UPSC Prelims 2022: UPSC Civil Services Prelims Exam

By Shubhra Anand Jain|Updated : July 4th, 2022

UPSC Prelims 2022 was conducted on 5th June 2022 by Union Public Service Commission in two shifts. The official UPSC 2022 notification was released earlier on the 2nd February 2022 along with the UPSC Prelims syllabus, exam pattern, and other details. UPSC Prelims is the first stage of the UPSC CSE exam and is an elimination round. UPSC Preliminary is a combined examination for UPSC Civil Services and UPSC Indian Forest Services Examinations.

UPSC has recently released the UPSC Prelims 2023 exam dates as well. As per the notification, the UPSC Prelims 2023 will be conducted on 28th May 2023. The application process will start on 1 February 2023, and the last date to apply for UPSC Prelims 2023 will be 1 February 2023. However, the exam dates can be changed depending on the circumstances.

UPSC exam includes three stages- Prelims, Mains, and Interview. UPSC Prelims is the first stage of the IAS exam, and therefore it is crucial for the candidates to fetch good marks in order to achieve their dreams of becoming Civil Servants. In this post, we are going to cover all the details an aspirant should know about UPSC Prelims. It will allow the aspirants to be prepared accordingly and strengthen their preparation strategy.

Table of Content

UPSC Prelims 2022 

UPSC Prelims 2022 was conducted on 05th June 2022. The UPSC Prelims Exam consists of two papers- UPSC Prelims GS paper 1 and UPSC Prelims CSAT paper 2. The Prelims Exam was held in two shifts with a 3-hour break in between. Candidates who had successfully filled up the UPSC Online Application appeared for the IAS Prelims Exam. 

The admit card for the UPSC Prelims Exam is released on the official website of the Commission. 

Latest News about UPSC Prelims 2022

UPSC Prelims Notification

The commission releases the UPSC CSE Notification which is also the UPSC Prelims Notification, usually in February. Candidates who wish to appear for the upcoming UPSC Prelims Exam 2023 must download the UPSC Notification to ensure a full understanding of the exam. 

UPSC Prelims Overview 



UPSC Prelims Date 2023

28th May 2023

UPSC Prelims Duration

2 hours each for GS-1 and CSAT

UPSC Prelims Language

English and Hindi both

Mode of UPSC Prelims

Pen and Paper; candidates need to fill the OMR Sheet with a black ballpoint pen.

UPSC Prelims Pattern

There are two papers, GS Paper 1 and CSAT Paper 2; both of them are MCQ Type

UPSC Prelims Subjects

History, Polity, Geography, Economy, Science & Technology, Environment, and Current Affairs. Aptitude for CSAT.

IAS Prelims Total Marks

200 marks (CSAT is qualifying with just 33% marks). 

Documents Required for UPSC Prelims

  • Admit Card
  • Valid ID Proof
  • Passport Size Photograph

Qualifying Marks for UPSC Prelims

UPSC Cutoff for Paper 1.

For CSAT, it is 33% of the total marks. 

Weightage of UPSC Prelims

One needs to qualify for the UPSC Prelims to sit for the UPSC Mains Exam. Marks of the Prelims are not added to the calculation of the final merit list.

UPSC Prelims Login

Application Number and Date of Birth

Official Website and Helpline Number

011-23098543 / 23385271 / 23381125 / 23098591

 UPSC Prelims Exam Time

UPSC conducts the UPSC Prelims Exam across the country in various exam centers on the same day. As there are two papers in UPSC Prelims, the exam is held in two shifts. UPSC prelims time duration is two hours for each paper with a gap of 3 hours between them. 

UPSC Prelims Paper 


UPSC Prelims Paper 1- GS 

09:30 A.M. to 11:30 A.M. 

UPSC Prelims Paper 2- CSAT

02:30 P.M. to 04:30 P.M. 

