UPSC CSE (Prelims) 2020: Last minute tips to score better!
With the UPSC CSE Prelim 2020 to be commenced on 4th Oct 2020, the stress as well as the anxiety levels of the candidates are rising. With less than 2 weeks to appear in the examination, the clock is ticking and hence it is obvious for many aspirants amid the last stages of their preparation for Prelim 2020 starts getting panic to revise the overwhelming syllabus. There is no doubt that civil services examination is regarded as one of the toughest exams, it can be very well navigable with meticulous preparation and systemic revision strategy.
The examination becomes not because of the overwhelming syllabus (as it is doable) or the exam pattern, but the vast number of aspirants (more than 8-9 lakhs in Prelim) who appear, so the better one reflects and performs on the day of the examination, shall appear not only in Prelim but also in all the stages of the examination – Prelim, Main and Interview.
It is the time when an aspirant must utilise the limited time (of couple of days) available before the UPSC IAS Prelims 2020 examination, diligent optimisation will ensure perform better and hence, score better.
Few Dos and Don’ts in the last few days that are remaining for the examination:
- Static vs Current topics:
In these last 10 days, it is crucial to revise all the important topics mentioned in the syllabus and ensure that the study material is also revisited for the same. Divide the revision strategy in static as well as current topics. Give the static subjects one days of time to each- History, Geography, Polity, Economy and some basic concepts of Science & Technology and Ecology and Environment.
Focus should be on the conceptual clarity than mere cramming of facts, here comes handwritten notes very handy!
- Do not read anything new
It is advisable to revise only what one has read, highlighted, or made notes of. Doing so not helps recalling and ensuring revision faster but also boosts confidence. And mind you, Prelim is more about Confidence than sufficient knowledge, as many times with little knowledge as well one can reach to the right answer, applying presence of mind.
It is advisable that the selective intensive study is carried out and the areas that need more attention should be concentrated to thoroughly get conceptual hold and memorise them accordingly.
Remember, it is the quality of preparation rather than quantity that matters.
- Time management
Align your sleep and wake up cycles in these last 10 days w.r.t. the UPSC Prelim 2020 exam timings. Many toppers have mentioned this in the past that it has been difficult for them due their habit of studying until late night. Slowly overcome this habit in last 10 days. Ensure revision with sufficient break time. Aspirants must figure out around what time he/she can put the highest level of concentration and try to be in tune with the UPSC CSE Prelim timings.
Apart from this, also ensure that while attempting the mock you have sufficient time to re-visit the question that are tick marked for later visit. So, practice enough to revisit the whole paper at least twice.
- Stick to one source
It is repeatedly said by faculties, toppers and all those who have gone through this exam cycle that do not multiply resources, as it is not a research-based exam. Although one needs to develop perspective for current affairs’ issues by various authentic sources, but it is not advisable to have multiple sources for static topics. The lesser, the better and just invest time in attempting the Qs by the retained knowledge.
Note: Best source is your notes if you have made it correctly.
- Revise High Yielding areas
Do not forget to re-visit high yielding areas such as in Polity related topics are- FR and DPSP, likewise map work for important places in news. Try to cover physical map.
- Focus on Current Affairs
Go through and re-visit the monthly compilations and the self-notes concerned, for effective revision. It will help keeping the facts fresh in mind before the exam. UPSC has been paying more attention to the current affairs especially Economy, Science and Technology, Biodiversity and Places/Events in News.
Read current affairs up to 15th of Sep 2020 as the paper must be already set, so channelise your energy in brushing up core concepts and be in tune with current events by going through the monthly magazines that you have been reading so far.
- Read the Questions carefully
Do not be in a hurry to attempt the Qs, first read, and try comprehending the correct essence quickly and then only attempt to tick mark. This is very well ensured if you have practised mock test papers sufficiently, if not, never mind still you can ensure it via appearing for mock tests in a time-bound manner. 10 days are sufficient to mitigate this issue. Overcome, the silly mistakes that are committed in the exam pressure.
It is essential to get into the time frame of the examination and manage your time accordingly, and try to strike a balance between your speed and accuracy!
- Try to be in calm composure
Do not indulge in the past results and overthink about them, keep the focus on the upcoming exam. Keep yourself busy in strengthening weak areas by efficient revision and keep the distraction at bay.
Spare few minutes (5-10 minutes) for meditative practises serve in long run to keep the stress and anxiety levels in check. It is advisable that aspirants do not overstretch especially one day before the examination. Sleep well and stay afresh and also ensure your immunity at the best by taking necessary precautions when stepping out for the examination.
Remember, whatever and however tough the level of examination may be, do not forget that it is doable- and aspirants do crack it every time and get selected as officer in the civil services domain. So, do not let fear psychosis grip you, keep faith in yourself and remain engaged in productive revision.
Prep Smart, Score Better, Go Gradeup!