Karnataka Administrative Service(KAS) Exam Syllabus, Exam Pattern and Preparation Tips

The KPSC conducts the KAS exam every year to recruits candidates to various civil service posts at the district and state level. The recruited candidates will fill the vacancies for posts like Assistant Commandant, Police, Tahsildar and various Officer levels. The recruitment is suited for people eager to get government sector jobs in Karnataka. The main criteria are that the candidates should be willing to work anywhere in Karnataka and should be proficient in reading, writing and speaking in both English and Kannada. The exam-based selection is known as Karnataka Recruitment of Gazetted Probationers and Karnataka Administrative Services Exam. The KAS exam has three stages:

  •        Stage I. Preliminary Examination (Objective Type) for the Selection of candidates to the main examination.
  •        Stage II. Main Examination (Written Examination) for selection of candidates to the personality test.
  •        Stage III. Personality test: For the final selection of candidates to various posts.

The dates for the examinations will be published soon.

Eligibility Criteria for KAS exam   

  •     The candidate must be a citizen of India.
  •     Candidates must have graduated from a recognized university with a degree/ masters in relevant fields.
  •     The minimum age is 21 and the maximum is 35 in general. Category 2A, 2B, 3A, 3B: can have 38 years and SC/ ST/ Category-I: can have 40 years as the age.

KPSC KAS 2018 Exam Pattern

        KAS exam has three stages and the first two are written exams while the final round is an interview.

KAS Prelims Exam Pattern

  •        KPSC question paper will be in the set of both Kannada and English.
  •        There will be two papers for preliminary examination and each paper will have 100 questions.
  •        The question paper will consist of multiple choice objective type questions.
  •        Each question carries 2 marks and a negative marking of 0.25 for each incorrect answer.
  •        The standard of General Mental ability questions shall be at 10th and SSLC level and remaining papers are degree level.
  •        The total duration of the preliminary exam is 4 hours, with each paper having a duration of 2 hours.
PapersSubjectsNumber of questionsMarks
Paper - IGeneral Studies related to National and International importance4080
Paper- IIGeneral Studies related to state importance.4080
General Science and technology, environment and ecology.3060
General mental ability3060

KAS Main Exam 2018 Exam Pattern

  •        The question paper will be set in both Kannada and English.
  •        KPSC Mains Exam in descriptive mode.
  •        There will be two qualifying paper namely Kannada and English, candidates should secure minimum 35% for these papers.
  •        The qualifying papers mark is not counted for final merit.
  •        The number of Candidates to be admitted for the Mains Examination shall be 20 times of the total vacancies.



Qualifying Paper
Kannada1502 hours
English2502 hours

Compulsory Papers
Paper 1: Essay2503 hours
Paper 2: General Studies - I2503 hours
Paper 3: General Studies - II2503 hours
Paper 4: General Studies - III2503 hours
Paper 5: General Studies - IV2503 hours
Paper 6: Optional Subject - I2503 hours
Paper 7: Optional Subject - II2503 hours

KPSC KAS 2018 Exam Syllabus

Prelims Exam Syllabus

GS Paper I

  1.       Important current events of National and International level.
  2.      Humanities – History of India- refer the topic it’s multi-level aspects like social, economic, cultural and political aspects with the specs of Indian National Movement through special prominence on Karnataka.
  3.      Geography – India with a special attention on Karnataka and World Geography
  4.      Indian polity and Economy – including Indian Political system, rural development, Planning and economic reform in India, sustainable development, demographics, poverty allegation etc.

GS Paper II

  1.       Important current state events and State Government Programs
  2.      General Science & Technology, Environment & Ecology- recent innovations in Science and Technology.
  3.      General Mental Ability- Comprehension, Logical reasoning and Analytical ability, Decision Making, Problem-solving, Basic numeracy (numbers and its relation, order of magnitude etc.)  and data interpretation like charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc. (class X/SSLC level)

KAS Mains Exam syllabus

Paper SectionSyllabus
Paper 1: EssayTwo essays - in English and KannadaTopics of international and national importance

Paper 2: General Studies I
Section 1: History and Cultural Heritage ( India & Karnataka )Cultural Heritage of India, Toward transforming Indian Society: Major schools of thought. Modern Indian History – from the beginning of the 19th Century, Reforms and Reformers, From Kadambas to the Hoysalas. The Vijayanagara Empire and thereafter (1336-1799), Modern Mysore (1799-1947), Freedom Movement in Karnataka and Unification (1885-1956)
Section 2: Social and Political PerspectivePost Independent Karnataka, Social Change and Movements, Social Change and Modernisation, Government and Political System, Decentralisation of power, Socio-Economic System, Rural Social system and Rural Development
Section 3: Indian Economy – Planning- Rural DevelopmentIndian Economy, India and International economic relations, Development patterns, Planning – Planning goals, Decentralization, Rural Development, Rural Development Initiatives, 8. Data Collection Analysis- Interpretation.

