Top 9 IAS Interview questions asked by UPSC Panel and their tactful answers

To help you understand the type and style of questions being asked in the IAS interview, we have listed the top 9 IAS Interview questions and their tactful answers below:

  1. Interviewer: Tell me about yourself? or Give a brief introduction about yourself.
    This is probably the most standard question asked in almost every interview and not only for civil services exams. If you are asked this question, you can begin by giving a brief background about your family, personal information, academic qualification and professional engagements. The information should be precise and to the point without any ambiguities, when compared to the resume or information you have already provided to the panel.
  2. Why do you want to become an IAS Officer?
    This is another standard IAS interview question that aspirants face which is aimed at bringing out not only the candidate's goals as an IAS officer but also indicates the clarity of thought in this regards. Although considered to a common question, this is one of the most important ones, as it gives a brief overview to the panelists about your passion, goals, interests and the motivation that has driven you up to this point to join the civil services. Therefore, it is advised that aspirants do some preparation for this question.
  3. There is one scooter. It has 2 tyres and one stepni (spare tyre). Each tyre can run 5 km. How long a scooter can run?
    3 tyres, each can run 5 km = total 15 km. However, at any time, you need 2 tyres. Hence, the total maximum distance that can be covered = 15/2 = 7.5 km. To achieve the maximum distance. Let the 3 tyres be A, B and C.
    Run on A and B for 2.5 km (remaining: A = 2.5, B = 2.5, C = 5)
    Run on B and C for 2.5 km (remaining: A = 2.5, B = 0, C = 2.5)
    Run on A and C for 2.5 km (remaining: A = 0, B = 0, C = 0)
  4. Can you name three consecutive days without using the words Wednesday, Friday or Sunday?
    Yesterday, Today and Tomorrow.

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  5. Interviewer: Fill this cup with the water.
    Candidate: Poured some water into a cup and it overflowed slightly.
    Interviewer: “nervous”?
    Candidate: “No sir, I always give my 110%”.
  6. How can you drop a raw egg onto a concrete floor without cracking?
    Concrete floors are very hard to crack! Read more Brain Teaser Interview questions and their answers
  7. Interviewer ordered a cup of coffee for the candidate. Coffee arrived and was kept before the candidate. What is before you?
    The candidate answered that Alphabet ‘T’ comes before ‘U’ and therefore T is before U.
    Explanation: Generally, a candidate would answer this with ‘Coffee’, however knowing that the panelist had ordered the coffee only to create the scenario whereby he could invoke this question needs some innovative thinking. The perfect answer to this question would be to completely ignore the coffee and look for an explanation in some other place. The candidate, who got selected, said ‘Tea’ is in front of him, and explained that alphabet ‘T’ comes before ‘U’ and therefore T is before U.
  8. How easy it is to weigh a fish?
    Sir, it has its own scales.
  9. Interviewer: You are driving along in your car on a wild, stormy night, it’s raining heavily, when suddenly you pass by a bus stop, and you see 3 people waiting for a bus:
    1. An old lady who looks as if she is about to die.
    2. An old friend who once saved your life.
    3. The perfect partner you have been dreaming about.
    Which one would you choose to offer a ride to, knowing very well that there could only be one passenger in your car?

    This was a hypothetical scenario created that was once actually used as part of a job application. You could pick up the old lady, because she is going to die, and thus you should save her first; or you could take the old friend because he once saved your life, and this would be the perfect chance to pay him back. However, you may never be able to find your perfect mate again. The candidate who was selected had no trouble coming up with his answer. Guess what his answer was?

    Candidate: I would give the car keys to my old friend and let him take the lady to the hospital. I would stay behind and wait for the bus with the partner of my dreams.

Finally, few tips for aspirants appearing for UPSC Interview

  • Interview is unpredictable and clearly some luck is involved.
  • Success Stories – How to Crack Civil Services?
  • Your attire is irrelevant as long as you are neatly dressed.
  • They may be looking for some key words and specific points in your answers and they will reward you plentifully if they get it from your mouth.
  • UPSC Interview – Reading Books as a hobby!
  • Be confident. Take mock sessions. Dress neatly. Forget about how you did the exam and do your best!