Know UPSC Cut Off for Prelims and Mains

One of most coveted exams – Civil Services Examination (CSE) takes place annually under the aegis of Union Public Service Commission (UPSC.) The exam takes place in three stages – Prelims , Mains and Interview. The cut off decided by the civil services decides the fate of lakhs of aspirants when it comes to prelims and main examinations. To understand the this cut off, you have to know the basic exam pattern of the CSE exam:

upsc cut off
IAS Prelims It has 2 papers:General Studies (GS)CSAT
IAS MainsIt has nine papers:EssayTwo Language Papers (Regional Language, English)Four General Studies PapersTwo Optional Papers

Now, one should know the nature of the examinations:

Prelims is an objective type paper where CSAT is only qualifying in nature. The marks scored in the General Studies paper of prelims are taken into consideration for the next stage which is Mains. Usually the UPSC Cut Off of the prelims exams is decided on the basis of difficulty of the paper 1 which is General Studies. 

Mains has 9 subjective type papers where Paper 1 and Paper 2 that are language papers are qualifying in nature. The cut off mains is decided on the difficulty and the performance of the candidates in the remaining seven papers.

How is the IAS Cut Off Calculated?

Candidates should know how UPSC cut off is calculated. That can solve various doubts about it and candidates can keep in mind to always try and score above it. 

  1. The cut-off is denoted as the minimum qualifying marks by the UPSC
  2. The merit list is prepared according to the number of vacancies in every category for a particular year. For example, if there are 200 vacancies for general category in a year, the mark of the last candidate in the general category list (of 200) would be the cut-off for that category.
  3. Hence, the marks scored by the last successful candidate becomes the cut-off for that year in both prelims and mains. 

Facts about IAS Cut Off

There are a few facts that an aspirant who is sitting for the CSE exam, should know about the UPSC Cut Off – 

  1. The difficulty of the prelims and mains paper is one of the main deciding factors of the IAS cut-off.
  2. The other important factor that helps in deciding the cut-off is the number of vacancies announced in that particular year of the exam. 
  3. Aspirants should always try to secure more than 60% of the marks in the Prelims exam to save themselves from the panic of remaining at the edge. That is, they should always try to score more than 120 in the paper 1 of the prelims. 
  4. To remain always above the cut-off, an aspirant should give equal importance to all the subjects mentioned in the syllabus and also be updated with current affairs. 
  5. In the 2018 Mains exam, the cut-off marks were 774 which are the marks of the last recommended candidate. It makes 44.22% of the total marks of 1750. So, out of 1750, a candidate has to try to score above 50 percent. 

Candidates should know that the UPSC Result is declared after each stage of the examination. Prelims result usually gets released in July, while Mains in December of the exam year. In 2020, the prelims exam is yet to take place on 4th October, hence results will be out later this year. 

Candidates should keep the above-mentioned points about the cut-off noted so as to reduce the stress related to passing in the examination.