Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT): A fresh way to recruit candidates

in Civil

Since a very long time speculations of changes in system of recruitment of candidates in Indian Civil Services Examination have existed. Recently, UPSC recommended the government to replace the existing system of Civil Services (Preliminary Examination) with Civil Services Aptitude Test or CSAT. This has led to a lot of speculations and anxiety among the aspirants of Civil Services Examination.

Recently, in an Interview with frontline magazine, Mr V. P. Gupta of RAU’s IAS Study Circle talked about the possible reasons for the introduction of CSAT, probable syllabus and the impact on aspirants.

In his interview he spoke about the changes that the new system will come up with. He said that the new Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT) will be two objective type question series mandatory for all candidates. This examination would be conducted to check the candidates on their decision making skills and aptitude for civil services.

When asked about the content and syllabus, Mr Gupta made it clear that UPSC has constituted a committee under Prof. S.K. Khanna, former Vice chairman, University Grants Commission. On his observations UPSC will announce the content guidelines for CSAT level. He also made it clear that the transition to CSAT is not done in a day. He told that CSAT was advocated in 2001 by Dr Y. K. Alagh in his Civil Services Review Committee Report. It was Dr Alagh who promoted the idea of testing every candidate on a common ground rather than on optional subjects.

When asked about the content and syllabus, Mr Gupta made it clear that UPSC has constituted a committee under Prof. S.K. Khanna, former Vice chairman, University Grants Commission. On his observations UPSC will announce the content guidelines for CSAT level. He also made it clear that the transition to CSAT is not done in a day. He told that CSAT was advocated in 2001 by Dr Y. K. Alagh in his Civil Services Review Committee Report. It was Dr Alagh who promoted the idea of testing every candidate on a common ground rather than on optional subjects.

Taking about the recommendations of Dr Alagh, Mr Gupta enumerated the ideas like Basic awareness of the country and the world, Analytical skills and problem solving techniques and elementary arithmetic. He said it was Dr Alagh who talked about these things first and now the commission is making a note of it and is trying to draft the syllabus on these parameters.

Mr Gupta in his interview made it clear that whatever changes are made will restrict to the first level of examination. The aspect of main examination and interview will be dealt with old and traditional guidelines. He stressed of the fact that a lot of commissions and committee have stressed on the fact on aptitudes of the candidates rather than the knowledge of the subject and one area of specialization. He also highlighted that this process of CSAT is more fair and transparent and will enable the system to recruit better candidates.

Talking about the effect of CSAT on civil services aspirants, Mr Gupta tried to show the brighter side of CSAT to students. He said that no student should be apprehensive about the system; he also told that CSAT is not a regular admission test like CAT or MAT but this is a recruitment test that will enable a student to join the most elite ranks in Indian democracy. He was also happy with the fact that the new system will bestow the system a fresh and new look with humane and transparent touch.

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V.P. Gupta has 5 articles online

V.P. GUPTA, Director Rau’s IAS Study Circle has been a friend, philosopher and guide to many successful civil servants. He has a philosophy behind his work: to enjoy the journey of life. And his focus is on learning, education and bringing about a different approach to the business.

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Civil Services Aptitude Test (CSAT): A fresh way to recruit candidates

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This article was published on 2011/01/10