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Which UPSC Optional Subject has the Highest Success Rate
It's a question that a lot of people ask, and that too for good reason. Your choice of optional subjects can have a significant impact on your success in the UPSC exams.
So, which optional subject should you choose?
There is no simple answer to this question. Success rates vary from year to year and depend on a number of factors, including the quality of the coaching you receive, how hard you work, and of course, luck.
That being said, there are some optional subjects that have a reputation for being more successful than others. In this article, we will take a look at the optional subjects with the highest success rates.
So, let’s start-
What is the Optional Subject Paper in UPSC Exam?
The UPSC Civil Service Examination consists of three stages, with the Main Examination carrying the highest weight (1750).
As part of this stage, 2 out of 9 papers that a candidate has to attempt will be on an Optional Subject selected at the time of applying for Prelims. Each paper weighs 250 marks and takes three hours to complete.
Which UPSC Optional Subject Has the Highest Success Rate?
Actually, there is no official success rate ever mentioned by UPSC officially. But, UPSC toppers and mentors have generated an approximate percentage counting on Highest Choosing Rate on every optional Subject excluding literature.
These Highest Chosen rates have been mentioned below −
|Subject Name||2017 Stat.||2018 Stat.||2019 Stat.||2020 Stat.||Avg. Stat.|
|Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science||1%||1%||1%||1%||1%|
|Commerce and Accountancy||2%||2%||2%||2%||2%|
|Political Science and International Relations||10%||8%||8%||7%||8.25%|
Note: This is not the highest success rate percentage. These are the percentages of students who have chosen these particular subjects as their optional in the UPSC Mains Exam.
Top 5 Optional Subjects with The Highest Success Rate in UPSC
There are a few optional subjects that have overall good success rates. That is why we’ve mentioned the names of a few optional subjects there which have a good success rate-
Public Administration is one of the most popular optional subjects in UPSC and it has consistently been among the top performers in terms of success rate. One of the reasons for its popularity is that it is a scoring subject and the syllabus is relatively manageable.
Geography is another highly popular optional subject with a high success rate in UPSC. The subject is a mix of both science and humanities, making it appealing to a wide range of candidates.
Sociology is a good-hitting subject that is gaining popularity among UPSC aspirants due to its manageable syllabus and relevance to the contemporary world. The subject is highly scoring and covers a wide range of topics related to social institutions, social change, and social movements.
History is a popular optional subject among UPSC aspirants, and it has consistently had a high success rate in the exam. The subject covers various aspects of ancient, medieval, and modern Indian history, along with world history.
Political Science and International Relations
PSIR is a highly popular optional subject with a high success rate in UPSC. The subject covers topics related to political ideologies, international relations, and comparative politics.
How to Choose the Best Optional Subject for UPSC Based On Success Rate?
Choosing the best optional subject for UPSC depending on success rate can be a good strategy for some aspirants, but it should not be the only factor in the decision-making process.
Here are some steps that candidates can take to choose the best optional subject for UPSC based on success rate −
Look at Past Success Rates: Candidates should look at past success rates of different optional subjects in UPSC and compare them to identify the subjects that have a higher success rate.
Consider Personal Interest: It is important for candidates to choose an optional subject that they are interested in and passionate about.
Evaluate The Syllabus: Candidates should evaluate the syllabus of different optional subjects to determine which ones go with their strengths and weaknesses.
Analyze The Overlap with General Studies: Candidates should analyze the overlap between the syllabus of their chosen optional subject and the general studies paper.
Seek Guidance: Candidates need to seek guidance from mentors, experts, and peers who have experience with the UPSC exam.
Factors That Contribute to The Success Rate of Different Optional Subjects in UPSC
We have mentioned a few factors that contribute to the success rate of the different optional subjects in UPSC −
Relevance of the subject to the UPSC exam
Availability of study material and resources
Overlap with the general studies paper
Interest and passion of the candidate in the subject
Guidance and support available for the subject
Manageability of the syllabus
Interdisciplinary nature of the subject
Scoring potential of the subject
Compatibility of the subject with the candidate's strengths and weaknesses
Complexity and depth of the subject matter.
Q1. How important is the success rate when choosing an optional subject in UPSC?
Ans. The success rate can be one of the factors to consider when choosing an optional subject for UPSC, but it should not be the only factor. Candidates should consider their personal interest in the subject, the syllabus, the overlap with general studies, and their own strengths and weaknesses FIRSTLY.
Q2. Should I choose an optional subject based solely on its success rate?
Ans. No, candidates should not choose an optional subject based solely on its success rate. Past performance of the subject can be a reference point, but personal interest, syllabus, overlap with general studies, and guidance from mentors or experts are also important factors to consider.
Q3. Does the success rate of optional subjects change from year to year?
Ans. Yes, the success rate of optional subjects can change from year to year, depending on various factors such as the difficulty level of the exam, changes in the exam pattern, and the quality of candidates who appear for the exam.
Q4. Is there any optional subject that consistently performs well in UPSC?
Ans. While the success rate of optional subjects can vary from year to year, some subjects such as Public Administration, Sociology, and Geography have had a consistently higher success rate in UPSC over the years.
Q5. What are the factors that contribute to the success rate of an optional subject in UPSC?
Ans. The success rate of an optional subject in UPSC can depend on various factors such as the relevance of the subject to the exam, the syllabus, availability of study material and resources, scoring potential of the subject, interest, and passion of the candidate, compatibility of the subject with the candidate's strengths and weaknesses, and guidance and support available for the subject.
Q6. How can I improve my chances of success in UPSC with my chosen optional subject?
Ans. Candidates can improve their chances of success in UPSC with their chosen optional subject by developing a thorough understanding of the subject. They can use quality study material and resources, practicing previous year’s papers and mock tests. Also, they need to seek guidance from mentors or experts and consistently put in hard work and effort.
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