CSAT Strategy

CSAT preparation:

Union public service commission every year conducts the civil service examinations like IAS, IPS, IES and others. As we know Civil services examination is known to be one of the toughest examinations and it has two papers called paper-1 (General Studies) and paper-2 (CSAT). The CSAT marks are not reckoned for the merit ranking based on which candidates are called to the mains exam. It is only a qualifying paper. Candidates have to work really hard and follow a tested strategy to clear the prelims exam. Even though the CSAT is not counted for the ranking, it is careful to be taken it seriously. Basic practice is essential so as not to miss the 33% required.

UPSC Syllabus for CSAT:

  • Comprehension
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability
  • Decision-making and problem-solving
  • General mental ability
  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. – Class X level)

Not only that the questions are not an easy select, the number of talented candidates and the hard competition accessible by the brilliants of India also makes this examination is much tough to crack in comparison to others. So, to get success in this exam, the main thing is to be needed is a sound strategy and its exact execution.

Before appearing in any competitive exam, it is must for the candidates to do their preparation from the best-recommended books and practising are the basic tools for the success.

To crack the toughest entrance, competitive or recruitment exam aspirants should do good preparation and commitment. At the time of preparation if you are confused about the kind of challenges that the exam question paper will throw up. But aspirants can easily tackle this challenge, by taking help from previous year Question Papers of any examinations.

Here are some of the CSAT prelims books and CSAT books for UPSC, you can have a look at them and do the best preparation of the exam.

  • CSAT Manual: General Studies for Civil Services Preliminary Examination (Paper – 2) by TMH
  • Analytical Reasoning by M.K. Pandey
  • A Modern Approach to Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning by Dr.R.S.Aggarwal
  • Pearson CSAT manual
  • Trishna’s Quantitative Aptitude And Data Interpretation
  • CSAT Conceptual Approach (Paper – 2) by P. N. Roy Chowdhury
  • CSAT (paper II) by Cl India
  • UPSC Portal: CSAT Comprehensive Manual

Practising Previous Year Question Papers:

To do better practice for your exam Previous Year Question Papers are the best source. The question papers help aspirants by offering a complete understanding of the type and format of the questions which will be asked in the examination.

By solving more and more of previous papers you will get to know the important sections of the exam and also you will note some repeated questions in all last year papers which may come in this year also. Recent trends in UPSC is changing after making it as qualifying paper, although people earlier thought that it is easy to crack prelims, it’s not been so easy especially post 2014. So, do practice more with provided papers from all the previous year UPSC examination papers.

Tips for Reasoning Preparation and English improvement:

Tips for Reasoning Preparation: In every competitive exam, reasoning plays an important role and students generally think about what is the Reasoning Preparation Tips? For solving the reasoning section, you just need to use your presence of mind and some easy tricks. The most important topics of the reasoning section namely Circular Arrangement, Linear Arrangement, Puzzles, Coding/Decoding, Inequalities, Blood Relations, and Directions are given in it.

Here some of the tips and tricks to master in CSAT:

  • You can have a look at the important questions and learn some easy tricks for how can you solve the reasoning questions easily with a shorter period of time.
  • The logical reasoning tests are designed to measure the ability of the contenders to draw the logical statement or arguments.
  • UPSC exam demands to have complete knowledge of logical reasoning. It is an important section to clear in the exam.
  • It is most important to make sure that you practice the right test questions for the aptitude test.
  • There are several types of spatial aptitude test questions, each designed to match a different level of difficulty and complexity, the right test questions are essential for a successful practice.
  • Get a good basic grammar book and read it. Ensuring you have the correct grammar usage is important for you to understand the given text.
  • Improve and expand your vocabulary so that you don’t have difficulty in comprehending the meaning of the passages.
  • Specifically, learn common idioms and phrases. This will help you not only in understanding but will also expose you to a lot of new words.
  • There are a lot of books and essays by Mahatma Gandhi and Jawaharlal Nehru that are in good and simple language. Read them and try to understand them. It will serve you the twin purpose of improving your English and also giving ideas for other papers.
  • Do not waste your time on time-consuming sites; don’t practice the generic spatial tests that are offered free on many websites, as they are likely to waste your time.

If you prepare for the exam from the given topics there can be a possibility of attempting 80% of the reasoning section. With more and more practice, you can find out the tricks and thus your scores can boost up.


  • Download the previous year question papers: Click here