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How do I become an IAS officer?

I want to become an IAS officer and would love to know the types of course I should be taking to do so. #ias #government #military #education #career #college #career-counseling

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Col Sen’s Answer

Hello Chinnappadas,

Great Idea! IAS is one of the premier services in India and the selection process is very competitive known as Civil Services Examination. There are many who aspire to be an administrator go through very rigorous process and some of them were/are from my family. It is a tough examination, but please don't get me wrong as I don't wish you to frighten you but to caution you. It requires long time preparation on two issues specially on General Studies (GK, History, politics, Social sciences, geography, literature.... and many other subjects) and special subjects (any subject listed in the curriculum and need not be your graduation papers, like you may have studies Physics but you can appear in the Mains with history, psychology, politics....or commerce...Sanskrit, whichever you are comfortable with). Some of the basic information are as under:

  1. The Civil Services Examination is a nationwide competitive examination in India conducted every year by the Union Public Service Commission.
  2. Minimum Qualification is : Bachelor Degree (B.Sc/BA/B.Com etc....including B.Tech/MBBS).
  3. There are three phases of the selection process: Prelims (only General Studies: objective), followed by Mains (like any university examination: subjective) and then Personal Interview.
  4. For further details, please refer to the :


Col Sen recommends the following next steps:

Do your graduation and do a broad based study on every subject, increase your horizon and general awareness.
If possible, join a preparatory institute which are available in all major cities specially in Delhi (near DU North campus).

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anusha’s Answer


To become an IAS Officer, you need to appear for and clear the CSE (Civil Services Examination) conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). It is an examination which is conducted by UPSC annually and the selection into the exam is totally based on one’s merit and score.

But it is not just a regular exam, it is often referred to as mother of all exams or the world’s toughest exam.

Let me explain you briefly about IAS.

IAS is the short form of Indian Administrative Service. It is one of the prestigious services among the 24 services like IPS, IFS etc for the which the UPSC conduct Civil Services Examination (CSE) for selecting the candidates. An officer selected into the Indian Administrative Service gets exposure in very diverse roles like the collector, commissioner, head of public sector units, chief secretary, cabinet secretary etc. Not only the experience and challenges but also the scope of making positive changes in the life of millions in India makes IAS a unique career choice.

Even though the exam to be undertaken is popularly known as IAS exam, it is officially called UPSC Civil Services Examination. The UPSC CSE consists of 3 stages – Prelims, Mains, and Interview. Getting into Indian Administrative Service is not easy considering the competition involved, but not impossible for a candidate with right attitude and approach.

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Lindsey’s Answer

Hi there! I wanted to be sure to direct you to a couple other Q&A threads on CareerVillage.org that will be SUPER helpful for you to read.

How to become an IAS officer:

Additional insightful Q&A threads on CV about IAS:
Tips on preparing for IAS exams:

I hope reading the advice on these threads is helpful! I'd encourage you to read through them in detail and then asking more specific questions about the process or the experiences of others on CareerVillage.org from there. Good luck!!