Saturday, July 25, 2015

Booklist for Mains

BOOKLIST FOR MAINS-

Essay – No book. Marks 160/250

General Studies Paper 1 – Marks 103/250
  • Art & Culture – never prepared. But I have heard people say Spectrum is good. No clue cause I didn’t study so please check with others. I left all the questions in the exam – which is reflected in my marks. J
  • Independence History – Old NCERT for pre-1857 and Spectrum for 1857 and beyond. I found that the questions need you to not go in depth but just know the topic and be able to analyse it right then and there. So I found reading the fat Bipin Chandra etc a complete waste of time. If you feel like it, then please go ahead but I didn’t do it. Also check out the new NCERT because the important  Personalities are mentioned in Boxes in that book.
  • Post- independence History – ONLY the new NCERT – India Since Independence. It is a brilliant book which gives everything you need to know clearly and concisely. Also again, the personalities are given in boxes. UPSC hasn’t run out of questions to ask from that yet, so it should suffice a few more years.
  • World History – Old NCERTs available as photocopies right from 9-12th. The ones from before the year 2000. They are more than enough. Again, UPSC hasn’t run out of questions to ask from that yet, so it should suffice a few more years.
  • Sociology material – did a few coaching materials on the random topics but it was more about my general understanding of Indian Society.
  • Geography – can’t help there since it was my optional so I did detailed material on the topics. But Mrunal.org has covered some stuff very nicely and YouTube has some brilliant videos on the basic topics. NCERTs are the main starting point even for the optional people.



General Studies Paper 2 – Marks 122/250
  • Polity – I only ever did Laxmikant Polity. I find it the best book ever. Haven’t read anything else. But maybe now after the exam I will try reading D.D. Basu just to see what it is all about. I tried it before and couldn’t get past the first chapter. So it was Laxmikant for me!
  • RPA – did google search and read stuff from multiple websites and also whatever was in the news.
  • Schemes etc – I did from the direct Ministry websites. Also my friend Shikhar used to listen to the news and would force me to listen with him on AIR Fm. Sometimes the news analysis that came after the news would give brilliant points for the schemes. But I hadn’t done ministry websites before and I did it this time. It made a huge difference. Also would google search for schemes of government of India and check out all the results that appeared.
  • Current Affairs – I did Vision coaching current affairs. I think they copy paste articles from The Hindu but since I was too lazy to read the Hindu everyday, this worked for me. I did the C.A. right from December of 2013. Last year I did not do current affairs at all, but that was a big mistake.
  • International Affairs – I did from Vajiram Coaching material which they bring out around a month before the exam. It was more than sufficient in my opinion.
  • Other topics – I did a lot of government documents like reports on the topics and also googled all the topics mentioned and read some of the articles that came up. Didn’t make notes but got a general idea.  I did this for the first time this year. Also did coaching material from 3 delhi based coachings – Sriram, Vajiram and Vision. Some topics were good in one source and some in the other.



General Studies Paper 3 – Marks 95/250
  • Basic Economics – I had done this in Business School so I just brushed it up. Didn’t follow any particular source.
  • Economics C.A. – Mrunal.org is a brilliant source. I did it only on the last night before the exam but I regret not paying more attention.
  • Government documents and websites for the other topics where needed.
  • Referred to Vision and Sriram material for most of the topics.
  • Security – I did Vajiram booklet but didn’t find it great. Sriram material had covered some of the topics really well.
  • Disaster – NDMA and other government websites.
  • S&T, Bio-diversity and Environment – I had in my first attempt finished Wizard Science & Tech (big fat book), so I kept doing it. Bought newer editions where I just had to update on the new additions.


General Studies Paper 4 – Marks 135/250
  • Lexicon thin book on ethics
  • Didn’t really need to prepare much so no clue. Never did a single case study or read any other book. Can’t help much here.
  • I handled Case Studies basis what I had learnt in Business School so there isn't any one technique. Every question requires a different strategy. Some techniques you can google are - PESTEL, Stakeholder Analysis, Value Chain, SWOT and Pro-Con. 


Geography Optional – 305/500
  • Savinder Singh – Physical Geography
  • Rupa Made Simple – Physical & Human geography both
  • Majid Hussain – Evolution of geographical thought
  • Goh Cheng Leong – Certificate Physical and Human Geography
  • K. Siddhartha – Economic Geography
  • NCERTs -6th to 12th old and new
  • I, even, did ICSE 6-8th  - not relevant anymore
  • Coaching material for the rest of the topics
  • Google searched a lot of issues not given clearly elsewhere.
  • YouTube videos on resources etc.
  • There were a few other books but none of them were relevant. I tend to buy everything anyone said and they were mostly useless. So just giving a list of the books I read again and again.
  • I am terrible at Maps. I can do the world map perfectly but just can't do India Map. I have been known to draw Amarnath in China, exchange Kandla and Mundhra port and basically change the location of every city. I know the big features as they relate to India physical but the small towns and cities and rivers that get asked, I never know. They ask a lot from Current Affairs and since I do my Current Affairs differently, I always get a 0 in map. Though I think I knew some of it correctly this year. So I cannot help with the preparation of the Map. 

