The UPSC Blog

Civil Services Exam, UPSC etc.

More advice on writing answers in UPSC Exams or long-answer, conventional papers.

without comments

1. Think of your answer as a structure, a fortress. Build your arguments. Write what is asked in the question. Follow a roadmap, logic, a sequence, order: an answer is a coherent whole.
2. DO NOT write what you know and want to. Write what is asked. Very important. Don’t be tempted to stuff your answers with all your knowledge, data and points if it does not match the need of the question.
3. Read question carefully and think for some moments before jumping to write. Think what it is actually asking. It is easy to jump to writing thinking you know it. You get marks for writing what is asked; not for what you know.
4. Keep hand writing clear and legible. Your examiner is checking dozens of copies every day. Don’t make it hard for him with bad handwriting.
5. Make your answer look physically good too. Use points, paragraphs, examples, current case studies etc. Make it look like an arrangement. Underline major points (especially where a new section of answer in a long answer begins). You may also use a highlighter but the colour may fade by the time it reaches your UPSC examiner; so underlining with pen is better. Think from the point of view of your examiner. Make your copy really stand out from the competition. Make the examiner look and appreciate your copy. You have done the hard work; make it obvious to him or her. Check some mock copies yourself and then you will realize how important this is.
6. You cannot afford grammar and spelling mistakes. So work on that if you need to. A future civil servant is expected to be comfortable with use of language.
7. Take it from someone who is evaluating many answer sheets on a regular basis: it becomes very boring and tiring if you are not following the above principles. There is no revaluation possible with UPSC. You have only one chance in a year to impress your examiner. So give your all. Give the best effort to produce a good answer sheet: structured, aligned answers in good language, grammar and suitably underlined. So that the examiner has less strain and more satisfaction in checking your copy.
8. Blue colour ink is better than black. Avoid fountain pen use; use blue ball pen. Ink Pen may leave marks and smudges when kept in storage boxes in UPSC premises.

Written by upsc aspirants

March 21st, 2015 at 7:00 am

Posted in Must Read

Leave a Reply