Friday, May 4, 2012

My booklist


Paper 1 - Haralambos - both old and new editions (the new edition has some additional topics and case studies presented in greater detail - referred to the syllabus to chalk out a suitable strategy; I didn't read either book from cover to cover)
Giddens - selected chapters
IGNOU BA notes - selected topics
oxford dictionary of sociology

Paper 2

IGNOU BA notes of Sociology
IGNOU political science notes for social movements in India (I had social movements by G.Shah but didn't find it very readable)
NCERT - old edition
I had other books by Yogendra Singh, Veena Das and MN Srinivas, which I didn't refer to due to paucity of time. I didn't find time for EPW either.
My preparation for Paper 2 was centered on IGNOU notes (BA) and newspapers

Pub Ad

Paper 1 - IGNOU MA notes (only two booklets out of eight- rest of the topics are covered well in Fadia)
Prasad and Prasad
Fadia and Fadia
Few topics from Sharma Sadana, laxmikanth and Stephen Robbins
Super 50 by Shubhra Saxena

Paper 2 - Fadia and Fadia
ARC reports 
Super 50 by Shubhra Saxena
I had a truckload of books like Rumki Basu, Mohit Bhattacharya, Maheshwari, Arora Goyal, Nicolas Henry, IIPA Journals, etc. - which I found were not in sync with the exam's requirements - and hence I wouldn't advise them

History - Spectrum, Bipin Chandra, TMH manual, ncert
Geography - NCERT, TMH Manual
Economics - NCERT, Economic Survey and Newspaper
Polity - DD Basu, TMH Manual, copy of constitution, NCERT
Science and Tech - Newspapers, chronicle magazine, (I had the book by spectrum but it isn't in sync with the exam's requirements)
CA - newspaper (The Hindu), chronicle
India year book
Indian culture - spectrum
stats - spectrum
IR - other than Hindu, i referred to the book by ramvir goria and reetika sharma, and another by VN khanna
Govt websites, reports, PIB releases, etc.

I had subscribed to magazines like yojana and frontline but could read them only selectively due to paucity of time


  1. fadia and fadia u mean b l fadia and kuldeep fadia?

  2. Hi Kshitij,

    Can you please post your answer-sheet if possible. It will be great help for us.

    Thanks & Regards
    Praveen Kumar

  3. can u please tell which ignou ma notes have u read for paper 1 of pub admn???

  4. you have mentioned "IGNOU MA notes (only two booklets out of eight". Please tell if these are first two booklets????

  5. @ saurabh and lokesh

    The booklets were numbered MPA 011 and MPA 012 (Administrative Theory) may also like to have a cursory glance at the booklet on public policy while covering that topic.

  6. can you please elaborate your coaching experience, no. of attempts made so far and your exclusive csat preparation strategy

  7. @ RVR - I haven't taken any coaching for this exam. This was my second attempt. In my first attempt I had taken mechanical engineering and psychology as optionals but couldn't clear pre since I wasn't prepared. I wasted that attempt since I had a total of 4 attempts left to be given in 4 years as per age criterion. I picked up sociology and public administration in December, 2010. I had completed half of paper-1 of both Pubad and Socio before pre and the rest was done after it. I shall update this blog soon with the minutiae of my preparation.

  8. Thank you for your prompt reply. Looking forward to see the minutiae of my preparation. i have chosen same optionals and saw your name in 'vision ias'. so wanted your feed back and "3-hour" strategy.

  9. Hi,
    Mr.Kshitij, ... finally I got the most genuine person to make the picture more clear. I'm also a Mech Engg & planned to go for the exam next year with Pub Ad & Mech Engg. My decision to go with Mech Engg as an optional is still not appealing me because I've seen most of the people not going with it. Any specific reason??? (People give scaling and huge syllabus as one of the reasons, is it true?)

