Every year UPSC conducts examinations to recruit elite officers like IAS, IPS, IFS, etc. Analysis of UPSC Papers and results every year makes us unravel the mindset of the examination body, which is extremely important to carve a specific and categorical strategy for the exam.
Prelims question paper of UPSC 2020 and results of UPSC 2019 both have created a ripple of strange waves among aspirants. Aspirants have again started quoting that UPSC is actually Unpredictable Public Service Commission. However, close analysis and scanning will show us that surprises in UPSC are not a new trend rather an old legacy that just changes its shape and form every year.
It is a general impression among aspirants that Optional is the keystone of the Mains Ecosystem. Good command over optionals can take you through the rough weather of UPSC. However, in UPSC 2019, marks in Ethics and Essay seem to have busted the hegemony of optionals. Marks of some of the toppers are so exceptional and high in Ethics and Essay that it won’t be an exaggeration to say that Ethics and Essay can be “Game Changer of UPSC”.
Let us see marks of some toppers to dive a little deeper:-
1. Pradeep Singh (AIR-1)
Marks in Optional- 293
Marks in Ethics & Essay 297
2. Mandar Patki(AIR-22)
Marks in Optional- 286
Marks in Ethics & Essay- 278
3. Ashutosh Kulkarni(AIR-44)
Marks in Optional- 281
Marks in Ethics & Essay- 266
4. Muskan Jindal(AIR- 87)
Marks in Optional- 262
Marks in Ethics & Essay- 288
5. Arnayak Saika (AIR- 59)
Marks in Optional- 270
Marks in Ethics & Essay- 259
So what conclusion do we draw from the above four random mark sheets?
Firstly, Marks of Rankers in Ethics & Essay have challenged the hegemony of both papers of optionals. In the above random samples, marks in Essay and Ethics are either more or just beneath the optionals.
Secondly, it seems to be a myth that an Essay is a vague paper and needs no specific preparation. Our interaction with many rankers this year makes us conclude that with proper planning coupled with smart preparation, people have crossed the boundary of 50 percent in Essay.
Thirdly, marks of UPSC 2019 appears to have broken the lethargy around Ethics. For the last few years, one misconception has penetrated among students that it’s almost impossible to score much after centuries in Ethics. Exponentially high marks in Ethics like 160 of Ravi Jain, AIR-9 has almost destroyed the myth.
Fourthly, marks in Essay and Ethics deserve more appreciation if we sketch cost-benefit analysis amidst investment of massive time in coverage of optionals. Nothing can be a more perfect definition of smart strategy when you chase and defeat optionals with a fraction of time investment.
Lastly, Ethics and Essay should go hand by hand. Our interaction with toppers makes us believe that aspirants have used multiple scholars and philosophers from the Ethics paper in Essay Paper to draw multiple facets of dimensions.
Hence, Ethics and Essay is indeed a Game Changer in UPSC.
Manoj K. Jha, Director @ GS Score