How to manage time while writing answers in UPSC Mains?

How to manage time while writing answers in UPSC Mains?

How to manage time while writing answers in UPSC Mains?- After you receive the Question cum answer booklet and before the bell rings, make sure to read the instructions!

  • First, read the question paper thoroughly and check if the booklet is printed correctly. If there are any issues, ask for a replacement.
  • Allocate a few minutes to carefully study the question paper.
  • Divide the entire time available into three separate hours.
  • Examine the question paper and divide the questions into three categories: eight easy questions, seven average questions, and five difficult questions (assuming there are a total of 20 questions).
  • Follow the 8-7-5 method: Answer your best-known eight questions in the first hour, seven in the next hour, and the remaining five in the last hour.
  • Write the well-known questions in the first hour with maximum speed.
  • Mentally plan the structure of your answers for all the questions in advance. Take a few seconds to decide how you will start each answer. Practice this technique beforehand.
  • Utilize bullet points wherever possible and underline important points using the same pen. Follow a framework that includes introduction, headlines, and conclusion for each answer. This will save time and improve the flow of points.
  • Be prepared for unexpected situations. If you realize that you misunderstood a question while writing an answer, do not panic and waste time. Writing one incorrect answer will not ruin your chances. Regretting your mistake and wasting time can negatively affect your performance.
  • Avoid spending excessive time on questions that you feel confident about.
  • Whenever applicable, include diagrams and flow charts in your answers. These visual aids can help convey the essence of your answer more easily and save time.
  • If there are questions for which you have no knowledge at all, it is advisable to skip them rather than attempting and wasting time. There are no grace marks for incorrect answers.
  • Keep a watch near your paper and ensure you have an ample supply of your preferred pens.

How to prepare for these strategies beforehand:

  • Practicing answer writing on a regular basis will refine your study process and make it more focused on exam requirements.
  • Since the marks obtained in the Mains exam have a significant impact on your All India Rank, it is crucial to practice answer writing every day.
  • During your initial attempts, you may not be able to produce perfect answers. However, with practice, you can improve by understanding the question and writing accordingly.
  • Ideally, you should practice writing answers for Optional subjects, General Studies, and essays every day.
  • Consider following IAS Parliament, which provides daily questions for answer writing practice.
  • Joining a Test Series and receiving feedback is essential.
  • Most importantly, learn from your mistakes and make improvements in your subsequent answer writing based on the evaluation points to manage time while writing answers in UPSC Mains.

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