421 comments:

  1. Dear ma'am,
    Congratulations on your achievement.
    Thanks a lot for sharing this valuable information.
    I am taking public administration as my optional paper. Can you please suggest some good books for the same ?

    Thanks,
    Ankit

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I did Laxmikant Pub Ad and some other books...but sorry since it was so long ago I can't remember! I wasn't very good at Pub Ad so it is out of my memory now! Please check some of the forums for help! Best of luck!

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    2. Mam,are als polity class notes and wizard good?

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    3. Sorry don't know...never studied from them...

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    4. is ncert enough for preminlary exam


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  2. Thanks Ira ma'am , this blog on a whole was really a great guide for the preparation of UPSC. Ma'am I've sent you a message on Facebook in the name of SAINYA SINGH, It has been filtered on your 'OTHER MESSAGES' folder because I'm not added in your list. Ma'am plz, if you have a bit of spare time , plz check that other message folder of yours. I shall be highly obliged. Thankyou!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I think I have already responded to you :)

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  4. Ma'am can u plzz let me know what books did you follow for paper 2 of geography optionals?

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    1. Please read my post on Coaching ......I didn't use a single textbook except NCERTs for paper 2 of geography

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  5. Dear ma'am
    I read your full strategy and I feel I too read same material and in same fashion. But I m nt able to qualify mains for two attempts. This year I got 570 marks only.

    Is it writing skill that matters or its level of understanding?.

    Plz reply ma'am.

    Thank you in advance

    ReplyDelete
  6. I dont know! I can't check my own level of understanding....maybe you can try working on the writing skill! I've mentioned how I wrote my answers in another post. Hope it helps! Best of luck!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thnx ma'am

      I haven't done writing practice. I always its good to read as much as I can and if I knw the answer I ll recall and write.

      This year I ll do writing practice.

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  7. mam could you please share some of your answers with us..it would be immensely helpful for aspirants..thanks in advance..:)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Sorry I havent ever written a single answer!

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    2. thank you for replying mam...please shed some light on how to write answers in points..mam this time i had written most of the answers in points but couldn't fetch good marks.

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    3. I hope you expanded the points when writing. And maybe underline the key words. Also please make sure the points are different from each other and not the same thing repeated in different words. Content matters in my opinion. Best of luck. Hope you do better this year!

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  8. Mem
    Mene 12th nios se Kiya hai or
    Graduate SOL.DU se kr rha hu
    Me upsc cse exam de paunga na

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I think so but please check with the right authorities!

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  9. Mam plz tell me from which class should i start reading ncerts first ( lyk from 11 class onwards or 6 class onwards) as i m trying to build a basic understanding of all subjects involved....thanks mam in advance

    ReplyDelete
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    1. i started from 6th in some subjects and 9th in others and 11th in still others...it depends on where your current level is. try figuring that out!

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  10. Ma'am , How did you prepare for the Language paper

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    1. I didnt prepare English...for hindi i read vyakaran books!

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  11. hello mam....i am ranjith a 12th graduate from tamil nadu. A hearty congrats for your your consistence preserverance . i know that we have only one life.....so we have to put hard to show off....i am ready to put ma effort to any extent for this UPSC...what ma question is which optionals you prefer?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. You mean to say which optional I would recommend for you? I think you are still too young to worry about that! You are just out of school! Please focus on your graduation for now.
      In terms of Optional, it is always better to go with something that you will truly enjoy and can read again and again. It is very important to enjoy your optional cause you have to revise it multiple times. Also it is better to choose something that is not very very popular cause then your answers get compared to more and more people so it becomes tougher to score. Best of luck! For now, forget UPSC CSE and just concentrate on your Graduation!

      Delete
  12. mam i want to take political science as my opinional subject , mam will you please prefer me some good books.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Sorry don't know! Please check with candidates who cleared with that optional. Best of luck :)

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  13. Hi mam,
    Congratulations for you achievement....
    I am from mechanical background so please inform me how to prepare for CSAT exams and which subject to take as optional and please inform me is it enough one year time to prepare.

