IAS Exam 2023: Exam Date, Syllabus, Paper Pattern, Eligibility

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

The IAS exam is officially known as Civil Services Examination, and it is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). Aspirants must kickstart their preparations in order to grasp the core concepts, and fundamentals and enhance the performance level of the exam. The prelims exam has been conducted on 28th May 2023. The Mains exam will be conducted on 15th September. Those who crack all three stages of the IAS exam, i.e. Prelims, Mains, and Interview, would enter into the Civil Services of India. With each passing year, the competition has gotten tougher.

A multitude of candidates take the prestigious and most sought-after exam, hence the competition for the IAS exam has been surging. Cracking the exam requires a high level of preparation, and the candidates must have an in-depth knowledge of the concepts. Eligible candidates must start their preparations to take the IAS exam 2024. Check here the complete details of the IAS exam vacancy, eligibility, exam pattern, and other details.

What is IAS Exam?

The IAS exam (Indian Administrative Service) was earlier known as ICS (Imperial Civil Services). The Civil Services Examination is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to appoint officers for the All India Administrative Civil Service. Hierarchy-wise, IAS is the top-level post among the 24 civil services like IFS, IPS, etc. The IAS exam is popularly known as Civil Services Examination, which is conducted annually.

It is important to know that those who clear all stages of the IAS exam will be employed by the Union Government, state governments, and/or public-sector undertakings. They will get exposure to various job roles like the head of public sector units, chief secretary, collector, cabinet secretary, etc. Candidates who apply for IAS 2023 must know the exam patterns and eligibility criteria to get a detailed answer to the question on what IAS is.

IAS Exam 2023

The IAS exam 2023 calendar has been released and it is critical for all applicants to keep track of the dates to plan well. Around 13 thousand candidates appeared for mains exam. The UPSC Mains exam is scheduled to be held on 15th September 2023. The candidates who will be able to crack the prelims exam will be able to move ahead to take the mains exam. Check the complete details pertaining to the IAS exam.

IAS Exam Details Description
IAS Exam Conducting Body Union Public Service Commission
Mode of IAS Exam Offline
Number of Attempts 6
IAS 2022 Vacancies 1011

IAS Exam Date 2023

UPSC 2023 exam dates have been released by the commission on the official website. The Union Public Service Commission will conduct IAS 2023 as per the schedule given below.

IAS 2023 Events UPSC CSE 2023 Exam Dates
Date of Release of UPSC 2023 Notification 01 February 2023
IAS 2023 Form Date 01 February 2023
IAS 2023 Application Last Date 21 February 2023
UPSC 2023 Prelims Date 28 May 2023
UPSC Mains 2023 Exam Date 15 September 2023

IAS Exam Eligibility Criteria

Before applying for the IAS exam, candidates must check the eligibility criteria for IAS 2023. Below we have mentioned the UPSC eligibility criteria like age limit, educational qualification, nationality, and the number of attempts to which candidates must adhere.

IAS Age Limit

As per the IAS exam 2023 age limit criteria, candidates who have attained 21 years of age and less than 32 years as of August 2023 can apply for the IAS exam. However, 3-10 years of age relaxation will be applicable as per the category.

Category Minimum Age Limit Maximum Age Limit Number of Attempts
General 21 32 6
OBC 21 35 9
IAS Age Limit for SC/ST 21 37 No limits
EWS 21 32 9

IAS Educational Qualification 2023

Candidates willing to appear for IAS Exam 2023 must meet the educational qualification set by the authorities. The minimum educational qualification for IAS 2023 exam is listed below.

  • Candidates must have graduated from a recognized University or have an equivalent qualification.
  • Candidates who are in their final year can also apply for IAS 2023.
  • Candidates having professional and technical qualifications recognized by the government as equivalent to technical and professional degrees are also eligible for the IAS exam.

IAS 2023 Nationality Requirements

Candidates applying for the IAS exam need to meet the following nationality criteria. The candidate must be-

  • A citizen of India,
  • A subject of Nepal,
  • A subject of Bhutan, or
  • A Tibetan refugee who came to India before 1st January 1962 to settle in India permanently or
  • A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, and East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, Ethiopia, Zaire, and Vietnam, intending to settle in India permanently.

