Indian Forest Service [IFoS] - Download Indian Forest Service Syllabus, Latest Updates on Indian Forest Service Exam 2023

By Shubhra Anand Jain|Updated : December 1st, 2022

The Indian Forest Service Exam 2023 notification will be released by the commission on 01 February 2023. The IFoS or Indian Forest Service is one of three All Indian Services of the Union Government. The other two services include Indian Administrative Service (IAS) and Indian Police Service (IPS). IFoS exam is one of the CSE (Civil Services Examination) conducted by UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) every year to recruit officers at the All India Level by the Indian Government to manage its forests. IFoS-Indian Forest Service was constituted in 1966.

The IFoS Mains Exam 2022 was successfully conducted from 20 November 2022 to 27 November 2022. Candidates who clear the mains exam will appear for the interview stage of the Indian Forest Service Exam. To become an Indian forest service officer, candidates must clear three stages of UPSC CSE- Preliminary, Mains, and Personality Test. The commission has released the IFoS Exam dates 2023, so candidates preparing for the upcoming exam must go through the latest IFoS syllabus and prepare accordingly. 

Table of Content

What is Indian Forest Service?

Indian Forest Service, full form of IFoS, is one of three All Indian Services that deals with the forestry services of India. IFoS is one of the Civil Services of India and belongs to the apex All India Services group. Those who clear all three stages of the IFoS-Indian Forest Service exam will be placed under various State cadres and joint cadres though they have the command to service both state and central governments.

The main goal of the IFoS is the proper implementation of the National Forest Policy, which has been established to ensure environmental stability and maintain the ecological balance. Below we have provided information on Indian Forest Service Exam.

Indian Forest Service Exam 2023

The IFoS Prelims exam 2023 is scheduled for 28 May 2023. The application form for Indian Forest Service Exam 2023 will be released along with the detailed notification in February 2023. The IFoS 2023 mains exam will be conducted in November 2023. Aspirants can download the latest UPSC calendar 2023 to better plan their preparation. 

IFoS Full Form

The full form of IFoS is the Indian Forest Service. UPSC conducts the Indian Forest Service exam, which consists of three stages- Preliminary, Mains, and Interview. The Preliminary stage is the screening test of the Indian forest service exam. Those who clear IFoS Prelims will be shortlisted for the second stage, i.e., the Mains exam. 

Note- The Prelims exam for both IFoS Exam and  IAS Exam is the same, but the Mains exam for IFos is different for UPSC CSE. Candidates need to mention it in the UPSC application form while applying if they are taking Civil Services or the Indian forest service exam for both exams.

Indian Forest Service Exam

IFoS Full Form

Indian Forest Service

IFoS exam is conducted by

Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)

Number of Attempts


Number of Vacancies

To be announced

IFoS Exam Pattern

Prelims exam, Mains exam, Personality test

Indian Forest Service Exam Notification 2023

The IFoS Notification 2023 will be released on 1 February 2022 The application process for the Indian forest service exam will begin on 1 February 2023. For reference, candidates can download the Indian forest service exam 2022 notification PDF using the link below. 

Download Indian Forest Service Notification 2022 PDF

The official notification for the Indian forest service is released in both English and Hindi on the UPSC official website. The detailed notification PDF contains all the details about the IFoS vacancy, syllabus, paper pattern, eligibility and more. 

IFoS Exam Date 2023

As per the latest UPSC exam date 2023, the notification will be published in February 2023, and the IFoS prelims exam date 2023 is 28 May 2023. Note all the important Indian Forest Service Exam dates 2023 below. 

IFoS Exam 2023 Important Dates

IFoS Exam Notification 2023

1 February 2023

Last date to apply for the Indian Forest Service Exam 2023

February 2023

IFoS Prelims Date 2023

28 May 2022

IFoS Mains Exam Date 2023

November 2023

IFoS Exam Final Result

Will be announced

IFoS Exam Date 2022

The mains exam of the Indian Forest Service 2022 was conducted in November 2022. The dates for the Indian Forest Service interview will be released soon. 

IFoS Exam 2022 Important Dates

IFoS Exam Notification 2022

2 February 2022

IFoS Exam Last Date of Application Form

22 February 2022

IFoS Prelims Date 2022

5 June 2022

IFoS Mains Date 2022

20 November 2022 to 27 November 2022

IFoS Mains Result 2022

Will be announced

IFoS Interview Date 2022

To be announced

Indian Forest Service Eligibility

Candidates who are applying for the Indian Forest Service need to satisfy the Indian Forest Service Eligibility as mentioned in the official notification. Those who don’t meet the UPSC Eligibility criteria won’t be able to appear for the IFoS exam.

