[Strategy & Studyplan] Public Administration Mains Paper 1 & 2 (Hindi / English) for UPSC IAS Exam Recommend Booklist

[Strategy & Studyplan] Public Administration Mains Paper 1 & 2 (Hindi / English) for UPSC IAS Exam Recommend Booklist

For those totally newcomers, wanting to prepare Public Administration in Just 2-3 months.

  1. Why Public Administration is Popular?
  2. Challenges/Obstacles/Problems in Preparation
    • Types of Question: Static vs Dynamic
    • Static Questions in Public Administration
    • Dynamic Questions in Public Administration
    • Gemstone Mining from SRB
    • Back-breaking Move
    • Innocent Bystanders from Small Towns
    • Notes making
    • Excuses Excuses
    • Bogus Postal Courses
  3. Essential Books and Study Plan for Public Administration
    • M.Laxmikanth’s Book on Public Administration
    • IGNOU BA and MA Booklets (Free download)
    • Prasad and Prasad
    • Mohit Bhattacharya
    • Nicholas
  4. Core Study Material For
    • English Medium IAS aspirants
    • Hindi Medium IAS aspirants
    • Non-English Non Hindi Vernacular Medium (Gujarati, Marathi,Tamil,Telugu)
  5. Not Recommend Books!

Public Administration as a Mains Optional Subject

  • Public Administration is a very popular optional subject both in UPSC and state public service exams because
  • The syllabus is relatively short, requires less mugging (compared to geography or history)
  • Syllabus has a lot of overlapping with topics of general studies and Essay (polity, budget, empowerment, good Governance, disaster Management etc)
  • Books, material and question papers of public administration are very easy to find in both English and Hindi medium.
  • The subject is easy to understand, any graduate from any stream: medical, engineering, science, commerce or arts can get a good grip over it after to 2-3 months of diligent preparation.
  • This optional subject is taken in huge number by both English and non-English medium aspirants, so when they get selected for the interview, the “success-rate” looks huge compared to Botany and Medicinal science.

Challenges of Public Administration

  • Public Administration is an “easy” subject hence any Tom, Dick or Harry can read the books once and (can manage to) attempt the questions. So it takes much effort to shine out from the Mains-crowd in terms of answer quality.
  • Lately UPSC has started asking unconventional question, thus making the life a little more difficult. More about it under Back-breaking Move sub-topic below
  • Keep in mind, selecting Public Administration as optional doesn’t automatically make you an IAS- hard work and good luck are essential.

“Before a science can develop principles, it must possess concepts” – Herbert A. Simon

So let us possess some concepts before developing the Principles of Public Administration Preparation Strategy. (PAPS!)
There are two types of questions in Public Administration (Mains) Exam

Types of Question: Static vs Dynamic

Static Questions

  • They are on the expected lines, directly lifted from the books.
  • They don’t require brain application, in the answer sheet you just have to jot down whatever points you’ve prepared (or mugged up.)
  • For example: Functions of Cabinet Secretary or Functions of O& M office.
  • Problem: even a 7th standard kid can read the book once and understand what it is all about.
  • But when you actually answering in 150 words, you have to write down the specific points, you cannot beat around the bush, like you did in the board and university exams by filling up answersheets by garbage and repeated lines.
  • And You cannot waste 10-15 minutes in “brainstorming or framing” an answer for this. You just have to mechanically reproduce the information from your mind on the piece of paper.
  • The advantage of a static question is, you write down the points and get full marks (unlike Dynamic questions, where the examiner may be expecting for a different angle of answer or opinion altogether)
  • Static questions give competitive advantage to rot-learners. For example if total functions of Cabinet Secretary are ten and you write down only 6, while others write 9 or 10, you are a gone case.
  • That’s why always have a crispy “key-words” note ready for static questions . For example
  • functions of cabinet secretary:
  • 1. Agenda 4 cabinet
  • 2. Advice PM
  • 3. Newspaper case
  • 4. Conscience keep
  • 5. Chief coordinate
  • 6. Select Jt.secy
  • 7. Conference of C/S

—etc.etc.And so on.
^or in the book itself, write down the keywords in the margin of the same page . You can quickly do revision of it. Whenever you pick up the book for the first-time, just finish the notes making simultaneously.
“baad mein kar loonga” (I’ll do it later) approach is dangerous. You’ll have to re-read the entire topic again.

Type:2 Dynamic Questions

Dynamic questions are “not directly from the book”. You’ve to pause, brainstorm, think and structure an answer before putting it on paper.
Example:

Kautilya’s Arthashatra bears considerable similarity with features of Weber’s ideal bureaucratic model. -2009 Mains

Here, First you’ve to brainstorm the ideas, e.g.

  • What was Kautilya talking about?
  • What was weber talking about?
  • How are their ideas related?

And then you structure a good answer out of it.

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