How to Apply for IAS Exam?

It is advised to the candidates to check the eligibility criteria before filling in the application form. Candidates who want to apply for IAS 2023 need to follow these steps:

  • Visit the official website of UPSC.
  • Click the UPSC IAS application form.
  • Enter the required details in the asked fields to register.
  • After that, the registration ID and Password will be sent to your given phone number and email.
  • Log in using the ID and Password.
  • Fill rest of the application form.
  • After that, upload the scanned documents.
  • Make the payment, and check all the details before submitting.

IAS Exam 2023 Application Fee

The IAS exam application fee can be paid by both online and offline modes. For paying the application fees online the candidates will have to use a credit card/debit card/Rupay card or Internet banking. For continuing offline transactions, candidates will have to download the e-challan and submit the fee in cash at SBI bank.

Category Application Fees
General and OBC INR 100
SC/ST/PWD and Female Exempted

IAS DAF Form 2023

The aspirants who will be clearing the prelims exam will be able to proceed further to the mains exam. The DAF form is released on the official site. The candidates getting selected for the Mains exam must be filling the UPSC DAF form to be able to proceed further.

IAS 2023 Vacancy

The Union Public Service Commission has released the IAS 2023 vacancies on the official site. In cumulative there are 1105 vacancies that have been released for the year 2023. The category-wise and post-wise vacancies will be released after the completion of the exam.

The candidates can also take a look at the vacancies released in previous years to gain knowledge of the vacancies released each year. The vacancies are the major determining factor in the selection of candidates.

IAS 2022 Vacancy

A total of 1011 vacancies were declared for various posts like IAS, IFS, IRS, and IPS, etc. Earlier in the IAS Exam, 2022 official notification was released by UPSC, the commission announced a total of 816 vacancies. But later UPSC increased the IAS vacancies to 1011. Let’s take a look at the year-wise IAS vacancies.

Year Vacancies
2022 1011
2021 712
2020 796
2019 896
2018 759

IAS Exam Pattern

IAS Exam will be conducted in three stages namely Prelims, Mains, and Personality Test. Candidates who clear all three rounds will be recruited into the Civil Services of India. Each round of the IAS 2023 will be a qualifying round so candidates need to qualify each to appear in the next one. That is why it is necessary to thoroughly understand the IAS Exam Pattern and figure out a strategy to make the UPSC preparation. We have provided the IAS 2023 exam pattern for Prelims, Mains below.

IAS Prelims Exam Pattern

IAS Prelims exam has two papers, General Studies 1 and CSAT (General Studies Paper 2). CSAT is qualifying in nature and needs to score a minimum of 33% in this paper to qualify. This means the General Studies paper will define your selection. There will be a negative marking in UPSC of 1/3rd of the marks assigned to the question. The questions in the Prelims exam will be objective types of MCQs.

Paper Duration Questions Marks
IAS Exam Paper 1 2 Hours 100 200 Marks
IAS Exam Paper 2


2 Hours 80 200 Marks

IAS Mains Exam Pattern

The next stage of the recruitment process for the IAS exam is called the UPSC Mains, and those who qualify for the Prelims exam will be eligible for this round. Mains is a written descriptive exam and contain 9 papers. Paper VI, and VII is the optional papers, and the candidates get to choose any subject he/she wants for the optional subject for UPSC from a list of 48 subjects. Paper-A and Paper-B will be qualifying in nature and other papers are of merit ranking nature.

IAS Exam Paper Subject Nature of the Paper Total Marks Duration
Paper A Compulsory Indian language Qualifying 300 3 Hours
Paper B English 300 3 Hours
Paper I Essay  

Merit Ranking

250 3 Hours
Paper-II General Studies I 250 3 Hours
Paper -III General Studies II 250 3 Hours
Paper-IV General Studies III 250 3 Hours
Paper-V General Studies IV 250 3 Hours
Paper-VI Optional I 250 3 Hours
Paper-VII Optional II 250 3 Hours
  • Candidates get the option to choose their medium of writing in the IAS Mains exam as English, Hindi, or any other language mentioned in the 8th schedule of the Indian Constitution.
  • Candidates who qualify for the Mains exam will be called for the Personality test round.
  • The final result will be based on the marks scored by the candidates in the Mains exam and the Personality Test round of the IAS exam.