UPSC Prelims 2023

Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) has released the UPSC 2023 exam calendar. As per the calendar, the UPSC Prelims will be conducted on 28 May 2023. The candidates who wish to appear for the UPSC 2023 examination need to fill up the application form first. As per the notification, the application process for UPSC 2023 will start on 1st February 2023, and the last date of the application form will be 21 February 2023. All the candidates are required to apply for Prelims before the last date. Candidates can check out the important dates for UPSC Prelims 2023.

UPSC Prelims Exam 2023 Events

UPSC IAS 2023 Dates

UPSC 2023 Notification Date

1 February 2023 

UPSC CSE Application Start Date 2023

1 February 2023 

UPSC Application Form 2023 Last Date

21 February 2023

UPSC Prelims Admit Card Release Date

To be Notified 

UPSC Prelims 2023 Date 

28th May 2023.

UPSC Prelims 2022

UPSC Prelims 2022 was conducted on 05th June 2022, and the results of the same were declared on 22nd June 2022. The candidates who cleared the UPSC Prelims will appear fir the UPSC Mains from 16th September 2022 onwards.

UPSC Prelims 2021 

UPSC Prelims result in 2021 was declared on 29th October 2021, and the exam took place on 10th October 2021. The qualified candidates were eligible for the Mains exam 2021 which was conducted from 7th January 2022 to 16th January 2022.

UPSC Prelims Application Form

The commission releases the UPSC Prelims Form along with the official notification. Candidates must check the UPSC Eligibility before submitting the application for the Prelims exam. Candidates who wish to apply for the UPSC CSE vacancy must fill out the online form and appear for the prelims exam. 

The UPSC prelims form 2022 was available from 02 February 2022 to 22 February 2022 on the official website. It is important to ensure that details filled in the UPSC Prelims Application are correct to avoid any disqualification at a later stage.

UPSC Prelims Exam Pattern

The UPSC Prelims 2022 exam consists of two papers namely General Studies-1 and General Studies-2 (CSAT). The CSAT exam is qualifying in nature, and candidates need to score more than 33% to qualify for this paper. On the other hand, General Studies-1 will determine the selection in UPSC Prelims. 

  • The questions asked in UPSC Prelims will be objective type (MCQ with 4 options)
  • There is a negative marking of 1/3rd marks for every incorrect answer.
  • The UPSC Prelims Paper is in both English and Hindi.

Let’s take a look at the UPSC Exam Pattern for the Prelims Exam in the table below.

UPSC Prelims Exam Pattern

Paper Name

No of Questions



Exam Nature

General Studies Paper-1 



2 Hours

Score will Decide the Selection

General Studies Paper-2 (CSAT)



2 Hours


UPSC Prelims Marking Scheme

The UPSC Prelims Paper is objective type and contains negative marking. It is considered to be the most difficult stage of the IAS Exam as it contains negative markings and one must clear the UPSC Cutoff to proceed further. 


For Every Correct Answer

Negative Marking

Prelims Paper 1

2 Marks - 2*100 = 200

0.66 (1/3rd Marks)

Prelims Paper 2 

2.5 Marks - 2.5*80 = 200

0.83 (1/3rd Marks)

UPSC Prelims Syllabus

The UPSC Prelims Syllabus is released along with the official UPSC Syllabus in the official notification. The syllabus of UPSC Prelims includes two papers namely General Studies Paper-1 and General Studies Paper-2 (CSAT) syllabus. The commission releases the UPSC Prelims Syllabus in English and Hindi. 

Candidates must download the Syllabus for UPSC Prelims for both Paper 1 and Paper 2 to fully understand the scope of topics and plan the preparation in a strategic manner. Check the detailed syllabus below. 

UPSC Prelims

UPSC Prelims Syllabus for Paper 1 [General Studies]

  • Current events of national and international importance.
  • Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion,
  • History of India and Indian National Movement.
  • Social, Economic Geography of India and the World.
  • Indian and World Geography-Physical, 
  • Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
  • Demographics, Social Sector initiatives, etc.
  • General issues on Environmental Ecology, Biodiversity, and Climate Change- that do not require subject specialization.
  • General Science.

