UPSC – CSE OPTIONAL EXPLAINED

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GENERAL STUDIES:(PRELIMS CUM MAINS) – Rs: 78800 -/-

Coimbatore & ERODE BATCH TIME:

10:00 – 1:00 PM – MORNING

05:00 – 7:00PM  – EVENING

OPTIONAL: Rs: 22500

HISTORY

GEOGRAPHY

PSIR

TEST SERIES – PRELIMS MAINS, OPTIONAL

KEY DIFFERENTIATORS

01

Academic Coach: Personalized and dedicated 24×7 support.Mandatory Weekly Tests and Discussions: For Prelims and Mains answer writing practice.

02

QUALITY STUDY MATERIALWell designed comprehensive books package.Designed as per the latest Syllabus and trend of the Civil Services Examination.

03

Classroom Workbooks and Discussions: Weekly current affairs (online classes) and Newspaper reading classes: To integrate a current based approach to students’ preparation.

04

Caters to the requirements of both Prelims and Mains stages of the Civil Services Examination.Monthly Current Affairs Magazines

05

ADDITIONAL SUPPORTIncludes Prelims and Mains test seriesCurrent Affairs Crash course for Prelims (CAP)Mains Advance Course (MAC – for Prelims Qualified Students)

06

Interview Guidance Programme (IGP)Backup classes in offline or recorded form for missed lectures for offline students.Free access to online study resources like Current Affairs, Daily quizzes, Editorial, etc through our App and web .

07

PERSONALIZED & DEDICATED ACADEMIC COACH24*7 academic support for study management.One-to-one resolution of academic doubtsDedicated support for improving answer writing skills through evaluation of descriptive answers with improvement suggestions

08

VALUE ADDED FEATURESWeekly Classroom Tests for both objective and subjective questions to ensure regular assessment and improvement.Weekly newspaper analysis sessions.Essay writing sessions

UPSC – OPTIONAL EXPLAINED
The optional paper can help a candidate secure maximum marks leading to a higher rank and thus increasing the odds of getting selected. In other words, if you couldn’t score well in other papers like General Studies, this paper can pull you out of your despair. Thus, picking the right optional based on your interest and that which brings out the best of your abilities is a must for scoring well. However, UPSC aspirants are often faced with the dilemma of choosing the right optional subject. So, this article is aimed at helping candidates who intend to choose ———-as their Optional Subject.

DOWNLOAD THE DETAILED SYLLABUS AND BREAK POINTS:

HISTORY
GEOGRAPHY
SOCIOLOGY
PSIR

Things to Keep In Mind While Choosing History As Optional

Interest
Interest in a particular subject should be given top priority when deciding on an optional subject. So, one should go through the syllabus and the previous year’s question papers.This will give the idea of which books needed to be read and what to read and not from those selected books because not everything present in the books is important from the exam point of view. Always remember that interest in the subject is very important.This allows for the utmost learning and retention and keeps you engaged. So, if you have an interest in learning and exploring History, then you can go for it.

Background

Aspirants do not require a bachelor’s degree in History to choose it as an Optional. The subject can easily be studied and mastered with proper strategy and guidance, which becomes essential for people with different backgrounds.

Resources
– The availability of resources plays an important role in deciding which optional subject one should take. In History optional, enough study material is available in the market as well as online and offline classes . Although, you are not required to read all of them. Even though there is a specific list of books that many people will list down, one is not required to read everything it contains.Experts at PM IAS Academy will guide you on how and what to read from the exam point of view.

Cost-Benefit Analysis- 
History forms a part of the General Studies Paper I. Even if you do not choose it as an optional subject, you would anyways have to read History for Prelims and Mains. History as an optional will only boost your studies for both all the papers. So, the input will almost remain the same, but the output will be large.

Reasons to Opt History As Optional

Availability of study materials

The amount of study material available to study History has no limits. Candidates can easily find material in shops, online (books/videos), and even notes
Choosing History as their optional subject would have no dearth of study material and this is what saves time. Most of the time is spent on finding the right and enough books. With easy access to material, students save time and can start with early preparation

Overlapping with other papers-
History also forms a part of the GS Paper I and to a great extent, Essay Paper as well. Also, it forms one of the major portions of Prelims as well. So, studying History for optional may be fruitful for other papers as well.

