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Most Preferred optional for 2014 Mains exam?

edited September 2013 in Miscellaneous
I am confused between history, geography and political science.

Which subject takes the least time to cover the whole syllabus?

Also which is the most preferred subject for 2014 exam according to current trends, scoring opportunity and viable for self study?
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Comments

  • edited September 2013
    These are the wrong questions to ask when choosing an optional. But I'll answer them anyways:
    1. Time to cover syllabus: History < geography < political science.
    2. In most years, the number of aspirants for geography > history > political science.
    3. There is no such thing as "scoring opportunity". It all depends on your effort and UPSC's mood.
    4. Self-study for geography and history is seen as being easier than political science.

    Choose the subject for which you feel you have the best aptitude and you can be among the best in the country.

  • 1. Time to cover syllabus: History < geography < political science.
    How did you arrive at this one, mate? :-?
    Sharpen your axe, before cutting down the tree...
  • I am confused between history, geography and political science.

    Which subject takes the least time to cover the whole syllabus?

    Also which is the most preferred subject for 2014 exam according to current trends, scoring opportunity and viable for self study?
    You won't get right answers unless you ask the right questions. You should be asking yourself - Which subject do I like? If none of these, then do read some basic texts on all of them and then decide. Remember there is no Pali anymore - Else I might have suggested that! :P
  • edited September 2013

    1. Time to cover syllabus: History < geography < political science.
    How did you arrive at this one, mate? :-?
    At one point of time I was considering these optionals (and ended up choosing pol sci) and so have a basic idea of what is required to be done. Political science has too much dynamic syllabus and we pretty much have to study the entire BA + MA course of IGNOU, so I am sure that it takes more time than the other two. While the other two have a mostly static syllabus for which ample upsc-specific material is available, unlike pol sci.

    But of course, I could be wildly off mark! "Time to complete syllabus" is a very relative term because it depends on your aptitude, effort and strategy.
  • If none of these, then do read some basic texts on all of them and then decide. Remember there is no Pali anymore - Else I might have suggested that! :P
    If you do not have a prior interest, what Partho has suggested will give you probably the best option.

    Also consider the availability of resources in market to study an optional comprehensively. One may also (if one can) try to foresee, if one will be able to sustain the momentum for that particular optional during the preparation.

    Sharpen your axe, before cutting down the tree...
  • edited September 2013
    "Time to complete syllabus" is a very relative term because it depends on your aptitude, effort and strategy.
    I was about to write this, but then you 'edited' the comment!!! :-))
    And @arithkv, kindly note - this is an important aspect.
    Sharpen your axe, before cutting down the tree...
  • Hi,

    Thank you guys for your fast replies.

    I have inititally thought of history as my optional. But the syllabus consisting of 51 chapters in 2 papers made look the subject too tough to handle.

    II find geography little bit easy for me to grasp. But I guess I am just grasping on factual datas which may not be useful in UPSC exam aspect. So I realise that I should also look at previous question papers of mains exam (which I havent done) before deciding on the optionals.

    II dont have much understanding of political science except that people with interest in history used to take political science as second optional during earlier times (when 2 optionals were there).

    So still undecided on optional.
  • These are the wrong questions to ask when choosing an optional.

    Thanks for your reply. So what are the right questions to be asked when choosing an optional. Please guide.

  • Look at your question...
    Most preferred in 2014...
    i don't think 2012 annual report is out yet and even that will only have most preferred in 2012...
    2013 applications are not in yet...
    2014 .... do i even have to ask...???

    But lets put aside the obvious errors in syntax for the moment and analyse the causal link behind your reasoning...
    Why in the world would anyone want to know which is the most preferred coz that data has no significance for an aspirant...
    May be if i am a publisher of optional books it would help me but otherwise its a moot point...
    TAX ASSISTANT IN CUSTOMS (CGLE 2014)
  • edited September 2013
    Its all depend- how will you enjoy the subject (and also see the annual report).
    In my case geography was my first choice then polotical science.. after 2 months of confusion I've finally stopped at sociology (which was never in my list of optionals). see what I've done-
    Read all NCERT - books (11, 12- 4 books)
    On first reading- It was like a punishment, dint know which line to underline- because most of the things written, we already know ...too bore.. napping/reading simultaneously.
    2nd reading- gained some interest, underlined some lines.
    3rd reading (still going on)- very interesting, learnt to think simultaneously with reading (social issues).
    Now waiting to read the big books.. I hope that too will be interesting.
    So-- to have some idea please- start with ncert basic books.
    Dedication is inversely proportional to Time
  • I agree with all views expressed above.

    The most preferred optional as what the market says is - Pol Science and IR (linkage with GS and essay), Pub Ad (linkage with GS), Geography (linkage with GS) Psychology (linkage with ethics and Mukul Pathak for optional coaching).

