Saturday, June 5, 2010


now that prelims are over n many aspirants wud hv started preps for here i m listing out the books or material for history that i followed :
1) Ancient : Romilla thapar,D.n jha,ncert,a l basham
2) medeival : ncert, satish chandra
3) modern : ncert,grover and grover,bipin chandra
4) world history : jain and mathur
5)Dr . krishna reddy sir's material and his approach of how to frame answers and chanakya's material which i took as postal course just after deciding for history as my optional...
6)Spectrum book for maps and maps in 2009 most of da points were from prehistory and those points were either in ncert or in agnihotri boob for pelims or in da classroom whne Dr Reddy sir was doing prehistory Sir covered almost every point in the class and as my map pointing is quite accurate i always did da map qs 2007 attempt whn i wrote mains also i got 182 in paper qs is very mark scoring...
7)for dis attempt..i went 2 delhi for apprx 2 months after mid june n joined baliyan sir's tests as in 2008 i didnt take ne attempt paper 2 my marks were slightly less as i cudnt prepare the modern india aan i just wrote 3 tests of modern india at baliyan sir's classes ..i found baliyan Sir's test analysis to be good...

now after reading the basic books and material one should write answers at least for sum qs or think wat the structure of answer wud be n dis help do develop the analytical ability of da aspirants n help 2 score better marks in mains...

Smile n Shine...


  1. hi di'
    will jain and mathur suffice for world history?
    i dont have any notes with me so will reading the standard books and structuring ans will be ok?or is it so that something beyond that is expected by upsc.
    thanks for all your help

    1. Old ncert standard 10 is good book for basic understanding of world history

  2. hi didi...thank you so much for giving your invaluable time in writing about some tips to improve performance in history..please....tell in the same way about public administration and gs also.................

    thanks & regards,

  3. This comment has been removed by the author.

  4. please write about gs and pubad preparation

  5. @ samrat..
    as mentioned earlier i followed the book and study material of Reddy for world c my background is mech engg. n i think as i had both optionals unrelated 2 my grad so i wrote tests at reddy sir and this helped me to know whether its upto upsc's standards or its imp 2 write ans n get sum of them corrected

  6. @ brij and varun..
    hv written abt pub admn...

  7. hii di,


    Can you please tell me one thing..
    1.How do u write history mains answers?? Do u write it point wise or in descriptive way?
    2. Can u please tell me about your GS preparation strategy? what r the books, magazines, newspaper and coaching study material u followed? Should I follow Vazirams notes?

    and all the best for coming days...

  8. Hi, Rashmita, First of all congratulations on your success!!! Can you please let me know how to prepare for GS Indian culture aspect. My optionals are Psy and Pub.

  9. @ sak...
    for any ans for optional we write descriptive answer bt in short para which kinda become each point...

  10. thank u so much..I shall also follow the same approach... thanks..

  11. congrats on your success first rashmi!...i am a medical graduate appearing for CSAT next year with history and pub ad as my optionals..i have joined RAU'S for history now and plan to do GS and pub ad from vajirams from october that a correct way of planning for the exams in your opinion??...and also are notes from RAU'S classes good enough for history or do i need to refer textbooks also??

  12. Thanks a lot mam for such a great blog........

  13. Mam, Please guide me for GS Mains as I have given my Pre this time...Which coaching to join Post-Result for the purpose of GS Mains?

  14. @ amit...i joined vajjiram fr mains...der r sum other institutes also...u can decide on ur own which one 2 join...
    @varun..i dont hv much idea abt rau's history notes...

  15. (This one's a little long, so sorry in advance for the trouble).

    Firstly, congrats on ur selection and wish you a great future!

    Now, moving on to my not-so-great present...I wrote Mains last time, but didn't get through. This (2010) is my second (and last) attempt.

    In the History optional last year, I scored very low in Maps...and that brought down my score drastically.

    1. Which NCERTs are you referring to? The old ones or the new ones? (i.e. the one by R.S. Sharma or new multi-coloured ones)?

    2. Apart from Spectrum, Agnihotri (and NCERT), without access to Mr. Reddy's notes, is there any other way I can improve my Map work? Any other mainstream publications I could use? Or is the Work done at Mr. Reddy's class indispensable? In which case I'll have to call friends in Delhi and give them some exercise.

