UPSC Interview: Do’s and Don’ts


Give RespectFor your age is the experience of the board members, so show respect by body language and words.

Speak truthfully: Truthfully style your answers to sound original, while maintaining your professionalism.

Be Ready to Justify: If you are going to negate the interviewer’s statement, you should be able to justify the same.

Sleep Well: Sleep well before the interview. You cannot learn new stuff in the last minute and you should be “fresh” during the interview. Your ability to think quickly and to concentrate on the questions is very important.

It’s a Conversation: Always think of the Interview as the Conversation and be logical and rational in the answers that you give and make sure you are up to date in Current Affairs.

Accept the fact that mistakes will happen: The board isn’t looking for perfect; they’re looking for flexibility and resilience. “Taking the pressure off the perfection valve will help you perform better and will show that you can have grace under fire.

    • Enjoy meeting the board members and the interview
    • Express enthusiasm and optimism
    • Be clear and concise – answer factual questions as succinctly as possible
    • Remain professional at all times
    • Listen carefully and try to respond to what you have heard
    • If you don’t know an answer. Say so
    • Be modestly confident, dwell on the positive
    • Pick up clues and react
    • Be flexible
    • Be natural, sincere, and straightforward.
    • Be logically consistent and analyse things rationally.


Don’t Blabber: Take time to reflect before answering a difficult question. If you are unsure how to answer a question, you might want to reply honestly.

Don’t panic: At times, the Board members might pile pressure upon you. Avoid negative body language. The interviewer wants to see how you react under pressure. Try to avoid signs of nervousness and tension.

Don’t criticize: Avoid criticizing any government policies/programs or mentioning any individuals.

    • Seem overly eager or desperate
    • Talk too much or too little
    • Interrupt
    • Bluff your way through an answer
    • Give long introductions
    • Attempt to draw out the interview
    • Try to be funny or cute
    • Bring up negative view on race, religion, or politics
    • Be overconfident or overbearing
    • Be coy or subservient
    • Be rigid and Vague
    • Avoid technical jargon
    • Fall into the too much information  trap – only provide what is applicable to the question.

More to come ?

Source: Forum IAS