IAS Interview

As mentioned above, candidates who have cleared the Mains stage of the IAS exam will be summoned for the Personality Test or UPSC Interview round with the board members, which is the final stage. In this round, candidates will be asked questions on various topics. This round of the IAS exam will be held at UPSC Bhavan in New Delhi.

IAS Syllabus

The IAS exam has a varied range of syllabus comprising a wide range of topics. To attain good scores in the IAS 2023 exam, candidates must have a comprehensive idea of the topics covered in the UPSC syllabus. Below we have provided the complete IAS syllabus for Prelims and Mains.

IAS Prelims Syllabus

IAS Prelims is the primary round of the selection process, and there are two papers in the Prelims syllabus – General Studies-I and General Studies-II (CSAT). CSAT is qualifying in nature whereas General Studies-II is merit ranking in nature. Below check out the UPSC Prelims Syllabus.

IAS 2023 Syllabus
IAS Prelims General Studies Paper-1 Syllabus 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
IAS Prelims CSAT Syllabus Comprehension, Interpersonal skills including communication skills, Logical reasoning, and analytical ability, Decision-making and problem-solving, General mental ability, Basic numeracy – Class X level), Data interpretation

IAS Mains Syllabus

The IAS Mains exam covers nine theory papers, and seven are considered to be taken into account for the final result and the merit list. In the other two papers namely Indian Language and English, the candidates will have to attain qualifying marks. Additionally, there will be two optional papers carrying 250 marks each. Candidates can choose any subject from the list of 48 UPSC optional subjects. Below we have covered the UPSC Mains Syllabus for each paper in the IAS 2023 Mains exam.

IAS Exam Paper Name of the Paper Syllabus
Paper – A Compulsory Indian Language Essay, Precise Writing, and Basic Language Usage, Translation, Grammar, etc.
Paper – B English Essay, Precise Writing, Translation, Grammar, Basic Language Usage, etc.
Paper – I Essay Don’t have any prescribed syllabus.
Paper – II General Studies I Indian Heritage & Culture, History & Geography of the World & Society.
Paper – III General Studies II Governance, Constitution, Welfare Initiatives, Social Justice & International Relations.
Paper – IV General Studies III Technology, Economic Development, Agriculture, Biodiversity, Security & Disaster Management.
Paper – V General Studies IV Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude.
Paper – VI Optional Paper I ____
Paper – VII Optional Paper II ___

Optional Subjects in IAS

As we have mentioned before, there are a total of 48 optional subjects in the IAS Mains exam. Candidates can choose any subject they want to. Each paper consists of 250 marks and a total of 500 marks. The questions from the UPSC Optional Subjects will be descriptive in nature. Here is a list of IAS Exam optional subjects along with the detailed syllabus.

List of Optional Subjects in UPSC Detailed Syllabus
Agriculture Download Syllabus PDF
Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science Download Syllabus PDF
Botany Download Syllabus PDF
Anthropology Download Syllabus PDF
Political Science & International Relations Download Syllabus PDF
Psychology Download Syllabus PDF
Public Administration Download Syllabus PDF
Sociology Download Syllabus PDF
Statistics Download Syllabus PDF
Zoology Download Syllabus PDF
Geology Download Syllabus PDF
History Download Syllabus PDF
Law Download Syllabus PDF
Management Download Syllabus PDF
Mathematics Download Syllabus PDF
Mechanical Engineering Download Syllabus PDF
Medical Science Download Syllabus PDF
Philosophy Download Syllabus PDF
Physics Download Syllabus PDF
Chemistry Download Syllabus PDF
Civil Engineering Download Syllabus PDF
Commerce & Accountancy Download Syllabus PDF
Economics Download Syllabus PDF
Electrical Engineering Download Syllabus PDF
Geography Download Syllabus PDF

IAS Exam 2023 Admit Card

The admit card for IAS 2023 has been released by the Union Public Service Commission on its official website. Candidates can download the Prelims admit card 2023 directly from the official website. They need to enter their application number, and password/date of birth to get access to admit card. They must remember that they won’t be allowed inside the exam hall without the admit card.