    3. Regarding Ancient/Medieval India, could you please give me the title of the Prof. Satish Chandra book and the publisher? And the same for Romila Thapar and DN Jha?

    4. Regarding the syllabus, did you cover each and every topic there? Or at least 90%? Did you prepare topic-by-topic such that you covered every word in the syllabus?

    5. Could you have made this without Chanakya and Mr. Reddy's notes (I'm asking as they are a little difficult to access for me)? Were they an absolute necessity?

    6. Reg. world history, somebody recommended this book by CDM Ketelbey? Are you familiar with this book?

    I know this has been a really long query,
    I'd be most grateful if you replied.

    Thank you so much,

  16. mam..
    i have heard that pub admns and history exms have a day gao in mains exam schedule ? how u managed to cope up with that as i have also opted for those optional only...

  17. @vineet..yes its true dat pub ad n history r almost back 2 dats gud in a way as in dat case ur sincerity fr da exam is easy 2 maintain...
    in 2007 mains hist n pub ad wr bak 2 bak bt pub ad xm got postponed n i got sum 21 days 2 prep fr pub ad bt instead of studying i went 2 c agra,jaipur n few more places..n just studied fr 3-4 days if der is no gap thn its a blessing in disguise...

  18. @samir...
    1)i m referred old ncerts..
    2)spectrum book is more than sufficient..sir did prehistory very nicely in class bt otherwise mapping i did on my own only..u cn restrict urself 2 spectrum n history thru maps if u think spectrum is nt sufficient..
    3)fr 2009 mains i covered almost 90 % of syllabus...i think one cant b selective nw after writing 2009 mains...
    4)c following chanakya or reddy sir's notes ws my choice if u hv ne other gud notes u cn follow dat..
    5)i m nt aware of da book of world history u r referring...

  19. Thanks Rashmita..
    One last thing...

    Regarding Ancient/Medieval India, could you please give me the title of the Prof. Satish Chandra book and the publisher? And the same for Romila Thapar and DN Jha?

    The reason I'm asking is because they so many books with similar names.

    SO if could give me the title and name of publisher, I'd be grateful..

  20. Ma'm,
    Is - History of Medieval India by Satish Chandra - the book you are talking about or is there a different book we ought to study?

    - Anant

  21. Hii.. Congratulation for your grt success..

    I am planning to appear for this exam first time. I am base in mumbai and looking for some good classes or good prof. who will really help me to crack this test... do you have any idea?? Can you give me some references if possible?

    One more query is that i heard that a chance of clearing this exam from mumbai is less? Is it true?? Does any examination center make difference in clearing test??

    Thanks & Regards
    Harshal Desai

  22. hello di. iam yash.Basically a computer science engineer 2010 batch i have taken optionals as pub ad and "mathematics".I have taken coaching of pudad and gs but still confused for maths so pls suggest me whether i should go for it. syllabus of maths is vast but i will comfortable in doing aths than other optionals and what should i do for improving my writing skills..waiting for ur positive reply

  23. hi mam its only today that i found ur blog.its really exceptional and will really help civil services aspirant in a long way.mam i am a student of elec&tc in my final yr..i am confused as i got placement in tcs but dream job is to prepare without any coaching as software job will have time constraints

  24. mam i know being a civil services officer u would be very busy..but please guide me as how to prepare if i couldnt afford coaching.hoping for an early answer mam.

  25. much time it usually takes to compelte history for mains .

    2.kindly provide some tips how to study history as it is lengthiest subject according to upsc syllabus.should we study 1 book at a time or more books on same topic and prepare notes.

    3.what made u opt history as u r from engg background and other sub like Psychology , sciology, anthropology were compact in length as compared to history

  26. hi rashmita!
    first of all thanx 4 giving us valuable guidence...please tell me about how to use 4 books on ancient india when we prepare notes on one topic like first topic of sources.ncert,al bashm and jha and srimali all cover this topic.can we read altogether or one by one..and what is the best method of making notes..
    thanx a lot....
    jitender kumar

  27. Hello,can u suggest how much time is enough to prepare for history optional in mains?

  28. Hello Rashmita Ma'am,
    How long does it take to complete the history optional for someone who has no background in it?

  29. hello mam, is it necessary to write the opinions of historians in answers? if found many opinions in grover and grover modern india and felt bit difficult to memorise verbatim. should we mention relevant opinions of historians? thanks in advance