Amit Thakur exploring ideas every single day

CSE 2020 Prelims Challenge

Update: Oct 04, 2020

I wrote CSE Prelims 2020 papers with absolutely zero preparation. Job work kept me busy for the last week too. So apparently I will score around 25/200 in Paper-I and 70/200 in Paper-II as per my rough memory data which I haven’t verified with any official data. Nevertheless it was fun writing a competitive paper with people 5-6 years younger than me.

Wish me a good luck for the next year. Cheers! :-)


Update Sep 27, 2020:

Unfortunately I couldn’t find even a little time for the preparation till now because of a criticial and hectic assignment for Q3-2020 at my day job and the prelims is on next Sunday. All I can do now is read through some quick 1 day small revision handbook. Hah! Does the term ‘revision’ even apply to me? :-) It is now better to start my preparation for the year 2021, 8 months to go for Prelims 2021. I did attempt one mock test where I scored 52/200 for GS paper with some logic and luck. Anyway it is always fun to read new stuff. As I step into the actual serious preparation I would keep my performance in mock tests posted here from Feb 2021 onwards. I want to take at least 4 months to cover basic GS syllabus.


Hi! A very happy independence day to my fellow Indian citizens.

Today I would like to let you know about a personal challenge that I want to pursue for next 40 days. I know many would laugh at me but I just want to try it for fun and to see what is my knowledge gathering capacity in the trade which is different from my active profession.

So without further ado, I tell you here that I’m preparing for Indian Civil Services Examination 2020 Prelims in just next 40 days. Yes, that’s the very competitive CSE Prelims exam conducted by UPSC, Govt of India. This year, 2020, the prelims exam is scheduled on October 4th.

Since high school years around 2006 I have stayed away from humanities and arts studies. The CSE paper has a big part of its syllabus covered by general studies and current affairs topics. My knowledge level in those topics is abysmal. I have spent a greater amount of time learning maths, physics, and software engineering. So If I were to appear in the CSE paper today I would score awful for sure.

I’m a software engineer by profession and I’m quite happy with my current job. Do not expect me to leave my current job to pursue CSE preparation full time, like many candidates do. I’ll do it with whatever time I can manage along with my 10 hour job plus managing cooking and home (I stay alone BTW).

This year I applied for the exam in February month without any serious goal - it costs you just INR 100. Covid-19 also happened this year because of which prelims exam has been postponed from May to October. My current employment started few months ago so I was very busy in my current job learing stuff for current project till now… and I still am. So yes, it will be a big challenge where I would be competing against more than a million candidates, many of whom would have finished their preparation and would be revising their notes by this time to secure few hundred civil services positions.

I believe that pursuing big challenge helps me keep pushing my abilities furher and make me wiser. So here is my plan for this challenge - I would be posting my prelims test series performance every week from now. This journaling would also help me to focus and actively pursue this goal.

Cheers!