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Best Optional Subject for UPSC, Check Scoring Optional Here

Best Optional Subject for UPSC

It is simpler for students to achieve high scores in the two optional exams of the UPSC Exam, each of which carries 250 points. In the UPSC Mains, the optional subject totals 500 out of a possible 1750 points. This demonstrates the importance of the optional topic and how crucial it is to select the most scoring optional in the UPSC, as it can significantly affect a candidate’s overall rank.

The information provided in this article on the IAS exam success rates for each optional subject in past years will assist candidates choose the best optional subject selections. The Best Optional topic for UPSC is listed here, along with the aspects a candidate should take into account before selecting any optional topic for the most difficult exam in India.

Best Optional Subject for UPSC 2024

No optional subject is simpler for the UPSC. Which optional subject is right for a candidate depends on his or her aptitude, capacity for learning, and area of interest. However, candidates should choose an optional subject whose study materials are readily available in the market or on internet channels.

  • The weighting of the optional subject is 500 out of 2025 points in the most current civil services exam patterns.
  • You need to decide and pick the greatest scoring optional subject as it is a vital aspect in deciding your final rank.
  • The familiarity of the subject and the accessibility of study materials are only two of the numerous factors that go into selecting the Best Optional Subject for UPSC.
  • Most applicants choose a topic from their graduate course. However, this isn’t always true or the only decisive aspect.
  • There is no need to be concerned if the topic you studied for your graduation is not one of the optional subjects. Any subject can be chosen, and you can still be successful on your first try.

Most Opted UPSC Optional Subject

The finest optional subject for the UPSC is not necessarily a subject that will earn points. Candidates are capable of achieving high marks in every topic, according to the past performance of the best candidates.

  • Technical courses like mathematics can help you achieve good results because each question has a clear-cut solution. In contrast, responses to questions in the humanities are entirely dependent on the examiner’s preferences.
  • Some subjects are thought to have low test scores because candidates lack the necessary effort or do not select the appropriate UPSC optional subject for them.
  • In the grand scheme of things, it may be said that the top UPSC scorers achieved 320+ in both technical and non-technical subjects.
  • Candidates have an advantage in the non-technical areas that overlap with the UPSC GS syllabus because they will have extra time for preparation and reading materials. The applicants’ overall Mains score will improve as a result.
  • Because the candidate did not make the necessary effort, some subjects are referred to as poor scoring.

Which is the Scoring Optional in UPSC?

Over the years, the vast majority of candidates have chosen the UPSC optional topic with the highest scoring average. Their syllabus overlaps with that of the Prelims, GS I, II, III, IV, and essays in the UPSC exam. Some candidates believe that the best optional subject for the UPSC should be relevant to the test. Let’s take a quick look at the table below at the optional subjects.

Scoring Optional in UPSC
Optional Subject for UPSC Aspirants Opted  Syllabus Overlapping with Subject
Sociology 1800 GS I, GS II, Essay
Geography 3500 Prelims, GS I and GS III
Philosophy 1000 GS IV. Essay
Political Science 1800 Prelims, GS II
History 3500 Prelims, GS I
Public Administration 3000 Prelims, GS II

The popular exam technique when selecting the simplest optional subject for the UPSC is to select a subject that overlaps with the UPSC Syllabus, as we have already explained. In spite of the fact that many applicants have passed the UPSC Exam without selecting these well-liked subjects, this technique might not be effective for you.

Optional Subjects with High Success Rate

The chart below shows that, with a success percentage of 18.8%, Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science is regarded as the best topic for the UPSC. Below is a list of the optional subjects’ success rates for the 2019 UPSC exam, as reported by the Department of Personnel & Training (DoPT).

Optional Subjects with High Success Rate
Best Optional Subject for UPSC Number of Candidates Success Rate (Percent)
Appeared Recommended
Geography 1916 105 5.5%
Sociology 1263 126 10.0%
Commerce & Accountancy 183 20 10.9%
Economics 243 26 10.7%
Agriculture 124 13 10.5%
Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science 16 3 18.8%
Anthropology 1189 108 9.1%
Botany 28 2 7.1%
Electrical Engineering 200 16 8.0%
Chemistry 156 13 8.3%
Geology 30 0 0.0%
History 751 51 6.8%
Law 186 19 10.2%
Management 54 6 11.1%
Mathematics 539 45 8.3%
Public Administration 705 58 8.2%
Civil Engineering 146 15 10.3%
Statistics 2 0 0.0%
Zoology 44 4 9.1%
Political Science & International Relations 1662 137 8.2%
Psychology 164 15 9.1%
Mechanical Engineering 213 12 5.6%
Medical Science 247 26 10.5%
Philosophy 439 27 6.2%
Physics 165 12 7.3%

High Scoring Literature Optional Subjects

Candidates who are proficient in literature might choose it as an optional subject. Sindhi (Devanagari) Language has the greatest success percentage of 50% out of all the excellent optional literature subjects listed for the UPSC. The table below shows the success rate for the Literature optional subjects based on the data analysis for the IAS Mains 2019 examination.

High Scoring Literature Optional Subjects
Best Optional Subject for UPSC (Literature) Number of Candidates Success Rate (Percent)
Appeared Recommended
Literature of Sanskrit Language 53 2 3.8%
Literature of Kannada Language 124 17 13.7%
Literature of Maithili Language 53 2 3.8%
Literature of Malayalam Language 105 13 12.4%
Literature of Hindi Language 191 13 6.8%
Literature of Marathi Language 6 0 0.0%
Literature of Oriya Language 3 0 0.0%
Literature of Punjabi Language 18 1 5.6%
Literature of Assamese Language 3 0 0.0%
Literature of Bengali Language 1 0 0.0%
Literature of English Language 31 3 9.7%
Literature of Gujarati Language 85 3 3.5%
Literature of Manipuri Language 7 0 0.0%
Literature of Sindhi (Devanagari) Language 2 1 50.0%
Literature of Tamil Language 77 5 6.5%
Literature of Telugu Language 32 1 3.1%
Literature of Urdu Language 18 2 11.1%

List of Top 10 Optional Subjects for IAS Exam

Choosing a high-scoring subject for the UPSC can help candidates achieve a high overall score. Although students must pay attention to the extensive UPSC syllabus, by choosing their preferred optional subject from the list, they can forgo studying a few areas they are weak in. We have compiled a list of the top 10 optional subjects for the UPSC, which are as follows, after taking into account all the facts and data mentioned above and the most recent UPSC Results.

  • Sociology
  • Geography
  • Literature Subject (Any)
  • Anthropology
  • Agriculture
  • Medical Science
  • Public Administration
  • Psychology
  • Law
  • History

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Best Optional Subject for UPSC FAQs

Which is the Best Optional Subject for UPSC?

The Best Optional Subject for UPSC have been discussed above in this article.

Which is the Most Scoring Optional in UPSC?

There is no scoring optional subject in UPSC. Candidates have scored good marks in every optional subject in previous UPSC exams.

Which is the Best Optional Subject for UPSC Based on the Syllabus?

Philosophy is the best optional subject for UPSC based on the syllabus as it has the shortest syllabus compared to other optional subject lists in UPSC.

Which is the Easiest Optional Subject for UPSC?

Philosophy is the easiest optional subject for UPSC. It has the smallest syllabus of all the UPSC optional subjects.

Is History the Highest Scoring Optional in UPSC Exam?

History is not the highest scoring optional as compared to technical subjects, like Science and Mathematics.


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