The eligibility for the Indian forest service includes educational qualification, age limit, and other requirements. 

IFoS Eligibility Criteria 2023 - Nationality

As per the nationality eligibility for IFoS, the candidate must be

  1. A citizen of India, or
  2. The Subject of Bhutan, or
  3. The Subject of Nepal
  4. Tibetan refugees who came to India before 1 January 1962 to settle in India permanently, or
  5. A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Burma, Pakistan, Sri Lanka, and East African countries like Uganda, Kenya, Zambia, Zaire, United Republic of Tanzania, Ethiopia, Zaire, and Vietnam to settle in India permanently.

Candidates who belong to 2,3,4, and 5 categories need to provide a certificate of eligibility, which the Indian government has issued.

Educational Eligibility for Indian Forest Service

The IFoS Eligibility Criteria 2023 in the educational qualification section remains the same. 

  • Candidates need to have a bachelor's degree in at least one of the subjects from Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science, Chemistry, Botany, Geology, Mathematics, Statistics, Physics, and Zoology or a Bachelor’s degree in Forestry or Agriculture or Engineering from a recognized university or equivalent.
  • Additionally, those candidates who are in their final year of college (With prescribed subjects) and waiting for the result can also apply for the exam. However, they must submit proof of passing that exam with their detailed application form in the last stage of the IFoS-Indian Forest Service Exam.

Indian Forest Service Age Limit

Candidates applying for the Indian forest service exam 2023 should be a minimum of 21 years and a maximum of 32 years on 1st August 2023. However, upper age limit relaxation is applicable for the following categories.

  • Candidates from SC/ST category get an age relaxation of 5 years
  • OBC and Defence Services Personnel candidates get 3 years of age relaxation.
  • Ex-servicemen, including commissioned officers and SSOs/ECOs who have rendered at least 5 years of Military Service as on and have been released, get 5 years of relaxation
  • Deaf-mute, Blind, and Orthopaedically handicapped persons get 10 years of relaxation within the upper age limit.

Age Eligibility for Indian Forest Service

IFoS Reservation Category

Upper Age Limit for IFoS 









Defence Services Personnel


Indian Forest Service Physical Eligibility

As per Indian Forest Service physical eligibility, the height of male candidates should be 163 cm minimum with 5cm relaxation for reserved categories. For women, the minimum height should be 150 cm with 5cm relaxation for reserved categories.

The male candidates' chests should be at least 84 cm with an expansion of 5 cm. The chest should be 79 cm for female candidates with a 5 cm expansion. In addition, candidates shouldn’t stammer while talking.

IFoS-Indian Forest Service Vacancy 2023

As per the official notification, the IFoS vacancy in 2022 was 151. The candidates from the SC, ST, OBS, EWS, and PWD categories will be provided with reservations according to the government. The vacancy plays a huge role in the selection process as it is one of the deciding factors for the IFoS cutoff.

The total vacancy for IFoS Exam 2023 will be released soon. 

Number of Attempts in Indian Forest Service Exam

Every candidate gets a fixed number of attempts for the Indian Forest Service exam. Here is the number of attempts allowed for candidates from each category.


Number of Attempts in IFoS Exam




No Restriction



Physically Handicapped

9 for General and OBC, Unlimited for SC/ST

IFoS Application Form 2023

Candidates who are aspiring to become an Indian Forest Service need to apply for Civil Service Prelims exam. There is no separate application form for IFoS, but candidates must keep a few important things in mind before applying. The UPSC application form 2023 will be released soon. 

  • Candidates must meet the Indian forest service eligibility set by UPSC.
  • To appear in the IFoS Mains exam, candidates must crack the IFoS Prelims exam.

How to Apply for Indian Forest Service Exam?

  • The application process for the Indian forest service exam is online, so candidates are required to apply online at the official website of UPSC.
  • Applicants have to submit a single application only.
  • If there is more than one application made, then the candidate needs to ensure that the application with a higher Registration ID is properly completed in all respects.
  • Candidates who are already in government service, government-owned industrial undertakings, or any private employment or similar organization should submit their applications directly to the commission.
  • Candidates must remember that if, in any case, a communication is received from their employers by the UPSC withholds permission to candidates appearing/applying for the exam, their application will be rejected.