UPSC Prelims Syllabus for Paper 2 [CSAT]

The UPSC CSAT Syllabus for the Prelims exam includes the following topics as per official notification. 

  • Comprehension.
  • Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
  • English language comprehension skills – Class X level.
  • Logical reasoning and analytical ability.
  • Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude, etc.) (Class X level)

UPSC Prelims Question Paper

One of the best ways to prepare for the upcoming UPSC Prelims Exam is by solving Last 10 Years UPSC Question Papers with Answers PDF to get a better picture of what to expect in the exam. Candidates must find the right strategy, and work hard with sincerity and dedication to clear the UPSC Civil Services Prelims Exam on the first attempt. However, enormous hard work done by a candidate will only be effective if it is done in the right way. 

For this candidates need to be familiar with the questions asked in the UPSC Prelims exam. That’s why it becomes inevitable to refer to UPSC Prelims Previous Year question papers to keep track of the trends and strengthen your preparation. As the CSAT paper of UPSC prelims is qualifying, it becomes even more important to download and practice UPSC CSAT Question Papers

UPSC Prelims Question Paper 2021

Below we have provided a direct link to download the UPSC Prelims 2021 Question Paper. It will help the candidates to practice and prepare in the best way possible.

UPSC Prelims Question Paper 2020

Below we have provided the direct link for UPSC Prelims 2020 Question Paper. You can download the question papers and kickstart your preparation for Prelims 2022. 

Also, download past year's UPSC Papers to level up your level of preparedness. 

UPSC Prelims Analysis

UPSC is known to surprise the candidates with its unpredictable moves. That’s why candidates have to be very careful. Candidates need to see the trends and analyze what to expect in UPSC Prelims 2022. It would be very helpful to know how many questions will be asked from each section of the UPSC Prelims Syllabus. That’s why we have broken down the UPSC Prelims 2021, and UPSC Prelims 2020 below in the table.

UPSC Prelims Analysis 2021 of GS Paper 1 


Number of questions

Current Affairs






Environment & Ecology


Science & Technology








UPSC Prelims Analysis 2020 GS Paper 1


Number of questions

Current Affairs






Environment & Ecology


Science & Technology








UPSC Prelims Preparation Strategy

Candidates who are preparing for UPSC Prelims need to have a solid preparation strategy to crack this paper. That is why we have come up with a robust preparation strategy that is recommended by the toppers to ace the UPSC Prelims. Go through the below-mentioned tips to know How to prepare for UPSC Prelims

  • Candidates need to give high importance to the current affairs section for UPSC Prelims and stay updated with recent incidents and information. Some of the useful sources for current affairs preparation are The Hindu/ The Indian Express Newspapers, Yojana Magazine, and Economic and Political Weekly.
  • Candidates need to start their preparation for UPSC Prelims and Mains simultaneously, and just 3 months before the UPSC Prelims exam their focus should only be on the Prelims exam preparation. Go through the UPSC Mains Syllabus to ensure that you are covering all common topics. 
  • Going through the UPSC Prelims question paper from previous years would help to gauge your level. In addition by practicing the question papers, you will be able to understand the UPSC Prelims exam pattern, and the important topics in a better way.
  • Make sure to make notes for the UPSC Prelims exam. Noting down the important points would give your that extra push just before the exam. 
  • Start with NCERT Books for UPSC as the questions asked in the UPSC Prelims will check basic understanding of the concepts, and NCERTs would be a great source for that.
  • Questions in the UPSC Prelims exam would be objective in nature, and that’s why candidates must attempt as many as mock tests possible. It will also help in reducing negative marking. 

UPSC Prelims Books

Candidates must be very careful when choosing the UPSC Books for the IAS Prelims Exam. The UPSC Prelims Exam demands a high conceptual understanding of topics and good preparation for current affairs.  For UPSC Prelims it is recommended to finish all the NCERTs books and they will help you to strengthen your foundations. Additionally, the NCERTs are written in simple language that can be understood easily by beginners as well. To begin with, every aspirant must finish NCERT books to create a good foundation for all the subjects. Learn how to read NCERT for UPSC to ensure maximum usage and better understanding. 

