Ethics Notes for UPSC:  Here’re the Ethics syllabus and notes for IAS Mains

ethics notes for upsc

Ethics is part of IAS Mains syllabus General Studies-IV (Paper-V).  Most of the candidates get confused about where to exactly study this subject. There is no undergraduate degree offered in this syllabus. Lots of candidates do mistakes of taking this subject lightly and it has affected their marks in a negative way. If you are also confused about the ethics syllabus. Don’t worry. Read this article till the end to get Ethics UPSC notes.

Ethics Syllabus

Before reading the Ethics notes for UPSC first let us understand the syllabus of this subject. The Ethics syllabus is:

1. Ethics and Human Interface

Essence, determinants, and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships. Human Values – lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers, and administrators; the role of family, society, and educational institutions in inculcating values.

2. Attitude

Content, structure, function; its influence and relation with thought and behavior; moral and political attitudes; social influence, and persuasion.

Aptitude and foundational values for Civil Service, integrity, impartiality and non-partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance, and compassion towards the weaker sections.

  1. Emotional intelligence-concepts, and their utilities and application in administration and governance.
  2. Contributions of moral thinkers and philosophers from India and the world.

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5. Public/ Civil service values and Ethics in Public administration

Status and problems; ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations, and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding; corporate governance.

6. Probity in Governance

Concept of public service; Philosophical basis of governance and probity; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.

7. Case Studies on the above Issues

Also Read:  How to Start Writing Practice? Preparation Tips for Answer Writing Practice

Ethics UPSC Notes to Ace UPSC

Ethics actually can be a scoring subject if you do your preparation in the right direction. Most of the time is wasted in planning how to study for this subject. Here are a few tips which you can use to study ethics and make your Ethics notes accordingly for UPSC which will save you a lot of time. Ethics is subject more like a general subject. You don’t have to remember lots of things. It is just an application of ethics concepts used in real-life.

  • Don’t use the look of technical words.  There something very unique and likeable about the layman language.
  • Follow any one book like the Lexicon any book that you like. Make notes topic wise.
  • If you are studying Values,  then read it from the book.  Do some thinking and brainstorming on it. Relate it with your daily life. Write it in your notes in your own language.
  • Make separate notes of examples and positive vocabulary which you use while writing answers. Remember every examiner like optimism
  • While preparing for case studies just refer to case studies given in the book to which you referring. Also, make note of case studies from your test series.
  • You will have to answer the questions related to case studies while keeping in mind the ethical as well as your daily life observation related ethics.

Also Read: CSAT Books for UPSC: An Effective Strategy for UPSC Prelims CSAT Preparation

Ethics Books

Here some Ethics book which you can refer to.

    1. Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude – G Subba Rao & P N Roy Chowdhury
    2. Lexicon for Ethics, Integrity & Aptitude for IAS General Studies Paper IV – Niraj Kumar
    3. Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude – Santosh Ajmera & Nanda Kishore Reddy
    4. Ethics, Integrity and Aptitude – M Karthikeyan
    5. Ethics in Governance: Innovations, Issues and Instrumentalities – Ramesh K Arora
    6. ARC Reports


Also Read: Here are the Online Sources You can Use for UPSC preparation


Ethics can be a scoring subject if you just take the steps in the right direction. Many candidates do the mistake of taking the subject lightly, don’t make that mistake. Ethics was first added in 2013 in UPSC CSE. There is no major in undergraduate related to this subject. That is why many candidates get confused to study for this paper. But still, there is lots of content available on the internet related to this subject. Choose to follow only the authentic ones.

Let us known in the comment section how useful you find our notes.

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Ethics Notes for UPSC:  Here’re the Ethics Syllabus and Notes for IAS Mains
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Ethics Notes for UPSC: Here’re the Ethics Syllabus and Notes for IAS Mains
Confused about how to make Ethics notes for UPSC? Don’t know which Ethics books to refer to? No problem. Click here for Ethics UPSC notes and syllabus and take your preparation a level higher.
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