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.Interview is taken to test the personality of the candidate. It is taken by a committee having one head and members who are experts of their specific fields. Questions are asked randomly from any field whether it is academic or non academic. Members of interview board try to test the personality of a candidate in a few minutes.
The interview in the UPSC Civil Services Exam is officially called a Personality Test.And the summon letter for interview is very specific that "it's not a test of knowledge, but a test of personality". Hence, it's not about how many questions you did not answer, rather, how you answered the ones you answered.
It's true that they can ask just about anything under the sun. But there is a sanity in this chaos.
For example, I was asked how much voltage and current flows in a typical lightning strike during a thunderstorm? I tried to reason with them that it depends on the size of cloud and the electrostatic charge stored in it, but the chairperson wanted a precise figure which I didn't know. It was actually a stress question and they already knew I would not have an answer. They were just testing my response mechanism.
But a typical UPSC interview hovers over your profile, your optional subject, your work experience, if any, and your hobbies. They may also ask about contemporary issues and current affairs at domestic and international level. They also ask puzzles sometimes, though I was not asked any.
Overall, there is a method in this madness, and it's aimed at judging your personality traits. They may fail to judge you accurately sometimes, but their judgement is rarely widely off the mark. Don't forget the interview board has 5 seasoned persons assembled from almost all walks of life. They know what they are doing there.
Lastly, never try to bluff or concoct an answer if you are not sure about it. Just politely tell them that you don't know, or take their permission if want to take a guess. If you bluff, you would be only fooling yourself. And they will make you pay for that.
The Civil Service Interview is held in the UPSC Office at Dholpur House, New Delhi. There are multiple boards' headed by a chairman and other members.
The list of board being faced by individual interviewees is given out at the time of declaring the dates of the interviews.
The interview questioners is given to you at the time of your interview or personality tests. So candidates are however advised to go as early as possible as lengths of interview are not fixed and your turn may come before you expected.
1. Give respect to the members who will take your Interview : Once you enter the interview room then give due respect to the members who will be going to take your interview. The board members will notice mannerism and decide whether you will be fit or not. So take mannerism seriously.
2. Do not forget what your wrote in your mains exam : You will only come for the interview after successfully clearing the written mains exam. So while you give interview you will be asked what you did in your mains. So remember and revise what you did there.
3. Have positive views in your Mind : Go for the interview with a positive mindset. Usually, it happens that negative thoughts would start entering to your mind. Especially, who are giving interview for the first time? So be positive and think right.
4. Have proper command on your language Skills : It does not matter what is your medium of the interview. Be it Hindi or English. It really does not matter. What matters is the command over the particular language.
5. It takes more courage to listen than to speak : You must listen to the interviewee before you answer anything. It is good to listen completely and then answer rather interrupting when they are speaking.
6. First question why you want to join this ? Six interview technique would be to prepare for this question because you will be asked. This will be perhaps the first question that you have to answer. So prepare an honest reply beforehand. You will find it easy to answer.
7. Speak Your Heart and Do not lie Yourself : If you are asked with tough questions or questions that you would not like to answer then do not tell a lie. Never create a fake story to boost yourself just tell them truthfully it does not really matters.
8. Show Confidence and talk to them, not at them : You should always look into their eyes and then talk. This is very basic interview tip for a civil service interview. Do not look down or elsewhere and answer. If do then they might think you do not have self-confidence.
9. For Serious Question give a Serious Reply : Although you should give a smile and give answers laughingly. But if you are asked a serious question then your answer should be serious too. You have to show them that you care about what they are asking.
10. Prepare what you're going to Say for Hobby Section : This is again very obvious question that you will be asked in a civil service interview is about your hobby. You should answer this question in a light mood. The board members must get a chance to laugh at some point in time.
❒ 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 through 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.
❒ Most importantly, the panel members will ask questions to test the candidate’s attitude, his/her confidence level and ability to stick to their point, which is to check their confidence level.
❒ The panel may ask some tricky questions as well to ascertain the confidence of the candidate, which is why, rather than answering each and every question even when you are not too confident about the answer, it’s better to nicely pass the question or be genuine saying I am not very sure about the answer of this question.
❒ The panel may also ask questions such as “What would you do if you encounter a bus accident in front of you in which a number of people get injured?”
❒ Make sure, your answer must be from an officer perspective and not a common man. You must be a quick decision maker here. You answer should be, you’ll call an ambulance, by which time you’ll encourage the people who are less injured to get up and help; you save other people who are more injured and so on.
❒ There is no right or wrong answers to such questions; it’s only a matter of your attitude and your perspective.
❒ Be honest and do not try to bluff. Listen to the panel members carefully before interrupting them in between. And always greet the chairperson first.
