Many IAS aspirants have many questions that keep revolving around their heads, like- “Can an average student crack IAS? Has any average student cracked the IAS exam?”  

It is widely known that the UPSC Civil Services Exam is extremely challenging. Every Civil Services Examination is carried out in three stages: Prelims, Mains, and Interview. So there is no denying the fact that the Civil Services Examination is difficult. 

So coming back to your question, Yes! You can crack the IAS exam. Many aspirants are under a delusion that students who have always excelled in studies in school and college will easily clear this exam, which is not true. This quote explains this situation perfectly: “A great future doesn’t require a great past.”

But, who is an average student? See, the education system in India generally focuses on the theoretical aspects but puts no emphasis on the practical elements, so many students end up cramming in exams and just mugging stuff. Examinations and evaluations are also planned to test memory rather than the understanding of the concept. And then, there is pressure on the students to score good marks, which are labeled as above average. Firstly, it shouldn’t be acceptable to put students in a category as everyone has different capabilities and talents. 

Every year, lakhs of candidates sit for this exam, and only a few hundred get selected as IAS. Undoubtedly, the UPSC civil services exam is tough. This article is for those under the impression that it is difficult to clear the UPSC exam on the first attempt. This exam has been cleared by academically bright students as well as those who weren’t toppers school and college. So, what do you make of that? 

When preparing for a tough exam like IAS, a student needs to hit the pause button on negative thoughts and be optimistic, have faith in your capabilities. Hard work is important, but perseverance is the key to success in life. Sometimes even after investing hours of hard work, you won’t get the desired results. So, you have to be determined to achieve your goal. 

However, before explaining further about IAS, you must be wondering how to prepare for the IAS exam? I will highly recommend The Thought Tree (T3). T3 is one of the promising and leading IAS coaching in Jaipur, Rajasthan.  We have academic experts and professionals who combine academic theory with practical experience and industry knowledge, providing quality learning experiences and sharing their knowledge with the students. 

Tips and Tricks for Average Student to Crack the IAS Exam

1. Read the Newspaper Daily

Can an Average Student Crack IAS
Can an Average Student Crack IAS

A newspaper is very important in IAS preparation.  Reading newspapers daily may sound cumbersome, but for an IAS aspirant, it is mandatory to read the newspaper. A newspaper is the best source to learn about current affairs and keep up with the current events of national and international importance. The aspirants should now how to read newspaper for ias and prepare notes from the Newspaper. The notes should be divided into two parts, where the objective information is the concrete data provided by the Government of India. Candidates can use these data in justifying their answers in the IAS main exam, as it will be useful for writing the essay. And Subjective information is for the critical analysis of influential personalities.

2. Set Realistic Goals 

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While there is nothing wrong with aiming high, it is also important to think over and see if the goal is achievable or not. Setting a realistic goal means that it must be something that you are willing to work towards and give your 100 percent. Keep in mind that you know how substantial your goal is, but also be sure there is an effective opportunity given that the conditions are right, you can achieve it.

3. Do Not Overburden Yourself

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In most cases, aspirants overburden themselves with extra course materials, which can lead to chaos. See, many resources are available, so a shortage of books and resources can never be a problem while preparing for competitive exams. Make good use of the books you already have and use extra materials only when required.

Read More: Eligibility for IAS Exam

4. Syllabus 

Can an Average Student Crack IAS

While preparing for the IAS exam, a student should consider UPSC Syllabus in parts and not see it as a whole. The syllabus is vast, but it should be divided into different sections. Each section must be studied thoroughly by being attentive. Any structured preparation begins by being well familiarized with the syllabus. It will guide you during your preparation and guide you in staving off the topics that are not relevant. 

5. Plan your Study Schedule

As for studying for any exam, it is important to plan, manage time, and study accordingly to get the anticipated outcome. Plan your schedule and figure out when to study, how much time frame should be given to a certain topic, and then study based on your grasping abilities. 

6. Importance of Revision

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As the syllabus is vast, many aspirants study all the topics but do not revise them regularly. Keep in mind your brain is a volatile memory like RAM, which means that it requires power (in your case, its revision) to maintain the stored information. It retains its contents while powered on, but the stored data is lost when the power is interrupted (when you don’t revise topics).

