Recruitment to 24 elite central civil services is made through the following 3-stage examination process.
- Preliminary Examination (CSAT) for the selection of candidates for the Main Examination
- Main Examination (Written) for the selection of candidates for the interview
- Interview (Personality Test)
CSAT (Preliminary Examination)
This examination is meant to serve as a screening test only. So the marks obtained in CSAT will only serve as qualifying criterion for Mains; they will not be counted for determining the final order of merit. Only candidates declared by the Commission to have qualified in the Preliminary Examination will be eligible for admission to the Main Examination of that year.
The number of candidates admitted to the Main Examination will be about 12-13 times the total approximate number of vacancies to be filled during the year in the various Services.
Exam Syllabus (CSAT)
Paper I - (200 marks)
Duration: Two hours
The topics do not require subject specialization.
- Current events of national and international importance
- History of India and Indian National Movement
- Indian and World Geography - Physical, Social, Economic geography of India and the World
- Indian Polity and Governance - Constitution, Political System, Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc
- Economic and Social Development -Sustainable Development, Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc
- General issues on Environmental ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate Change
- General Science.
Paper II- (200 marks)
Duration: Two hours
- Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
- Logical reasoning and analytical ability
- Decision making and problem solving
- General mental ability
- Basic numeracy - numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude etc (Class X level)
- Data interpretation - charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc (Class X level)
- English Language Comprehension skills (Class X level)