    Thanking you.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sorry...I never specifically prepared for CSAT. I have given CAT before so did not need to do anything for CSAT part of the exam. But I hear there are some books that you can maybe check out. Please check with other candidates for information on those.
      As for the optional - I repeat what I said before - In terms of Optional, it is always better to go with something that you will truly enjoy and can read again and again. It is very important to enjoy your optional cause you have to revise it multiple times. Also it is better to choose something that is not very very popular cause for popular optionals your answers get compared to more and more people so it becomes tougher to score. Best of luck!

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  14. Hello Ma'am,

    How to revise the entire syllabi before preliminary and mains exam?

    While revising I end up reading everything once again.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That is what I did. Read everything again. I don't see how that is bad!

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  15. Hii mame.....this is Nishchay sonbirse from Balaghat ( mp)..i got a very special tips from your provided information...that....we should not read so,many books and magazines .....we should read and use minimum books and topics but we should analyze from the bottom of the issues........my subject is geography...so pls tell me...books for human geography in Hindi medium...thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I am sorry I did not read anything in Hindi Medium. Please check with someone else who has cleared with Geography in Hindi Medium. Best of luck!

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  16. Maaaaaaaaaaaaaaaammm !!! Heartiest congratulations.... U r my real hero and inspiration .. So nice to connect to you .. Am going to buy old NCERT books of geography today after ur suggestions....... Will see u soon someday ........ :)

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thank you so much and Best of luck! :)

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  17. Dear Madam,

    You referred to India since indpendence for post independence history.
    Kindly tell whether this new ncert is of: a)Class 11 or 12 b) Pol Science or History

    TIA

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    Replies
    1. It is a new NCERT. I don't remember if it is for History or Pol Science. The name should suffice when you are buying it :) Best of luck!

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  18. Hello mam! Can you please elaborate on how you prepared dynamic portion in geography optional subject in both papers . What website and sources , reports you referred and what were the points you looked in those reports. please guide.

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    1. Like I said somewhere else, Economic Survey and the normal current affairs material of G.S. is what I used. Census had just come out so I used data from that - did some google search for some of the things. No specific websites. You can just google whatever exact data point you want and check the results that come up - for example the demographics and economic trade etc. Best of luck!

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  19. Respected Mam,

    I have also taken option as "geography" but my only query is that for GEOGRAPHY OF INDIA..............which book i should follow...........is "GEOGRAPHY OF INDIA" by MAJID HUSSAI is good enough....for it ???????
    for this kindness i would be always obliged to you.

    your sincere,
    ATUL KUMAR VERMA

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have not read the book so don't know. I did not follow any book for paper 2 of geography outside of NCERTs. Please check with some other candidate. Best of luck!

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  20. Eramam. Namastey for geog optional which coaching notes is best

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  21. Eramam. Namastey for geog optional which coaching notes is best

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    Replies
    1. I think most coachings are giving the same exact material. You can take whichever is easily available. I bought Alok Ranjan coaching material also, it was the exact same thing that I already had! So I think they are all the same thing! Only different printing styles.

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  22. Ira, My name is Sandeep Gupta. I am an Educational Consultant with the United Nations. I run a UN-Affiliated Program Know The World in 77 Hours. I have written a mail to you about something specific. Please read the mail and do get back to me.

    Do watch what the participants say about my free-of-cost UN-Affiliated program:

    https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=H5yAtenCrsM

    Thanks a lot.

    ReplyDelete
  23. Ma'am,
    Isn't India Yearbook a good source for the govt. Schemes & other CA stuff? Please elaborate.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I found it too big and scary! So didn't use it. Hence, I dont know if it is a good source. Though, Yearbook is published at the end of the year which means it will be published and released for Dec 2014 by Jan 2015. But if you are giving the exam in Dec 2015, a lot of new data would be missing in the book! So you will anyway have to do it from other sources!

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  24. mam, i had a commerce background, i was just average on accountancy., would u consider my optional subject as accountancy or should i try for something new subject such as pubad or geography?
    thanks for replying

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If you are just average at it, would you want to study it again and again? Please choose a subject you can keep studying again and again. Best of luck!

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  26. I have never find in any topper's interview that the person who topped took regional language compulsory paper apart from HINDI...
    whether its you, Gaurav Sir, Roman Sir or check in the long history...
    so can we conclude that HINDI is in the dominant and not others.... Asking this as I am Bengali and focused to sit for 2016 ie. next year

    Secondly please shed some light on solving papers of ETHICS...how to get a good marks in this?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Renu Raj is from Malayalam background if I am not mistaken? She at least took Malayalam as her optional. I don't think that is the case about Regional Languages. I don't think it is a good idea to make such analysis and get discouraged. At least go ahead and try! If no one has done it before, why can't you?? The only person stopping you, is you.

      As far as Ethics goes, I have mentioned how to handle it in the blog somewhere....if you have any specific doubt then ask me that please. Makes it easier for me to answer. I have no sample answers in case you are wondering :) Best of luck!

