UPSC » UPSC Mains GS 3 Syllabus, Books & Preparation Tips

UPSC Mains GS 3 Syllabus, Books & Preparation Tips

The Union Public Service Commission conducts the Civil Services Examination (CSE). The official notification for the 2023 examination will be issued on 1st February 2023. The examination is conducted annually to recruit the Civil Services of the Government of India – Indian Administrative Service, Indian Foreign Service, and Indian Police Service. The registration will close on 21st February 2023. This blog will provide you with relevant information on the GS 3 syllabus, the books to be purchased, and other details related to the exam. 

General Studies 3 Paper Syllabus for UPSC Mains

The UPSC GS 3 is a subjective paper of the UPSC Mains examination. In all there are 9 subjective papers in the exam. the subjects included in the GS 3 paper are: 
  • Economy
  • Agriculture
  • Science
  • Environment
  • Internal Security
  • Disaster Management
The detailed GS 3 syllabus is mentioned below: 
Subject Topics
Economic Development
  • Indian Economy – Issues related to planning, mobilization of resources, employment, growth, and development.
  • Inclusive growth 
  • Government Budgeting
  • Land reforms in the country
  • Effects of liberalization on the economy
  • Changes in industrial policy 
  • Industrial growth.
  • Infrastructure: Energy, Ports, Airports, Roads, Railways, and others
  • Investment models
  • Major crops and the cropping pattern in different regions/ parts of India
  • Types of irrigation and irrigation systems storage
  • Transport and marketing of agricultural produce – issues and related constraints
  • E-technology in the aid of farmers
  • Issues in direct and indirect farm subsidies
  • Issues relating to minimum support prices
  • Public Distribution System – objectives, limitations, functioning, revamping
  • Issues of buffer stocks and food security
  • Technology missions
  • Food processing and related industries in India – significance and scope, location, upstream and downstream requirements, and supply chain management.
  • Developments, applications, and effects in everyday life
  • Achievements of Indians in science and technology
  • Indigenization of technology and development of new technology
  • Awareness in the fields of IT, Space, robotics, Computers, nano-technology, and biotechnology
  • Conservation
  • Environmental pollution and degradation
  • Environmental impact assessment
Internal Security
  • Basics of cyber security
  • Challenges to internal security through communication networks
  • Linkages between the development and spread of extremism
  • Linkages of organized crime with terrorism
  • Money-laundering and its prevention
  • Role of external state and non-state actors in creating challenges to internal security
  • Role of media and social networking sites 
  • Security challenges and their management in border areas
  • Various Security forces/agencies and their mandate

Books for GS Paper 3

The following books should be used to prepare for the GS 3 paper.

  • NCERT Class X – Understanding Economic Development 
  • NCERT Class XI – Indian Economic Development
  • NCERT Class XII – Macroeconomics 
  • Indian Economy for Civil Services Examinations by Ramesh Singh
  • Challenges to Internal Security of India by Ashok Kumar and Vipul
  • Disaster Management notes – IGNOU
  • Cyber Security notes – IGNOU
  • NITI Aayog Reports
  • India YearBook
  • Lok Sabha Question-Answers

How to Prepare for UPSC GS Paper 3 Syllabus?

Below mentioned are some tips and strategies to prepare for the GST 3 paper. 

  • Economic Development 

It is essential to have an in-depth understanding of the subject.  If you are already acquainted with the subject, you can start repairing immediately, but if you are new to it, go through the NCERT economics books (from Class 9 to 12). 

Also, go through the book on the Indian economy by Ramesh Singh, which will help you understand the subject. Make short notes on all the micro topics mentioned in the GS 3 syllabus. After making the notes, go through them regularly. 

  • Agriculture

For this paper, you should study the topic thoroughly and do note-making. Be aware of the new happenings. In the agricultural sector – about the subsidies being given to agricultural farmers, debates on minimum support prices. 

The newspaper Hindu will provide you with different viewpoints on this subject. Studying in a systematic manner, you will collect a lot of information on the subject and be able to answer well.

  • Science and Technology

Under this subject, usually analytical questions are asked. So, use the current affair compilation to gather information and apply this while answering the questions to make them substantive.

  • Security and Challenges 

Rely on the India Yearbook and the current affairs compilation to prepare for this subject. You will be able to gather substantial information and be able to tackle the questions. Study the map of India and get aware of the security threats to the country. Gather information on various security issues in detail.

  • Disaster Management

Follow the theory of disaster management from IGNOU notes to prepare for this subject. Also, rely on the chapters relating to disaster management mentioned in the India Yearbook.  Get aware of the guidelines issued by the National Disaster Management Authority (NDMA).  

More Useful Tips

  • Make weekly and monthly targets for the UPSC CSE preparation. In the weekly timetable, keep a fixed period for studying. 
  • For the monthly target, calculate the months left for the examination and divide the days between completing the syllabus and revision. 
  • Make revision a continuous process. 
  • Do not be deterred by hard work. 
  • As you continue preparing, you will gain confidence. 
  • Follow the schedule to complete your syllabus. Start solving previous years’ question papers and sample papers. 
  • This will make you more proficient and confident. 


We hope this article has been helpful in providing information on GS 3 Syllabus. The notification for the UPSC Civil Services will be released on 1st February 2023. The last date to apply for the exam is 21st February 2023. Candidates must keep checking the website for further updates on the examination. 


Frequently Asked Questions

When will the UPSC Main 2023 examination be conducted?

Answer:  The examination will be conducted on 15th September 2023.


What are the topics to be covered for GS 3 Syllabus – Economic Development paper?

Answer: The topics are: ...Read full

What are the subjects under GS 3 Syllabus?

Answer: The GS 3 paper contains topics on economic development, technology, bi...Read full

What are the topics under the Environment section in the GS 3 Syllabus?

Answer: The topics to be covered are: ...Read full