Details Mentioned on IAS Exam Admit Card

After downloading the admit card 2023 for the IAS Exam, candidates need to check the following details on their card – Name of the Candidate, Mother’s Name, Father’s Name, Date of Birth, Exam Center, Roll Number, etc. If candidates find any kind of issue with the admit card then they are advised to contact the UPSC helpline number.

IAS Exam Centers

Candidates get the freedom to choose from the listed examination center for the IAS exam. Applicants must choose their preference in the application form. The IAS exam centers for the prelims exam are also mentioned below.

IAS Prelims Exam Centre

Aurangabad Jabalpur Ranchi
Dehradun Leh Tirupati
Aizawl Imphal Pune
Bilaspur Jorhat Siliguri
Bareilly Jammu Shillong
Gangtok Mysore Vishakhapatnam
Coimbatore Kolkata Thiruvananthapuram
Dharwad Ludhiana Varanasi
Ghaziabad Panaji (goa)
Agra Gurgaon Port Blair
Delhi Lucknow Udaipur
Ajmer Gwalior Prayagraj (Allahabad)
Aligarh Indore Raipur
Dispur Madurai Vellore
Faridabad Mumbai Vijayawada
Agartala Gorakhpur Patna
Cuttack Kozhikode (Calicut) Tiruchirapalli
Anantpur (Andhra Pradesh) Itanagar Rajkot
Ahmedabad Hyderabad Puducherry
Gaya Nagpur Warangal
Bhopal Jodhpur Shimla
Chandigarh Kochi Srinagar
Gautam Buddh Nagar Navi Mumbai
Bangalore Jaipur Sambalpur
Chennai Kohima Thane

The exam centers for the Mains exam are given below. The mains exam is conducted for the candidates selected after the prelims exam. Hence, the number of exam centers reduce for the mains exam.

IAS 2023 Mains Exam Centres
Coimbatore Kolkata Thane
Cuttack Kozhikode (Calicut) Thiruvananthapuram
Dehradun Lucknow Tiruchirapalli
Delhi Ludhiana Tirupati
Dharwad Madurai Udaipur
Dispur Mumbai Varanasi
Faridabad Mysore Vellore
Gangtok Nagpur Vijayawada
Gaya Navi Mumbai Visakhapatnam
Ghaziabad Gautam Buddh Nagar Warangal
Aurangabad Jabalpur Rajkot
Bangalore Jaipur Ranchi
Bareilly Jammu Sambalpur
Bhopal Jodhpur Shillong
Bilaspur Jorhat Shimla
Chandigarh Kochi Siliguri
Chennai Kohima Srinagar

IAS Exam Cut Off 2022

The IAS exam 2022 cut-off has not been released yet, however, we have mentioned expected UPSC Prelims 2022 Cut Off. The IAS cut-off is determined by factors like the difficulty level of questions, the number of vacancies, and the number of applicants who applied. Candidates can check the IAS exam cut-off for the previous year to get an idea about the expected cut-off for IAS 2022 exam.

IAS 2019 Cut Off

Check here the IAS exam cut-off released in 2019. The aspirants can check the prelims, mains, and final cut-off. The complete details of the cut-off have been presented here.

Category IAS Exam Prelims Cut-off IAS Mains Exam Cut-off IAS Exam Final Cut-off
General 98 751 961
OBC 95.34 718 925
SC 82.00 706 989
ST 77.34 699 893

IAS Exam 2018 Cut off

The aspirants can check the previous year prelims and mains cut off. This will allow the candidates in gauging the difficulty level of the exam. The minimum marks obtained by the candidates in the prelims, mains, and final cut off have been elaborated here-

Category IAS Prelims Exam Cut-off IAS Exam Mains Cut-off IAS Final Exam Cut-off
General 98.00 774 982
OBC 96.66 732 938
SC 84.00 719 912
ST 83.34 719 912

IAS Exam 2023 Preparation

The IAS exam is known as one of the toughest exams in the country, and candidates need to have a foolproof strategy to crack this examination. IAS requires sheer will, determination, focus, and hard work combined with a solid preparation strategy. Here are some of the IAS exam preparation tips that will pave the way for higher ranks in IAS 2023.

