Turning Into an IAS Officer Post 12th Grade

2023-07-10 00:04:49 - Grace Browns Grace Browns has been a lifestyle, fashion, and beauty writer for over 5 years, and she currently serves as a senior editor at 422346.com.

If by chance you have completed your 12th standard and now find yourself unable to sleep due to the burning desire of becoming a dynamic IAS or IPS officer, let me assure you that you are meant for UPSC.

Every day, Civilsdaily receives numerous inquiries regarding these careers. It is observed that the dream of UPSC starts to take form during the penultimate year of school life. So, if the fire to become an IAS or IPS officer has ignited within you, let's explore the allies that will lead you to LBSNAA.

Can one become an IAS officer after the 12th? No, it is not possible to become an IAS officer with just a 12th standard qualification. To become an IAS officer, you must have a Graduate Degree from a recognized University/Institute. However, you can apply for the CSE exam conducted by the UPSC during your final year of graduation.

Therefore, the essential eligibility criteria to sit for the exam are that the candidate must possess a Graduate Degree from a recognized University/Institute. This means that 12th pass students cannot appear for this exam immediately after the 12th. They must first complete their Graduation program successfully and then take a shot at the CSE to become an IAS officer.

However, even though you cannot appear for the exam right after the 12th, you can still start preparing. As they say, "Winners start early." To become an IAS officer, you must first dream, and that dream should transform into beliefs, which will then result in action. You cannot change your future, but you can change your habits, and it is these habits that will shape you into an IAS/IPS officer. UPSC is a vast ocean that cannot be crossed by simply standing and staring at the water. It is observed that 90% of toppers start their UPSC preparation right from the beginning of their college life. They focus on 7 components:

- Direction

- Discipline

- Consistency

- Value addition

- Evaluation

- Motivation

- Mentor

Remember, you should not wait for an opportunity, but rather create it. Start developing these qualities as soon as you can.

Recognizing the importance of choosing subjects in graduation to ensure clearing UPSC with your graduation degree, many young IAS and IPS officers advise starting preparation towards the end of school life, as bigger things always start with small steps.

Therefore, determined aspirants may start CSE preparation after the 12th. However, preparation can begin even before reaching the 12th standard. You can start by focusing on current affairs, making notes related to current affairs, and reading newspapers daily.

So, what should you do after the 12th to prepare for the IAS exam? Here are some steps to follow:

- Allocate adequate time to prepare for civil services. Learn about the life of a civil servant or diplomat. If possible, talk to an IAS officer and gain insights straight from the horse's mouth. Ask yourself if this is truly what you want. If the answer is yes, then go ahead.

- Utilize your habit of learning and evaluating.

- Choose a graduation course that includes history and polity, as these subjects are of immense importance in the UPSC syllabus.

- Study these subjects well during your graduation, keeping the UPSC syllabus in mind.

- If you master these subjects, you can also choose one of them as your optional subject.

- Start reading subjects like public administration and economics. Depending on your interests and aptitude, you can even study these subjects as your main subject.

- Maintain your grasp of basic math, as it is needed for the CSAT paper in the IAS Prelims. Read more about the IAS exam pattern.

- Study like an IAS aspirant, not like a college student who skips classes.

- Make use of your college library and read as many relevant books as possible.

- Develop the habit of reading the daily newspaper to stay updated with the latest happenings in the country and the world.

- Work on your interpersonal and communication skills. Strive to develop a good personality that will aid you during the IAS interview.

- Do not disregard your school NCERT textbooks, as they are essential for studying for the UPSC exam.

- Learn how to make effective notes and start practicing this skill.

- Solve previous years' IAS question papers.

By following these steps, you will not lack the time, energy, dedication, devotion, zeal, or confidence required to succeed.



  • All applicants must possess at least one of the following educational qualifications:
  • A degree from a Central, State, or Deemed university.
  • A degree obtained through correspondence or distance education.
  • A degree from an open university.
  • A qualification acknowledged by the Government of India as equivalent to one of the above.

The following applicants are also eligible but need to provide proof of eligibility from a competent authority at their institute/university during the main examination. Failure to do so will result in disqualification from attending the exam:

  • Candidates who have appeared in an examination that, if passed, would fulfill one of the above criteria.
  • Candidates who have passed the final examination of the MBBS degree but have not yet completed an internship.
  • Candidates who have passed the final examination of ICAI, ICSI, and ICWAI.
  • A degree from a private university.
  • A degree from any foreign university recognized by the Association of Indian Universities.


  • The candidate must be between 21-32 years of age (for candidates in the General category) on August 1st of the examination year. However, age relaxations are available for SC, ST, OBC, and Physically Handicapped candidates.
  • For Other Backward Castes (OBC), the upper age limit is 35.
  • For Scheduled Castes (SC) and Scheduled Tribes (ST), the limit is 37 years.
  • The upper age limit is relaxed for certain candidates who are marginalized in other factors and for physically handicapped individuals.

Key Takeaways

'Every thorn accompanies a rose'

Pursuing higher education and preparing for the UPSC exam is undoubtedly a challenging endeavor. However, success can be achieved in the first attempt if one's aspirations are truly directed towards this goal.

When beginning preparations for the UPSC exam, dedicating sufficient time to stay informed about current affairs is crucial. Keeping abreast of significant events worldwide enables candidates to stay updated with global developments.

Initiating preparation immediately after completing class 12th exams provides ample time for understanding and analyzing the paper pattern and standards. This grants aspirants insights into the intricacies of not just the two written papers but also the IAS Interview, a critical component of the recruitment process.

Preparing for the UPSC exam is not a fanciful whim. If you have a couple of years at your disposal, there is no better time to invest focused attention in UPSC preparation.

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