Current affairs are an integral part of the UPSC Mains 2020 examination system. Officers in the IAS need to stay updated and aware of all developments in the nation and take decisions accordingly. Half-witted and ill-informed decisions have no place in the commission. That is the key reason why the UPSC Mains exam gives its weightage to current affairs. As a potential IAS officer, you too must be aware of what is happening around you and what to make of it. As the UPSC Mains 2020 are approaching our studying needs to get more rigorous and efficient and current affairs are going to play a big role in the same.
What is ‘The State of Current Affairs’?
Everything that is happening on a macro scale either globally or nationally constitutes the state of current affairs. It could be a chain of events that has led to a particular situation or a particular situation that is leading to a chain of events. Either way, these matters keep shaping the world around us and subsequently the future.
What To Expect in the UPSC Exam 2020?
There is no trend in what can be asked in the exam since we live in a dynamic world where no one facet of public life stays dominant. E.g. Currently we are facing a global pandemic which was not even thought of just year ago. However, that doesn’t mean the examination can ask you anything out of the blue. There are a few core subjects and a few dynamic subjects on which a candidate’s awareness is tested. Core subject are polity, geography, history, economics etc., while dynamic subjects include topics like environment, science and technology etc.
How to Prepare and Revise?
As discussed right now, the first step is to segregate every news into its respective category. Core subjects should take priority here as these events have the most important part to play in decision making by officers. Dynamic subjects, unless they have taken the world completely by storm, can take the backseat. This doesn’t mean you can skip them, just that they come later.
Newspapers are Important
The best source of information when it comes to current affairs is the media, print media especially. The newspaper usually comprises detailed news and coverage over a lot of major happenings in and around the country. If you read our previous blogs, we have given a detailed guide on how to prepare for UPSC Examination from the newspaper. The Hindu is widely regarded as a model house of journalism mainly due to its standard of language and largely neutral stance towards events, in general. Another aspect of the newspaper is the editorial section. This section gives one insight into the thought process of the populace. You can visit this blog to know more about preparing for UPSC with newspaper editorials.
Focus on The Larger Picture
Usually, an individual event or news doesn’t make a huge difference, but the developments around it do. Let us consider the example of the Chandrayaan-2 mission. The mission was deemed a success despite the Vikram rover not being able to land properly and deploy. The news itself doesn’t hold as much weightage as the progress made by India in the field of science and technology does. Indian scientists’ ability to make an autonomous robotic rover all by itself is a very big achievement and also marks the advent of our nation in the space race.
Another example we can look at is the CoVid-19 pandemic. Some person in Wuhan ate a bat and contracted a powerful virus was just news in January 2020. The chain of events that set off after that has become the current state of affairs today. The world has been completely reshaped, unraveled, and reoriented as of November 2020 and it looks like the effect is here to stay. The bigger picture here includes the global economic systems, political changes, changes in the work culture globally, and the new normal for the entire world.
To elaborate, focus on what is happening as an effect of an event or what was the cause of the event and how it affects the world. As officers, you might have to change your decisions someday based on such developments.
Keep Looking at Every Affair And Adding To It Regularly
The current state of affairs is not just one event, but it is a collection of events. Once you segregate your most important affairs as per their subject, you keep adding to the event, making changes to your notes as things progress. Your notes should be a precise observation you can make while getting more and more information every now and then.
Keep going back to your notes every 5-10 days, lest you might forget to record any developments and miss out on a few things. Give yourself some time to revise all your notes frequently.
In a Nutshell
Focussing on events around the state of affairs and rigorous amendments to your notes for every affair every week is the way to go. This will help you not only remember things properly but also would aid in keeping updated with every detail and facet of the affair. Don’t go back more than 12 months as those events become either irrelevant or other events take up their place. Keep reading and revising regularly. This will help you capture almost all the major affairs with good accuracy.
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