    If u in absloute dilemma, choose any 1 out of above 4
  • edited September 2013
    Your query doesn't make sense because logically one would go for the 'least preferred' optional. Then the competition would be less and if you work hard, there are very good chances of you getting above average marks, which would automatically boost your final score.
  • i m confused between history ,geography , sociology , public admistration
    history= interest but lenthy sylabus
    Geography= interested but weak in drawing map and diagram
    Sociology = intersted but it is not easy to write a suitable answer . is it socing or not. i think it can cover in 2-3 months ,
    Public administration = short sylabus
    I hv done engineering. i hv nt arts background .plz sugest which optional i take .according to less sylabus
  • i m confused between history ,geography , sociology , public admistration
    history= interest but lenthy sylabus
    Geography= interested but weak in drawing map and diagram
    Sociology = intersted but it is not easy to write a suitable answer . is it socing or not. i think it can cover in 2-3 months ,
    Public administration = short sylabus
    I hv done engineering. i hv nt arts background .plz sugest which optional i take .according to less sylabus
  • @kundan232 you have mentioned in your question 'Public administration = short syllabus' & you are asking 'which optional i take according to less syllabus'. Then i suggest you go for history.
    "God is great"
  • I am confused between History , Political Science & IR (PSIR ) , Philosophy . I am almost equally interested in both History and Political Science but PSIR syllabus seems to be quite lengthy and dynamic in nature , will require in depth study of world affairs etc . History is also interesting especially the modern era but the some of the other parts in the syllabus looks quite boring . I don't have any clue about Philosophy but the syllabus looked quite small and I think it is manageable even if I start from scratch . But overlap with GS is much less compared to History or PSIR .
    And I would like to know which optionals did well this year , nonetheless its not the optional which does well , it the examinee who does but still is there any particular optional which got really low marks and some other in which majority got average or above average marks .
  • Asking others to suggest an optional is like asking them to write the exam for you. Optional should be selected by you based on your aptitude for the subject, liking and source available.
  • Anthropology is very scoring. Wonder why more people do not take it.
    I am a real ghost (after dead type). I am being honest. Boooooo......
  • This whole trend of asking others as to what optional one should choose is false .How can other person tell you that in which particular subject you have the requisite aptitude !

    How can a third person narrow down an optional subject for you when each one of us is different .No one is the same when it comes to interests , aptitude for a subject, intelligence etc .

    Taking up an optional solely for the purpose of its popularity is digging your own grave .Like geography suffered in 2013 this year it might be some other optional .

    So please choose an optional based on your liking as absurd and odd it may sound to others .Choose pub ad , take up Anthropology , Hindi , Oriya , Bengali if you want but choose only on the basis of your interest because an year long preparation cant be sustained without this integral factor .

    Here is a simple method :
    •Pick up basic books or NCERTs for all the subjects listed in the optional category .
    •Read 3-4 Chapters of that book
    •Likewise cover chapters from other books too.
    •Now , slowly you will begin to notice that some subjects are easy to grasp for you and they arent difficult to understand .You dont fall asleep reading those subjects & as per this criteria choose your optional.
    •Within a week you will have decided an optional based on your above exercise.


    I myself had chosen my optional ie Psyhcology this way .

    Hope it helps .
    :-)
    The fault , dear Brutus, is not in our stars, / But in ourselves, that we are underlings .
  • Anthropology is very scoring. Wonder why more people do not take it.
    Books nahi milti hai ...............
  • Is it possible to change optional for this year's mains?
  • please someone enlighten on this,can we change optional now?
  • please someone enlighten on this,can we change optional now?
    Read the notification. Clearly mentioned.
    Prelims : 2/5; Mains : 0/2; Interview : 0; Remainder : 1+1 (Tired but not; Retired) / Medical Science / Kolkata / Nihilist extraordinaire | Thanks a lot...
  • @All
    Totally confused....
    request to all plz sort my problem..

    Aiming for CSE 2015 (beginner),
    completed B.Tech this year,
    good mugging power,
    no basic idea about any Optional Subject (so no love for any subject), also not joining any coaching.

