How to choose Optional Subject for Mains?
The smallest decisions can change your life forever.
Opting the right subjects is one of the crucial decision for a Civil Services Aspirant.The choices you will pick can make or break your dreams to be an IAS. Hence it needs caution, detailed analysis and thought process backed by research about subject and oneself before selecting your subjects for Mains Examination.
As you know there are three stages 1st one is prelims (for screening purpose), 2nd one is mains and finally the interview to reach the dream job of an IAS.
In the new pattern for Mains, you can opt only one Optional subject which will comprise of two papers of 250 Marks each. So, one Optional subject carries 500 Marks in Mains.An aspirant have 51 optional subjects to choose.This leads to lot of confusion and decision making becomes tougher.
Some people use past success rate, vastness of syllabus, number of candidates opting for that subject or difficulty level of question papers as the criteria to decide their optional subjects.But taking only one of these or few of these parameters for decision making is not the right thing to do.
Following are few points which an aspirant should keep in mind before taking decision
- Go through list of all the available optional subjects,get a fair idea about the subjects.Try to understand what topics, areas will be covered in those subjects.Look at the syllabus of these subjects.You should be able to choose 4-5 subjects from this exercise.If you could not choose 5 subjects in one go repeat the activity
- You will understand which subjects interests you, when you will try to link it with current issues and read about it.You will get more clarity about the subject.I would suggest to read about all those 5 subjects you choose initially.Don’t be eager to make final decision
- Try to relate those subjects with graduation subjects or subjects you studied in your school or high school.You will realize there are few subjects which you studied more liked more because those subject interested you.And those subjects were always your favorite, you can recall lots of things studied in those subjects,you scored very well in those subjects.This exercise will help you to zero down your subjects to 3-4.
- Have a look at past years papers of all the subjects you have in your preferred list,try to find out difficulty level of the questions,check about number of candidates who took these subjects as their optional.Analyse the past success rates and marks of those students.This exercise should give you 2-3 subjects which you should take as optional subjects.
- Now I would suggest not to make impromptu decision talk to your friends, seniors and teachers ask about their feedback.Listen what they have to say about these subjects.
- Stop!!Don’t jump to conclusion.You still have not taken your decision,and don’t be in hurry to do so.Search about availability of books and study material of the subjects you are considering.Otherwise it will hamper your preparation at later stage.
- If all this exercise has given you a clear cut idea and you are ready with your 1 subject,you are LUCKY but if you are still confused about subject,facing dilemma between 2 or 3 subjects you are LUCKIEST.
- I personally recommend you to read regularly for minimum 15 days about both the subjects,study them as you have taken both of them as your optional subjects.Believe me 16th day you will be more clear with a best decision for yourself.
This exercise is very crucial and should be done with sincerity,Remember this is one of the most important parameter to decide your success in the exam.So don’t carried away with boredom laziness or random thoughts.Be patient try to understand yourself,make your mind clear.Be 101% sure about the subject you are opting, and why you are opting.
I am sure this exercise will reap you lots of benefits in future and help you to be a winner and pass through flying color.
If you make decisions based upon people’s reactions or judgments then you make really boring choices.
YOU win by working hard, making tough decisions and building coalitions.
Action is the foundational key to all success.Success is simple. Do what’s right, the right way, at the right time.