IFoS Exam Application Fee

The application fee for the Indian Forest Service exam can be paid in both offline and online modes. Candidates can use debit, credit, Rupay cards, and internet banking for online payment. Those who want to make offline payments must download the E-challan and submit the fee in cash at SBI bank.

  • For male candidates from the general and OBC categories, the fee is INR 100
  • SC/ST/PH and female candidates are exempted from paying the fee.

Indian Forest Service Exam Pattern

The main goal of the Indian forest service exam pattern is to test the academic expertise of the candidates. It examines if a candidate can present himself/herself coherently and systematically. Below we have covered the IFoS exam pattern for both Prelims and Mains. Those who are going to appear for the Indian Forest Service must understand the exam pattern before beginning their preparation for effective results.

IFoS Exam Pattern for Prelims

As we have mentioned above, the Prelims exam for IFoS and Civil Services is the same. The IFoS Pattern for Prelims consists of two papers, each with 200 marks. 

  • Both of these papers are MCQ, and the time duration will be two hours each. 
  • The two papers are General Studies-1 and General Studies-2 (CSAT). 
  • The CSAT paper is qualifying in nature, and candidates must score at least 33% to qualify.

UPSC Forest Service Exam Pattern

Papers in IFoS Pattern



General Studies-1






IFoS Mains Pattern

Candidates who clear the Preliminary stage of the Indian Forest Service exam will be called for the Mains examination. Candidates must know the Indian Forest Service exam pattern to develop an effective preparation strategy. The mains exam is very crucial for the candidates, as the marks scored in the Mains exam and interview sum up to produce the final result.

  • There are a total of 6 papers in the IFoS Mains exam, and all of them are descriptive in nature. 
  • The total marks of IFoS Mains would be 1400. 
  • Candidates need to choose two Indian forest service optional subjects for the Mains exam. 

Check out the exam pattern of the IFoS Mains below.

Indian Forest Service Mains Exam Pattern



Total marks

Time Duration

Paper I

General English


3 Hours

Paper II

General Knowledge


3 Hours

Paper III

IFoS Optional 1


3 Hours

Paper IV

Paper V

IFoS Optional 2


3 Hours

Paper VI

Indian Forest Service Personality Test

Those candidates who crack the IFoS Mains exam will get e-summon letters for the Personality test round. 

  • The personality test is the last stage of the IFoS Exam and carries 300 marks. 
  • The personality test aims to assess the candidate’s suitability for the service. 
  • The marks scored in the IFoS Mains, and Interview round will be taken into consideration for the preparation for the Final result of the Indian Forest Service Exam.

Indian Forest Service Syllabus

Candidates preparing for the IFoS Exam need to have an in-depth understanding of the IFoS syllabus for both prelims and mains. The Indian Forest Service Syllabus covers a wide range of topics. Below we will be covering the entire syllabus of the IFoS Prelims and Mains exam.

IFoS Syllabus for Prelims

The Indian Forest Service Syllabus for prelims is the same as that of the IAS prelims syllabus. The Prelims syllabus consists of two papers- General Studies-1 and General Studies-2 (CSAT). Candidates can check the entire UPSC Prelims Syllabus below.

IFoS Exam Syllabus for Prelims 2023

UPSC IFoS Syllabus for Prelims Paper 1

Current events of national and international importance, History of India and Indian National Movement, Indian and World Geography, Indian Polity and Governance, Economic and Social Development, General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity and Climate Change, General Science

Indian Forest Service CSAT Syllabus

Comprehension, Logical reasoning, and analytical ability. Decision-making, Interpersonal skills including communication skills and problem-solving, General mental ability, Basic numeracy – Class X level), Data interpretation.

IFoS Mains Syllabus

After clearing the IFoS Prelims exam, candidates have to appear for IFoS Mains which would be different from the IAS Mains exam. The IFoS Mains syllabus is totally different from the IAS Mains Syllabus

  • In the Indian forest service exam syllabus for mains, there is a total of 6 papers, and candidates need to pick two IFoS optional subjects as well. 
  • Each Indian forest service optional subject includes two papers, so there will be four optional papers. 

Let’s check out the syllabus of each paper below.

Indian Forest Service Syllabus for Mains


Name of the Paper

IFoS Syllabus for Mains



General English

Comprehension of given passages, Precis Writing, Usage and Vocabulary, Short Essay



General Knowledge

Current events, Political system, the constitution of India, History, geography, etc.



Optional Paper-1

Depending on the chosen subject from the IFoS optional subjects




Optional Paper-2

Depending on the chosen subject from the IFoS optional list.



