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Syllabus, Civil Services & Forest Services Exams


 (With effect from 2011, the pattern of preliminary exam. has changed. There is no optional subject now. The change is notified as follows:

Changes in syllabus and pattern of the Preliminary Examination from
2011 in the scheme of Civil Services Examination

• As per the decision of Government of India, there shall be change in the syllabus and
pattern of the Preliminary Examination from 2011 in the scheme of the Civil Services
• The Preliminary Examination shall now comprise of two compulsory Papers of 200
marks each and of two hours duration each. Detailed below is the new syllabus and
pattern of the Preliminary Examination, which is brought to the notice of the
prospective candidates intending to appear at the Civil Services Examination (CSE) in
2011 onwards:

Paper I – (200 marks). Duration: Two hours

• Current events of national and international importance
• History of India and Indian National Movement
• Indian and World Geography – Physical, Social, Economic geography
of India and the World.
• Indian Polity and Governance – Constitution, Political System,
Panchayati Raj, Public Policy, Rights Issues, etc.
• Economic and Social Development – Sustainable Development,
Poverty, Inclusion, Demographics, Social Sector Initiatives, etc.
• General issues on Environmental ecology, Bio-diversity and Climate
Change – that do not require subject specialization
• General Science.

Paper II- (200 marks). Duration: Two hours

• Comprehension
• Interpersonal skills including communication skills;
• Logical reasoning and analytical ability
• Decision making and problem solving
• General mental ability
• Basic numeracy (numbers and their relations, orders of magnitude
etc.) (Class X level), Data interpretation (charts, graphs, tables, data
sufficiency etc. -Class X level)
• English Language Comprehension skills (Class X level).
• Questions relating to English Language Comprehension skills of Class X level
(last item in the Syllabus of Paper-II) will be tested through passages from
English language only without providing Hindi translation thereof in the question
• The questions will be of multiple choice, objective type.

• A set of sample questions for both Papers are available on the UPSC website
http://www.upsc.gov.in for reference of the prospective candidates.

• The prospective candidates are advised to note that no changes are being introduced
at this stage in the Civil Services (Main) Examination and Personality Test in the
scheme of Civil Services Examination (CSE).




Section – A

 Non-chordata and Chordata

(a) Classification and relationship of various phyla up to subclasses; Acoelomate and Coelomate; Protostomes and Deuterostomes, Bilateralia and Radiata; Status of Protista, Parazoa, Onychophora and Hemichordata; Symmetry.

(b) Protozoa: Locomotion, nutrition, reproduction; evolution of sex; general

features and life history of Paramaecium, Monocystis, Plasmodium and Leishsmania.

(c) Porifera: Skeleton, canal system and reproduction.

(d) Cnidaria: Polymorphism, defensive structures and their mechanism; coral reefs and their formation; metagenesis; general features and life history of Obelia and Aurelia.

(e) Platyhelminthes: Parasitic adaptation; general features and life history of Fasciola and Taenia and their pathogenic symptoms.

(f) Nemathelminthes: General features, life history and parasitic adaptation of Ascaris and Wuchereria.

(g) Annelida: Coelom and metamerism; modes of life in polychaetes; general features and life history of Nereis, earthworm and leach.

(h) Arthropoda: Larval forms and parasitism in Crustacea; vision and respiration in arthropods (prawn, cockroach and scorpion); modification of mouth parts in insects (cockroach, mosquito, housefly, honey bee and butterfly); metamorphosis in insects and its hormonal regulation; social behaviour of Apis and termites.

(i) Mollusca: Feeding, respiration, locomotion, general features and life history of Lamellidens, Pila and Sepia, torsion and detorsion in gastropods.

j) Echinodermata: Feeding respiration, locomotion, larval forms; general features and life history of Asterias.

(k) Protochordata: Origin of chordates; general features and life history of Banchiostoma and Herdamania.

(l) Pisces: Respiration, locomotion and migration.

(m) Amphibia: Origin of tetrapods; parental care, paedomorphosis.

(n) Reptilia: Origin of reptiles; skull types; status of Sphenodon and crocodiles.

(o) Aves: Origin of birds; flight adaptation, migration.

