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UPSC Syllabus for IAS Preliminary & Mains-Geography exam

Indian Civil Service Exam (Preliminary & Mains) Syllabus – Geography-09

Indian Civil Service Exam (Preliminary) Syllabus – Geography

Section-A

Physical Georgraphy

i) Geomorphology

  • Origin of the earth; Geological Time Scale; Interior of the earth; Types and characteristics of rocks; Folding and Faulting; Volcanoes; Earthquakes; Weathering; Landforms caused by fluvial, aeolian and glacial actions.

ii) Climatology

  • Structure and composition of atmosphere; Temperature; Pressure belts and Wind systems; Clouds and rainfall types; Cyclones and anti-cyclones; Major climatic types.

iii) Oceanography

  • Ocean relief; Temperature; Salinity; Ocean deposits; Ocean currents, El Nino and La Nino; Waves and tides.

iv) Biogeography

  • Origin and types of soils; Major biomes of the world; Ecosystem and food chain; Environmental degradation and conservation.

Section-B

Human Geography

i) Man and Environment Relationship

  • Growth and development of Human Geography; Concepts of Determinism and Possibilism.

ii) Population

  • Races of mankind and tribes; growth and distribution of world population; migration; population problems of developed and developing countries.

iii) Economic Activities

  • Food gathering and hunting; pastoral herding; fishing and forestry; Types of agriculture-shifting, subsistence, commercial and plantation; Mining, Power; Manufacturing -locational factors of textile, iron and steel, sugar and fertilizer industries; Tertiary activities-trade, transport, communication and services.

iv) Settlements

  • Origin, types and patterns of rural settlements; Processes of urbanisation; morphology and functional classification of towns; million-cities and mega-cities.

Section-C

Geography of the World

  1. Major Natural Regions : Characteristics, economic base and human adaptation.
  2. Regional Geography of Developed Countries : Canada, U.S.A., Western Europe, Russia, Japan, Australia and New Zealand.
  3. Regional Geography of Developing Countries : S.E. Asia, S.W. Asia, China, Southern Africa and Brazil.
  4. Regional Geography of South Asia.

Section-D

Geography of India

i) Physical Setting

  • Landforms, drainage, climate, soils and natural vegetation.

ii) Economic Base

  • Minerals & energy resources, aquatic resources, forest resources; irrigation, agriculture and industries; trade and commerce.

iii) Population

  • Growth, distribution and density; demographic characteristics.

iv) Environmental problems, developmental issues and regional planning.

Section-E

Geographical Thought

  1. Ancient Period : Contributions of Indians, Greeks, Romans and Arabs.
  2. Pre-Modern Period : Contribution of Verenius, Kant, Humboldt and Ritter.
  3. Modern Period : Dichotomy of determinism and possibilism; contributions of Ratzel, Semple, Huntington and La Blache.
  4. Recent Period : Quantitive Revolution; Radicalism, Behaviouralism and Humanism.

Section-F

Techniques of Geographical Analysis

  1. Maps : Scale and types, uses.
  2. Diagrams : Types and uses
  3. Projections : Types, characteristics and uses.
  4. Remote sensing and geographical information system (GIS) : Aerial photographs and imagery, GIS.

Civil Service Exam Syllabus for IAS Main Exam – Geography – Paper –I &  II

Paper-I

Principles of Geography

Physical Geography:

  1. Geomorphology:Factors controlling landform development; endogenetic and exogenetic forces; Origin and evolution of the earth’s crust; Fundamentals of geomagnetism; Physical conditions of the earth’s interior; Geosynclines; Continental drift; Isostasy; Plate tectonics; Recent views on mountain building; Vulcanicity; Earthquakes and Tsunamis; Concepts of geomorphic cycles and Landscape development ; Denudation chronology; Channel morphology; Erosion surfaces; Slope development ; Applied Geomorphology : Geohydrology, economic geology and environment.
  1. Climatology:Temperature and pressure belts of the world; Heat budget of the earth; Atmospheric circulation; atmospheric stability and instability. Planetary and local winds; Monsoons and jet streams; Air masses and fronto genesis, Temperate and tropical cyclones; Types and distribution of precipitation; Weather and Climate; Koppen’s, Thornthwaite’s and Trewartha’s classification of world climates; Hydrological cycle; Global climatic change and role and response of man in climatic changes, Applied climatology and Urban climate.
  2. Oceanography:Bottom topography of the Atlantic, Indian and Pacific Oceans; Temperature and salinity of the oceans; Heat and salt budgets, Ocean deposits; Waves, currents and tides; Marine resources: biotic, mineral and energy resources; Coral reefs, coral bleaching; sea-level changes; law of the sea and marine pollution.
  3. Biogeography:Genesis of soils; Classification and distribution of soils; Soil profile; Soil erosion, Degradation and conservation; Factors influencing world distribution of plants and animals; Problems of deforestation and conservation measures; Social forestry; agro-forestry; Wild life; Major gene pool centres.
  4. Environmental Geography:Principle of ecology; Human ecological adaptations; Influence of man on ecology and environment; Global and regional ecological changes and imbalances; Ecosystem their management and conservation; Environmental degradation, management and conservation; Biodiversity and sustainable development; Environmental policy; Environmental hazards and remedial measures; Environmental education and legislation.

