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UPSC Civil Services Mains 2017: Last Minute Tips for General Studies Papers 3 and 4


UPSC Civil Services Mains 2017: Last Minute Tips for General Studies Papers 3 and 4


General Studies Paper – 3

  1. Revise our Mains test series – 2017 question papers and answers. In paper -2 many questions have repeated from our Mains tests. We expect many to get repeated in paper-3 as well. 
  2. Attempt 15 Marks questions first and then attempt remaining ones.
  3. Write in point-format 
  4. Assume that there will be 2-3 very difficult questions and enter the exam hall. You won’t be shocked when you see some strange questions. Between, those 2-3 questions will be difficult for everyone else too.
  5. You will be able to manage time better in GS-3 thanks to GS-1 and 2 experience. Use extra time to present answers neatly.
  6. Don’t leave any question unanswered if you know answers to all questions. Push your limits to answer all. In case you partially know answers, write partial answers and allocate time to write more in 15 Marks questions. 
  7. In GS-3 paper, if there is a question on flood (again) stick to framework of GS-3 syllabus (disaster management, agri, EIA, conservation, infra and technology dimensions – instead of geographical perspective)


General Studies Paper – 4


  1. Start with case studies and finish it within 1 hour 45 minutes (if there are 6 case studies like in previous pattern)
  2. When you start with case studies, first case study might eat consume lots of time. To overcome this, answer a case study during lunch break (preferably 15 minutes before you enter exam hall) This will help you immensely. 
  3. Go with the assumption that UPSC would surprise or shock you (like more number of questions and sub-questions demanding more time, more number of case studies with 10-15 marks – like in those comprehension questions in CSAT, or more of specific theoretical questions etc)
  4. Never attempt questions for which you absolutely don’t have any clue! Absolutely leave it blank. Instead use this time to write more in case studies. 
  5. Write all answers in paragraph format (including case studies) – this what we have recommended to all our offline students since beginning. It works. 
  6. In Section – A, give at least 2 examples.
  7. In case studies, always consider all stakeholders and think from each one’s perspective while evaluating merits and demerits of your actions.
  8. Be truthful and empathetic, but don’t be too idealistic in your answers. 
  9. Like in essay, evaluators appreciate original answers in GS-4. Think well and answer each questions. Use your experiences, observation and readings to write good examples (to bring originality)


Wish you all the best once again.