IAS Topper’s Strategy: Rank 374 Rahul Narwal, 110 Marks in Ethics (GS Paper 4)

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Name Rahul Narwal
Rank in CSE 2015 374
Total Attempts in CSE 4
Optional Subject Zoology
Medium English


Class 10 percentage of marks 76%
Class 12Percentage of marks 73%
Graduation: College and marks 74%
Post graduation: College and marks N/A
Any other course N/A

IAS Score: What were the basic mantras of your success?

Rahul Narwal: Persistent efforts, removing the fear of failure from within and giving exam not to prove anything to anyone.

IAS Score: What were your strategies for the lengthy syllabus of General Studies for both Prelims and Mains?

Rahul Narwal: For prelims: concentration on basics, focus on current affairs + not reading the things haphazardly.

For mains: focus on linking the concepts, having basic understanding of every topics.

IAS Score: Did you integrate your Prelims or Mains preparation or was it separate in the changing scenario?

Rahul Narwal: Till July preparation was integrated but before 20-25 days of prelims focus on prelims but it all depends upon individual.

GS Preparation for Prelims (Summary)

Study material / Guidance GS Score, Vision Current Affairs
Basic Books Geog- NCERT, Environment- ICSE, Economy – Mrunal, Polity – Laxmikant
Current Affairs The Hindu, GK Today Site, IAS Score Site, Vision IAS Monthly Magazine


GS Mains Preparation (Summary)

Paper Study Material/Guidance Current Issues Source Answer Writing Practice
GS Paper 1 NCERT World history, Geog- Spectrum GS Score GS Score
GS Paper 2 Polity – Laxmikant, Indian Governance- Laxmikant ARC Report Summary GS Score
GS Paper 3 Indian economy by Mishra and Puri, Security issues from net. GS Score
GS Paper 4 Notes of GS Score, Lexicon, Meaning of terms from net GS Score


Optional Subject Preparation (Summary)

Study material / Guidance Invertebrate / vertebrate + kotpal zoology – P. K. Verma
Basic Books By Reema mathur + Evolution Notes, Diagram Practice
Current Affairs From Net + Youtube channel of zoology


IAS Score: How did your prepare for essay.

Rahul Narwal: Write 10-15 essay, have a basic understanding of essay concepts (social, economic etc.) + reading 2-3 newspaper daily. Have a look on thought of Dr. Ambedkar and Gsndhiji etc.


IAS Score: Did you adopt any specific strategy for GS Paper 4?

Rahul Narwal: In case studies write answers in multi dimensional manner. Start giving solution from basic level + understanding the meaning of easy terms mentioned in syllabus. Answer writing.

IAS Score: What is your advice on notes-making for other aspirants?

Rahul Narwal: Personally I didn’t make notes, but notes making if done by aspirants then revision becomes easier.

IAS Score: What was your style (paragraph or point format) of writing in the exam? How was it distinct from the general writing style? How did you develop this writing style?

Rahul Narwal: Point format in this attempt. In earlier attempts I used to write in paragraph form and once read the strategies of Ira Singhla madam, there she helped about writing answer in point format.

IAS Score: So much focus is being given to Test Series, both for Prelims and Mains, in your opinion how useful are they, in the course of a preparation process? Which Test Series did you join and how useful did you find it to be?

Rahul Narwal: Test series judge you and your preparation. I joined essay and ethics test series in GS Score, and valuable inputs helped me to find fault which I was regularly making. Too many test series should be avoided.

IAS Score: Which sources you referred to prepare for Contemporary Issues.

Rahul Narwal: GS Score compilation, newspaper, IDSA sites, Yojna, employment news.

IAS Score: Given the recent boom in online initiatives to support an aspirant, which were the platforms that you find useful enough during your course of preparation. Please list the sites.

Rahul Narwal:






Rahul Narwal Mark sheet

Paper Marks
Prelims 99
Essay (Paper 1) 125
GS 1 (Paper 2) 82
GS 2 (Paper 3) 82
GS 3 (Paper 4) 98
GS 4 (Paper 5) 110
Optional 1 (Paper 6) 113
Optional 2 (Paper 7) 121
Written Total 731
Personality Test 160
Total Score 891

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