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  27. Mam love you........Diabolic Hunter :p

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Thank you :D If I knew who you were, I would have tried to return the sentiment!

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  28. Mam, plz elaborate how this year's preparation for prelim should be along with any booklist if possible

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    1. Like I said, I never prepared for Prelims so not the right person to ask about it! Hope you find answers elsewhere! Best of luck!

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  29. Thank u so much man for ur valuable blog. Mam I m very grateful to u becoz before read ths blog I was very worried about books. This is wonderful for me. And appreciated coz nobody tells lik ths.. seriously mam thank you so much

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  30. Mam reading 9 to 12th pol science necessary or it wkuld be enouh if i do laxhmikant.

    ReplyDelete
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    1. If you have the basic idea, Laxmikanth would be enough I think. Best of luck!

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  31. maam, could you please share your GS IV paper answer and at least few case studies in proper manner.......it would be a great help for fellow candidates

    ReplyDelete
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    1. I would love to share, if I could, for the life of me, remember what I wrote! Everything happened so fast in the exam hall that I did not really notice what I was writing. And I have never written a single practice answer. Never attended any test series etc either.
      P.S. What is proper manner? How is it improper when sharing?

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  32. 1) for India since independence - is it with the Name politics in India since independence
    2) please mention which sites are to be referred for govt. Schemes...
    Thanks a lot for providing this platform..

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please see my responses above to similar queries. Best of luck!

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  33. How you managed optional as it requires intensive and extensive reading ?

    ReplyDelete
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    1. Well I did the intensive and extensive study :) There is no escape from that :) I never said I didn't study deeply. Just that I didn't study too long :) Best of luck!

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  34. ....and what am i do ira didi?? I am very confused that what books should really to read.....i have all of ncert books.....lucents.....and coaching ke notes me afford nahi kar sakta......to me apni g.s. hindi me cover kese karuga

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. please kissi hindi medium ke candidate se check kariye. Mujhe hindi medium ke baare mein kuch nahin pata. Best of luck!

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  35. ....and what am i do ira didi?? I am very confused that what books should really to read.....i have all of ncert books.....lucents.....and coaching ke notes me afford nahi kar sakta......to me apni g.s. hindi me cover kese karuga

    ReplyDelete
  36. hello mam.. congratulations for ur achievement..u r great example of perseverance n determination . i ll b giving my first attempt dis time in 2015..mam can u tell how much time did u take to complete the geography optional. mam i hav keen interest in geography. do u really advice for optional coaching or is it manageable by self study. plz tell the strategy or approach used for geo optional answer writing. plz do reply for d query

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    1. I have written the answer writing strategy for optional also in the post about answer writing. I studied geography for something around 5-6 months. I took coaching because I did not know anything about the exam at all! But a lot of people have done it without coaching. You can start it yourself and see if you can manage and if at any stage you feel you need help, then check about it. Best of luck!

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  37. mam cud u plz share ur geog marks last year (2013)

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    1. I think somewhere around 192-193? I dont remember clearly.Last year geography had some very different sort of questions.

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  38. mam, u scored exceptionally in gego ppr 1. what special u did in ppr 1. did u change ur approach this year

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    Replies
    1. No. I always get good marks in Geog Paper 1. My basics for Geography paper 1 are very strong. Like I mentioned, I have studied it from many many books - in fact almost all my booklist is for this paper. These are marks for pure content and conceptual clarity. This was the only paper I did not underline, but I wrote a few things in points and I made diagrams in a few questions (not all). I don't think I did anything too different, but I always get high in this paper. This paper is my main strength besides GS 4- Ethics. Best of luck :)

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  40. mam did u read all the reports of commitee and commision.how to use them in exam. are these points which we have to write ifthe question ask why this thing is not doing good and wat will u do type of question?

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    Replies
    1. No I did not! I just read the reports that were relevant to the Topics clearly mentioned in the course for GS2 & GS3. For the reports you read, you need just a basic idea of the problems being discussed and the kind of solutions being proposed. Nothing else. And yes, these are the points you have to write. Best of luck :)

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  41. Respected medem how you managed part2 of paper 1 of geography optional ?

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    Replies
    1. I have mentioned the booklist above. I did it from them. Best of luck :)

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  42. Congratulations Ma'am.
    You've quite lit up some of the sleeping brains of this country. And I wish you continue the same throughout your life. Keep inspiring and keep helping.
    I am quite confused as to whether to go for the coaching, I know how to start up the things being a fresher but I can't really give time when preparing at home. I feel disturbed at home and at the same time I feel coaching isn't required.
    This has been a rather complex issue for me to solve.

    Please help with your kind words.