Static Subject-
History is a static subject and does not contain many dynamic topics unlike other optional subjects like Sociology, PSIR, etc. where a candidate not only has to prepare for current affairs but also keep on updating notes. History books have been filled with the same information for years and once you prepare notes out of these books, you are good till the last day of your exam or even for your next attempt, if any. This is the most important benefit because once a candidate prepares for History, it is not going to change and will help subsequent attempts

Interesting and Easy Subject-
A lot of candidates find history an interesting subject, as most of the topics are easy to comprehend and there are no complex theories, concepts, or core ideas to analyze. Many students say that History is the story of the past and it is interesting because it feels like people who had lived once upon a time. Sounds interesting. Doesn’t it?? We all love watching movies, reading books. History can be made easy in a similar way. Also, History will help to understand the present – this is one of the biggest profits of reading history.

Helps in Interview-
In the UPSC- Civil Services interview, questions related to the history, art and culture, heritage, etc. are common. When you read History from your Optional paper point of view, you have to dig deeper and read from a more specialist angle. With deeper knowledge, you will be able to put forward a well-blended answer.

Sources and Reference Books

Recommended Sources
Ancient IndiaSources:
Books: UPINDER SINGH

Literary sources

Prominent travelers and their travel books (upinder singh)Focus on Vedic and post-Vedic library works (Upindersingh)

Secular literature
The tradition of Historical writing in India

Indus Valley Civilization 
Books: UPINDER SINGH, and NCERTAreas to be focused on: Economic, Social, Religious and cultural life, Various theories related to rise and fall

Vedic Civilization
Books: UPINDER SINGHAreas to be focused: The main emphasis needs to be given to the transition from rig Vedic to later Vedic period

Mahajan pada era:
Books: R S SHARMA, Areas to be focused: The main emphasis on the topic of Jainism and Buddhism, Rise of Magadha.

Mauryan Era 
Books: BALYAN SIR NOTES AND IGNOU B.A HISTORY NOTESAreas to be focused: Rise and fall of Mauryan Empire, Administration, Arthashastra, Foreign policy

Gupta Era & Post-Gupta Era:
Books: R S Sharma, Upinder Singh, IGNOU BA

Medieval India

Dr. A.L.shrivastava’s: for Delhi Sultanate & Mughal Empire.Satish Chandra-History of Medieval India
Modern India :
Reference of books and materials:
Modern India (from 1707–1857)Books: B L GROVER, BIPIN CHANDRAThe following topics need to be prepared from the above books

The disintegration of Mughal IndiaRise of Provincial states like Maratha, Mysore, Bengal, HyderabadSocio-economic-political condition of India before the British ruleAnglo-French rivalry, Duplex, carnations wars

Battle of Plassey, Buxar: causes and significanceBritish rule up to 1857: phases, reformsModern India (from 1857-1905)British policy: land, police, revenue, education

1857 revolt: Bipan Chandra  Remember the causes, significance, and nature of the revolt.
Read the views of various Historians about the nature and significance of this revolt.

Peasant and Tribal uprisings phase: Bipan Chandra, Colonial rule and reforms: B L Grover Foundation of Congress and early phase of congress: Economic critique:  B L GroverSocio-religious reform movement:  B L Grover
Modern India (from 1905–47)
Books: Bipin Chandra- post Independence, Topic to be referred:Phases of National movement: Moderate, Extremist, Gandhian, and socialist): causes, nature, objectives, and leaders of these phases.Various movements: very important) Swadeshi, NCM, CDM, and Quit India Movement. Read about the distinctive features, causes, and significance of these movements.
Tribal and Farmer movements.Labour, women, and Dalit movements.British rule and reforms like the Government of India Act 1935, Round table sessions, etc.Important personalities
Modern India (1947–64)Books: Bipin Chandra- post-Independence Topic to be referred:Partition and India till 1950: challenges and opportunities.The accession of Princely statesNehru policies.Labour, women, and Dalit movements.Tribal, environmental, and women movements after Independence.
Important personalitiesModern India (from 1905–47)Old NCERTs- Norman Lowe

Things to Keep In Mind While Choosing Geography As Optional

Geography is the study of the land and its physical features like relief structure, composition, inhabitants, phenomena of the Earth and planets along with the relationship between people and their relationship with the surrounding environment.
WHY OPT FOR GEOGRAPHY AS YOUR OPTIONAL?Scientific, no rote learningAmple study materialHigh success ratioOverlaps with prelims syllabusWill help in General Studies 1, General Studies 3 and Essay papers Well defined and limited syllabusPopular among Science students, Engineers etc.It has an important role to play in preliminary exam as around 15 to 20 questions from Geography are asked every year in prelims.Geography integrates your prelims and mains preparation. Thus, saving time for other topics.Most of the topics of GS paper I of Civil Services Main examination are covered under Geography optional itself.In GS paper 4 (Ethics, Integrity and aptitude) of Civil Services Main examination, many thinkers are Geography scholars.

