IAS Interview (Personality Test)
Officially called the “Personality Test”, the objective of the interview is to assess the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in public service by a board of competent and unbiased observers. The test is intended to evaluate the mental calibre of a candidate. In broad terms, this is really an assessment of not only a candidate’s intellectual qualities, but also social traits and interest in current affairs. Some of the qualities to be judged are mental alertness, critical powers of assimilation, clear and logical exposition, balance of judgement, variety and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, and intellectual and moral integrity. The technique of the interview is not that of a strict cross-examination, but of a natural, though directed and purposive conversation that is intended to reveal the mental qualities of the candidate.
Chandra Mohan Garg,
UPSC interview is a basic personality test. Questions are very diverse. But mostly they relate to information you fill in your detailed application form, current events, general awareness, decision making , HR based questions.
1. When you prepare a marketing strategy what are the issues you keep in mind?
2. What are the issues going on with European Union?
3. What is sovereign debt crisis? What is Germany demanding from PIGS countries and why is their resistance?
4. Why salaries and pensions especially being targeted by Germany?
1. You started a community project? What was the project? Did you registered it or was it just for fun, a part time thing?
2. How did you help the underprivileged children?
3. What were the learning gaps among the children? Your Team size and how many children were there?
4. What was the size of the community?
5. What was the social profile of the people, where did they belonged to and what were their occupations?
6. Tell me what all issues and problems you could see in the community?
1. You worked in Deloitte? What was your job profile and what did you do there?
2. You did your graduation in Instrumentation but worked in software, why so ?
3. Do you think colleges should close down or reduce seats in such branches?
4. Who was Netaji?
5. Suppose Netaji would have been alive today? What would be happening in India?
6. Tell me about his ideology?
7. How he would have led the nation today?
8. We are still following socialist goals, how he would have been different?
9. What is this issue of declassification of Netaji files?
10. What’s so special now? Why declassify now
1. What do you understand by proxy war?
2. Bleed India through thousand cuts? One factual question, I don’t remember
3. Why Pakistan going for it?
4. Do you think resolution of Kashmir issue would resolve problems between India and Pakistan?
5. At least it will stop terror attacks?
6. What are non state actors?
7. Why are they called so?
8. Who were behind recent Pathankot attacks?
9. There is something special happening around Yamuna? What is it and who is organizing it?
10. Don’t you think it’s a good initiative?
11. What are the issues?
1. You left your job in 2013 so what are you doing now?
2. Oh so you are in Accounting services? So how do you like learning accounts after being an Engineer?
3. You presented a paper on child labor? What was it?
4. What’s your take on child labor? Is it good or bad?
5. What are the reasons behind child labor in India?
6. How can we tackle this menace?
7. When even educated people are unemployed, how will you convince parents not to engage children in child labor?
8. Telecom sector is booming, what do you think about postal? Don’t you think it has little scope?
9. I want to know about its core activities, not additional ones? Don’t you think there is little scope left for postal in its core operations?
Your Interview is over. Thank You
My own review: I was confident, I had clarity of concepts but lacked on knowledge aspect in few questions.
By- Bhavesh Mishra,
Board: Professor H.C. Gupta
Date: 9 June 2015
Time: 4:30 pm
Academic Background: B.Tech, Electrical IIT Delhi (2013)
Job Experience: RBI & Samsung (both intern), Estee Advisors (current)
Hobbies: Learning language, chess, teaching.
————– (Chairperson) ———
CP: So are you working ?
Me: Yes sir.
CP : Where and what are you doing?
Me: Sir, I am working as a technical analyst at Estee Advisors Private Limited, Gurgaon
CP: What’s your role.
Me: Sir, I write softwares for High Frequency Trading platform.
CP: In which stock exchanges does your company trade?
Me: NSE, BSE, MCX, CME, SGCX, DGCX
CP: Recently the govt has launched a scheme related to gold. Do you know about it?
Me: Yes sir. It is called Gold Monetisation Scheme …. details followed.
CP: I think it’s a completely useless scheme. People are emotionally attached to their jewellery and therefore they would never put their jewellery in bank.
Me: Sir we can offer higher interest rate and moreover all our gold is not in the form of jewellery.
CP: (not convinced by my answer). It’s the bureaucrat like you that give such nonsense suggestions. Tell me some measures to improve the scheme.
Me: (.. gave some measures).
CP: (again not convinced). The steps suggested by you have been tried earlier in many different forms. If they did not work in past then how will it work in future?
Me: Sir, it’s better to have hope than be pessimistic.
CP: Do you think having hope will run the country ?