Read More: List of NCERT Books for IAS Preparation

7. Make Notes

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Organize notes in a structured manner. Making notes and writing down information will help you remember it in a better way, and also, you will be easily able to revise before the conduction of the exam. It will also allow you to learn concepts, and it would be easy, and you will be able to revise in a short period. 

8. Take a Mock Test 

Can an Average Student Crack IAS

Mock tests are necessary because you will get a lot of practice. Basically, they are like a trial run. You will be in the same place, feel the pressure before appearing for the actual examination, and foster self-analysis and confidence in the aspirant.

Success Stories of Average Students

Get some inspiration by reading the success stories of some average students who battled all the odds and achieved their dream of becoming an IAS officer.

Himanshu Kaushik

  • Himanshu Kaushik secured a spectacular AIR 77 in the Civil Services Exam in April 2018.
  • Having two backlogs in engineering did not stop him from accomplishing his dream.
  • He completed his engineering and got a job, but he wasn’t satisfied and happy working in the private sector. He always wanted to work for the public and improve the interaction between government and industry.
  • According to him, this exam requires dedication and patience, and anyone can clear the exam in the first step; one needs to focus on learning and avoid all the negativity. 
  • He believes that this exam is a long and demanding journey, and to sustain and climb up here, you have to keep away from stress and always remain motivated.

Junaid Ahmad

  • In 2014, Junaid completed his engineering and started the IAS preparation.
  • IAS Topper Junaid Ahmad secured a commendable AIR 3 in his fifth attempt.
  • He said that he studied for eight to ten hours to strengthen his base initially.
  • According to him, his failures were the best part of his journey. He treated failures as the error correction stages.
  • He also believes that an aspirant should have these qualities: Hard work, Patience, and Perseverance to become an IAS officer.

Read More: How can I Become an IAS Officer after 12th?

Shubham Gupta

  • Shubham Gupta completed his B.Com and M.Com, from DU. 
  • In 2015, he gave the UPSC exam for the first time, but he failed. 
  • After that, he gave the UPSC exam for the second time and secured an AIR 366 in 2016.
  • He was offered an IAAS post but was not content, so he appeared again in 2017 but couldn’t clear the prelim exams.
  • In 2018, he attempted for the fourth time and secured an impressive All India Rank 6
  • According to him, success and failure are part of life, and one should not feel down during times of failure. The second most important thing is to give 100% in your preparation

As IAS is one of the toughest exams in the country, an aspirant must be having some queries regarding IAS.

Final Thoughts

So, to wrap it up, I hope that this article on “Can an Average Student Crack IAS” was helpful to you and encouraged you to pursue your dream of becoming an IAS officer. Keep in mind that you have what it takes to become an IAS officer. Believe in yourself and remember determination is important to achieve what one desires.


Q1. Is it possible to crack IAS for an average student?

  • Yes! An average student can crack the IAS exam. Don’t get discouraged by your past academic performance. On this note, I would like to mention this quote: “You’re not average, so stop treating yourself like you are.” And besides, past academic performance doesn’t matter in the civil services examination. 

Q2. Can I crack IAS in 1 year? 

  • Absolutely. If you are on the right track and have planned accordingly, then one year is more than enough. Devise a study plan strategy, stick to it and you can crack IAS exam in first attempt.

Q3. How many hours do IAS toppers study?

  • See, there is no perfect answer to this question. Some aspirants study 10-12 hours per day while preparing for the UPSC exam. And, while some clear the exam just by studying 6-7 hours in a day. It all depends on your capabilities and your grasping power.

Q4. How many years is the IAS course?

  • At The Thought Tree, we suggest that aspirants pursuing graduation or in should opt for the 2 year IAS course, and the aspirants who have already graduated should opt for the 1 year IAS course. But see, before a counseling process takes place and after evaluating your capabilities, you will be assigned a mentor. Who will tutor and clear all your doubts to prepare for this tough exam? You are our responsibility, and we will be with you to guide you until the selection takes place. 

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