UPSC Topper Shruti Sharma’s Preparation Strategy

  • She said the most important step in the IAS preparation is making a preparation strategy based on self-analysis, preference and interest. The candidates should limit the study material and setting the short term targets is the key to preparation. She suggested having content-based targets instead of time-based targets.
  • She said that study hours do not matter in the IAS preparation, it is the output from the study that matters the most. She stressed that taking breaks is also essential to balance oneself. She used to take breaks after her studies. Although, she is present on social media but not have much and enjoys time with her friends.
  • She referred to the basic and standard books for her preparation but prepared notes for the exam. She prepared her notes based on the keywords given in the official IAS UPSC syllabus. She prepared her Current affairs notes from newspapers and enhanced them on daily basis. They proved very helpful in UPSC answer writing and provided an edge over other competitors.
  • She used to prepare notes on the topics given in the syllabus and orient them as per the previous year’s questions. She did the answer writing practice before the main exam which immensely helped her in the getting highest marks in the main exam.
  • She suggested that consistency is the key to success in the IAS exam. In addition to that personalised strategy and time management is an important component of IAS preparation. For the candidates who could not make it to the list this time She said that if the candidates feel motivated even after the failure, they should go for their attempt in the Civil Service Exam.
  • She began her UPSC preparation 4 years ago and started off by studying NCERTs.
  • Since current affairs are perhaps the most important part of the IAS exam Shruti backed her preparation by regular newspaper readings to give adequate focus to what is happening in the country and internationally.
  • She took a few online test series to help her get enough practice before the actual exams.
  • The notes she made while studying helped her alot in revising the vast syllabus.
  • She relied a lot on the internet and her center of attention was answer writing practice for the Mains exam. It is very important to know how to choose the optional subject for the UPSC mains, as the two optional papers account for 500 marks, a big chunk of the final tally. She took History as her optional subject in the Mains.

Shruti Sharma’s Optional Subject
She had opted for History as the optional subject in the Civil Service Main (written) exam. She is a graduate in History and has a deep interest in History.

UPSC Toppers Shruti Sharma’s Interview Experience
She shared that her mock interviews were going good but the actual interview somehow did not turn out so great. She said that her IAS personality test was a little bit factual in the orientation where she could not answer some questions. Some of the questions asked were about the Champaran Satyagrah, governance issues and questions about her school Sardar Patel Vidyalaya. She scored 173 marks in the IAS interview. UPSC toppers 2021 marks were released on May 30 itself.

UPSC Toppers Shruti Sharma’s Daily Routine
She used to get up early as she studied better in the morning. But she said everyone has their preference and it does not make difference whether someone is studying in the morning or evening. But she suggested that there should be a fixed timetable for daily preparation incorporating the essential elements.

UPSC Toppers Shruti Sharma’s Hobbies
She has fond of reading poems, watching movies and taking walks is her favourite pass time. Reading, Movies and spending time with friends. She would be travelling and exploring after the UPSC results.


On a personal level, she is very much inspired by her mother and grandmother (Nani). She told that both of them are strong women. At the professional level, she admires the work of IAS officer Laxmi Priya in Assam.

A few tips for UPSC exam preparation

  • Action Plan – Set aside at least one year for CSE preparation and chart out an action plan to start off with your preparation.
  • Plan meticulously: Always have a realistic and achievable study schedule to follow while preparing for UPSC CSE. Making a planner and keeping track of the goals helps too.
  • Limit your Study material – Hopping on to different books for exam preparation will only lead you to confusion, hence, pick out a few selected books and materials and try to stick to it as much as you can.
  • Use Internet for your good – While the internet is an excellent source of information and study material, she also warns students against its overuse as there are plenty of distractions.
  • Do not panic: It takes some time to gain a rhythm in CSE preparation which works for you. Do not panic, if a concept seems hard and you get stuck, think it through and you will get clarity on how to study that particular concept.
  • Understand yourself: Understanding your own strengths and weaknesses will help you in focussing your preparation. This focus and understanding will help immensely in optimizing every stage of preparation according to your needs.
  • Practice: Before you take the actual exam, you should take mock practice tests both for the prelims and the mains. This will help you gain confidence and experience in framing your answers properly.
  • Stay focused: Preparing for the UPSC exam can be extremely challenging, so keep yourself motivated and stay positive. Always look at the bright side of things and be confident about your ability to crack UPSC CSE 2022.

Source - Various Internet Sources