IFoS Syllabus PDF Download

Candidates who aspire to become an Indian Forest Service officer must analyze the IFoS syllabus properly to level up their preparation. 

Download Indian Forest Service Syllabus PDF

Without having in-depth knowledge of the syllabus, it would be tough to have an effective and efficient preparation strategy. 

Indian Forest Service Optional Subjects

As you can see above, candidates need to pick two optional subjects. Each optional subject will have two papers which means there will be four optional papers. That’s why candidates need to carefully choose the IFoS optional paper.

IFoS Optional Subjects

List of optional subjects (two to be chosen) available for the IFoS main exam:

  1. Agriculture
  2. Agricultural Engineering
  3. Civil Engineering
  4. Forestry
  5. Mathematics
  6. Mechanical Engineering
  7. Physics
  8. Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science
  9. Botany
  10. Chemical Engineering
  11. Statistics
  12. Zoology
  13. Geology
  14. Chemistry

The candidates will not be allowed to have the following combination of optional subjects:

  • Agriculture and Agricultural Engineering
  • Mathematics and Statistics
  • Agriculture and Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science
  • Agriculture and Forestry
  • Chemistry and Chemical Engineering
  • Of the Engineering subjects, namely, Agricultural Engineering, Chemical Engineering, Civil Engineering, and Mechanical Engineering – not more than one subject.

Indian Forest Service Salary

Indian Forest Service Salary is one factor that attracts aspirants to join IFoS. IFoS salary is almost the same as the IAS Salary

  • The entry-level salary of an Assistant Conservator of Forests/ Assistant Deputy Conservator of Forests is around INR 56,100 per month. 
  • The Principal Chief Conservator of Forests (Head of Forest Force) gets the highest salary of INR 2,25.000 per month. 
  • Additionally, the IFoS officers get House Rent Allowance, Travelling Allowance, Lease Allowance, etc. 
  • Apart from lucrative Indian Forest Service Salary and Allowances, IFoS officers also get many benefits like medical benefits, transport service, house help, etc.

Indian Forest Service Cutoff

The cutoff for the Indian forest service exam 2022 will be released after completing all three stages of the IFoS exam. The cutoff of IFoS depends on the difficulty level of the question, the number of applicants, the difficulty level of the question, and the number of vacancies. Below we have mentioned the IFoS exam's previous year’s cut-off so that candidates can prepare accordingly.

IFoS-Indian Forest Service Cutoff 2019


Prelims Cutoff

Mains Cutoff

Final Cutoff

























Best Books for IFoS Exam

The Indian Forest Service syllabus is vast, but having the right books by your side makes your preparation easier and more efficient. That is why it is crucial to choose the best UPSC Books so that it will be easier to cover the entire Indian Forest Service syllabus. Below we will be covering some highly recommended books for the Indian forest service that would help you in your preparation and enhance your selection chances.

  • NCERT Book - Class XI
  • NCERT: Physical Geography of India for X - XII Std
  • NCERT (+ 2 level) - Ancient India, Medieval India, Modern India
  • NCERT Class XI and XII
  • Modern India from Spectrum Publication by Rajiv Ahir
  • Publication Division: Gazetteer of India (Vol 2: History & Culture)
  • India- A Comprehensive Geography by Khullar
  • Modern India by Bipin Chandra
  • School Atlas: Oxford or Orient Blackswan
  • Indian Economy by Sanjiv Verma
  • Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh
  • Biology Textbooks (12th grade)
  • Science NCERT Textbooks (10th grade)
  • Indian Art and Culture by Nitin Singhania
  • P.M. Bakshi by Indian Constitution
  • Our Parliament by Publication Division - Subhash C. Kashyap
  • Indian Constitution by D.D. Basu
  • Indian Polity by M Laxmikanth

Indian Forest Service Admit Card

UPSC releases the IFoS admit card for prelims and mains on its official website. The commission publishes the Indian Forest Service Admit Card for prelims 15 days before the exam date to all the applicants who successfully register for the IFoS exam. Candidates who clear the prelims exam can download the IFoS mains admit card after the release. 

Indian Forest Service Prelims Question Paper

Candidates who have applied for IFoS 2023 must go through the UPSC Previous Year Question Paper to see the exam pattern, question trend, and types of questions asked in the exam. Being familiar with the question paper would help the candidates to enhance their preparation and score more. Additionally, they can also practice the question papers to get acquainted with the difficulty level of the papers as well. Below we have provided a direct link to download the question paper.