  10. Mechanical engineering has a huge syllabus. Thermodynamics alone is bigger than Sociology and Public Administration combined. Also, a lot of skill needs to be acquired through practice of problems and numericals, which is time consuming. Another fact is that very few people take mechanical engineering as an optional - and those who would be taking it will not be newbies in the subject. Finally very few candidates are selected out of this small set - thus making it all the more difficult. Subjects like Socio and Pubad are taken by many, including those who aren't as serious, and there are many seats for these subjects in the final list, making it easier for a genuine candidate to succeed.

  11. Hi kshitij ... Congrats on your grand success.... I gave my first mains this year with pub ad and sociology but for me too many cooks spoiled the broth I fell into the trap of referring to too many books and consolidating less... So I couldn clea mains... Kindly throw some light on the art of answer writing .... How does one answers from a pub ad and sociology perspective.... If you culd upload some sample answers it would be very helpful.... It would be greatly beneficial for aspirats like meto get a glimpse into the thought process of a successful topper like yourself......

  12. Hi Aman

    I didn't practise answer writing per se but I did make thought frameworks for previous years' questions in my notes. I shall try to get some scanned and upload here.

  13. Hi Kshitij

    Did you take any leave before appearing for Mains? Since when are did you start devoting three hours daily?

  14. yes Ashish - I took two months off before Mains.
    I had begun GS and Current Affairs in August 2010 and Optionals in December 2010---by dedicating evenings on weekdays and as much time as possible on weekends

  15. Hi sir,
    Thanks for guiding aspirants with this blog of yours..
    I had a query...Which book of DD Basu did you refer-'Indian Constitution' or 'Introduction to Constitution of India'?

  16. Sir, it would also be helpful if you could post some model answers, or give a few tips in answer writing.

  17. Can you please tell how did you managed vast resource of ARC reports? Did you read whole of it or just the reco?

  18. Fadia & Fadia book ka Title bataiyega KT bhai.. Main 2 book mein confuse ho jaa raha hoon..

  19. @ Anand - I think the book for paper-1 was titled "Public Administration" and the one for paper-2 was "Indian Administration"

  20. Can you tell the cost of Yojana,Chronicle and any other Govt magazines you have subscribed to as even I want to subscribe to them?
    I am staying in a remote place hence can't go to bigger city and all my search on the internet for the recent prices(May,2012) have gone in vain.

    Thanks in advance.

    1. Yojana Rs. 10/issue 180/year ; Chronicle Rs. 670/year , 85(avg)/issue

  21. Congrats again friend.Could you pls upload the files you feel are appropriate to be studied for future CSE aspirants.Thanks in adnvance.

  22. Dear Kshitij
    It's relly great tht u made it :)
    In reference to the IGNOU MA books can u please provide the links since in IGNOU site it's not there.

    Thanks in advance

  23. This comment has been removed by the author.

  24. what is the complete name of the old harlombus you referred ?

  25. the old one was by haralambos and heald; the new one is by haralambos and holborn....You can buy only the new one as it has everything that the old edition contains plus contemporary case studies. I kept reading the old one also since the 2nd edition is a tome, and is rather intimidating :)

  26. I have buyed the books for sociology mentioned by you. But I have two questions :-
    1. Did it is necessary to buy IGNOU M.S.O series for preparation or E.S.O will work.
    2. I am not able to find the topics for chapter - 2 of paper - 1 can you help me ? I am going strictly according to the topics mentioned in the syllabus like 2.) Sociology as a Science 2a.) Fact value and objectivity.
    I have just started my preparation.

    1. Both these topics are covered in Haralambos

  27. Kshitij,

    I have been reading Haralambos for some time and it seems it has many sections which are outside UPSC syllabus. Finding out relevant sections doesn’t seem very intuitive either. Could you please specify which chapters and sections you read for UPSC.

    Thanks in Advance

  28. Hi,

    could you please tell us the name of some faculty whose notes are fruitful for the UPSC Exam, particularly for GS Section.
    I know Notes are available at Delhi so please tell us.
    Please dont ignore this comment!