How to Prepare for UPSC PSIR Optional?📑

5 minute read

Hello Students, I am Professor Owl🦉 and today I will talk about how to prepare for the PSIR Optional subject. A good strategy is required to secure good marks in the examination. It will help you to utilize your time in the best possible manner. The syllabus of the PSIR optional majorly overlaps with the UPSC syllabus, so this strategy will also help in your UPSC preparation.

PSIR Optional Preparation Strategy📌

There are basically two papers of Political Science, i.e. Paper 1 and Paper 2 in the UPSC Mains exam. To clear both exams you need to follow a proper strategy which is stated in the given table.

PSIR Paper Strategy to Cover PSIR Optional Syllabus
PSIR Paper 1, Part AThis part has dynamic portions and you can cover these portions from M.Laxmikanth, Indian Nationalism (Spectrum and Bipin Chandra).You can also use related quotes from academicians. Also, you can read the editorials part of the Indian Express and The Hindu on the current political scenario.
PSIR Paper 1, Part BYou need to make a balance between the dynamic and static portions of this paper. Remember to keep your answers India-centric.You need to include contemporary issues in the answers. But keep in mind that the problem is relevant to the question.
PSIR Paper 2, Part ARefer to reading newspapers as the best source of preparation for this part.You need to focus on the editorial part authored by Ashley Tellis, Nirupama Rao, C Raja Mohan, Rakesh Sood, Lisa Curtis, etc. Also watching news clips from channels like DW News, BBC World News, AL Jazeera, BBC World News, etc. will help a lot.
PSIR Paper 2, Part BRefer to reading newspapers as the best source of preparation for this part. You need to focus on the editorial part authored by Ashley Tellis, Nirupama Rao, C Raja Mohan, Rakesh Sood, Lisa Curtis, etc. Also, watching news clips from channels like DW News, BBC World News, AL Jazeera, BBC World News, etc. will help a lot.

Why should one choose PSIR as an optional subject for UPSC CSE?💁‍♂️

Here are five top reasons to choose PSIR Optional subject for UPSC CSE preparation.

  • The success rate of students with PSIR Optional is very high in the last 5 years.
  • High scores can be achieved with this subject, a lot of students are scoring more than 300 marks in PSIR optional. 
  • The PSIR optional subject has a lot of similar syllabus with GS Paper I for Prelims.

➡️ For Mains, GS Paper I (topics based on ideologies like communism, socialism etc) 

➡️ GS Paper II (almost the entire syllabus)

➡️ GS Paper III (Internal Security and Border Management)

➡️ GS Paper IV (Thinkers and Philosophers, Ethical Dimension of International Relations and International Institutions).

All this common syllabus can be prepared easily by studying the PSIR optional subject. It will ultimately lead to saving a lot of time and effort for the students.

  • Stuff like books and other study materials are readily available for the PSIR optional in both online and offline formats.
  • PSIR is a dynamic and very interesting subject. You can develop an interest in the subject for a very long time.

Best Books for Prepare PSIR Optional📚

There are various best books that you can refer to prepare for the PSIR optional paper. Quality study material helps to cover the syllabus quickly and prepare for the examination smoothly. Some books that you can refer to for the PSIR optional include An Introduction To Constitution- D.D. Basu, India’s Struggle For Independence – Bipan Chandra, Indian Government And Politics – B L Fadia, and more.

Daily Time Table For UPSC Preparation By Tine Dabi👩‍🎓

Below, you can find the timetable shared by Tina Dabi that she followed during her preparation days.

TimeWhat to do
7:00 AMWake up and freshen up
7:30 AMNewspaper time
8:30 AMSlot 1 of studies
9:00 AM – 12:00 PMCurrent Affairs time
1:00 PM – 2:00 PMLunch time
2:00 PM – 3:00 PMBreak/leisure
3:00 PM – 5:00 PMSlot 2 of studies
5:00 PM – 8:00 PMRevision time
8:00 PM – 9:00 PMDinner time
9:00 PM – 11:00 PMSlot 3 of studies
11:00 PM – 12:00 AMBreak/leisure
12:00 AMSleep

Utilize the three slots in the following manner.

  1. Slot 1: Big topics (early morning, more energy and focus)
  2. Slot 2: Medium-length topics as this is only for 2 hours
  3. Slot 3: Revision of topics studied previously. It is recommended to revise the topics at least three times.

📌Guide for UPSC Interview Preparation: No Coaching Needed for 2024 Aspirants!

Shubhra Ranjan PSIR Notes📃

Below, you can find the Shubhra Ranjan PSIR notes for Paper 1 and Paper 2.

PSIR Paper 1

PSIR Paper 2

PSIR Optional Toppers UPSC👩‍🎓

Below you can find the list of toppers who have chosen PSIR as their optional subject.

Gunjan Dwivedi20189
Ankit Pannu201731
Abhishek Sharma201769
Anand Vardhan20167
Sidharth B201615
Mirant Parikh201667
Tina Dabi20151
Karn Satyarthi20159
Umesh NSK201477

Related Blogs

UPSC Book ListBest Public Administration Books for UPSC
Best Political Science Books for UPSCHow to Prepare for UPSC 2024 at Home?
How Many Questions are there in UPSC Mains?🧑‍💻UPSC Preparation for Working People

Mr. Owl – “I’ve answered all your queries with the utmost precision that I was capable of. Now, I’ll be taking my leave, but if you think I might have missed something, do check out the FAQ section or drop a comment. I always respond!”


How do I start preparing for the PSIR optional?

You can start by understanding your syllabus first, preparing a strategy to cover all the topics, and also staying updated with the latest criticisms and theories by following the current affairs.

How much time is required to complete the PSIR optional UPSC?

According to our experts, 4 months is a good time to study and prepare for the subject. However, this majorly depends on you, and how much time you require to cover the whole subject.

Is PSIR hard optional?

PSIR optional can be easy to cover if students build a strong base and attain conceptual clarity of the topics included in the subject.

This was all about the “How to Prepare for UPSC PSIR Optional?”.  For more such informative blogs, check out our UPSC Exams Section, or you can learn more about us by visiting our Indian exams page.

Leave a Reply

Required fields are marked *