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    Replies
    1. Thank you so much. Please check my post about coaching. Coaching is not necessary obviously! U can get it if you feel you need help or need some kind of routine etc. It is a very personal choice but I don't think it is vital. I did all the GS papers from the materials I have mentioned above. Best of luck! :)

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  43. hello ma'm, cngrts for succesfully clearing the exam! can u pls tell me what an aspirant should do 15 days before the prelims? and regarding geography optional preparation, can one prepare on thr own? is thr any difficulty? pls respond.. thanks in advance!

    ReplyDelete
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    1. 15 Days before the exam, you should be studying! And Not worrying! Revise your current affairs, and basic history, geography and polity. I don't know if the optional can be prepared on our own or not...I did use a coaching for it, but I am sure there are people who did it all on their own! The books are freely available and the NCERTs clarify all concepts brilliantly!

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    2. Best of luck! Hope you do really well! :)

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  44. mam congrats for urs clearing the cse and becoming the topper..........mam wanna ask u something to u dat from which month should current affairs ( CA) start for both prelims nd mains?

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    1. do Full 12 months before the exam. For pre- from August of the previous year and for Mains- from December of the previous year. Best of luck!

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  45. Congratulations Ma'am :-) What keeps you so motivated and determined?

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    1. People around me! They are fantastic! And the fact that I have immense faith in my capabilities. I can generally find a rational reason for what went wrong, so I try to change it. If I can't then I don't worry about it and find something else. I am clear what my legacy I want to leave behind on this earth. So that helps. In the end, it is all about what you expect from yourself :) Best of luck!

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  46. Heartiest Congratulations on the wonderful success...!!!

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    1. Thank you so much :) Best of luck to you!

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  47. Congratulation mam. Give me some tips to prepare consistently?

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    1. Thank you so much :) The only tip I can possibly give is make realistic targets and stick to them. Also leave time in your schedule to enjoy and relax. Best of luck!

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  49. maam which government websites are important

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    1. You have to check the Ministry websites for the schemes etc. The topics are mentioned in the syllabus....just take each topic and go to the relevant ministry site. Best of luck :)

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  50. madam can u suggest how to prepare for science &technology and what are the best sources for S&T?

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    1. I have mentioned the source I used....I think Vajiram and other coachings also come out with some material towards the end...and some of the people running the teaching websites like Mrunal etc. also discuss the topic. Best of luck

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  51. Dear Mam,

    Congratulations,happy to see women on such a high position.

    I really inspired from you.

    Please help me for the mains.exams.

    NCERT's Roman sir videos and Mrunal sir notes and all other specified famous books are sufficient for mains coverage.

    Please help me for the mains how can i prepare well in 5 months.I really follow you,.

    Warm regards
    saurabh pathak

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. I have studied only the material I have mentioned...I have posted a new blog post about clarifying more things that I did...hope it all helps! 5 months sounds enough to me! Best of luck!

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    2. Dear Mam,

      Thank you so much for the kind reply and i am really happy that someone came forward and help me like an teacher.

      I wish u very successful and brilliant future..!!!

      Thanks Again for all.

      Warm regards
      Saurabh Pathak

      Delete
  52. Hi Ira ma'am,

    First of all Many many congratulations.
    Hi Ira ma'am, My name is Saurabh. I am an IT professional since last 4 years. I am currently 26 years old.
    Getting selected as IAS has always been my aspiration. Could you please guide me how to proceed and prepare for it. Could you please also suggest me books in regard to that.

    Thanks & regards.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. That has all been discussed on this post...what else do you require? I have given all the books...I just did another post of my videos discussing all this...Hope it all helps!
      Best of luck!

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  53. Hello Ira Mam, Congratulations for your achievement. You mentioned about the Govt Reports and websites. can you please tell which are the MUST govt reports to read and which govt websites are must to look for the UPSC preparation.
    Thanks

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There is no MUST. Everywhere new reports come out so you need to go through those. Also check the important reports like ARC etc. Specially focus on the reports on the topics clearly mentioned in the syllabus. As for the sites, you have to check the Ministry websites for the schemes etc. The topics are mentioned in the syllabus....just take each topic and go to the relevant ministry site. Best of luck!

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    2. Thank you mam for your comments.

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  54. If i hav to economy frm stratch how shd i go about?
    what are the minitry reports i hav to reppare?

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Start from class 9th NCERT. And then you can move to specialized material like Economic Survey etc. Some online websites do brilliant work on teaching the subject so you can check those as well. Already answered about the Ministry reports in the previous response. Best of luck.

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  55. Congratulation madam...! You have fought a lot for this achievement... Hats off to you madam....You are a source of inspiration for many of us... India needs people like u..!!!..History has been always a challenging subject for me maam..Can you please guide me how to go ahead with this subject on a prelims and mains basis....!

