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Strategy for Public Administration optional | UPSC Mains 2019

In these recent years scoring under Public Administration optional is really difficult. The main reason for this is the question papers are tough for this paper and relatively tough checking as well so it is better to plan and develop a proper strategy for the subject.

First of all opt for the subject only when you truly have interest in the subject not because people say it is easy and can be covered with ease.

Learn to enjoy reading theoretical and abstract stuff so as to develop perspective of administrative thinkers.

Read Indian polity as much as you can and go through it again and again, believe me it counts know what you know at the very least.

Try to have experience of working in an organization, to know about group management, organizational behavior and personnel management. It could be an Ngo so as you know more and understand more.

It is very easy to understand. But, to know it in a way such that you are able to express it beautifully on paper requires considerable time with the subject. You will need to read the same book again & again and until you memorize the entire vocabulary of Public Administration Optional, the job is not done.

Preferably make your own hand written notes in a compact format for Public Administration optional, so that revision becomes easier. It is also proved that matter written in your own handwriting can be remembered better.


Practice more on Public Administration optional and more mock tests and experiment with different answer writing techniques in these tests to know what suits your style (Paragraphs, Point wise description, few diagrammatic representations etc).

Get them evaluated by professionals that are related to the subject but also do give some answers to friends and well-wishers, to know if enough interest is generated with your answer, highlight important points that will be your answer.

Avoid general answers as you write in GS. They should be different. Use administrative terminology from the subject; quote thinkers and theories in your answer and explore the issue on administrative lines.

Try relating your answer with general theories and try to make comparisons between the policies of one country with another.

Finally avoid complicated language. Use Simple English in an administrative style with short sentences and relevant examples.

You should be able to state the concept clearly and precisely on paper and take a fair stand on issues after giving appropriate arguments and evidence from both sides. That much is enough.

Books to Refer

  1. Indian Administration – Ramesh K. Arora & Rajni Goyal.
  2. Indian Administration – S.R. Maheswari. 
  3. Administrative Theory – Avasti & Avasti
  4. Public Administration – Avasti & Maheswari.
  5. Administrative Thinkers – R. Prasad and Prasad. 
  6. Administrative Thinkers – S.R. Maheswari.
  7. Public Administration – Sadan and Sharma
  8. Local Government – S.R. Maheswari.
  9. New Horizons of Public Administration – Mohit Bhattacharya. 
  10. Public Administration Theory and concepts – Rumki Basu 
  11. Indian Constitution – D.D. Basup (or) Pandey. 
  12. Public Administration and Public Affairs – Nicholas Henry. 
  13. Modern Public Administration – Nigro and Nigro







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