(p) Mammalia: Origin of mammals; dentition; general features of egg laying mammals, pouched-mammals, aquatic mammals and primates; endocrine glands (pituitary, thyroid, parathyroid, adrenal, pancreas, gonads) and their interrelationships.

(q) Comparative functional anatomy of various systems of vertebrates (integument and its derivatives, endoskeleton, locomotory organs, digestive system, respiratory system, circulatory system, including heart and aortic arches; urino-genital system, brain and sense organs (eye and ear).

 Section – B


(a) Biosphere: Concept of biosphere; biomes, Biogeochemical cycles, Human induced changes in atmosphere including green house effect, ecological succession, biomes and ecotones, community ecology.

(b) Concept of ecosystem; structure and function of ecosystem, types of ecosystem, ecological succession, ecological adaptation.

(c) Population, characteristics, population dynamics, population stabilization.

(d) Biodiversity and diversity conservation of natural resources.

(e) Wildlife of India.

(f) Remote sensing for sustainable development.

(g) Environmental biodegradation; pollution and its impact on biosphere and its prevention.


 (a) Behaviour: Sensory filtering, responsiveness, sign stimuli, learning and memory, instinct, habituation, conditioning, imprinting.

(b) Role of hormones in drive; role of pheromones in alarm spreading; crypsis, predator detection, predator tactics, social hierarchies in primates, social organization in insects.

(c) Orientation, navigation, homing; biological rhythms; biological clock, tidal, seasonal and circadian rhythms.

(d) Methods of studying animal behaviour including sexual conflict, selfishness, kinship and altruism.

 Economic Zoology

(a) Apiculture, sericulture, lac culture, carp culture, pearl culture, prawn culture, vermiculture.

(b) Major infectious and communicable diseases (malaria, filaria, tuberculosis, cholera and AIDS) their vectors, pathogens and prevention.

(c) Cattle and livestock diseases, their pathogens (helminthes) and vectors (ticks, mites, Tabanus, Stomoxys).

d) Pests of sugar cane (Pyrilla perpusilla), oil seed (Achaea janata) and rice (Sitophilus oryzae).

(e) Transgenic animals.

(f) Medical biotechnology, human genetic disease and genetic counselling, gene therapy.

(g) Forensic biotechnology.


Designing of experiments; null hypothesis; correlation, regression, distribution and measure of central tendency, chi square, student t-test, F-test (one-way & two-way F-test).

 Instrumental methods

(a) Spectrophotometer, phase contrast and fluorescence microscopy, radioactive tracer, ultra centrifuge, gel electrophoresis, PCR, ELISA, FISH and chromosome painting.

(b) Electron microscopy (TEM, SEM).


Section – A

Cell Biology

(a) Structure and function of cell and its organelles (nucleus, plasma membrane, mitochondria, Golgi bodies, endoplasmic reticulum, ribosomes and lysosomes), cell division (mitosis and meiosis), mitotic spindle and mitotic apparatus, chromosome movement, chromosome type polytene and lampbrush, organization of chromatin, heterochromatin, cell cycle regulation.

(b) Nucleic acid topology, DNA motif, DNA replication, transcription, RNA processing, translation, protein foldings and transport.


(a) Modern concept of gene, split gene, genetic regulation, genetic code.

(b) Sex chromosomes and their evolution, sex determination in Drosophilla and man.

(c) Mendel’s laws of inheritance, recombination, linkage, multiple alleles, genetics of blood groups, pedigree analysis, hereditary diseases in man.

(d) Mutations and mutagenesis.

(e) Recombinant DNA technology; plasmid, cosmid, artificial chromosomes as vectors, transgenics, DNA cloning and whole animal cloning (Principles and methods).

(f) Gene regulation and expression in prokaryotes and eukaryotes.

(g) Signal molecules; cell death, defects in signalling pathway and consequences.

(h) RFLP, RAPD and AFLP and application of RFLP in DNA finger printing, ribozyme technologies, human genome project, genomics and protomics.


(a) Theories of origin of life.

(b) Theories of evolution; Natural selection, role of mutation in evolution, evolutionary patterns; molecular drive, mimicry, variation, isolation and speciation.

(c) Evolution of horse, elephant and man using fossil data.

(d) Hardy-Weinberg law.

(e) Continental drift and distribution of animals.


Zoological nomenclature; international code; cladistics, molecular taxonomy and biodiversity.

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