  • Current affairs-based questions are asked in both Prelims and Mains exams, so make sure to stay updated with credible sources like The Hindu, PIB, Yojana, etc. Additionally, keep track of national and international events of the last 10-12 months.
  • Go through IAS Previous Year’s Question Papers, to get an idea about the pattern, and trending topics from the UPSC syllabus.
  • Read the NCERT books for UPSC to build a solid base, and try to make two types of notes. Short notes for the IAS Prelims exam and descriptive notes for IAS Mains.
  • Start your preparation for both the Prelims and Mains exam simultaneously, but 3 months before the IAS 2023 Prelims exam date, shift your focus completely in the preparation of the Prelims exam.
  • Choose an optional subject based on your interest, and experience.
  • Go through the standard books after completing the NCERTs
  • Don’t take the qualifying papers lightly as you can’t crack IAS if you fail in them.
  • Practice previous year’s question papers, attempt UPSC mock tests to be familiar with the exam pattern, and syllabus, build confidence, and find out your weaknesses.
  • Revise multiple times, and prepare separate short notes for the revision period.

IAS Question Paper

IAS previous year question paper plays an integral role in the preparation for the upcoming exam. Those candidates who are appearing for their first IAS exam would be benefitted from the question paper from previous years. The question paper will give them a clear picture of what kind of questions they will be facing, and help them to be familiar with the exam pattern. IAS Prelims is scheduled for 28th May, candidates can check out the UPSC prelims question paper. Candidates can also check out the previous year’s IAS question paper as illustrated below-

Let’s take a look at the IAS Exam Prelims 2021 question paper below.

UPSC Question Paper Prelims GS 2021
IAS Question Paper 2021 Prelims GS – SET A IAS Exam Prelims 2021 GS Question Paper 1 PDF SET-A Here
IAS Question Paper 2021 Prelims GS – SET B IAS Exam Prelims 2021 GS Question Paper 1 PDF SET-B Here
IAS Question Paper 2021 Prelims GS – SET C IAS Exam Prelims 2021 GS Question Paper 1 PDF SET-C Here
IAS Question Paper 2021 Prelims GS – SET D IAS Exam Prelims 2021 GS Question Paper 1 PDF SET-D Here
UPSC Question Paper Prelims CSAT 2021
IAS Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET A Download UPSC Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET A
IAS Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET B Download UPSC Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET B
IAS Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET C Download UPSC Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET C
IAS Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET D Download UPSC Question Paper 2021 for CSAT – SET D
IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains 2021
IAS Mains Question Paper 2021 for Essay IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains 2021-Essay
IAS Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-1 IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-1
IAS Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-2 IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-2
IAS Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-3 IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-3
IAS Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-4 IAS Exam Question Paper for Mains GS Paper-4

IAS Exam Result

The Union Public Service Commission releases the IAS exam results every year on its official website. The candidates who appear for the exam can check the result by following these simple steps.

  • Visit the official website of UPSC.
  • Click on “Written Result.”
  • Find the result link.
  • Search results using the roll number.
  • Download the result and keep it for future reference.

IAS Mains Result 2022 Declared

The IAS Mains result 2022 has been declared by the authorities on the official website on 6th December 2022. The aspirants who took the exam can check the UPSC result and track their selection status. The qualified candidates can commence their preparation for the next round of the selection process, which is the interview. The mains exam was held from 15th September to 25th September. IAS Prelims 2022 Results Declared. The Interview was conducted in two phases from 30th January to 10th March. The remaining candidates will be taking the exam from 30th January to 10th March. The phase 3 interview will be conducted from 24th April to 30th May.

The IAS Prelims 2022 has been declared on 22 June 2022 by UPSC on its official website. The Prelims was held on 05 June 2022.

IAS Final Result 2021 Declared

The IAS final result 2021 has been declared on 30 May 2022 by UPSC on its official website. Candidates who have cleared the Mains can check their final results on their official website. The interview was the last stage of the recruitment process which began on April 5 and concluded on May 26 after that UPSC published the final result of UPSC 2021. A total of 685 candidates have been selected for civil services. Shruti Sharma secured All India Rank 1 in 2021.

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