Even though it is first step and not sufficient in itself to get selected, yet it is a must to clear in order to write the Main Examination. Thus it has its importance. An impressive performance in prelims also motivates & energises to immediately start preparing for Mains with a better motivation after the Preliminary Examination.
As both the Papers in Prelims are Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) based thus preparation strategy has to fit to that. Thus preparation of notes with relevant information and practice of examination-relevant quality questions is necessary. A balance between Prelims and Mains preparation is needed.
As Preliminary Examination covers questions from large range of subjects and issues thus in order to recall the information revision is important. It requires practice of questions so as to improve and adopt smart strategy or for optimising exam score as there is negative marking in the examination.
As the Paper I on General Studies has 100 questions, and time time given is 2 hours, thus good memorising and recalling helps.
As memorising and recalling of information is important, thus one should pay attention to organised and systematic notes in different areas.
Prelims Exam trends show that a good number of questions are current—based or else on current-inspired issues so news and updates are important.
There are too many sources for news and information , but one has to keep a balance in enriching information but not wasting time.
Though digital-era has facilitated instant information flow, thus e-learning has its place, yet one should be mindful of time-constraints.
Though magazines and guides help in saving some time and giving some compiled information in one place, yet one may have to go beyond.
As many news events keep on evolving and emerging thus one may have to keep track of events, but all this with time management.
If traditional and current information on related subjects and issues is connected well then that helps in bette understanding and memorising.
Use of infographics as per need not only helps in better structuring and organising information, it also helps in better updating and memorising.
Through and comprehensive coverage of issue is on side, and being organised, structured, organised, pinpointed, focused the other
Effective time management demands phased preparation strategy, short-term, intermediate and final targets and meeting them rightly on time.
As per the need of issues enriching knowledge with diverse and latest information, facts and analysis may help, but with time-efficiency.
It is on General Studies and it is for 200 marks, and it contains 100 multiple choice questions. Subject to one getting minimum prescribed qualifying marks in Paper II in aptitude test, screening in Prelims for eligibility to write Main exam is based on performance in Paper I. There is negative marking in it, and also in Paper II. There is a deduction of 1/3rd of marks allocated to each question, for answering a question wrong. One needs to make fundamentals strong in different segments, pay attention to relevant factual information as well, update and follow current events, and practice relevant questions.
It is on aptitude test, and it has minimum qualifying marks, if one does not qualify in it then despite a good performance in Paper I one cannot get through Prelims. Based on a look and analysis of recent exam trends, it is clear that it requires a fair degree of preparation. Not only there is subjectivity in some questions, even there are efforts by the recruiting body to improve standard of questions year-after-year. Looking at importance of its different segments as per exam trends, and one’s weaknesses and strengths, one may strategise preparation. It is for 200 marks, and it contains 80 questions.
Current events of national and international importance are significant as not only there are direct questions on them, there are also questions on current inspired issues in different segments.
This part is primarily on Indian History and there are questions on ancient, medieval, modern history and freedom struggle, art, architecture, historical movements, era and rulers, etc.
This part includes geography of India and world, and there are questions on physical geography, human/commercial geography, maps, continents & oceans, geographical events, earth, space, etc.
This part includes questions on Constitution of India, political system, terms and concepts, bills and legislations, governmental institutions, working of political and administrative system, current political happenings and events, etc.
This part includes questions on fundamental concepts on economy, economic terms, features and working of Indian economy, economic reforms and policy changes, Economic Survey and Budget, sectors of economy, current economy, etc.
This part includes questions on conservation, bio-diversity, climate change, forests, environmental policies and institutions, international and national initiatives on environment, conventions-summits-events on environment, etc.
In this part there are questions on General Science as well as scientific and technological advancements. There are questions on life sciences, nutrition, general applications of physics-chemistry, bio-technology, information and communication technology, etc.