UPSC Civil Services Mains Geography Paper-I of 1998


A Must Read for Civil Services Geography Optional of UPSC

For the civil services mains examination, UPSC provides 41 optional subjects. Each aspirant should select one optional paper of their choice and appear in two papers (Paper-I and Paper-II). Among these options, for a long time, Geography has been one of the most popular optional subjects among civil services aspirants. Though the syllabus is vast, it is equally preferred by engineering, science, art, and humanities graduates.

The first step to prepare for the Geography Optional is thoroughly reading and understanding the NCERT Geography Books. Even before that understanding the contents of each of the 10 NCERT Geography Books. With that in mind, the key topics covered in each of these books are given below for a high-level understanding before you dive deep into the option.



Time Allowed: Three Hours Maximum Marks: 300


Candidates should Questions 1 and 2 which are compulsory, and any three of the remaining questions selecting at least one question from each Section. All questions carry equal marks. Illustrate your answer with suitable sketch-maps and diagrams.

1. On the outline map of India provided, mark the following and write in not more than ten words in your answer-book, what you consider to be the most significant aspect of each one of them:
a. Hirakund Dam
b. Konkan Coast
c. Satpura Range
d. Narmada River
e. Lava Region
f. Paradip Port
g. Visakhapatnam
h. Lucknow
i. Chilka Lake
j. Bangalore

2. On the World map provided, mark the following and write in not more than ten words in your answer-book, what you consider to be the most significant aspect of each one of them:
a. Caspian Sea
b. Hwang Ho River
c. Gulf of Oman
d. Madagascar Island
e. Appalachian Mountain
f. Gibson Desert
g. Sicily Island
h. Palk Strait
i. Dogger Bank
j. Amazon River

3. Write short notes on any three of the following (each answer should be in about 200 words):
a. Soil genesis
b. Geomorphic processes
c. Locational Triangle
d. Types of Farming


1. Discuss the concept of volcanicity and show how the theory of Plate Tectonics explains the mechanism of volcanism and volcanic eruptions.

2. Discuss the nature and composition of earth's atmosphere.

3. Explain and illustrate the submarine relief of the Atlantic Ocean.


1. What is understood by quantification in Geography? Discuss the significance of
quantification in modern geographical studies with examples.

2. Explain the term resource management. Discuss its relevance in the context of global resource scarcity and the future of mankind.

3. Examine the impact of advanced agricultural technology on environment. Support your answer with examples.

Written by Venkadesh Narayanan, IRAS

He is a Mechanical Engineer and an MBA with over 30 years of experience in Consulting and Coaching Civil Services aspirants. He is a former member of Indian Civil Services (IRAS 2000 Batch) who opted for Geography and Psychology papers during his CS Mains.

Leave a Reply

    Success Is Just One Click Away

    Don't feel like calling? Just share some details about your SOP Requirements & Fhyzics representative will get in touch with you. Schedule A Meeting with our Manager