    Plz suggest a optional subject based on my requirements which are as follows:

    1. Good Scoring
    2. Mostly Static Syllabus
    3. Can be Completed in 6 Months
    4. Helpful in GS papers
    5. Good availability of study material and books
    6. Less competition

    Note: 1. pls don't suggest that read 2-3 basic books to develop interest.
    2. my mugging capability is quite good.
    3. optional outlined by me: PubAd, Philosophy, Sociology, History, Geography

    plz refer to my query soon.
    Due to current economic conditions the light at the end of the tunnel has been turned off
  • @the_knight: Dude, as you mentioned , you are having a good mugging power, then you can go with any subject( ANY subject means, ANY subject). Because you wont have to understand the nuts and bolts of the subject. Just cram, and the success will be yours bro....Trust me .
  • @the_knight
    If you have good mugging power go with any science optional be it physics/chem/maths.
    Mugging helps only in these and not in arts optionals. Things are changing in optionals as well
  • edited September 2014
    @the_knight
    If you have good mugging power go with any science optional be it physics/chem/maths.
    Mugging helps only in these and not in arts optionals. Things are changing in optionals as well
    lol....
    @the_knight don't trust him. [-X
    All good things are wild and free
  • @the_knight

    If you want to choose optional because of your great mugging power then better not to choose History & Geography. I dont have idea about other optional.

    But trust me, UPSC loves to eliminate Muggers in mains :)>-

    Best Luck :)
  • @ the knight ,

    If you really think that you are good at learning by mugging , UPSC is for you . You may take any subject may it be science subject or humanities or economics any subject. Albeit I would suggest you to consider Philosophy , history , geography that is subjects which have minimum syllabus relating to dynamic current affairs. this is one thing that can prove advantageous, because although you are good at mugging but if the optional is too dynamic based then there is a possibility that may may miss something worth preparing.

    When I first started preparing for UPSC ( almost 1.5 years ago)
    people used to say that UPSC judge our analyzing power and understanding of the subject. But the experience that I had till now , I can safely commend that all that was nothing but ignorant shit . And you may discover that by your own , just see some previous years papers ( both prelims and mains ) and you will know that the questions demands vast reading and memory , at no question they even try humbly to test your understanding that IIT used to test in pre 2004 era. Every thing here is too general and thats what makes UPSC a paradise of lucky man.

    Mains me paper pora karna is ek challenge ha , ek paper likh kar dekhle pata lag jaega ki sochne ka time hi nahi ha , UPSC intelligence ko behad napasand karta ha chahe prelims ho ya mains. UPSC loves people who can learn by rote. Even on introducing CSAT UPSC said that they want to discourage rote learning but the irony is that CSAT promotes rote learning even more that pre CSAT. The questions that appear in CSAT and the difficulty level they bear is pathetic ( even a class 9 student can solve them even in time , although this years CSAT was a not exactly like that , UPSC tried to fix this problem , but still it was easy for such hyped national exam ) , the questions are repeated and they demand skill ( just like bank po papers that need skill and speed that can be developed in 2 weeks ) and not thinking ( like what IIT's used to ask ). So in my view UPSC wants to select a lucky man from the pool of well prepared people with modest intelligence. ( they do not toil to test your intelligence and understanding ) .

    If you knoe hoe to mug-up UPSC is for you . And one more thing one can prepare for UPSC in no more than 6 months ( from scratch , that is if you are an engineer and good at basics maths and basic understanding or if you sincerely prepared for IIT JEE in 11th and 12th class ; and if you do not even know that India lies in Asia or even unaware that "Asia " is a continent , then also 6 months is more than enough , though you may take years to prepare if you talk about preparing and harly study ).

    For prelims : - read ncerts , laxmikant , ramesh singh first and then practice MCQ's every subject . Then go through Economic survay and IYB very quickly and practice more MCQ's dynamic ones. No need to read news paper even , though it will help if u read . It will take no more than 3 months time. And you will score anything between 100 marks to 150 marks in prelims GS paper depending upon your luck . For CSAT just practice 10 mock papers and official GMAT guide for passages and critical reasoning nothing else , it will be sufficient to score anything between 160 to 195 , depending upon your luck and level of questiond in exam.

    FOR MAINS :- Revice basic books that you read for prelims ( in 15 days ) , go through with IYB and economic survey and read vision material or synergy's or sri rams for mains ( read that material which is least bulky , do not read bulky books like bipin chandra , these books are meant for you satisfaction not needed for exam ) . And join a test series ( any test series , objective is to complete the paper in given time ). In actual exam write whatever u can , do not think that you need to write logical or good answer ( remember it is not IIT , UPSC does not know what logic is ) if you attempt every question success will be yours.

    For Interview :- prepare thoroughly , this is that stage that makes difference , here you need to be logical and intelligent , and this is the stage that can make or break. actually success lies in interview PT need basic study and mains need luck.


    Good luck , Remeber read less and remember most and write anything that you remembered. That is hoe we clear UPSC.
  • @Hank
    yes!! this is what i would say a crisp analaysis !!! L-)
    keeping aside the time limit you have mentioned.. i do agree with most of the stuff you have written!!
    upsc doesnt need one to do a Phd , but one who can pick up pointers from multiple sources , and write them at a place in the limited amount of time! hence, revison is the key ..for sure!! 8->
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