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- Always remember you get enough time to write your essay (4 essay 300 words each – 2014). Reports and arguments have different parameters (We will tell you later about this).
- Choosing the topic is the main important part for this exam, because if you are not sure about the topics how can you expect yourself to write an essay on that topic.
- Prefer those topics having objective and scientific nature.
- You can write maximum 10% more or 10% less words in an essay. Means a maximum 330 words and minimum 270 words.
- Listen very carefully, You need to complete all the essays at any cost, no argument and no question.
- Subjective assessment of one’s personality, one’s reasoning and one’s line of thinking.
Expectation of UPSC
- Essay is not just a flow of information, facts, theories or materiality nor it’s a platform to express our-self or our feelings, attitude, opinion or thoughts.
- Purpose to include essay into exam is to test the writing skills of the candidates and the more important thing, UPSC judges candidate’s thinking, ability to respond critically and personally to a problem or cause, ability to think clearly, decisions making capability, uses of resources (Information), presentation
Read the essay question carefully
- Highlight key words.
- Identify the task words that indicate what needs to be done, eg ‘discuss’, ‘explain’, ‘compare’.
- Identify the topic words that indicate the particular subject of the essay, eg the character of ‘Juliet’ in Shakespeare’s Romeo and Juliet, the ‘causes’ of World War 1.
- Identify any limiting words that restrict the discussion to a particular area, eg in ‘Chapters 1-3′, during the ‘nineteenth century’.
- MAKE PARAGRAPHS
- MAKE BULLET POINTS
- MAKE DIAGRAM
- MAKE FLOW CHART
- MAKE TITLE HEADS LIKE INTRODUCTION AND CONCLUSION ETC.
- QUOTE UNTIL YOU HAVE FULL COMMAND ON THAT
- MERGE THE RESOURCES
- DEVIATE FROM THE TOPIC
- WRITE IRRELEVANT THINGS
- WASTE YOUR TIME
- STICK TO THE TOPIC
- CONSTRUCTIVE CRITICISM AND SATISFACTORY MECHANISM
- FOLLOW THE GIVEN INSTRUCTIONS
Preparation of Essay
- Don’t devote much time to this part.
- GS knowledge + reading habits + Cute and decent command over English/Hindi is only needed.
- Be alert with the new Government strategy and plan, UPSC always follows governments (Government = Papa and UPSC = Son/ Daughter)
- Draw structure and outline of the last 3-4 year Exam papers .
- Be very specific
- Never Overload your mind with a lot of information and facts.
Materials needed to write an Essay
- The Hindu and note down the important issues in points
- Yojna is the ultimate source for writing the best essays.
- Some articles from Frontline.
Follow these and be a Rockstar
- Relevance meaningful support to your main argument.
- Inclusiveness : having many aspects and should present a analytical and multi-dimensional approach towards the given topic.
- An Essay comprises three parts
- Introduction : Provides an insight into what follows
- Body : organize points/ideas, arrange sub – arguments. Provide supporting evidence for each point that you make.
- Conclusion : Should have a sense of closuer and leave something in the mid of reader to think about. Demonstrate how you have proven your thesis. Try to Finish with an interesting or thought-provoking, but relevant, comment.
- Sustained Cohesiveness : All supportive points should stick to the main theme which give a coherence, direction and purpose to the essay.
- Make your essay concise.
- While quoting the specific data or statement, understand the the relevance and appropriateness of the context.
- always put the quotes in the inverted commas.
- Miss-quoting can be nasty.
- Analytical and critical thinking is required because independent opinions based on sound facts and logic is always appreciated by UPSC.
- Be a good explainer.
- Make the reader crystal clear about your points.
- Be selective: use sources which are relevant and accessible.
- Use a mind map to help stimulate lateral thinking.
How to Start an Essay
- There can be three alternatives to start an essay, choose according to your will
- Starting with a general statement : A general statement followed by specific statement. (Generally 70%-75 % follow this)
- Starting with a quote : Quote should be relevant and should be used in proper context. (20%-25% follow this)
- Starting with an anecdote : anecdote is a short story, it can be fictitious. But it should be relevant, interesting and logical. (0%-10% follow this)
How to conclude an Essay
- It’s the only conclusion where you get marks
- A clouser = No, rather impart a sense of clouser to the essay. Ensured by supproting conclusion with a quote which elaborates the argument or gives a broad approach for the argument.
- Your argument shouldn’t be repetitive. Be assertive and positive.
- Your conclusion should reflect the main theme.
Should leave something in the mind of reader to think about.
More Than the content it is the structure, organization and closeness of the
content to the asked theme that is important.