Hopefully, this article would be useful for all who have never appeared for the IAS Mains yet and those who have appeared once or more than once or those who are still in a dilemma about their optional subject.
Popular optional subjects
Here are some reasons as to why some subjects are popular:-
Anthropology – This is a scoring subject and an interesting subject as well . Science students find this easy and they have to memorize diagrams, learn about tribal issues and relate topics to current affairs.
Public Administration – Has a definite syllabus and, it requires limited coaching and most syllabus involves self-study.
Geography – is a vast subject with a definite syllabus .Students need to concentrate on conceptual questions that require deep analysis. Students should also be aware of current affairs and should be well-versed in in India and World Maps.
History – History is a common optional subject and good for scoring as well. History needs more understanding and interpretation because the questions asked in the exam are in such a way where candidates have to link the concepts with some facts in their answers.
Sociology – This subject requires the ability to distinguish between abstract theories and concepts.
However, the popular scoring optional has nothing to do with the exam as there are few remarkable people who have cracked this exam by taking the not-so-popular optional subjects. The reason is that they chose the optional subject based on the interest and background and not based on the scoring or popular one.
How to Choose the right Optional Subject
When you choose the optional subject, don’t decide just based on marks but instead , choose the subject keeping the below factors in mind:-
- The subject should interest you.
- Acquaint yourself more with it
- The subject should not bore you
- It should make you think differently
- You should have all the books and study materials ready.
The candidates who scored well in the optional prove that it’s not just the popular subjects . So selecting an optional subject based only on the scoring criteria is inappropriate.
Hope you got an idea of how to select the optional subject for your UPSC exam.It is well advised that while choosing an optional subject not to think of the score, but decide based on the above-mentioned qualities and these qualities may differ from one person to another.Once you have understood the syllabus and have ample writing practice then marks will follow by its own.
Hope the points provided above helped you in finalizing an optional subject. Think through them and make your decision after a few days based on what you truly want. It is better to go by your own judgment . Whatever optional you select, you should be focused and willing to study hard ,so that you can score well in the exam. All the best!