To begin with, as the name of the topic suggests, Public Administration is really something that every future IAS officer would need to know at the back of their hands. Surely there is no escaping the subject.
Now, there are a lot of other optional subjects that you can select. But just for your information, Public Administration, Economics, Indian Polity, and History, are considered the most important pillars of the entire UPSC exam.
All these above-mentioned topics have clearly some connection to the current affairs of the country and you really need to keep yourself updated with the current happenings in the nation and be on your toes with the information.
Thus, Public Administration would be a certainly good choice as your optional subject, majorly because there is a lot of overlap with the UPSC prelims in their General Studies section. It covers almost 60% of the General Studies from Prelims from the Marks allotted and content perspective.
Also, another important reason that you can successfully opt for the Public Administration subject is because of the fact that the essay you need to write in your Mains can also be chosen from the ‘Polity, Governance and Democracy’ section. Thus having great knowledge of the Public Administration subject, gives you a lot of advantages over others to secure not only good marks but gives you an overall competitive advantage as well.
However, it is an absolutely personal and individual decision to choose the subject as your optional.
What is the Success Rate of the Public Administration Optional for UPSC Mains?
As per the data from the Civil Services Examination Board for 2017, the success rate of Public Administration Optional Subject for the UPSC mains was 10.2%, which is essentially a good number as compared to many other subjects. However, just so that you know, there are many other subjects from the optional category that have a closer success rate or maybe even higher than Public Administration.
Also, it has been observed over the past few years that almost half of the successful candidates who cleared the UPSC exams, had Public Administration as their common subject.
Again, here are some very important points that you need to consider before opting for this subject:
- It is very important to note here that you need to have plenty of interest in the field to really take it up as your optional subject.
- You don’t really require a graduate diploma or degree or so to say, an educational background in this field to choose it as your optional or to learn it. Any layman can definitely learn and comprehend this subject easily.
- Also, since this topic is really important from the point of view of a future administrator, choosing this topic would really help you prepare for future work as well.
- Last but not the least, you need to have plenty of interest in the field to really be able to score well in the same.
How to Prepare for the Public Administration Optional?
Public Administration as a subject plays a vital role in the actual role of an IAS officer’s regular duties. The subject is absolutely easy to understand and needs pretty much clarity of concepts to actually be able to score great marks in this one. You also need to know that this subject requires you to be very analytical in your approach while writing your answers for this topic.
Here are some really good pointers to help you to get started with Public Administration as your optional subject and how to make yourself successful with your selection of topic.
- Now, the most important thing for you to note here is that this subject is highly competitive and many aspirants opt for it because of its relevant nature. And this makes it doubly crucial for you to work really harder and make your answers stand out from the rest of your competition.
- Next is to understand all the concepts in this topic in a very analytical manner, and know your basics properly.
- Also, you need to make sure you keep yourself up to date with the latest news and happenings as they give you a lot of ideas and thoughts to connect with your subject and to make your answers more relevant and replete with updated information, which is certain to fetch you higher marks. This also means you need to keep a tab on the newspaper editorials to update you with the current stuff.
- Make sure you refer to the correct and comprehensive reference books, which are quite popular for the subject such as:
- New Horizons of Public Administration by Mohit Bhattacharya
- Administrative Thinkers by Prasad and Prasad
- Public Policy: Concept, Theory, and Practice by Bidyut Chakrabarty and Prakash Chand, and many more!
- Enrich your answers with relevant and vital data from reports such as the Second Administrative Reforms Commission.
- Practice answer writing to a greater extent to improve your content writing skills and provide the most relevant and exclusive answers by having the best start and conclusion to your answer. Try to come up with several ways in which you can formulate the best answer and once you know what is good for you, you can stick to that approach.
- And also while referring to books or newspapers, reading articles online, etc. make sure you take down notes in a continuous manner and write them such that they become easy to recall and revise.
- Referring to online content such as online articles and blogs on this topic, of course, again which are updated with the current information is also a good practice these days and gives you a lot of new ideas and thoughts to write in your answers.
Having said that, Public administration is surely the best and most relevant subject that is extremely easy to comprehend and more suitable for your career as an IAS officer.
So, if you wish to learn more in detail about the topic and clear your mains with this optional subject, you can get in touch with the best IAS coaching in Hyderabad Pragnya IAS Academy to help you with the best coaching and knowledge.