After finishing the NCERT textbooks candidates can jump into the standard books for the UPSC Prelims syllabus. Other important books for UPSC Prelims Exam are as follows:

  • Polity - M. Laxmikanth
  • Economics - Ramesh Singh
  • History - History of Modern India by Bipin Chandra
  • Geography - NCERT + Goh Cheng Leong
  • Indian Art and Culture- Nitin Singhania
  • Environment- NCERT Biology Class 12 selected chapters
  • The Hindu for Current Affairs

UPSC Prelims Notes

You can’t miss out on the study materials while preparing for the UPSC Civil Services Prelims examination. The UPSC Prelims Notes play a big role in the Prelims exam preparation, and studying from the right UPSC Books would be highly efficient and effective. It is highly recommended that aspirants make their own study notes for the UPSC prelims exam as it helps in revision. UPSC Prelims exam gives more weightage to quality over quantity therefore effort must be on revising the syllabus multiple times. 

Make it a habit to create UPSC prelims notes for both GS and current affairs. 

UPSC Prelims Cut-Off 

The UPSC Prelims Cutoff is the minimum mark required for candidates to qualify in the prelims, and be eligible for the UPSC Mains round. The cutoff varies depending on the category of the candidate. The UPSC Prelims 2022 Cut Off will be released after the declaration of the UPSC Prelims result.

  • Candidates who have scored more than the cut-off will be qualified for the next stage of the UPSC exam.
  • The UPSC Prelims Cutoff only depends on the score of General Studies-1 only, as the General Studies-2 is qualifying in nature where the candidate needs to score at least 33%. 
  • The cut-off of UPSC Prelims 2022 will depend on the number of vacancies, the number of candidates applied, and the difficulty level of the exam.

UPSC Prelims Cutoff 2020 for General Category was 92.51 and UPSC Prelims Cutoff 2019 was 98

UPSC Prelims Result

The UPSC Prelims Result 2022 will be declared within a few weeks after the completion of the Prelims exam on the official website of UPSC. However, the UPSC Prelims Result 2021 was released on 10th October, on the official website of UPSC, the candidates who have qualified for the Prelims exams were allowed to appear for UPSC Mains. 

How to Check the UPSC Prelims Result?

Here are the following steps to check the UPSC Prelims result

  • Go to the official website of UPSC
  • Click on “Written Results”
  • Click on Civil Services Prelims Result
  • Download the PDF to see the list of candidates who have cleared the UPSC Prelims.

UPSC Prelims vs Mains

The UPSC Prelims and UPSC Mains are two different stages of the UPSC Exam. The Prelims is the first stage and Mains is the second stage of the UPSC exam. The difference between UPSC Prelims vs Mains is given below:

  • The UPSC Prelims follow an objective type paper pattern, whereas the UPSC mains is of a descriptive type pattern. 
  • In UPSC Prelims, questions are mostly to the point, factual, or one-liners, but in UPSC Mains, the questions are of descriptive type, assessing the candidate's analytical and critical thinking ability.
  • The UPSC Prelims consist of two papers, GS Paper 1 and CSAT. Whereas, in UPSC Mains, there are 9 papers in total, where the 2 language papers are qualifying and the rest 7 papers comprise of essay, General Studies subject and the Optional Subject.
  • The time duration for both the papers of UPSC Prelims is 2 hours. The UPSC Mains has papers of 3 hours each.
  • There is no concept of Optional Subject in UPSC Prelims, but for UPSC Mains, a candidate needs to select an optional subject from the list of 48 Optional Subjects given by the Commission.


write a comment

UPSC Prelims FAQs

  • UPSC Prelims Exam also known as UPSC Preliminary Exam or UPSC Civil Services Prelims Exam is the first date of the UPSC Civil Services Exam. The UPSC CSE contains 3 stages- Prelims, Mains and Interview. Prelims is the qualifying stage and candidates who clear the prelims to appear for the Mains Exam. 