Reasons to Opt Geography As Optional

INTEREST – Interest in a particular subject should be given top priority while deciding on an optional subject. If you are having interest in Geography, you can go for it.
BACKGROUND- If you are not having any educational background in a technical subject and wish to opt for a non-technical subject, you must go for Geography optional subject. Many of the topics in Geography Optional overlap with your GS syllabus of civil services examination.
RESOURCES- Availability of resource plays an important role in deciding which optional subject one should take. In Geography, adequate study material is available. Although, you are not required to read all of them and experts from PM IAS Academy will guide you properly.In case you choose any other optional subject, then also, you would have to read considerable amount of Geography chapters in GS paper 1, Indian Agriculture in GS paper 3, Current Affairs, etc.If you are left with lesser time, it is advisable to opt for Geography. It will reduce your burden and will save your time.

Sources and Reference Books

PAPER-I
Physical Geography – Majid Hussain/Savindra SinghModern Physical Geography – Strahler and Strahler (Optional)Certificate Physical and Human Geography – Goh Cheng LeongPhysical Geography Made Simple – Rupa PublicationDictionary of Physical Geography – PenguinEvolution of Geographical Thought – Majid HussainEconomic and Social Geography Made Simple – Rupa PublicationModels in Geography – Majid HussainDictionary of Human GeographyOxford Student Atlas
PAPER-II
India – A Comprehensive Geography – KhullarRegional Planning in India – Mahesh ChandIndia Year Book – Publication DivisionYojana and Kurukshetra Magazines

SOCIOLOGY OPTIONAL

Things to Keep In Mind While Choosing Sociology As Optional

Interest When it comes to choosing an optional subject, it is of utmost importance that you have an interest in that particular subject. With interest in the subject, you will be able to score even the highest marks in the Optional subject out of all your Mains papers.
BackgroundIf you are from an Arts background, you can easily go for Sociology. But, if you have a Science/Commerce/technical background, you have to research a bit about the subject as you must have lost touch with the Humanities subjects for quite a bit of time. In any of the cases, you must have the interest to learn the subject further – whether with the help of guidebooks or coaching classes. Many of the topics will also overlap with your GS syllabus of the Civil Services examination.
ResourcesThe availability of study material plays an important role in deciding the justify optional for you. For a subject like sociology, ample study sources are available. But, there can be a lot of confusion regarding the subject even if you are an expert in the subject. This happens because the subject has to be studied from UPSC point of view and an experienced guide from PM IAS Academy will be able to guide you through the task of selecting the justified books. Also, proper coaching will enable you to understand and learn the justify portion of the syllabus of the UPSC optional paper.
RationalityIn case you choose any other optional subject, you would have to read a considerable amount of Sociology related topics especially in current affairs. If you are left with lesser time, it is reasonable to opt for sociology. It will reduce your burden and will save your time as it can be learned from practical experiences as well.

Reasons to for Opt Sociology As Optional

Consistency The Sociology optional is performing consistently well. Also, an increasing no. of students are opting for this subject year after year. Moreover, students with sociology optional are consistently getting top ranks in UPSC. Students who gave their Mains paper with Sociology as an optional, have scored really high marks according to trends.
Overlapping with other papers- It overlaps with almost the entire GENERAL STUDIES syllabus. Also, Sociology related questions can be found in the Essay paper as well because it is a subject that requires experiences gained from society and a bit of research and proper guidance from experienced mentors. Sociology is one subject that has its relevance in many aspects of our lives.
Availability of study materials- Further, there is more than enough study material available for Sociology and students will be able to gather all the relevant material for the same without much hassle.
High Scoring and Success Ratio- Sociology is relatively easier compared to other optional subjects. It is easy in the sense that it is more relatable and takes lesser time to understand. Students can easily score 300+ marks if there is a well-devised study plan. Also, the selection of candidates who selected Sociology is on the rise every passing year.
Helps in Interview-Sociology as an optional subject also helps with the UPSC interview as questions related to society, general views on societal and cultural relations are also asked.

