HOW TO CLEAR PRELIMS IN 75-90 DAYS? :-
The Preliminary Exam (PT) is a rejection process. You must be VERY STRONG in your optional & STRONG in Current Affairs to clear this exam. To be thorough in your optional read 6-10 standard text books word by word & write down in point format the facts which you think are difficult to remember. I had Public Administration as my 1st optional & the book list has been given in my blog.
For General Studies read The Hindu thoroughly. Jot down the factual points in a separate note on Current Affairs & General Knowledge. If you think that you can’t do that at this stage then go for ANY ONE SOURCE for Current Affairs … either Wizard Current Affairs Special for Prelims OR Vajiram & Ravi Booklets for Prelims. Read any one but read it thoroughly & revise it 10 days before the PT test.
For Modern India read Spectrum "A Brief History of Modern India". It is factual & well-suited for PT exam. For Ancient & Medieval India take Short-Cut. As only 2-3 questions come in PT read the Indian History Specials that come in Wizard Monthly.20-25 pages of mugging of "who wrote which book",The Delhi Sultanate,Chronologically arrange Rulers etc of Ancient & Medieval India will do. Don’t read NCERT books for them as Cost-Benefit Ratio will be less.
For Polity read "EITHER" Vajiram & Ravi class note dictated by Mr Ravindran Sir or D D Basu. The later takes time. So Vajiram Note will do. At least read it 2 times.
For General Knowledge, General Science & General Mental Ability you can go through the TMH General Studies Guide. Don’t read other sections in this guide as it will duplicate things. The above mentioned sections have been covered well in this guide & you will have to labour less for it. If you have more time you can read Vajiram Class Note on GMA & try to mug up some formulas in Permutation & Combination & Probability.They will come handy in GMA as UPSC is asking 15-20 GMA questions in PT.
The important point to be kept in mind is that: - FOR EACH SECTION OF GENERAL STUDIES READ “A SINGLE AUTHORITATIVE SOURCE” rather than reading 3-4 sources and confusing yourself in the process.
For Indian Economy the Economic Survey (especially Chapter 1, 10 & the chapter on Finance & all BOX ITEMS) & Indian Economic Development (NCERT 11th standard) should be read. Be attentive to all economic news & facts that appear in Hindu Business page & Business Review.10 days of reading of The Economic Times from Feb 25 to March 10 (Budget Time & Eco Survey Analysis time) will make things easier for you. If you don’t get the meaning of any economic terminology please refer Collins Economic Dictionary. It is very simple & lucid.
For Geography read NCERT 11th & 12th standard text books (important ones being India Physical Geography & India Land & People).Apart from this read casually some chapters from Certificate Physical & Human Geography by Goh Cheng Leong & be well conversant with ATLAS & Maps. Frequently see maps & Atlas (Oxford or Macmillan) while reading The Hindu & try to locate the important landmarks (like lakes,mountains,rivers,Tropic of Cancer passing through which countries, the borders of countries touching which other countries & oceans, Capitals,National Parks of India & other countries etc).
DEVOTE 4-5 HOURS EVERYDAY FOR GENERAL STUDIES & 6-7 HOURS FOR OPTIONAL.60-70% EMPHASIS SHOULD BE LAID ON OPTIONAL & REST 30-40% ON GENERAL STUDIES.BUT IF YOU ARE “VERY WEAK” IN GENERAL STUDIES THEN MAKE IT 50 % EMPHASIS ON GS & 50 % EMPHASIS ON OPTIONAL.
In India Year book focus on the following chapters :- Finance, Diary of Events,Agriculture,Industry,Commerce,Basic Economic Data, India & The World, Land & People, Our Polity & Glossary of General Knowledge given in the end etc. Also browse through the IMPORTANT CONSTITUTIONAL AMENDMENTS given in India Year Book.
In Manorama Year Book focus on The India & World Panorama ( where day to day happenings have been given date-wise & month-wise),International Organizations, Awards, Books & Authors, Quiz etc. Suppose if you get a fact from it just ask your mind if this fact is going to come in Prelims, What is its probability? & if YOU think that it MAY come try to remember the fact by writing it down in your Current Affairs Note.
For this read LAST 5 YEARS UPSC GS PT QUESTIONS well so that you can READ THE EXAMINER'S MIND i.e. WHAT HE IS GOING TO ASK THIS YEAR IN CURRENT AFFAIRS & GENERAL KNOWLEDGE ...
If you have taken coaching from any Reputed Institute in Delhi (for ex. Vajiram & Ravi) then just revise their class notes.
Regularly & Attentively listen to Mid-Day News & 9 O Clock News in All India Radio. Coincide them with your lunch & Dinner timings so that you can save time & your Current Affairs & General Knowledge can be built up gradually.
Sometimes UPSC asks factual questions from Hindu Editorials. So if time permits read some editorials on Social Sector Schemes like NREGA,Bharat Nirman,NRHM,JnNURM etc. This is being done to test who are reading the Editorials & who are leaving them & just focusing on factual parts of The Hindu Newspaper. If you are THROUGH with THE HINDU 50 % of General Studies is done.
Suppose you get A NEW FACT on General Knowledge or Current Affairs from your friend or say Times of India just make it a point to write it down in your Current Affairs note after you return to your room. This enhances Memory & makes you confident during the exam. The more confident you are the better your chance to clear PT as NEGATIVE MARKING is there.
MOST IMPORTANTLY HAVE FAITH ON YOURSELF,NEVER DOUBT YOUR ABILITY & POTENTIAL,DO HARD WORK & HAVE FAITH ON GOD.UNLESS YOU BELIEVE IN YOURSELF YOUR SELF-DOUBT WILL INCREASE.SO BE CONFIDENT FROM DAY ONE & KEEP MOTIVATION LEVEL & CURIOSITY LEVEL HIGH.
ALL THE BEST FOR THE COMING PRELIMINARY EXAM ON 23RD MAY, 2010.
I will soon put a blog regarding details of PUBLIC ADMINISTRATION preparation for PRELIMS.
Till then, happy reading ….