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How to Start Current Affairs Preparation for IAS/IPS/UPSC Exam 2019-20?

How to Start Current Affairs Preparation

Current Affairs is one of the most important aspects in the entire examination process of the Civil Services Examination because most of the questions at all the three levels i.e. Preliminary, Main and Interview are asked directly or indirectly from this part of the syllabus. The number of direct questions from current affairs in the Prelim Examination has been shown a declining trend but this is not true in the case of the main examination and the interview stage.

CURRENT AFFAIRS PREPARATION: IMPORTANCE OF CURRENT AFFAIRS

The current affairs part is one of the most important aspects of UPSC-IAS exam preparation. If you analyse the UPSC papers of years 2016 and 2017, there were about 25 questions from current affairs section. In the year 2018 and 2019, the weightage of questions from current affairs has drastically increased up to 55 questions in each year directly or indirectly. This shows the change in the pattern in the UPSC examination. 

There is a fact to keep in mind that UPSC has been asking questions by linking current affairs part with the traditional subjects like History, Polity, Geography, Economy, Science & Technology, Environment, etc. It shows that current affairs are of utmost importance for all the three stages of UPSC civil services examination

HOW TO READ CURRENT AFFAIRS?

Current Affairs is a vast area comprising of current events of national and international importance, bilateral relations between countries, etc. For that be familiar with the civil services examination pattern, i.e. demand of exam in all stages prelims (facts), mains (analysis, opinion, interlinkages, written communication, etc.) and interview (overall personality, verbal communication). Further, Read the syllabus of civil service examination both of Prelims & Mains thoroughly (especially Mains as it is well defined compared to Prelims) with related instructions. Now while Reading Newspaper, a candidate is to be selective-for any news to be read related to the news article with the syllabus, then study the article carefully.

For example, if the news is that India won ashes series 4/0 beating England or some actress is charging 10 crores for a movie. You cannot relate this news with your syllabus, so this news is useless for your civil service exam preparation. But if there is news on Prime Minister Narendra Modi visiting Nepal for talks then you can relate this news with “India and its neighbourhood relations “of the International Relations section of General Studies 2 paper of the main examination.

Now after reading, think and analyze the news by using the details in the article to have a 360° view of the topic. If the content given in the article is not sufficient then you may make use of the internet or any other reference book or your previous knowledge about the topic. 

The daily habit of reading newspapers will help you in the entire process of the examination. Further, Watching Rajya Sabha TV debate and current affairs monthly magazines like Yojana, Kurukshetra will also be helpful for current affairs.

SOURCES TO BE COVERED FOR DAILY IMPORTANT NEWS FOR IAS

The study sources for current affairs can be divided into two categories- primary & secondary. If you want to make your current affairs portion strong, the following study sources can be followed-

Primary

  • Focus on any National newspaper like The Hindu or Indian Express and read it daily
  • Government Monthly Magazines like Yojana and Kurukshetra
  • Chahal Academy current affairs monthly magazine 

Secondary

  • Websites like- india.gov.in, pib.nic.in, newsonair.nic.in, Wikipedia
  • India Year Book by publication division, Government of India (Yearly)

ROLE OF NEWSPAPER IN CURRENT AFFAIRS FOR IAS PREPARATION

When you are preparing for the IAS exam, the reading of the newspaper becomes crucial then. It is highly advisable that a UPSC aspirant must read anyone's national newspaper whether in Hindi or English based on his medium of examination. Now the question comes why IAS aspirants should read newspapers? The answer is here. For preliminary examination, newspaper reading will help you in keeping yourself updated with current affairs which play a major role in the UPSC-CSE general studies paper 1. Further for CSAT, reading newspapers will help you to develop reading comprehension skills.

Further, for the UPSC-CSE main examination, the newspaper will help you in understanding the current issues and developing your Opinion and language for answer writing. The social issues part of General Studies paper 1, complete General Studies paper 2 and General Studies Paper III are based on current affairs. In this context, the newspaper reading becomes highly important for the UPSC main examination.

Further, if a candidate has chosen a dynamic optional subject like Pub-ad, PSIR, etc. then the rigorous reading of the newspaper becomes important.

Further, if we talk about the UPSC interview, a candidate is required to have a balanced opinion about the national and international issues. The newspaper helps a candidate in his interview preparation, especially the editorial section of the newspaper which has the opinion of experts from various domains helps the candidate in building a balanced opinion about any issue. The UPSC aspirants are always advised to read 2 national level newspapers between the main examination and the interview.

ROLE OF RAJYA SABHA TV IN CURRENT AFFAIRS FOR CIVIL SERVICES EXAM

Rajya Sabha TV is also a helpful source for the preparation of current affairs for the UPSC exam. Watching various debate programs like The Big picture, India's world, Science monitor, etc on Rajya Sabha TV is very helpful for current affairs preparation. It helps a UPSC aspirant throughout the entire examination process.

These debates on Rajya Sabha TV cover issues related to Governance, polity, and constitution of the country. The issues related to the clash of Executive and legislative, human rights commission issue, governor’s issue, etc. In these debates, UPSC aspirants get insights about various exam related issues that help them in framing the answers during the main examination.

Step 1.

Be familiar with civil services examination pattern, i.e. demand of exam in all stages prelims (facts), mains (analysis, opinion, interlinkages, written communication etc.) and interview (overall personality, verbal communication)

Step 2.

Read syllabus of civil service examination both of Prelims & Mains thoroughly(especially Mains as it is well defined compared to Prelims) with related instructions.

Step 3.

 Now while Reading Newspaper be selective-for any NEWS to be read relate the news article with syllabus, then study the article carefully-

Example:

If news is that England won ashes series 4/0 beating Australia or Kareena Kapoor ischarging 10 crore for a movie. You cannot relate this news with your syllabus, so

these news are useless for your civil service exam preparation.

But if there is news on Prime Minister Manmohan Singh visiting Pakistan for talks – then you can relate this news with “India and its neighborhood relations “of General Studies 2 paper.

Now after reading THINK-ANALYSE the NEWS item by using the details in article (if the content given in article is not sufficient then you may take use of INTERNET or any other REFERENCE BOOK or your previous KNOWLEDGE about the topic) to have 360° view of topic.

Still if you are not clear or have any doubt then you can ask your concerned teacher (if news is related to particular subject i.e. polity / economy / science etc. you can ask your respective teacher)

Step 4. Sources to refer

Mandatory

  • Newspaper ( any one )- The Hindu , Indian Expres
  • Government Magazine- Yojana (Monthly- published by Government of India)

Supplementary

  • 1. Websites (be selective and balanced use)–
  • 2. insightsonindia
  • 3. iasbaba
  • 4. xaam.in
  • 5. india.gov.in
  • 6. pib.nic.in
  • 7. newsonair.nic.in
  • 8. wikipedia
  • 9. Kurukshetra
  • 10. News Magazine – Frontline ( Fortnightly)
  • 11. Career Magazine ( any one )- Civil Service Chronicle or Civil Services Times( Monthly)
  • 12. India Year Book by publication division , Government of India (Yearly )

Here is a list of our coaching centres around the country. In this list of IAS coachings in India, We have mention our each and every coaching centres situated in or around Delhi NCR, Which is most famous city for IAS Preparation acorss India. Chahal Academy have been teaching students for UPSC civil services exam since at least past 8 years.

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