The UPSC interview process lasts for about 30 minutes, and it carries 275 marks out of a total of 2025. However, marks of mains or prelims alone do not determine success in an IAS exam. The total score of Prelims, Mains, and Interview round collectively determines an IAS candidate’s success. The interview is a test of personality. Its primary objective is to test a candidate’s suitability for civil services and determine administrative skills. The aim of taking an interview is to observe the candidates approach and the candidate’s suitability. It will provide data about the candidate’s intellectual qualities and also social traits, and current affairs. The candidates can opt for English, Hindi or regional languages for facing the interview panel

Focus Area of the Interview Panel

The interview is conducted to test presentation, communication, emotional stability, body language, sense of empathy and answering mechanism. The interviewer also checks the candidate’s knowledge of day to day national-international affairs. The interviewer will also look for a balance of judgment, clarity, intellectual and moral integrity, and the ability to lead. The candidate is interviewed by a board of 3 to 4 experts, who have the candidate’s entire record. Another focal point of the interview is to look for natural conversation and purposive conversation on behalf of the candidate and the interviewer and not cross-examination them. The interview also aims to check the candidate’s mental qualities. Candidates are expected to present intelligence, not only in their specialised subjects but also in current events—the events happening around them, both within and outside their state or country.

Qualities a UPSC Interviewer Seeks

UPSC assesses a candidate’s intelligence, aptitude and knowledge. Apart from marks in the mains, the interviewer also assesses the candidate’s knowledge about current affairs. Further, the interview also tests the ethical tendencies, mental aptitude, social quotient, leadership skills, intellectual abilities, and moral integrity of the candidate. A candidate must look for IAS Interview Questions of the previous years to get an idea of the marking style of a UPSC interviewer. A candidate must give honest answers and focus on being himself/herself in the UPSC interview. Interpersonal skills play a vital role in this diverse job. An IAS officer is a team leader, and he/she has to deal with the aspirations of common people. A civil servant can not be sensitive towards the common public. Otherwise, he/she cannot serve the country well

Also Read: How is Public Administration as Optional in the UPSC Mains? Is Opting for it Beneficial?

1 Analytical Abilities

Analytical skills are the most vital skills that members seek from IAS candidates. The interview panel also assesses the candidate’s analytical skills for politics, honesty and patriotism. A successful IAS candidate is broad-minded and has concerns about improving the conditions of weaker sections of the society

2 Knowledge Related to Current Affairs

Apart from subject knowledge, the interview panel also looks for knowledge about national and international current affairs. The interview panel wants to check whether such knowledge will help the candidate implement his analytical skills in real life.

3 Communication Skills

The interview panel also looks for communication skills from the candidate. Communication skills play a vital role in the interview round. If the candidate has good communication skills, he/she can answer the questions correctly or adequately for taking the top position. The purpose of a UPSC interview is to look for the personal suitability of a candidate for public service. Communication skills play a vital role in the Board of unbiased experts and observers headed by a Chairperson

4 Body Language

Apart from knowledge and communication skill, body language forms part of every interview. The interview panel also looks at the candidate’s body language through eye contacts, voice modulation and the candidate’s dressing. The panel expects confidence from the candidates. Therefore, proper eye contact shows confidence

Importance of Detailed Application Form (DAF)

Qualified candidates in the UPSC exam have to fill up the Online Detailed Application Form before appearing for the interview. However, preparing for DAF is considered to have completed half the work. UPSC interview panel gets the information about the candidate from the information written in the Detailed Application form. This form contains information such as birthplace, graduation subjects, optional subjects, professional experience, college details, the topic of interests, hobbies, etc., of the candidate. It is best to have a hobby that reflects upon your personality. DAF is the manuscript for clearing the interview. The candidate must make sure that no false information is reflected in the DAF that can later become a hassle.

Ways to Prepare for Educational Background

IAS candidates must prepare thoroughly about their college. The candidate has to prepare for the degree pursued and the reason for choosing. The candidate must have adequate knowledge about his stream to master a particular stream. Therefore, the candidates should prepare themselves with questions related to their educational background in the interview

Also Read: What Qualification is Required for IAS? What Rank is Required for IAS?

Prepare for Work Experience and Optional Subject

The candidates must possess sound knowledge of the business organisation in which they work. The candidates should be aware of the key responsibilities within their organisation. They should have an understanding of their work experience for clearing the interviews. The candidates also have to prepare for a switchover of jobs to join civil services. Apart from specific subjects, the candidates need to prepare answers related to their hobbies. They must possess knowledge about their hobby. They must state their role in implementing the same in real life

Benefits of Enrolling in Interview Guidance Assistance

The benefit of enrollment in interview guidance assistance is that it will remove the fear factor from the candidate’s mind. The mock interview will help the candidate bring out his/her strengths and weaknesses. It also improves the candidate’s confidence and helps the candidate understand the possible questions that could be framed from DAF


We hope that this article helped you gain a clear insight into how the UPSC interview panel decide the particular candidate selected for IAS or IPS

uFaber is an Edutech company that provides top-quality and best educational products and have brand profiles like UPSC Pathshala and IELTS Ninja under their wing. UPSC Pathshala is for preparation of the UPSC exam and helps the candidates with correct guidance on UPSC preparation. UPSC Pathshala provides IAS aspirants with quality guidance on different aspects of the interview round and assists candidates to prepare for such an interview. The learned faculty helps IAS aspirants develop their overall personality and bring out the best potential to guarantee success in the interview round. Take our free demo class to get acquainted with our personal mentorship. For more such blogs, visit UPSC Pathshala’s official websiteHow does UPSC Interview Panel decide the Particular Candidate

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Shilpa is a professional web content writer and is in deep love with travelling. She completed her mass communication degree and is now dedicatedly playing with words to guide her readers to get the best for themselves. Developing educational content for UPSC, IELTS aspirants from breakthrough research work is her forte. Strongly driven by her zodiac sign Sagittarius, Shilpa loves to live her life on her own notes and completely agrees with the idea of ‘live and let live. Apart from writing and travelling, most of the time she can be seen in the avatar of 'hooman' mom to her pets and street dogs or else you can also catch her wearing the toque blanche and creating magic in the kitchen on weekends.

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