Recommended Book List


PAPER-I
Haralambos & Holborn Sociology: Themes And Perspectives- HaralambosSociology – Anthony GiddensSociological Theory – George RitzerSociological Thought – Francis Abraham, John Henry MorganPolitical Theory – O P GaubaEssential Sociology- Nitin Sangwan

PAPER-IIIndian Society, NCERT Class 12Society In India: Concepts, Theories And Recent Trends – Ram AhujaSocial Change In Modern India – M. N. SRINIVASModernization Of Indian Tradition – Yogendra SinghSociety In India: Concepts, Theories And Recent Trends – Ram AhujaSocial Problems In India – Ram AhujaPersistence and Change in Tribal India – M.V. Rao

PSIR OPTIONAL

Reason to choose PSIR as Optional

Political Science and International Relations can prove to be a smart choice considering several factors.It overlaps with almost the entire GENERAL STUDIES syllabus.It has also witnessed many successful candidates.Study material is easily available.Helpful in preliminary exam as around 15 to 20 questions from Indian Polity and governance section are asked every year for sure.Political Science integrates your prelims and mains preparation. Thus, saving time for other topics.The philosophical perspectives of political thinkers help to enrich the essay’s articulation.Most of the topics of GS paper II of Civil Services Main examination are covered under Political Science optional itself.In GS paper 4 of Civil Services Main examination (Ethics, Integrity and aptitude), most of the thinkers are Political Science scholars.Again, in the UPSC- Civil Services interview, some questions are asked about international relations irrespective of your academic background

WHO SHOULD CHOOSE 

Interest: Interest in a particular subject should be given top priority while deciding on an optional subject. If you are having interested in political science, you can go for it. 
Background:If you are not having any educational background in a technical subject and wish to opt for a non-technical subject, you must go for political science & IR as an optional subject. Many of the topics will also overlap with your GS syllabus of civil services examination. In case you choose any other optional subject, then also, you would have to read considerable amount of PSIR chapters in Indian Polity, Ethics, History, current affairs, etc.If you are left with lesser time, it is advisable to opt for PSIR. It will reduce your burden and will save your time.

POLITICAL SCIENCE OPTIONAL SUBJECT RECOMMENDED BOOKLIST

POLITICAL THOUGHT IN MODERN INDIA: PANTHAM & DEUTCH (SAGE PUBLICATION)INDIAN GOVT. AND POLITICS: FADIA & FADIA (SAHITYA BHAWAN)COMPARATIVE POLITICS: J.C. JOHARIA HISTORY OF POLITICAL THOUGHT- PLATO TO MARX (MUKHERJEE & RAMASWAMY)AN INTRODUCTION TO POLITICAL THEORY: O.P. GAUBATHE GLOBALIZATION OF WORLD POLITICS: BAYLIS, SMITH & OWENS (OXFORD)

Why PM IAS Academy

OPTIMAL CLASS TIMINGS TO PROMOTE SELF-PREPARATION
LIMITED BATCH SIZE TO DELIVER PROMISES
INTERVIEW GUIDANCE 

We will follow a 2.5 hours per day, 2 subjects per week model for the regular batches with the class timings for the Core Subjects being set from 8:00 AM to 10:00 AM from Monday to Thursday.
The morning sessions will allow for students enrolled in the Prelims-cum-Mains course to allocate ample amount of time for their Self-Preparation of their Optional Subject.
Having classes for 2 subjects in a week (3 days of one subject followed by another 3 days of the next subject) will help the students cover the syllabus without having significant time-gaps between the completed subjects while keeping the student interested.
Over 650 Hours of classes (including Essay and CSAT classes) will be scheduled in the Prelims-cum-Mains Course  for the UPSC Civil Services Exam Teachers with expert domain knowledge (and at least 3 appearances in the Interview) will provide a comprehensive coverage of the syllabus from the perspectives of both the Prelims and the Main exam for the GS Subjects.
The class timings are designed in a such a manner to enable an aspirant to utilize the remainder of the day for undeniably important and crucial activities such as mains answer writing practice and notes making.
The truth is that – it is not just about completing the syllabus by attending classes, but it is actually about putting in extra effort towards utilizing what was taught into writing answers – that helps you in clearing the exam.

Each of our batches is limited to no more than 20 students to help towards the cause of providing individual attention.We do NOT believe in dividing our resources and increasing the number of students as it reduces the delivery efficiency and we can also understand the adverse effects of sitting in a classroom packed with over hundred students. 
Hence, we have a high faculty-to-student ratio in every batch to facilitate for effective mentoring of students during their preparation with sufficient individual attention and engagement in the classroom

he Interview round accounts for 275 marks out of a total of 2025 marks that are considered for the Final Ranking.Interview guidance is now included by PM IAS Academy as a part of the Prelims-cum-Mains course. As a part of the Interview Guidance Programme, we will be supporting you in:DAF Based Assessment by the Experts along with DAF discussionPersonality Development sessionsMock Interviews and Feedback sessions
Providing Home State and District specific Questionnaire and support for answersProviding Basic and Hobby-related Questionnaire and support for answers
Guidance on Presentation of oneself and Navigation through Probable questionsGuidance on Controlling the “direction” of the interview and Dodging controversial statementsCovering Current Affairs for the Interview