Interview Guidance for UPSC IAS and Best Coaching for Preparing IAS Interview

The UPSC exams have three parts which are prelim, main, and interview. Of all the three-part of the UPSC IAS exam, the interview is the most intense part. Candidates who succeed in clearing their prelim and main exams are the only ones who make it to the interview. Unlike the prelim and main exams, the interview does not have an outline of its course. Hence it becomes very difficult for the candidates to prepare. 

IAS Interview Guidance is the last part of the UPSC which is 30 minutes long and carries 275 marks. The total of all three exams decides the performance of a candidate. Given their ranks, in the examination, the candidates will be allotted to the various service keepings and the preference expressed by the candidates for the various services and posts.

What is the interview by UPSC?

According to the notification published by the UPSC, the focal point of the interview is defined as follows:

  • The interview of the candidates will be taken by the board that will hold a record of his/her career. 
  • Questions on general interest will be asked from the candidates.
  • The objective of the interview is that a board of competent and unbiased observers will assess the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in public service.
  • The test is conducted to judge the mental stability of the candidate.
  • This is an assessment of not only intellectual qualities but also social traits and the candidate’s interest in the current affairs as termed by the board. 

Therefore an interviewer has two things in their mind when interviewing a candidate:

  • The personality issues
  • The knowledge aspect of the candidate

Tips for clearing the interview

Begin early: Time is something that should not be lost. Hence candidates should start preparing right after the written exams. Candidates should polish their skills as soon as they can.

Recognize your true self: It is the possibility that one may not know all colours hidden in themselves. To be an IAS officer candidates must know everything about themselves and if any of their personalities is weak and does not match the criteria of the IAS then it should be improved upon in time. 

Go through the bio-data thoroughly: Most of the questions asked in the interview will be based on the biodata which will be passed on to all the board members in the form of a Detailed Application Form (DAF). It is best for the candidates not to fumble in these personal questions.

Have a positive attitude: Myths and rumours regarding the interview might be scary but candidates must not let them affect them negatively. What will happen in the interview is beyond the control of the candidates hence candidates should hope for the best.

Don’t take the interview lightly: Be serious and don’t be casual with the board members. Give them respect as they have vast knowledge and experience in the field. 

Develop self-confidence: Candidates who are sure in their beliefs, answers, or solutions, and can express themselves confidently are preferred the most. At the same time, it is best not to go overboard and there is a fine line between self-confidence and arrogance. 

Don’t lie: Candidates should not make fake points in their bio-data to impress the interviewers; it is often caught by the board members.

Improve communication skills and current affairs knowledge: Listening to debates and news on television will help in improving communication skills and increase current affairs knowledge. Candidates should have a command of their language as it might be troublesome to look for words during the interview. And this might also give a bad impression to the interviewers.

Be on point: Candidates should practice condensing their answers into small and interesting sentences. The lengthy explanation may sound boring to the interviewers. Only seldom long answers are acceptable. 

Questions on hobbies: Hobbies help interviewers to understand the personalities of the candidates. Hence don’t give cliche answers and prepare well.

Revise optional subject and graduation textbooks: It is best not to forget the main exam syllabus as questions from those subjects may be asked. Since graduation textbooks are the latest thing a candidate goes through, interviewers may ask questions regarding that as well.

Questions on district and state: Candidates should know well about their district and state regarding things like problems and what they wish to see differences in their birthplace.

Learn to deliver balanced answers: Answers should not be political or biassed. If one decides to take a stand on a particular topic then the candidate should be prepared for jurisdiction from the interviewers.

Stay calm: If candidates come across questions they do not know when it is safe to say they don’t know. Panicking won’t work as emotional intelligence matters. Interviewers know it is okay not to know about everything.

Stick to moral integrity: Make sure the moral integrity is sound as the interviewers also look for social traits.

Maintain positive body language: Convey your answer with your body as well as your words and avoid unnecessary gestures Understand the real ‘IAS interview questions’: The interview is to test either the specialised or general knowledge of the candidates which has been already tested through their written papers.

Using common-sense: Some of the questions require common sense which can be jeopardised due to stress on the interview day. It should be realised that common sense is not very common.

Neat dressing: First impression matters and it can go with simplicity. A light-colored shirt and dark trousers should give a professional appearance to the gents. For ladies, a simple churidar or saree is recommended.

Documents should be rechecked: Make sure all the documents are available to avoid last-minute panic. Take a mock interview: Common mistakes can be avoided by rehearsals. Help from friends and family can help. Candidates should not alter their personality with all the opinions of the people.

Be yourself: Be as transparent as you can but also don’t show any negative sides of yourself. Being fake will not impress the interviewers.

Best Coaching for Preparing IAS Interview

Ranking on top since 2021 as the UPSC Coaching in Bangalore for interview preparations is the Legacy IAS Academy. To prepare well students can go to Bangalore, Karnataka. It offers online courses for not only main and prelim but also the interview classes.


Unless one tries their best, nothing is impossible to achieve. When it comes to interviews many thoughts run through the minds of the candidates. How to act and what to do are among them. Well, this article is written to guide these candidates to achieve the required preparation one must have when delivering the interview. This was free interview guidance; we hope that candidates find it useful.

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