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    1. I have mentioned every single source I used for History above. Please refer to that. Try reading them multiple times if you find the subject challenging. Revision is the only key to get over our fears. In history, I recommend just doing the mains syllabus...ancient and medieval Indian History portions aren't worth the effort they require in my opinion. So I used to always skip them. Best of luck.

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    2. Thank you so much mam....! Thanks for spending time to reply for our queries...! Happy Independence Day madam...! This blog is a great source for all UPSC aspirants...!!!

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  56. Ira mam salute to you ,..... we are tremendously inspired by you ,... no words to comment ,... mam i wish to know the priority topics for quick revision for pre ...

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    1. I don't know...sorry! For me priority are subjects that I am stronger in...so I can at least have some strong areas. But this can backfire so you should try to revise everything that you can. Best of luck :)

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  57. Ira mam salute to you ,..... we are tremendously inspired by you ,... no words to comment ,... mam i wish to know the priority topics for quick revision for pre ...

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  58. thanks mam,

    your achievement is charismatic

    ReplyDelete
  59. hello ma'am
    congratulation for your achievement
    my name is surbhi kishore and i am preparing for upsc exam 2016. I want to ask you something mam, I am suffering from SPINAL MUSCULAR ATROPHY ( its a neuro-muscular genetic disease) in which i cannot stand or walk. I want to ask you if i clear the exam then after that is i face any kind of medical restriction or something like that?
    thankyou

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    Replies
    1. As per the current system, Yes it will. But still, give the exam! It is better to fight it after you are in, rather than from the outside. Best of luck!

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    2. truly said ma'am, thank you so much for this info.

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  60. Hello madam,
    Congratulations
    I have a small query that shall i have to go through both the books of LAXMIKANTH on INDIAN POLITY & GOVERNANCE ? or one book on indian polity by laxmikanth is sufficient?

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    Replies
    1. Are you referring to the book of Pub Ad optional? I didnt know there were 2 books on polity...I only did Indian Polity book.... best of luck!

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    2. there is a separate book on INDIAN GOVERNANCE by LAXMIKANTH,shall i go for that or INDIAN POLITY by LAXMIKANTH is sufficient for both polity and governance ?

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  61. hello mam...
    I just have a small query. Is it possible for an irs to get its first posting in new delhi and does your first posting depends on your choice and AIR in cse??
    plz plz reply to this.
    and which are the other services in which you are posted in delhi most of the time ?

    I will be very greatful to you if you answer this :)

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. There are a lot of services where you are mostly in Delhi! I am not sure but I think IIS etc are some of them. Please check with the candidates who have been a part of the different services. I can just tell you that in IRS C&CE you can get Delhi in the first posting. They ask you for choices and try to accommodate everyone so most people get their first choice. It is not about the rank but more about the departmental exams and your performance in the Academy. Best of luck!

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  62. IRA MADAM which pen did you use while writing mains ? i.e. Gel or Ballpoint pen.blue or black.
    in csm 2012 and csm 2013 I could not get post due to shortfall of some marks.

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    Replies
    1. Blue colored Gel...but that doesnt matter! I have seen people write with black as well and most candidates write in Ball pens. I am just more comfortable with a gel pen...my handwriting is small so it gets smudged with a ball-pen. I don't think it matters too much as long as your paper is readable and easy to check. Best of luck for your future attempts!

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    2. I wish to express my gratitude to you for your practical help....Thank you so much...!

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  63. mam,i am currently in graduation 2nd year should i join upsc coaching now or should i do self study.what should be my strategy.please reply.

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    Replies
    1. Self Study for now. But please concentrate more on your graduation. You cannot give the exam without that anyway! You are still very young! So take your time and prepare carefully. Also if you can first work after graduation, that would be better. Work-ex gives you a wider perspective and helps you write better answers. Also a job gives you confidence so you are less nervous during preparation. Best of luck!

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  64. First of all congratulations ma'am.....As I visited your blog for the first time I feel that only sky is the limit for the people like you.....Apart from information, even after getting selected, you are responding to each and every person shows that you are attached to roots. It's really amazing to see toppers like you with humble nature.
    I'm also preparing for exam and my aim is to secure rank 1 in my very first attempt. After visiting your blog I'm feeling more energized. Hopefully I will be meeting you after as an administrator after securing rank 1 in 2018.
    Thanx and all the best, India needs people like you and yes salute to your courage...:)

    ReplyDelete
  65. I congratulate you for your success.As I am in M A English hons. I made notes from books and I got good marks than others.So, I want to ask you for essay topics and ehics paper how can I start my study.Please suggest.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Please check the blog post on Answer and Essay writing. Also you can check the videos I posted the links for yesterday. Best of luck :)

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  66. Hello mam,is it possible for you to share your final upsc cs official marksheet photocopy or screen shot..? Please upload it. Thanking you

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  67. Hello mam,is it possible for you to share your final upsc cs official marksheet photocopy or screen shot..? Please upload it. Thanking you

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  69. Hello ma'am ..cordial congrats.. Ma'am .. I have done my degree in food technology in 2015 with very less %=66..as I never studied this..I have a2 years gap as well after my ssc exam in 2010/. Can I appear in cse with the his or eligibility... If yes how should begin with geography.. As my optional. ?

