UPSC Interview Process – IAS Interview Questions and Strategy

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The Civil Service Examination is an annual competitive exam for hiring civil service officers. The Union Public Service Commission holds this examination in three phases – The Preliminary Exam – Objective type, Mains Exam – Subjective, and lastly an interview.

The Personality test or UPSC Interview Only 1 -2 % of the total candidates reach till here. It takes place in UPSC Bhawan, Delhi. And this is the final destination of this exam as well.

The basic questions asked in personality tests are about the candidate’s interests, current affairs, general knowledge, and situation-based questions. 

This is to evaluate a candidate’s personality and critical thinking. The final score only looks at the mains exam and the personality test. The prelims are only for screening. The interview stage of the UPSC Exam requires good communication skills to be able to have a conversation with the officers.

Because the competition at this stage is very high because of fewer people, candidates should have some strategy in mind before appearing for the interview. Let us take a look at IAS interview Process and Strategy.

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UPSC Interview Process

The UPSC Interview is two-way communication between UPSC aspirants and the officers from the UPSC board. There is a discussion of around 20 minutes where a wide range of topics are covered.

The interview might be scary but confidence, soft skills, and relevant preparation can make the interview really well. There is no such laid down IAS Interview process but the previous candidates were kind enough to share their experience. 

  • The candidates reach the venue sometime prior to the interview. The security guards check their identity proof and interview call letter. The best idea is to carry government issues identification to avoid any confusion there.  
  • After proper security checks, the candidates have to submit their mobile phones and other personal belongings at the bhawan. The staff of the place checks the education certificate and caste certificate in the entrance hall. The people are quite welcoming and even offer refreshments and newspapers to the candidates. 
  • Then the candidates have to fill out a questionnaire for UPSC’s research and analysis purposes. After the verification and submission of documents, the candidates get a panel number and the order of their interview turns. The name of the panel chairperson is kept confidential.
  • Then the candidates reach a large where they are divided according to their panel numbers. All the students of the same panel wait here together. The reimbursement forms are filled here too. The panel takes 5-6 candidates at a time and each interview lasts for around 20 minutes. There is no time limit but they usually wrap under 20 – 30 minutes. 
  • The staff members call out the names one by one. A staff member escorts the candidate from one room to another for the interview. The time to reach is usually 08:45 AM and their turns begin at 10:00 AM. This mostly depends on their sequence number. We would advise you to reach here after a good breakfast. 
  • This is the basic schedule of the UPSC Interview day. It is a unique experience for all the aspirants. The key to a good interview is confidence and calmness. If you do these two things, things will be easier for you. 

UPSC Interview Questions

The UPSC Interview does not have a well-defined syllabus. The officers can ask about anything in this process. The idea is not to test your knowledge here but your personality. They already test your intelligence in UPSC Prelims and UPSC Mains.

Here they are looking at more than those things. Some basic and repetitive questions according to previous candidates are – 

Introduction UPSC Interview Questions

  1. An Introduction about yourself. 
  2. Where do you come from? Tell us about your native place.
  3. What does your name mean?
  4. Tell us a bit about your family background

Education UPSC Interview Questions

  1. Tell us about your school or college. How was your experience?
  2. How can your major help the public administration of India?
  3. Which subject did you like the most?
  4. What was the reason behind choosing a particular course in the institution?
  5. What kind of projects did you do during your graduation?
  6. What kind of student were you? Why? 

Current Affairs Interview Questions for UPSC

  1. What are today’s newspaper headlines?
  2. What do you remember from today;’ paper?
  3. Tell us about an ongoing issue in your state or hometown. 

Work and Hobby Related Interview Questions for UPSC

  1. What were your major responsibilities at your job or work?
  2. Why do you think you are fit for this post?
  3. How do you think your past experience will benefit the country?
  4. They can question you about your interests and hobbies as well. 

Optional Subject UPSC Interview Questions

  1. Why did you choose this optional subject?
  2. Why did you choose your major subject as optional?
  3. What are thoughts about – theories, prominent people, new additions related to your optional. 

UPSC Interview Preparation Strategy

  • Don’t miss out on current affairs of national international importance.
  • Go through your application and prepare yourself for questions based on those details.
  • Practice with people or in front of the mirror to improve your communication skills. 
  • Try to record yourself to improve your body language and gesture for the interview.
  • Go through your college and school syllabus and activities.
  • Don’t try to give out the perfect answer. Rather be honest about your opinions and speak to them confidently. 

UPSC Interview Common Mistakes

  • Try to remain calm on the interview day to avoid stress and anxiety.
  • Don’t lie about anything. Be honest about your answers and details. 
  • Instead of focusing on the practical aspect, try to move towards framing your opinions.  
  • Try and avoid any argument over any topic with the panel. Remember patience is one important personality raut of officers. 


This article will brief you completely about UPSC Interview or the UPSC Personality Test. It covers the interview process, common interview questions, interview preparation strategy, and some common interview mistakes.

In order to appear for this last exam, it is important to know the basic structure of it. The candidates who clear the first two rounds reach here. If you are someone who is going to appear for this test then this article will definitely guide through the process and smoothen your preparation. 

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