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Geology Preparation Strategy for UPSC Optional
Geology is one of the optional subjects offered by UPSC. It is not a famous subject like history or public administration. Hence there are many students who opted geology as their optional & cleared the exam. The crowd for this subject is very less as this is a specialized subject.
Our article will tell you about geology as an optional subject & some tips & strategies you need to follow during your preparation.
What is Geology?
Geology is the study of the Earth, the materials of which it is made, the structure of those materials, and the processes acting upon them. It includes the study of organisms that have inhabited our planet. An important part of geology is the study of how Earth’s materials, structures, processes, and organisms have changed over time.
Benefits of Geology
Everything comes with some added advantages. So the benefits of choosing geology as your optional are discussed below:
- It is highly scoring subject, you can easily score well in this exam if you prepare well.
- This subject is very easy to understand. If you focus on this subject you will get to know that you just have to clear with the basic concepts else everything will be easy for you.
- This is a scientific subject so there is no role of the interpretation of the answer by the examiner, unlike other subjects.
- The questions in UPSC CSE are very tricky, but the questions of this subject are more straightforward rather than tricky. If you are clear with the concepts then there is no need for hesitation.
- The last but biggest advantage is that there is less competition in this subject as compared to other subjects. The students who have a deep knowledge of this subject only choose this subject as their optional which removes the unnecessary crowd.
Syllabus of Geology
Geology consists of two exams with 250 marks each. So it is necessary to score well if you want to clear the exam. For this, you have to read deeply the syllabus. So some of the main points of the syllabus are given below.
- General Geology
- Remote Sensing
- Structural Geology
- Indian Stratigraphy
- Engineering Geology
- Metamorphic Petrology
- Sedimentary Petrology
- Economic Geology
- Mining Geology
- Environmental Geology
Strategy for Geology
- While preparing for this subject start your preparation with the thorough reading of the syllabus. Read the syllabus carefully & do not leave any single section.
- After that start according to your understanding & need, choose the relevant study material for you.
- Then start making notes. You have to write every important thing you read. As you will study from books or other sources it is necessary to make notes. The proper notes will help you in your revision & you will easily get to know about the entire syllabus.
- Next thing is that this is dynamic paper, so you have to stay updated with the recent news. So read a newspaper daily to keep updated with recent current affairs. The questions in the exam will be based on current affairs related to geology. So always remain updated with the recent news related to geology.
- After this, the important thing is general awareness. So try to read a good guidebook or a yearbook for this section.
Answer Writing Strategy
Your answers are the only way which helps you to get good marks. So some of the tips or points which you should consider while writing an answer are:
- While writing long answers, start your answer with a direct or indirect introduction. Firstly introduce the topic & then write about it. You can also start with some quotes related to your question.
- After introduction gives a proper definition of the topic. The definition should be exact & to the point.
- After that, you have to explain your topic. For this, you can relate the topic to the real world examples or you can also give some links to the other chapters. But stay focused on the topic. Do not go beyond the topic.
- Next thing is to make diagrams wherever necessary. The diagrams will help you to fetch marks. If you don’t know much or you cannot write long on the topic. Then make sure you will draw a diagram related to that. Diagrams will make your answer better & different from the others.
- When you were ending your answer then remember, always end your answer with a positive thought. The ending of your answer should be visionary. You can write some solutions about the problem or give some examples if needed.
- Always remember do not follow the same pattern while writing an answer. Write your answers in bullet points as well as in paragraphs. Your answer should be a mixture of points & paragraphs. If possible give some relevant examples but try to rephrase the examples in your words rather than using it again & again.
- For short answers, you can start writing the definition of the topic & then directly start explaining it. After definition, you can directly hit the core.
- If you don’t know how to write an answer & if you want to improve the quality of your answer, then join some test series. It is necessary to join test series as this will give you a proper idea about the exam pattern & questions.
Reference Books/ Reference Material
- Deccan Traverses: The Making of Bangalore’s Terrain-Mathur, Anuradha & Cunha, Dilip Da
- Dimensions of Himalayan Geology- Biyani, A.K.
- Early Man in Eastern Himalayas: North-East India and Nepal- Sharma, A. K.
- Earthquake Disaster Reduction: Masonry Buildings, Design, and Construction- Arya, Anand S.
- Encyclopedia of Fish and Fisheries- Anand, Vishal
- Encyclopedia of Geology- Yadgiri, Vaishali
- Foreland Sedimentation in Himalayan Tectonic Regime: A Relook at the Orogenic Process- V. Riverman
- Marine Geology: A Scenario around Indian Coasts- T.K. Mallik
- Metallogenesis of Manganese Ores of Srikakulam-Visakhapatnam Belt- Siddiqui, F.N.
- Mine Closure- Naresh Chandra Saxena
- Poisonous Snakes- F. Wall
- Remote Sensing and GIS for Natural Resource Management-Bir Abhimanyu Kumar
- Remote Sensing in Geomorphology- Ramasamy, S.M.
- Soil Chemistry: Basic Concepts- G. Byju
- The Evolution and Classification of Soils-Raman, E. & Whittles, C.L. (Tr.)
- The Ice Age in the Indian Subcontinent and Associated Human Culture-Terra, H. De. & Paterson, T.T.
- Concise Glossary of Geology- Mathur, S.M.
- Himalaya: Geological Aspect, Vol. 5-P.S. Saklani (Ed.)
- Himalaya: Geological Aspects, Vol. 1 & 2 – P.S. Saklani
- Himalaya: Geological Aspects, Vol. 3- Saklani, P.S. (Ed.)
- Himalaya: Geological Aspects, Vol. 4 / Saklani, P.S. (Ed.)
- History and Culture of the Himalaya, 3 Vols- Gulia, K. S
- Hydrocarbon Potential and Exploration Strategy of Cauvery Basin, India- J.N. Sahu
- Inland Fisheries: Ecology and Management- Welcome, R. L
- Geological Maps- D.K. Awasthi
- Geology and Evolution of the Indian Plate- Naqvi, S.M.
If you have any doubt or need guidance you can comment below, our team will try to answer it.