The UPSC Civil Service Exam is considered to be one of the most difficult exams to pass in India. More than 10 lakh candidates apply at the preliminary stage for around 1000 vacancies. Naturally, this has led to many myths about exams. Here are some common misconceptions along with some clarifications.

Myth: you have to study 15-18 hours a day

Reality: It is probably the biggest. It is almost impossible to maintain this level of preparation for a one-year cycle. The number of hours spent does not guarantee success. What is needed is an appropriate strategy. Make sure you’re getting enough sleep and working on your physical and mental health so you can focus properly.

Myth: an aspiring UPSC should know everything about everything

Reality: It is true that the program is large and diverse, but there is a pattern that can be deduced. Serious aspirants carefully analyze the program by reviewing each topic / subtopic and previous questionnaires. Stick to a short, manageable list of books and focus on current affairs.

Myth: only those with the best university degrees can take the exam

Reality: UPSC only requires a graduate degree in any stream. This implies that he is ready to welcome anyone who demonstrates perseverance and leadership qualities as well as intellect to help in nation building. While it is true that many of the IITs or IIMs do take the exam, there are a larger number of relatively modest academic exams that have passed it as well.

Myth: only people with good English can take the exam

Reality: UPSC encourages applicants from diverse backgrounds to apply. The examination and interview can be taken in any of the 22 languages ‚Äč‚Äčlisted in the Constitution. The aspirant should be able to convey his knowledge and opinions in a simple and straightforward manner.

Myth: you can’t take the exam without supervision

Reality: While coaching can help provide direction, it is not a necessity. There are many online resources and tips available to help you build a smart personalized strategy and resource bank.

Persistence, hard work, self-confidence, and the right strategy are the keys that can unlock your dreams of being in public service.

The writer teaches sociology to UPSC aspirants at IAS Gurukul and is the head of the Indian Civil Service Association.