are set by the Union Public Service Commission in accordance with the Ministry of Home Affairs.

For more details on the CISF exam, aspirants can check the linked article.

CISF Exam Pattern: Assistant Commandant

Before preparing for any competitive exam, every candidate should have a proper idea of the exam pattern. Preparing as per the CISF syllabus and exam pattern will help the candidates to score better ranks.

The CISF Exam Pattern consists of 3 rounds:

  1. Round -I: Written-test
  2. Round -II: Physical efficiency test
  3. Round -III: Personality Test/ Interview

CISF Exam Pattern (Round- I)

According to 2019 exam pattern, the round-I i.e., written-test of CISF exam consists of two papers:

  • Paper-I: Objective type
  • Paper-II: Descriptive type

The highlights of the exam pattern for round-I are given below:

CISF Exam (round-I)



Paper-I (objective type)

General ability and intelligence

250 marks

Paper-II(Descriptive type)

General Studies, Essay & Comprehension

200 marks

The total number of questions in Paper-I is 200 and the duration of the paper is 2 hours. Further details are given below:






3 hours

Comprehension & Precise writing


CISF Exam Pattern: Round-II

Round -II of CISF Exam is the physical efficiency test and the medical efficiency test.

Highlights of physical efficiency test are given below:

Physical Efficiency Test (PET)



100 metres race

In 16 seconds

In 18 seconds

800 meters race

In 3 minutes 45 seconds

In 4 minutes 45 seconds

Long jump

3.5 metres (3 chances)

3.0 metres (3 chances)

Shot put (7.26 kgs)

4.5 metres


Candidates should meet some of the prescribed physical standards to be eligible for physical efficiency test.

The physical standards include:

(a) height



(d)hearing ability.

The Physical Standards/Physical Efficiency Tests and Medical Standards Tests will be supervised by a Nodal Authority to be appointed by the Ministry of Home Affairs.

For more details refer to the images below.

CISF Exam Pattern-Physical Standards-1
CISF Exam Pattern-Physical standards(2)
CISF Exam Pattern-Physical Standards-3

Personality Test/ Interview

Candidates who qualify the physical efficiency test, as well as the medical standards, are called for an Interview/Personality Test which will carry 150 Marks. Candidates who are short-listed for Interview/Personality Test, including those shortlisted for Interview/Personality Test provisionally will be issued a Detailed Application Form (DAF) in which they will be required to indicate their preference of Forces.

CISF Syllabus

CAPF exam will be held on 18th August 2019. Therefore, aspirants should start preparing for the exam now itself to score better ranks. Due to the vast CISF Syllabus, candidates often find it difficult and proper distribution of the syllabus and revision time will help in scoring better marks.

According to the syllabus of 2019, the CISF exam consists of two papers:

  • Paper-I: General Ability and intelligence and Professional skill (Multiple type questions)
  • Paper-II: Essay, Precis writing and comprehension ( Descriptive type)

The detailed topics of CISF syllabus are listed in the table below:

CISF Exam Papers



(General Ability and Intelligence)

General mental ability: logical reasoning, quantitative aptitude, numerical ability and data interpretation.

General Science: includes general questions from the areas of Information Technology, Biotechnology and Environmental science.

Current events of national and international importance including the areas of sports, culture, music, arts, literature, governance, industry, business and globalisation.

General Awareness: History of India, Indian and world geography, Indian polity and Economy.


Part A- Essay

Candidates need to write an essay on the topics related to modern Indian history i.e., freedom struggle, geography, polity and economy, knowledge of security and human rights issues, and analytical ability. The medium of essay can be English or Hindi.

Part B- Comprehension & Precise Writing

This part includes comprehension passages, précis writing, developing counter arguments, simple grammar and language testing. The medium of writing for comprehension & precise writing is English.

The candidates who qualify the written test are called for round-II i.e., physical efficiency test and the medical efficiency test as per the eligibility criteria.

For more details, aspirants can check the CAPF Syllabus

CISF Exam Preparation

Due to the vast syllabus and competitive nature of CAPF Exam, aspirants willing to join the CISF department should soon start with the preparation.

The first step should be going through the mentioned syllabus and exam pattern on a regular basis.

Candidates can also refer to the CISF Previous Year Question Papers to get an idea of the level of questions asked.

Some of the books that can be referred for previous year question papers are mentioned below:

CAPF books


Name of the author

Solved Papers CAPF Assistant Commandant Examination

Arihant Publishers

Arihant Experts

CAPF Assistant Commandants Previous Years Question Papers

Ramesh Publishing House

RPH Editorial board

UPSC Central Armed Police Force Assistant Commandant Exam Solved Papers

Kiran Prakashan, Pratiyogita Kiran, KICX

Kiran Prakashan

Candidates must choose the right book for CAPF preparation. The preference and selection criteria for the books may vary among the different candidates. However, the list of some important books are given below:


CAPF Books

General Aptitude

  1. Quantitative Aptitude Quantum CAT- Sarvesh K. Verma
  2. Quantitative Aptitude for the CAT- Arun Sharma
  3. Quantitative Aptitude- R.S. Aggarwal

General Reasoning

  1. A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning- R.S. Aggarwal
  2. A New Approach to Reasoning: Verbal, Non-Verbal & Analytical- B.S. Sijwalli, Indu Sijwalli
  3. General Mental Ability Logical Reasoning & Analytical Ability- Upscportal

General Knowledge

  1. General Knowledge – Manohar Pandey
  2. General Knowledge- Dr.Binay Karn and others
  3. Objective General Knowledge- Sanjiv Kumar

General English

  1. High School English Grammar and Composition- Wren & Martin
  2. Objective English for Competitive Exams-Hari Mohan Prashad, Uma Sinha
  3. Objective General English-S.P.Bakshi

CISF AC (EXE) LDCE: Syllabus & Exam Pattern

Apart from the CAPF examination, UPSC also conducts in-house recruitment known as Limited Departmental Competitive Examination to fill the vacancies of Assistant Commandant (Executive). The number of vacancies depends upon the required criteria and changes annually.

The exam pattern for CISF AC (EXE) LDCE is similar to the CAPF exam pattern. The exam consists of 3 rounds:

  1. Round – I: Written Exam
  2. Round -II: Physical Efficiency Test (PET) and Medical Standard Test
  3. Round -III: Personal Ability Test / Personal Interview

The syllabus for PET and Personal Ability Test is similar to the CAPF syllabus.

CISF AC (EXE) LDCE Syllabus:-Download PDF Here

Refer to the related links below to know more about CAPF exams