Human Geography:

  1. Perspectives in Human Geography: Areal differentiation; regional synthesis; Dichotomy and dualism; Environmentalism; Quantitative revolution and locational analysis; radical, behavioural, human and welfare approaches; Languages, religions and secularisation; Cultural regions of the world; Human development index.
  2. Economic Geography: World economic development: measurement and problems; World resources and their distribution; Energy crisis; the limits to growth; World agriculture: typology of agricultural regions; agricultural inputs and productivity; Food and nutrition problems; Food security; famine: causes, effects and remedies; World industries: locational patterns and problems; patterns of world trade.
  3. Population and Settlement Geography: Growth and distribution of world population; demographic attributes; Causes and consequences of migration; concepts of over-under-and optimum population; Population theories, world population problems and policies, Social well-being and quality of life; Population as social capital.

Types and patterns of rural settlements; Environmental issues in rural settlements; Hierarchy of urban settlements; Urban morphology: Concepts of primate city and rank-size rule; Functional classification of towns; Sphere of urban influence; Rural – urban fringe; Satellite towns; Problems and remedies of urbanization; Sustainable development of cities.

  1. Regional Planning: Concept of a region; Types of regions and methods of regionalisation; Growth centres and growth poles; Regional imbalances; regional development strategies; environmental issues in regional planning; Planning for sustainable development.
  2. Models, Theories and Laws in Human Geography: Systems analysis in Human geography; Malthusian, Marxian and demographic transition models; Central Place theories of Christaller and Losch;Perroux and Boudeville; Von Thunen’s model of agricultural location; Weber’s model of industrial location; Ostov’s model of stages of growth. Heartland and Rimland theories; Laws of international boundaries and frontiers.

Paper-II

Geography of India

  1. Physical Setting: Space relationship of India with neighboring countries; Structure and relief; Drainage system and watersheds; Physiographic regions; Mechanism of Indian monsoons and rainfall patterns, Tropical cyclones and western disturbances; Floods and droughts; Climatic regions; Natural vegetation; Soil types and their distributions.
  2. Resources: Land, surface and ground water, energy, minerals, biotic and marine resources; Forest and wild life resources and their conservation; Energy crisis.
  1. Agriculture:Infrastructure: irrigation, seeds, fertilizers, power; Institutional factors: land holdings, land tenure and land reforms; Cropping pattern, agricultural productivity, agricultural intensity, crop combination, land capability; Agro and social-forestry; Green revolution and its socio- economic and ecological implications; Significance of dry farming; Livestock resources and white revolution; aqua – culture; sericulture, apiculture and poultry; agricultural regionalisation; agro-climatic zones; agro- ecological regions.
  2. Industry: Evolution of industries; Locational factors of cotton, jute, textile, iron and steel, aluminium, fertilizer, paper, chemical and pharmaceutical, automobile, cottage and agro – based industries; Industrial houses and complexes including public sector undertakings; Industrial regionalisation; New industrial policies; Multinationals and liberalization; Special Economic Zones; Tourism including eco -tourism.
  3. Transport, Communication and Trade: Road, railway, waterway, airway and pipeline networks and their complementary roles in regional development; Growing importance of ports on national and foreign trade; Trade balance; Trade Policy; Export processing zones; Developments in communication and information technology and their impacts on economy and society; Indian space programme.
  4. Cultural Setting: Historical Perspective of Indian Society; Racial, linguistic and ethnic diversities; religious minorities; major tribes, tribal areas and their problems; cultural regions; Growth, distribution and density of population; Demographic attributes: sex-ratio, age structure, literacy rate, work-force, dependency ratio, longevity; migration (inter-regional, intra- regional and international) and associated problems; Population problems and policies; Health indicators.
  5. Settlements: Types, patterns and morphology of rural settlements; Urban developments; Morphology of Indian cities; Functional classification of Indian cities; Conurbations and metropolitan regions; urban sprawl; Slums and associated problems; town planning; Problems of urbanization and remedies.
  6. Regional Development and Planning: Experience of regional planning in India; Five Year Plans; Integrated rural development programmes; Panchayati Raj and decentralised planning; Command area development; Watershed management; Planning for backward area, desert, drought prone, hill, tribal area development; multi-level planning; Regional planning and development of island territories.
  7. Political Aspects: Geographical basis of Indian federalism; State reorganisation; Emergence of new states; Regional consciousness and inter state issues; international boundary of India and related issues; Cross border terrorism; India’s role in world affairs; Geopolitics of South Asia and Indian Ocean realm.
  8. Contemporary Issues: Ecological issues: Environmental hazards: landslides, earthquakes, Tsunamis, floods and droughts, epidemics; Issues relating to environmental pollution; Changes in patterns of land use; Principles of environmental impact assessment and environmental management; Population explosion and food security; Environmental degradation; Deforestation, desertification and soil erosion; Problems of agrarian and industrial unrest; Regional disparities in economic development; Concept of sustainable growth and development; Environmental awareness; Linkage of rivers; Globalisation and Indian economy.

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