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  70. mam i m from bihar.i want to be a civil servant.how much hour per day i will have to study?i feel tired while studying long.what should i do for mainting my concentration and energy for long hour?

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  71. Mam Is Delhi Coaching Class will be more beneficial for UPSC rather than doing preparation at home ?

    How much importance of Delhi Class ?

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  72. congratulation on your success.
    Mam can you tell how much important the handwriting is for an IAS aspirant???
    My handwriting is not good does it affect my marks in mains???

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  73. Ma'am,
    I am a civils aspirant, currently pursuing MBA, since am already filled up with MBA work it left me for very less time to study for civils, actually I could only spare the time is 4 hr is spent in metro going to and fro, should I join a coaching near my college or continue self study.

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  74. Warm greetings mam, many congratulations...I have specific query where I need ur esteemed advice..I wrote last two mains but due to poor mark in Geo-II i m not qualifying. Though I am scoring well in Geo-I it is painful in Geo-II.While writing this paper i dont feel comfortable also.answers dont come from inside...I m struggling how to overcome..many questions in paper-II are abstract type how to expand and elaborate i.e. my bottleneck. Plz shed some light in this regard. Thank u so much.

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  75. Mam I want to know the name of a good book about Art and culture for prelims. Please tell me.

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  76. MAM FIRST I WOULD CONGRATULATE FOR YOUR SUCCESS,
    MAM I AM CURRENTLY PURSUING B.TECH 2ND YEAR .PLEASE SUGGEST ME TO PREPARE FROM THIS YEAR ONWARDS FROM WHERE I HAVE TO START MY PREPARATION

    ReplyDelete
  77. From where I can download old NCERT books for History?????

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. http://upscguide.com/content/ncert-English-medium-books-download

      Delete
  78. cngrats and gud luk for the future

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  80. mam,as par i did my school in hindi medium.so i want to crack upsc exam then which medium i choose hindi or english medium.which one best.

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  81. Mam, congrates on ur huge success .... mam i want to serve the Nation as an IAS officer, i m persuing MBBS , but i m a little bit confused ...from where i should start preparation? thanks for reply

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  82. Congratulations Maam .. You are a huge insiration to me . I am a Kidney Transplant recipient. I desperately want to prepare for UPSC . Will my medical condition become a hindrance at the medicals. Please Reply.

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  83. Congrats maam fr ur great success..
    I had jst started civil service preperation
    Can u please suggest me some books as a beginer fr Pre nd Mains

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  84. Dear Ira,
    Big Congratulations for AIR 1...
    I am an Engineer + MBA combo like you...
    How can I leverage my skills better for CSE preparation?

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  85. mam,me basic se geography ki preperation kar raha hu,to ncert ke sath sath kon si book refar kar sakta hhu me

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  86. Congratulation on your success ma'am
    i hv started preparation for UPSC can u pls suggest me frm where shuld i strt from ncert books(i.e 6th-12th) or directly from mains
    bit confused while choosing optional subject as i hv done my graduate in BSc(IT)..kindly pls suggest us wht to do...

    ReplyDelete
  87. Congrats !!!
    Hi Ira mam, does the profile matter so much at the time of interview ??

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. i think profile has 0 importance to board members......qualifying mains should suffice....

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  88. mam pleas suggest any material on sociology gs paper 1

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  89. hello mam congrats on your huge success.
    I want to know how to remember a inch of all what we read for exam.
    and what has to be schedule about revision??
    plz rply asap.thnx..

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  90. Hello Ma'am, you scored so well in Geography including other subjects as well. Thanks for providing us the booklist. Ma'am it would be so kind of you if you please share your strategy for Geography optional. It will be helpful for many of the aspirants.
    Thanks in advance :)

    ReplyDelete
  91. first of all congratulations to you on your success and being as a motivation for many students.....ma'am i m taking geo as optional...i want to ask whether new ncert have positives as compare to old ones as some of the topics(for eg country names, borders) have been altered...nd if old ones have to be preferred, then of which topics..

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  92. and ma'am 1 thing more......what your thoughts on dk khullar a comprehensive geography

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  93. thanks mam for giving valuable information...