❒ The preparation for the personality test or Interview requires proper planning. Since overall personality development is a continuous process it requires vast reading. Candidates are required to go through numerous books, journals, magazines and few daily newspapers.
❒ The candidate should make a self-analysis of his/ her strengths and weaknesses and make a conscious effort to work on them.
❒ They should try to improve their conversational skills with the right pronunciation.
❒ The candidate should be prepared to answer questions on his background, hobbies and extracurricular activities.
❒ It is a good idea to discuss current affairs and recent issues with friends. One good way of rehearsing possible questions would be to have mock interviews and forming discussion groups.
❒ Do not give long introductions. Come straight to the point.
❒ You should be logically consistent and analyse the answer rationally. You are supposed to defend what you say, but with due respect to the board. Stop trying to defend if it becomes difficult to do so logically and fairly.
❒ Do not make hasty or sweeping generalisations.
❒ Avoid the expression, 'I am sorry.'
❒ Avoid conversational cliches, like: 'as you know', 'that's correct', 'of course', 'indeed', 'obviously', etc.
❒ Avoid technical jargon. However, if a member continues to probe you in any technical field, you can use technical expressions.
❒ Maintain a cheerful face. You can appear serious, now and then, but most of the time keep smiling and remain composed.
❒ If the board laughs, you should only smile. It may give positive reflection on the depth of your personality.
❒ Show human concern whenever possible in your answers.
Que 1 : Give a brief description of yourself?
Ans : To answer this question you have to tell about yourself like your name, your qualification and about your last job profile etc.
Que 2 : Tell me about your hobbies?
Ans : you have to speak about hobby so you must research well on your hobby and then give answer in a polite manner.
Que 3 : What are your biggest strength and greatest weakness?
Ans : This question will help to polishing your skills. Firstly identify your strength and speak about your knowledge, experience, skills and abilities.Then when you’re going to answer about your weaknesses question you must answer in a positive way. You can answer like; your weakness is that you hate lie, unpunctuality and laziness in work.
Que 4 : Where do you want to see yourself in next Five Years from Now?
Ans : Remember you are there to get attached to that organization; your plans must be formatted as you are going to get attached for long time with the firm you are giving interview of.
Que 5 : What you have learned from your mistakes?
Ans : Answer this question in this way: everyone do mistakes but here are very few persons who really realize their mistakes and don’t repeat their faults, I am also in one of those persons.
Que 6 : What work you have done on your UPSC Knowledge in the last year?
Ans : you must have to include improvements activities can be mentioned as positive self improvements and also show a desire to keep learning by listing hobbies non-work related.
Que 7 : why you left your previous job?
Ans : you may answer this question as; you didn’t get a good chance to prove yourself or your want to face new challenge. Show your interest in the job profile for which you are giving interview.
Que 8 : Why do you want to join Civil Services?
Ans : This question is asked for checking your seriousness and inclination of yours. Interviewers get a good idea about the frame of mind of the candidate by studying his response.
Que 9 : if you were the Collector/SP of Ajmer, Rajasthan, what would you do after the bomb blast in the city?
Ans : Some situational questions like this are asked by the interviewers to test the presence of mind. So you must develop an analytical and foreseen thinker mind to face the IAS interview.
Que 10 : What are your goals?
Ans : Tell about your aims and goals of life that what you want to do after being an IAS Officer, what changes you want to do the national environment and how you will produce them.
Following Documents has to be submitted at the time of Personality Test Board for Civil Services Examination.
SC/ST Certificate Performa, OBC Certificate Performa, Undertaking, Physically Handicapped Certificate Performa, Performa of Hailing from Certificate Questionnaire, Attestation Form, TA Form. The Questionnaire, Attestation Form and TA Form are available at the UPSC official website. If you have applied under SC or ST or OBC, or Physically Handicapped category then fill in and submit the respective certificate. The certificate is separately available for print out at the UPSC site - www.upsc.gov.in.
The candidates are requested to carry the following documents for the interview.
I. Filled Questionnaire : The seven page questionnaire is required for the research and analysis section of UPSC and is used for assessing background information of the candidate appearing for the personality test/ interview. This questioner has be duly filled and submitted at the time of the interview. The questionnaire is divided into several sections.
❒ Background of the candidate
❒ Employment status
❒ Previous Civil Services attempts
❒ Competitive exams cleared
❒ Reasons for interest in Civil Services
❒ Education particulars
❒ Background of Parents/Guardian
❒ Source of information for Civil Services
❒ Coaching attended
❒ Optional subject chosen
II. Attestation Form : The attestation form has to be filled with required details including residence, nationality education and has to be signed by a Gazetted officer before being submitted at the time of the interview.