General Studies- I: Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and Society (250 marks)

Strategy For GS Paper-I By Shweta Chauhan, IAS (Rank 8, CSE-2017)


Sources to be followed

  • Indian culture will cover the salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times:

CCRT website, RS Sharma old NCERT book, Tamil Nadu Board 11th History

  • Modern Indian history from about the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities, issues.
  • The Freedom Struggle – its various stages and important contributors /contributions from different parts of the country.

Bipin Chandra India Struggle for independence, Website, Mrunal videos

  • Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.

Bipin Chandra India since independence- Selective Reading, Website,

  • History of the world will include events from 18th century such as industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like communism, capitalism, socialism etc.- their forms and effect on the society

Old NCERT 10th and 12th, Norman Lowe: selective Reading, Website,

  • Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India, Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies.

Yojana magazine, Newspaper, India Year book

  • Effects of globalization on Indian society, Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism.

NCERT 12th class, Mrunal website, Newspaper, Yojana magazine

  • Salient features of world’s physical geography.

NCERT Physical Geography, G C Leong, Mrunal Videos

  • Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian subcontinent);

Old NCERT, Mrunal website

  • factors responsible for the location of primary, secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India)

Old NCERT, Mrunal website

  • Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location- changes in critical geographical features (including water bodies and ice-caps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.

NCERT Physical Geography, NDMA website, Yojana on disaster management

Further Suggestions from my experience

GS 1 is almost static part of syllabus. Prepare notes on the topics which are not directly given in books from newspaper, magazine or internet. See the cost benefit ratio of syllabus while preparing, world history or India after Independence have huge material but the questions asked are few, so read selectively.

In social issues, have the basic knowledge like what are the issues faced by women or problems related to population from internet and NCERT. With the basics in cleared add the current issues and examples to them. Also, add the various steps and policies being implemented by government from Yojana magazine and The Hindu Newspaper.

For Geography it is important to draw diagrams in order to make answer more appealing and different.

For GS 1, one cannot beat around the bush, answer have to be to the point. So, make notes, underline in the book, and revise again and again… Finally, it is always helpful to join a test series.


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