Paper 3: General Studies II
Section 1: Physical Features and Natural ResourcesGeography of the world: Lithosphere,

Physiography of Continents and Demographic distribution.

Geography of India: Physiography of India, Industrial Planning and Development.

Geography of Karnataka: Physiographic divisions, Urban Land Use Policy and Urbanisation.
Section 2:  Overview of Indian ConstitutionNature of the Constitution, Fundamental rights, Distribution of Legislative powers, Unicameral and Bicameral legislations, Important Amendments of the Constitution, Welfare mechanism in India, Services under the Union and State.
Section 3:  Public Administration and Management – International Relations.Private and Public Administration, Structure of Organisation, Organisational Behaviour and Management Concepts, Formal and informal Organisation, Management Tools and Techniques, Administrative Reforms,  United Nations and Specialised Agencies.

Paper 4: General Studies III
Section 1:  Role and Impact of Science and Technology in Development of Indian, Information Technology In Public Domain.Basics of Science and Technology, Space Science and Technology,  Energy Resources, Disasters, Pests and Pollution, Related Perceptions, Knowledge Society, Rural Upliftment and Science & Technology.
Section 2:  Advancement and Modern Trends in Natural Sciences, Life Sciences, Agricultural Science, Health and HygieneNatural Science, Agriculture Science, Horticulture and Sericulture,  Initiatives in Biotechnology, Animal Husbandry (veterinary, dairy and fishery sciences),  Agriculture development policies, programs and trade, Agriculture development policies, programs and trade.
Section 3: Challenges and Issues of Development on Environment & Ecology.Environmental Segments, Natural Resources, EcoSystem and Biodiversity, Environment Pollution and Solid Waste Management, Role of Information Technology in Environment and Human Health, State community-civil society interface, Joint forest management system.

Paper 5: General Studies IV
Studies 1: EthicsEssence, determinants and consequences of ethics in human action, dimensions of ethics, ethics in private and public relationships. Ethics in public administration, status and problems, ethical dilemmas in government and private institutions, laws, rules, regulations and conscience as source of ethical guidance; Accountability and ethical governance, strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance, ethical issues in international relations and funding, corporate governance; Concept of public service, philosophical basis of governance, information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, codes of ethics, codes of conduct, citizen charters, work culture, quality of service delivery, utilization of public fund, challenges of corruption. Human values- lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders, reformers, administrators, Role of family, society, and educational institutions in inculcating values.
Section 2: IntegrityIntegrity, impartiality and non- partisanship, objectivity, dedication to public service, empathy, tolerance and compassion towards the weaker sections.
Section 3: AptitudeAptitude and foundational values for civil service, Content, structure, function, its relation with thoughts and behavior, moral and political attitudes, social influence and persuasion, Aptitude and foundational values for civil service, emotional intelligence and their utilities and application in administration and governance, contributions of moral thinkers from India and the world.
Paper 6: Optional Subjects IAgriculture, Agriculture Marketing, Sericulture and Cooperation, Animal Husbandry, Veterinary Sciences and Fisheries, Anthropology, Botany, Chemistry, Civil Engineering, Commerce and Accountancy, Economics, Electrical Engineering, Geography, Geology, History, Law, Management, Mathematics, ,Mechanical Engineering, Philosophy, Physics, Political Science and International Relations, Psychology, Public Administration. Sociology, Statistics, Zoology, Rural Development and Cooperation.
Paper 7: Optional Subjects IILiterature of any one of the following Languages.English, Hindi, Kannada, Urdu

Tips to prepare for KPSC KAS Exam

  •        To qualify the prelims, you should cover the topics at higher secondary and degree level and should be well updated on the current affairs.
  •        Read newspapers and journals every day to be informed on the latest news in various fields to perform well in the GK and current affairs sections.
  •        The candidates should be well versed in both English and Kannada be it reading, writing or speaking.
  •        For Mains, opt the subjects on which you have a strong knowledge and try to cover all the topics given in the syllabus while studying for it.
  •         Focus initially on the prelims as it determines your further entry into the other stages.
  •        Refer to NCERT and degree level prescribed textbooks while preparing for the prelims and other prescribed textbooks depending on the topics opted by you for the mains.
  •        Practice solving previous question papers  and mock tests to get an idea about the kind of questions asked and to learn to manage time.

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