  • The UPSC Prelims Exam is conducted by Union Public Service Commission every year as per the IAS notification to select candidates for the Mains exam. Usually, the prelims exam is conducted in May/June of every year in offline mode across various centers of the country.

  • The UPSC Prelims 2022 has been conducted on 5th June 2022 through offline mode. The exam will be conducted in two sessions as there are two papers. The exam duration will be 2 hours for each paper. The candidates who qualify for the Prelims exam will be eligible for the UPSC Mains and hence one step closer to becoming a civil servant.

  • The UPSC Prelims exam is an object pen and paper test and the questions asked are MCQ based. Each question has 4 choices and has one correct answer. Every correct answer in UPSC prelims paper 1 gets 2 marks and 1/3rd negative marks for incorrect answers. Applicants must submit their answers on the OMR sheet. 

  • To apply for the UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2022 candidates need must be graduated from a recognized university. Additionally, those who are in their final years of college and waiting for their result are also eligible to apply for UPSC Prelims 2022. Candidates must check the UPSC Age Limit for the prelims exam which is 21 t0 32 years for the General category. 

  • There are two papers in the UPSC Civil Services Prelims exam namely General Studies-1 and General Studies-2 (CSAT). The CSAT paper is qualifying in nature whereas the qualification of a candidate will be based on the General Studies-1. Each paper of the UPSC Prelims carries a total of 200 marks.

  • UPSC Prelims cutoff is the minimum marks required for candidates to qualify for the UPSC Mains exam. The Prelims cut-off varies every year. The cutoff for UPSC Prelims 2020 was 92.51 for the general category, and for UPSC 2019 the cutoff was 98 for the general category. Above we have mentioned the year-wise cutoff to get a clear picture of the expected cutoff for the upcoming Prelims exam.

  • There will be two papers in the UPSC Prelims exam, namely General Studies-1 and General Studies-2 or CSAT. The General Studies-1 contains a total of 100 questions and the total marks of this paper is 200. On the other hand, there will be a total of 80 questions in the CSAT paper which is qualifying in nature. 

  • As we have mentioned above the UPSC Prelims is only a screening test to find the eligible candidates for the UPSC Mains exam. However, the questions will be a little tough as the level of UPSC exams are high. But with a solid preparation strategy, effective study schedule, and hard work candidates will be able to clear this exam easily.

  • The UPSC Prelims syllabus for GS paper-1 includes current affairs, Indian and World Geography, Economic and Social Development, Biodiversity, Environmental Ecology, Polity, History, and General Science. The CSAT syllabus tests the analytical skills, reasoning ability, and interpersonal skills of a candidate.

  • Candidates can download the UPSC previous year's question paper from the direct link mentioned here. Practicing with the UPSC Prelims question paper would help the candidates to understand the exam pattern, and it would be easier for them to figure out the important topics from the UPSC Prelims syllabus. 

  • To crack the UPSC Civil Services Prelims 2022 in 6 months, you need a robust study plan and effective strategy. Make sure you cover the Prelims syllabus properly and complete all the NCERT textbooks. Don’t forget to make short notes, as it will help you during the revision period. Don’t stress yourself too much, and take shorts breaks to keep your mind refreshed.

  • Yes the UPSC Prelims is qualifying in nature as the marks obtained in this exam won’t be considered while preparing for the final UPSC merit list. The Prelims exam is only an elimination round to find the eligible candidates for the UPSC Mains, which is the second stage of the UPSC exam.

  • The candidates who clear the UPSC Prelims exam will be able to appear in the second stage of the UPSC exam which is Mains. If a candidate manages to crack the UPSC Mains then he/she will get invited for the final interview round. Those who clear all three rounds of the UPSC exam will get recruited for different civil services as per their ranks.


Featured Articles

Follow us for latest updates