Navigating the UPSC Interview: A Practical Guide to Dos and Don'ts

The UPSC examination is divided into three stages, Prelims, Main and the Interview round. The Interview round is the final stage of the UPSC examination and the marks obtained in this round along with Mains marks are considered while preparing the final merit list of the candidate. 

It is a crucial round and therefore preparation for this round requires perseverance, knowledge and quick wit. 

The interview panel assesses the personality of the candidate and traits like expression clarity, narrative grasping prowess, reasoning powers, awareness of different socio-economic topics, appreciation of viewpoints, communication skills, leadership values and intelligence & presence of mind. 

Stick to the end of the article as we share important dos and don'ts for acing the interview round.

  • Preparing for the interview round

Firstly, it is most important to start preparation as soon as you receive your Mains results. It is not possible to become a well-groomed and confident person overnight and therefore it is recommended to start preparation right away.

  • Do not panic

We can understand that facing the UPSC board can be panic-inducing, but it is highly recommended not to stress out. It is easier said than done but with adequate preparation and dedication, you will be able to pass the interview round easily. There are several UPSC interview round videos available online that can help you to gauge the possible questions asked in the interview round and help you build a calm facade as you start preparation.

  • Following certain tips while answering

It is not advisable to portray a fake personality to the UPSC panel of judges. Do not give false information regarding your personality, hobbies or personal achievements. The board members are thoroughly experienced people and therefore, it would not take much time for them to see through the lies.

While answering the questions, it is recommended to follow some of these pointers. While speaking, do not blabber, speak hastily or speak too little. 

Blabbering shows a lack of confidence or unsure knowledge. Speaking hastily shows nervousness. Therefore, take a little time to organize your answers. Speak to the point and answer in measured words. Listen to the questions carefully and then answer accordingly. It is also advised not to sound arrogant or rude while answering. Also, refrain from providing negative comments on government, caste, race or on religion. Provide balanced views instead of criticizing the conditions. 

Situations might arise where you could disagree with panellists but arguing with them unnecessarily or sounding arrogant/ rude can have a negative impact. The panellists expect humility and respect and unnecessary arguments can showcase a rigid nature.

  • Maintain the decorum

Maintaining positive body language is always advisable for the candidates. As we know positivity is infectious, therefore, maintain a pleasing personality. Do not fidget while answering as it indicates nervousness and does not laugh unnecessarily. 

You can smile if any of the board members crack a joke but avoid cracking unnecessary jokes yourself. We know that certain panellists can be difficult to impress, however, it is not advised to enter the interview round holding a negative mindset. Also, it is important to wear decent and formal clothes to showcase professionalism.

Bottom Line

Now there you go, hopefully, our article was able to shed some light on preparing for the UPSC interview. Practising mock interviews plays a crucial role in your preparation. You will find several videos online which can help you to prepare well for your final round. 

As soon as you receive your Mains result, do not waste your time and instead start preparing for the last stage. It is not advisable to start studying new but to remain updated with current affairs. 

Preparation and dedication are the key pointers when it comes to acing the Interview round. Maintain a calm composure and practice breathing exercises to ease your nerves during the interview. Also, do not forget to carry the required documents to the interview hall.