How many hours of study are required to crack the UPSC Civil Services Examination (CSE)? A simple YouTube search will show hundreds of videos from experts as well as aspirants.

Recently, IAS officer Awanish Sharan spoke out against the study vlogs that ask aspirants to study for more than 18 hours a day.

He stated the information to be “misleading” and that students aren’t required to study for such long hours. He further advised that aspirants should stay away from such blogs.

Many IAS officers have stressed the quality of study over quantity. Today, we have curated tips and standard plans adopted by IAS officers who reiterate the same.

Sourabh Bhawania, who cleared the exam in 2018 with an All India Rank of 113, says studying for hours is not mandatory to become an IAS.

While being a full-time parent and a working professional in the Reserve Bank of India (RBI), he would dedicate around four to five hours daily to studies.

“It does not matter if you are a parent or a working professional. Taking out five hours is not impossible. All you have to do is sustain the momentum,” he says.

“Do not let a small headache or a family function come in your way. Willpower and discipline are two of your biggest strengths, exploit them wisely. Set your goal and embark on it without fear and doubts,” he adds.

Meanwhile, Tina Dabi, who secured AIR 1 in the UPSC CSE 2015 by studying for seven hours daily, shares her advice.

She followed a three-hour and two-hour time slot schedule, in which she picked a subject and stayed with it for that time period.

“Those subjects that I felt required more time, I spent three hours on them, otherwise I spent two hours per subject. This helped me in concentrating as well,” she says.

“Remember, that the idea is not to sit in front of the books, but to ensure that the matter reaches our brains,” she adds.