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  94. Congratulations mam. Where did you take coaching for geography optional?

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  95. Ma'am, In GS 1 for modern history did you follow Brief history of modern India or Comprehensive history of modern India??

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  96. hello mam congrats on your success i want to prepation for upsc please guide me

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  97. hello mam congrats on your success kya aap muje bata sakte hai ki pre ke liye koni books bettar rahegi

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  98. congratuations mam,
    mam, i am working and could not join any reputed coachings at delhi. this time 2015 i gave upsc by preparaing self. i think gs prelims could be done self butfor mains i feel i should better join a coaching .also i have less time so with coaching i will properly guided. which will increase my quality hours . i have soe local coachings. and vsat coachings of als, dhyey academy, discovery. kindlu guide me and give me some tips on prearation. while in job. also should i join coaching and which one

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  99. mam good day,
    your views on physical geography strahler & strahler

    ReplyDelete
  100. Congrats Mam:-) you proved yourself
    Mam please guide me as I am strugglin with current affairs and wasting Time with newspaper reading.
    So Mam can I skip newspaper and depend on visionIAS or similar current affair notes. Mam please guide and suggest the best and scoring alternative.
    Thanx in advance Mam

    ReplyDelete
  101. Hello Ma'am
    Could you please guide me about writing practice. I know its very important and I am trying to do that too.

    How did you do the writing practice? did you join any test series online of offline. did you attempt full fledged mock test papers?
    As far as writing speed is concerned, I can write fast. So how should I go about it. When I look at the question I think I can write something on it and able to jolt down the necessary points.
    I am working on questions posted online by insight. Please guide how to go about it.

    Thank you :)

    ReplyDelete
  102. Congrats Mam:-) you proved yourself
    Mam please guide me as I am strugglin with current affairs and wasting Time with newspaper reading.
    So Mam can I skip newspaper and depend on visionIAS or similar current affair notes. Mam please guide and suggest the best and scoring alternative.
    Thanx in advance Mam

    ReplyDelete
  103. There is a coaching institute called ias-top100 which is using some words from you as endorsements to their program. I am skeptical of their claims. I wish to know whether you are really endorsing their coaching or just the connecting the dots approach. This approach is not unique to them. I have seen many coaching institutes claiming to give holistic, connecting the dots approach but are useless in reality.

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  104. mam, is arun sharma cat books are sufficient for cat preparation?

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  105. Mam I am working professional in Varanasi and preparing for CS ,I am unable to get vajiram and sriram material as u have mention please tell me from where I can get it.

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  106. 1st congratulations mam,i am in btech 1st yr in computer science engineering and i wanna become an ias officer,so how can i prepare 4 this exam and which sub. should i most prefer ...pls ans mam..and pls suggest me some books...
    thank you..

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  107. Hello ira ma'm, first of all congratulation for your remarkeble success.i'm in graduation first year with geography,history,English lit as my graduation subject;actually i'm 24 year of age and due to some family responsibilities I couldn't completed my graduation earlier;so I have started my graduation from an open university this year.ma'm I want your guidence on how should I prepare for ias exam from now, and which subject should I choose for main exam.one more thing ma'am I'm a hinDi medium student but I don't feel any problem reading or listening in English so which language should I prefer for exam and in which language should I study

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  108. Hello Ma'm.. You said that for GS paper 1 Post- independence History part, you only followed "the new NCERT – India Since Independence". Are you referring to the Political science class 12 text book "Politics in India since independence"? Cos in History class 11 and class 12 there is no text book which covers post independence part.. Thanks in Advance.

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  109. you are very brave, congratulations!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

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  110. mam i am civil engineering(2nd year) student . will it help more if i choose civil engineering as optional .

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  112. Hello ma'am, for geography optional which coaching institute would be best?

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  113. Mam!! Congratz for ur huge success.. keep reading ur post everytime i feel i have lost momentum. Mam can you do me a favour by attaching your exam answer sheets to yadavvishant@gmail.com which can guide us for reference answers. Thanks in advance :)

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  114. Mam!! Congratz for ur huge success.. keep reading ur post everytime i feel i have lost momentum. Mam can you do me a favour by attaching your exam answer sheets to yadavvishant@gmail.com which can guide us for reference answers. Thanks in advance :)

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  115. Hallo mam congratz................i wanted to ask wether its possible to study and score good at optional paper (GEOGRAPHY) if preparing by myself or is it necessary to go for coachingsi have presently joined an institute at trivandrum but here they dont provide geography optional classes. (BTEC BACKGROUND, FINANCIALLY TIGHT, FIND GEOGRAPHY BASICS INTERESTING)

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  116. Mam.. I am 2nd year civil engineering student.I want to start preparation now onwards.. so with what should I start the preparation..?

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