UPSC CSE Result 2019: AIR 131 Pawan Kumar Shares His Preparation Strategy for All Stages of Exam
“There are no mediocre aspirants, there are only mediocre efforts,” says the 25-year-old Pawan Kumar Goel of Delhi. Pawan is a DTU alumnus and holds a B.tech. Degree in Electrical and Electronics engineering. He got a decent placement at the final semester of his graduation but rather chose to prepare for the Civil Services Exam. Let’s have a look at his preparation strategy and study tips for other aspirants.
Prepared for 1st attempt of UPSC in 3 months
Pawan began his UPSC Civil Services exam preparation in 2017 just three months before the Prelims exam. At that time Pawan was in the 8th semester of his engineering degree and simultaneously prepared for the exam. However, he could not qualify the exam but scored 90 marks in GS Paper 1 of the Prelims exam. This gave him the confidence to dedicatedly put in efforts for the exam and began his preparation after completing the graduation degree. He also got campus placement but did not take up the offer as he wanted to invest his time just in the preparation of Civil Services.
UPSC Prelims Strategy - Pawan says that he only stuck with the basic NCERT and other standard lists of prescribed books for the preparation. Laxmikant for Polity, old as well as new NCERTs for history. Other than this he followed exclusive IAS online channels for preparation. He kept himself abreast of all the current affairs and is an avid newspaper reader which helped in the current affairs preparation.
Do not ignore the CSAT paper and solve previous papers to gain knowledge about the pattern and type of questions asked in the exam.
Answer Writing Preparation for UPSC Mains
- Pawan says that he prepared notes for each of the GS Papers during the mains preparation. He prepared 1-2 page notes on each topic in a fixed pattern of - Facts related to the topic, Challenges, Solutions (Govt. Schemes), Way forward, and conclusion. This helped in constructing better answers for the GS papers.
- For essay paper, one should always have 2-3 important quotes or examples related to each topic while preparing the notes, These can be used in the opening and in the body of the essay during the exam.
- Pawan stresses on the practice of philosophical essay topic writing as the UPSC has introduced one philosophical essay writing in the essay paper from the past few years. Many aspirants are not comfortable in attempting this section has prior practice would help. Include multidimensional examples in your essay.
- Introduction and Conclusion are an important part of essay writing. Include quotes or anecdotes to make your essay stand out.
- For Ethics paper, Pawan read the Lexicon book which helped him in answer writing. For ethics, answers focus on the practicality of the situation given rather than giving philosophical ideas. Make your answers optimistic and multidimensional.
- Pawan opted for Sociology as an optional subject for the mains exam. He chose the subject as he was comfortable with its syllabus and was not comfortable to choose the graduation subject as optional. As per him, it is important to prepare really well for the optional papers as they can help you score high in the total marks of the mains.
- He advises aspirants to choose an optional subject after complete the research and study of its syllabus. Choose the one you find most interesting and are most comfortable with.
Personality Test Preparation for UPSC
In the interview round, Pawan faced unexpected questions that were not related to his DAF at all. Most questions were asked on defense, the American constitution, health schemes etc. no questions were asked on his personal or academic details. Hence Pawan suggests that in the personality test stage an aspirant should not just concentrate on the DAF but also about the current events.
- Aspirants should stay calm and not be nervous during the exam. There is a substantial possibility that you would not know a question but instead of panicking admit your unawareness about the topic.
- Attend mock interviews for confidence build-up but also understand that the questions asked in the mock interview are just the mock questions. There is a possibility that your actual interview questions may be entirely different from the mock interview.
- Read interview transcripts of recommended candidates. This will help you in understanding the type of questions actually asked by the panel at UPSC.
Pawan Kumar believes that hard work and consistency can only help an aspirant to get through the exam. Do not lose hope at the failures and keep preparing with a positive attitude and belief in your goal.
Jagran Josh extends heartfelt congratulations to UPSC CSE AIR 131 Pawan Kumar on his success.