Essay Writing Strategy For UPSC

The essay paper plays a vital role in the UPSC Mains examination as it carries 250 marks. The pattern was different previously, but now it is two essays in 3 hours. 

The word count for these two essays has to be maintained at around 1000 – 1200 words. The UPSC Essay Paper is for 250 marks, with one essay carrying 125 marks.

In this article, we will discuss how to write the essay for UPSC, including the genesis of the essay, books, and references for essay writing and guidelines about UPSC essay writing.

Guidelines for Essay Writing in UPSC 

Below are the few guidelines that are formulated to write essays for UPSC

  • While writing an essay is not about just piling facts and figures. It is also about adding your creativity, new ideas and innovatively presenting facts.
  • Keep a list of quotes, powerful sentences updated in your memory to make your essay hold more weightage. 
  • Grammar is essential when it comes to essay writing. Use simple words and sentences, but try to avoid grammatical mistakes. 
  • Also, essays should be relevant to the topic given; try not to deviate from the topic, stay relevant and be in sync with the topic. 
  • Make sure you keep an introduction, body of the essay and keep a conclusion to the essay. The introduction should be around 10 per cent of the length of the essay, the body of the essay should be 80 per cent, and the conclusion should be around 10 per cent.
  • There is something associated with the ABC of the essay a, which stands for accuracy; b stands for brevity; and c, which stands for creativity.
  • The extremity should not be displayed in your essay. It should be an amalgamation and a holistic approach of balance, judgement, and practical and analytical views. 
  • Think about the topic wisely; take your own time and select the topics wisely; you could first think about what is required, collect your thoughts on what needs to be written, write down the points, determine the sequence and then actually begin writing the essay.

Books and References for UPSC Essay Writing 

  • India after independence – Bipin Chandra
  • My experiment with truth by M.K Gandhi
  • Discovery of India – J.L Nehru
  • India after independence – Bipin Chandra
  • Women in Indian Society by Neera Desai and Usha
  • Discovery of India by J.L Nehru
  • Getting India back on track by Ratan Tata
  • My experiment with truth by M.K Gandhi
  • Getting India back on track by Ratan Tata
  • For detailed reading –
  • Democracy in India NCERTe
  • Social Problems in India – Ram Ahuja
  • Thakkar ( NBT Publication)
  • The Hindu ( editorial articles)
  • Yojana
  • Kurukshetra
  • Frontline

Essay for UPSC – Highlights

  • Number of essays to write – 2
  • Time allotted – 3 hours
  • Word Limit – 1000-1200 words
  • Marks allotted- 125 each. Total Marks – 250

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