Civil Services Examination is a coveted dream you simply cannot take risks with. After putting in so much hard work for more than a year and with CSE 2019 approaching, you must be dedicatedly preparing for the crucial and initial most stage of the examination – The Preliminary stage. Amidst the hectic study schedules and note-making sessions, students often get confused with what should be the right time to enroll for Prelims Test Series. We often come across students who have this and related questions and so, we asked our Subject Expert to answer these for you!
Q. Ideally, what juncture do you think Civil Services aspirants must be in, right now?
Expert – This, being the last week of November 2018, aspirants must be busy completing the syllabus. Ideally, by this time of the year, almost 80-90% of the syllabus for the Civil Services Examination must be completed and students should start focusing on writing practice & revision. But it is totally an individualistic approach and we suggest students better start phasing out of learning new things and get more indulged into solving questions! The more they test themselves now, before shifting to Prelims centric preparation, better will be the chances to polish the weak areas, in the little time left!
Q. Students often ask us as to what the right time is to enroll for a Prelims Test Series. Do you suggest it is time they should do it?
Expert – Absolutely. As I said, by this time students must have completed most part of the syllabus for the Civil Services Examination and thus, November mid is the best time of the year to begin solving Mock Tests. Reasons being –
- Post syllabus completion is the best assessment phase – Having completed most of the syllabus by now, students develop a strong knowledge base and are almost ready to switch to Prelims Centric preparation. Solving Prelims Test Series at this stage will help assess the ground preparation and polish the weak areas in the Prelims preparation phase.
- Experts’ analysis and guidance is the Key – Coaching academies for Civil Services Examination, in this phase, are all up with Prelims Test Series programs available for students in different modes. All the premium coaching institutions, like Chanakya IAS Academy, have their Prelims Test Series available for both the Hindi & English Medium Students which can be enrolled for, as per students’ choice of mode (Online/Classroom). Why I wrote Chanakya IAS Academy specifically here is because I strongly recommend Chanakya IAS Academy for Test Series and mock Interview, though for coaching Rau’s and Vajiram too can be considered, but for Test Series and Mock Interview, nothing can beat Chanakya, I personally believe, based on my experience and previous analysis.
Coming back to the point, solving Prelims Test Series at this stage will not just give aspirants an added advantage of getting answer evaluation and guidance by subject matter experts but at the same time aspirants will also get benefit from exclusive discussions and doubt clearing sessions which almost every IAS Academy provides.
- The Earlier, the better – Starting to solve Mock Tests from the time suggested above, i.e. mid-November will help aspirants in ways, like –
a) More you solve, better will you perform – Prelims Test Series come in a set of several tests, which ensure a complete syllabus coverage of Civil Services Exam. The earlier aspirants begin solving the test series, the more time they will get to work on their shortcomings and solve a maximum number of questions, which surely give a sound idea of the probable questions, question pattern, and at the same, the practice boosts up the confidence level of the students. Here, students must understand that learning to make the right pick, despite not knowing the answer, is a gradual process, which we call ‘smart guessing technique’, & it plays a major role in clearing the objective stage of this competitive examination.
And as you may already know, ‘Practice makes a man perfect’! What best than Test Series can be for that?
b) You get sufficient time in hand to rectify the weak areas – As stated earlier, starting off to solve Prelims Mock Tests on time, will leave students with enough room to assess their focus areas and nurture it in the coming months, before the Prelims examination. Enrolling in the classroom mode of the Prelims Test Series will ensure that the aspirants get added group discussions, experts’ reviews and a lot of value-added advantages for their Prelims preparation. Hence, taking the Prelims Test Series with a good hand in time will sure pay off well.
Q. And until when should aspirants write these Mock Tests?
Expert – That is one of the most crucial aspects of Civil Services Exam preparation. One simply cannot quit studying until the last day of the exam, and the same goes with the Prelims Test Series. Students must solve tests until they finally sit for the Prelims Examination. That so because the Prelims is an objective stage and Prelims Exam revolve a lot around the current affairs. Mock Tests are constantly updated on the basis of current affairs and will guide students towards everything that they must know of. And as I mentioned earlier, it will also help students constantly practice solving the paper in strict regard to UPSC’s pattern of asking questions.