UPSC IAS topper 2022: On May 30, 2022, UPSC declared the final result 2021. In the civil services examination 2021, Ankita Agarwal came in second place. When questioned about her future plans, she stated that after entering the Indian Administrative Service (IAS), she would like to work for women's empowerment and primary healthcare.

UPSC Topper Ankita Agrawal’s Preparation Strategy

Ankita Agarwal considered appearing for UPSC while she was in the second year of her college. As she was unsure at that time, so she worked for a year in the private sector and then quit her job to study exclusively for the IAS Exam. She scored a total of 1050 marks in her third attempt and bagged an AIR 2 in the prestigious exam.

Ankita began preparing for the UPSC Civil Services Exam in 2018 and after appearing for the exam three times, she successfully became one of the UPSC Toppers. She obtained the AIR 236 Rank in 2019 but decided she wanted to study harder and join the Indian Administrative Services. When asked why she didn’t pursue a post-graduation degree, she said-

“I was clear about my goal and therefore chose not to enrol for a postgraduate degree. I worked for a year and then jumped into UPSC preparation. I qualified for the exam in 2019 and got into the IRS but my goal was to join the Indian Administrative Services. So I reappeared in the exam in 2021. This was my third attempt,”

Aspirations: On being asked about her future plan, Ankita Agrawal expressed interest in working in the areas of women’s empowerment and primary healthcare. She expressed her desire to serve at the grass-root level and believes that this is the best chance to do so, being an IAS. She has chosen West Bengal as the cadre of her choice. Issues of poverty, unemployment and climate change are some of the main issues she wishes to work towards after joining the IAS.

When asked about her preparation strategy Ankita Agarwal said she prepared through self-study as well as coaching. She believes both play equally important roles in a candidate’s life. Ankita defied UPSC clichés by keeping her preparations well-balanced. She would take breaks and go out with her friends.

  • She began her UPSC preparation 4 years ago and apart from basic books, she kept herself updated with current affairs.
  • She devoted as much time as she could to the preparation for the exam.‘I studied hard as I could while still giving time to her health, her family members and to her friends. I tried to fit in as many hours as I could to study for at least 8-12 hours a day.”
  • For current affairs, she read newspapers and monthly magazines.
  • She made her notes on a computer as it is easier to organise notes digitally. She used to study from sources and translated them into her own language which makes it easier to revise.
  • She solved a few test series to help her get enough practice before the actual exams.
    For Mains preparation, her centre of attention was answered writing practice. She took Political Science and International

Relations as her optional subject in the Mains.

  • Instead of counting the number of hours, she used to give as many hours as possible for the exam preparation. She said-
    “Instead of putting in a definite number of hours, I tried to maintain a sustainable study schedule.”
  • She developed a study timetable but limited her study sources and stated that she did not pick up additional books or study materials during revision time.
  • While preparing for the Civil Services Exams, Ankita kept a balanced schedule, taking time out to relax and unwind, to meet her friends. To help her prepare with full concentration, she also confessed to deleting all her social media so that she would not get distracted.
  • When queried about her motivation for the exam, Ankita said,
    “More than strategy, I think if someone wants to be a civil servant, they should be very clear about their motivation as only that will push you on difficult days. Consistency is key.”
  • She solved previous years’ UPSC prelims question papers to get an idea about the nature of the questions asked in the UPSC prelims examination.

Source - Various Internet Sources