Bare Minimum Book List for UPSC Civil Services Prelims
UPSC Prelims is the biggest and the most dicey hurdle for IAS aspirants. I can vouch for this as I flunked the 2015 Prelims despite feeling prepared and the in CSE 2016 I just stayed afloat with merely 2 marks more than the cut-off.
The GS paper in UPSC Prelims 2017 has shown how unpredictable this exam can get. After basing the previous year’s paper almost entirely on Current Affairs, they have suddenly tested the core concepts this time. This has come as a shocker for most of the aspirants, specially the new entrants.
In my opinion, this year’s Prelims paper is the ideal one as it values rigorous understanding of core concepts rather than mugging up facts from monthly current affairs magazines. This also highlights the need to stick to the core books no matter what.
So here is the minimalist Book List for UPSC Prelims exam. Some of them are linked to help you download or buy online:
History, Art & Culture:
- NCERT History (Old) of Classes 6,7,8, 11 and 12.
- Tamil Nadu Board History of Classes 11 and 12.
- Spectrum A Brief History Of Modern India
- NCERT An Introduction to Indian Art (Class 11).
- Nitin Singhania Hand Written Notes on Art & Culture.
- NCERT Class 11 & 12 Geography Textbooks (Refer to lower class books if absolute beginner)
- The Orient Blackswan School Atlas
- Certificate Physical and Human Geography (G C Leong)
- Refer to Mrunal Youtube Channel
- Indian Polity 5th Edition (Laxmikanth)
- NCERT Class XI: Indian Constitution At Work
- Refer to Constitution of India App for bare Acts.
Ecology & Environment
- NCERT Class 12 Biology (Only 4 chapters on Ecology)
- NCERT Class 11 Chemistry (Environmental Chemistry chapter only)
- Environment by Shankar IAS Academy
- NCERT Class 12: Introductory Macroeconomics
- NCERT Class 11: Indian Economic Development
- Indian Economy by Ramesh Singh (Read strictly according to syllabus, not cover to cover)
- You may refer to Sriram IAS Academy Economics Book
- Watch Investopedia video explanations of different concepts (Google ‘Economics Terminology + Investopedia’)
- Refer to any monthly current affair magazine of any one coaching institute. Highlight important parts and revise multiple times.
- All India Radio News at 9 PM
- Economic Survey
- India Year Book
- NCERT Science Books of Class 11 and 12 (skip if have strong Science background)
So this is the only book list you will ever need to crack UPSC Prelims. Do not refer to any other book. Rather revise these limited books as many times as you can. You must have your basic concepts thoroughly clear.
I will soon post blogs on how to read these books effectively with maximum returns. Bookmark this website for more!