Atlas for UPSC: Which Atlas is Best for UPSC?
An atlas is an amalgamation of various maps of the Earth or a specific region of the Earth. It serves as a substantial part of the UPSC preparation, especially in the geographical section of the paper.
Which is the Best Atlas to Buy for UPSC?
Oxford Student Atlas
One of the most comprehensible map books is the Oxford Student Atlas for Indian students. It caters to the needs of the students preparing for competitive exams like UPSC and other examinations. This book not only gives you an insight into map-based problems but also covers topics like agriculture, wildlife, flags, GDP, and more by providing a 360-degree overview of the geographical sense.
It includes several attached maps focusing on the Indian subcontinent, environmental concerns, and natural disasters of the country. A plethora of map-based exercises are available in the form of multiple-choice questions to enhance geographical skills. This atlas book facilitates quick and easy learning by providing explainable videos and gripping animations.
Orient Blackswan Atlas
Orient Blackswan Atlas is also a preferred map-book for UPSC. It is a detailed book as it comprises thoroughly detailed maps, graphical representation of facts in the form of pie charts, and other diagrams. It has maps of ancient civilizations of both India and the world.
This map-book covers various political and physical themes relevant to India and other continents of the world. However, the political and physical maps of India are banded together, which makes studying the physical features a bit inconvenient.
How to Study an Atlas for UPSC?
Many map-based questions confuse the aspirants about what topics to cover and where to begin when it comes to maps and atlases. Mentioned below are a few pointers that are to be acknowledged to effectively utilize map books for preparing geography and tackle map-based questions in UPSC:
- World Atlas books enhance the ability to learn about the geographical aspects and physical features of the world.
- One can easily and efficiently cover physical and anthropogeography through the atlas maps.
- Map book offers core preparatory material for geography provision.
2 Types of Map-based Questions
- Static Part: With basic questions that every student must know.
- Dynamic Part: With advanced questions mapped with current affairs.
Furthermore, to cover the subject well, start memorizing the political maps of India focusing on 29 states (with their capitals), seven union territories, and other major cities in India. One must be aware of the various hills, rivers, important national parks in the physical reliefs in addition to the northeast part of India, which is considered very important from the prelims point of view.
One’s preparation should be segregated in different physical regions and beliefs. Another integral aspect of geography is the world map. It is the vastest and the most important area. However, various mnemonic and memorizing strategies are present to take in hand the minute details. One of them would be to start covering the topic continent wise, where aspirants should prioritize Asia first.
Concerning the other continents and countries, focus on important physical reliefs like rivers, lakes, bays, etc. thereby laying an eagle eye on the geographical news.
There are a few techniques to master the geographical aspect of the paper strategically, which are as follows:
Current Affairs based Map Reading
While reading a newspaper, always keep an atlas book handy. Mark the cities and states that are currently trending on the news primarily for international issues. Major global issues and Indian geography-based topics like boundary disputes, and dam issues are also considered vital concerning the UPSC exam point of view.
Grasp Human Geography
The human geography of India primarily deals with the study of people, cultures, and communities. To have an in-depth knowledge of these perspectives, one needs a clear idea of the location of various places, including the capital cities, connectivity, etc. Always try to grasp little details and compare states with their speciality, food, dance for a crystal clear understanding.
History of India and The World
Atlas books give a clear understanding of India’s civilization, archaeological excavations, ancient monuments, and famous historical places.
Map books provide a brief idea about the location of important monuments and places. For example, the famous Taj Mahal located in Agra can be easily associated with its location using maps. In the geography section, one can mention the places by drawing maps, and this technique is used to fetch better scores.
Some Tips to Ace the Geographical Part of the Paper Using an Atlas Book
- UPSC exam mainly has location-based questions. Mark important locations like rivers, mountains, lakes, glaciers, etc. in your atlas book.
- Initiate the preparation with geography followed by atlas physical as well as political then touch the topics like history and polity.
- Explore every continent one by one starting with North America and later cover other continents.
- Memorize the physical world features like oceans, significant seas, bays, etc. as a whole.
- Last and the most important tip for a UPSC aspirant would be to paste the world map and map of India on their study room‘s wall. It can help retain map knowledge.
No doubt, maps are an intrinsic part of the entire preparation and can lead to a lack of clarity and a baffling experience among aspirants. UPSC aspirants should have a thorough knowledge of map-based questions. Atlas books are used as a reference to sharpen the map-based expertise for the exam.
Map book for UPSC would also provide a grip on various political entities and physical features of the world. One must go through the map topics since the geographical section of the paper is quite crucial. UPSC Pathshala has numerous blogs and articles that resonate with an aspirant and would help to clear doubts about various subjects. Visit our website to know more.