CP suggested to other members to ask questions.
M1: So Bhavesh, tell me what’s a blue water navy?
Me: I told him the definition etc.
M1: What is India doing in this regard ?
Me: Told him about our PMs visit, navy rescue efforts, joint exercise, upgradation etc.
M1: He asked me about some warfare ships imported from Russia.
Me: Sorry sir, I don’t recall the name
M1: Your hobby is language learning. What languages do you know?
Me: Sir, I like learning scripts and I can read and write in all major Indian languages.
M1: Can you write your name in Tamil .
Me: I wrote my name in Tamil.
M1: So your name is Bhavesh and not Bhaavesh.
Me: Yes sir !
Lady Member (from Bengal): Write your name in Bengali
Me: I wrote my name in Bengali
Lady Member: Great, this guy can be posted to any corner of the country.
M1: Why are you learning these languages.
Me: Told him about my project to digitise all Indian texts from ancient to medieval era in a searchable format.
M2: So you have worked in RBI?
Me: Yes ma’am.
M2: Do you think RBI role is as important today as it was 20 years.
Me: Gave some standard text book answers.
M2: Why 21st century is called Asian Century.
Me: A standard reply follows …
M2: Give some reasons why Bollywood will supercede Hollywood in 21st century.
Me: Large diaspora, diversity, music, huge population etc …
M2: Which was the last book you studied?
Me: Surely You’re Joking Feynman – Richard Feynman
M2: What’s it about?
Me: Told her about the life of great physicist etc….
M3: Why our agricultural policy is flawed?
Me: Gave a very long reply – compromising on long term gains vs short term benefits etc. ….
M3: Did India liberalise too early?
Me: Again a long answer followed. I gave ample data both in favour and in against …
M4: Tell me something about John Nash. Which disease was he suffering from?
Me: Narrated his life history in detail ………….
M4: Who gave the concept of Game Theory first?
Me: Sorry sir, I don’t recall the name.
M4: How many Nobel prizes have been awarded in the field of game theory.
Me: I told him 6 but 11 was the answer.
M4: Why IITians don’t join DRDO?
Me: Gave a long reply ………….
M4: I will have to talk to DRDO !!
Chairperson: Thank you Bhavesh, your interview is over.
I really had a fun time in the interview. Contrary to what others tell, the board members are extremely cordial and friendly. Prof H.C. Gupta is a genius. He did his PhD at the age of 20 / 22 years !!
Although he seems intimidating at first but he actually tries to put you through stress test.
Overall I was quite satisfied with my effort. Now waiting for marks; although UPSC is known for giving very less marks even if you think that your interview went fine.
Interview of Arun Raj- All India Rank 34 in 2015 batch
Candidate: Arun Raj
All India Rank 34 in 2015
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6.S Divyadharsini IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2010
7.Shah Faesal IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2009
8.Shubhra Saxena IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2008
9.Adapa Karthik IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2007
10.Mutyalaraju Revu IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2006
11.Mona Pruthi IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2005
12.S Nagarajan IAS Topper Rank 1 Interview-2004
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UPSC Civil Services: How to prepare for interview round
The questions the panel members ask are nowhere related to your general knowledge, rather they completely focus on your personality and attitude.The interview round is the final procedure of UPSC to shortlist the right candidate. This round carries 300 marks and your final selection completely depends upon your performance during the interview. The questions the panel members ask are nowhere related to your g eneral knowledge, rather they completely focus on your personality and attitude.
Usually, around 5 to 6 panel members are present during an interview headed by the chairperson. The interviews conducted at the UPSC office at Dholpur House in Connaught Place, New Delhi. Each panel member holds a specialized degree and knowledge in his or her particular field; they could be a retired judge, a lawyer, a former officer, etc.
Important points a candidate should know:
A detailed form has to be filled by the candidate before entering the room where the panel members are seated. This detailed form serves as a CV to the panel members. The questions of the panel members will be based solely on the responses of candidates on said form. For example, panel members may look at the city from a where a candidate belongs to and may ask questions depending upon the major events of that city.
A candidate has to be thorough with the history of their city as well as important developments that took place there. Secondly, a candidate may also be asked questions regarding his or her educational background. If a candidate is a mathematics expert or a science student, the panel can post questions based on those fields.
The word ‘Interview’ is a nightmare for many students. But in my view, it is easier than Prelims and Mains if you know what is expected out of you in UPSC Interview. You don’t need to be good in English to score high marks. You don’t need to remember all facts and figures to score high marks. In Civil Service Interview, a candidate is given marks for his/her personality traits and not for his/her knowledge.