IFoS Question Paper for Prelims

Download Indian Forest Service Question Paper

IFoS Exam 2019

-Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2019 Prelims Paper 1

- IFoS 2019 Prelims Paper 2

Indian Forest Service Exam 2018

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2018 Paper Here

Indian Forest Service 2017

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2017 Paper Here

Indian Forest Service Exam 2016

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2016 Paper Here

IFoS Exam 2015

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2015 Paper Here

IFoS Exam 2014

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2014 Paper Here

Indian Forest Service Exam 2013

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2013 Paper Here

IFoS Question Paper 2012

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2012 Paper Here

Indian Forest Service Question Paper 2011

Download IFoS-Indian Forest Service 2011 Paper Here

How to Become an Indian Forest Service Officer?

To become an Indian Forest Service officer, candidates need to meet the Indian Forest Service eligibility criteria first. After that, the candidate can apply for the Indian Forest Service exam UPSC conducts. There are three stages for the IFoS exam: Prelims, Mains and Personality Test. 

  • The exam preparation for the Indian Forest Service exam usually takes almost a year, and candidates must begin by downloading the IFoS syllabus. 
  • Choose the IFoS optional subject and prepare for both UPSC IFoS prelims and mains simultaneously.
  • After completing each topic, aspirants must solve the previous year's IFoS questions for practice and revision. 

Life of an Indian Forest Service Officer

The main focus of an Indian Forest Service officer is to properly implement the National Forest Policy, which ensures maintaining environmental stability and ecological balance. The IFoS officer of respective states would be responsible for ensuring safety and dealing with rising environmental concerns of that particular location. The officers have to work for the protection, and conservation, of forests and wildlife. Additionally, they must aim to increase the opportunities for the forest-dependent communities of tribal and rural areas.

Indian Forest Service Ranks

Following are the ranks and responsibilities that come with the ranks of IFoS officers.

  • Principal Chief Conservator of Forest- it is also called the head of forest force, and the major responsibility of this rank is to manage the forest, wildlife issues, and environment of a state in India. This is the highest position of an IFoS officer.
  • Additional Chief Conservator of Forest- this officer assists the Principal Chief Conservator of the Forest. The officer is directly answerable to the principal chief.
  • Deputy Conservator of Forest- this officer is a deputy conservator of the forest and is also known as a divisional forest officer. The major responsibility of this officer is to manage the forest, environment, and wildlife of a forest division of a state.
  • Assistant Conservator of Forest- this officer assists the higher-level officials in the department, and he/she has to complete the tasks assigned by them.


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FAQs on Indian Forest Service

  • The Indian Forest Service Exam is also known as the IFoS exam, is conducted annually by the Union Public Service Commission. UPSC administers the IFoS exam to recruit eligible Indian Forest Service officers.

  • IFoS stands for Indian Forest Service, one of the three All-India services in India. The other two services are IAS and IPS. 

  • IFoS Syllabus is divided as per the selection process in Indian Forest Service Syllabus for prelims and mains. The IFoS Syllabus for prelims is the same as the UPSC CSE syllabus, whereas the mains syllabus consists of general knowledge, general English and two optional subjects. 

  • How to Apply for Indian Forest Service?

    To apply for Indian Forest Service, one must apply online on the official UPSC website. The first step is registering and then filling out the application form with all relevant details. After that, upload the picture and signature. Finish the IFoS apply online by paying the application fee. 

  • No, the IFS syllabus is the UPSC CSE syllabus, whereas the Indian Forest Service Syllabus is different for the mains exam. The Prelims syllabus for the IFS exam and IFoS exam is the same. 

  • There are a total of 14 subjects in the IFoS Optional list. Candidates must choose two IFoS Optional subjects to appear for the mains exam. 

  • No, there are a few combinations of Indian Forest Service exam optional subjects that cannot be opted for together. One such combination is Agriculture and Forestry. Other such IFoS Optional subjects are Mathematics and Statistics, Chemistry and Chemical Engineering and more. 

  • The Indian forest service qualification states that the aspirants must have a bachelor's degree in one of the stated fields, and the candidates must be 21- 32 years of age in the General category. 

  • Yes, the IFoS exam for prelims has a negative marking of 1/3rd mark for each incorrect answer. The Negative Marking in the UPSC IFoS exam only applies in the prelims exam. 

  • The UPSC Mains syllabus contains more papers and one optional subject. The IAS mains exam contains 4 GS papers and 1 optional paper apart from the language and compulsory papers. On the other hand, the IFoS syllabus for mains is only general knowledge, general English and two optional subjects. 

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