Which Degree is Best to Become an IAS Officer?

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: November 14th, 2023

Which Degree is Best to Become an IAS Officer? This question arises in the mind of every student who wants to crack the Civil Services Exam to become an IAS officer. Students who wish to pursue their careers as IAS officers must select the right degree after completing their 10+2 successfully. Because the graduation degree plays a significant role in the IAS Exam preparation. There are some subjects that overlap with the general studies syllabus, and the optional syllabus of the UPSC Exam. Choosing these subjects can make the preparation efficient, and one can utilize his/her time in the best possible way.

However, it can be overwhelming, and confusing for the students to choose a degree that would not only satisfy their area of interest but also help them with their UPSC preparation. To help students figure out the best, and most suitable degree for IAS we have created this article. It would surely help the students to choose the best degree for IAS.

Which Degree is Best to Become an IAS Officer?

Coming to this question, is there any best degree to become an IAS Officer? The answer is no. Because cracking the UPSC Exam depends on skills, hard work, and the interest of the candidate. There are some subjects that may help during the IAS exam preparation but they don’t guarantee success. The UPSC Syllabus is vast, and it includes a wide range of subjects. So covering the degree subjects won’t be enough to crack the exam.

Check: UPSC Previous Year Question Paper

There have been many toppers who have opted for their degree subject as their optional. But one optional subject won’t ensure the success of a candidate. The most important thing is the interest of a candidate. However here we will help the students to analyze the different possible options they can choose from as per previous year’s trends and expert advice.

Best Degree to Become an IAS Officer

Keeping the UPSC Syllabus in mind, and analyzing its topics, the best degree to become an IAS officer is a Bachelor of Arts. Many candidates have chosen a Bachelor of Arts after their 10+2 in order to prepare for the IAS Exam. However, this is not the only factor that would help the candidates to crack the exam. In the past, MBBS candidates, engineering, and MBA candidates have also cracked the IAS Exam. Candidates can choose any degree as per his/her area of interest.

  • There are some subjects that overlap with the General Studies papers of the UPSC Civil Service Exam. Candidates can opt for these subjects if it meets their area of interest. Candidates should also go through the Optional Subject syllabus once to see the subject options available and take their decision accordingly.
  • Political Science and Public Administration are the part of GS-2 syllabus, and GS-4 Syllabus also covers Public Administration.
  • On the other hand, sociology, history, and geography are part of the GS-1 Syllabus. Candidates can opt for these subjects as their optional subjects as well.
  • The economy is part of the optional syllabus, and GS-3 Syllabus as well.

Best Degree for IAS Exam as Per Previous Year Trends

In UPSC Exam 2019, 2302 candidates appeared for the IAS Interview, and among them, a total of 922 candidates were recruited by the UPSC. Below we have mentioned the success rate of the candidates with their bachelor’s degrees.

Bachelor’s Degrees Interviewed Recommended Success Rate
Science 69 27 39.1 %
Humanities 159 77 48.4%
Medical Science 126 44 34.9%
Engineering 1382 524 37.9%

Let’s take a look at the success rate of the candidates with master’s degrees or post-graduation courses in the IAS exam. It will give a clear picture of which post-graduation courses were taken by the selected candidates.

Post Graduation Courses Appeared Recommended Success Rate
Medical Science 27 12 44.4%
Humanities 315 146 46.3%
Science 92 34 37.0%
Engineering 132 58 43.9%

The above-given table only shows the previous year’s trends data. It is recommended that candidates shouldn’t make their decision based on the previous year’s data. They need to make decisions based on their area of interest as the degree doesn’t matter much when it comes to becoming an IAS officer.

Degree of the Previous Year’s IAS Toppers

Below we have mentioned the last 10 year’s IAS toppers with the subject they studied in their graduation. It would help the candidates to understand from which background the IAS toppers belong.

Year IAS Toppers Name Degree
2014 Ira Singhal BTech Computer Science
2015 Tina Dabi BA Political Science
2016 Nandini KR BTech in Civil Engineering
2017 Anudeep Durishetty BTech in Civil Engineering
2018 Kanishak Kataria BTech Computer Science
2019 Pradeep Singh BTech Computer Science
2020 Shubham Kumar BTech in Civil Engineering
2021 Shruti Sharma BA History
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