Newspapers & Magazines - Read to retain for Civil Services Interview

Newspapers & Magazines – Read to retain for Civil Services Interview

Reading newspapers and magazines is an important part of preparations for the civil services main exams and all aspirants follow the norm but this habit is not to be maintained only for the prelims. Reading newspapers and magazines is equally important after the prelims when the candidates are all geared up to face the interview. Staying updated with the current happenings around the world is a vital aspect to be covered in the interview preparations. So, make it a point that you do not discontinue the habit when the prelims end. It will help you develop clarity of concepts, up-to-date knowledge of current affairs and important issue. When your preparation is strong, there are good chances that your interview will go well and you will be able to develop confidence while answering.

Make a wise pick

It is advised that you pick at least two standard national newspapers on a daily basis. Pick any two from the list and make sure you do not skip between the days:

- The Times of India
- The Hindu
- The Hindustan Times
- The Telegraph
- Indian Express
- Deccan Chronicle
- DNA, etc.

Also concentrate on the pages dedicated to your region, if these newspapers are published in your state since it is most likely to help you with the questions that would be asked on your state. E-papers are also available for most of these which can be of great help.

Magazines are also an excellent source for general awareness and for developing clarity of concepts with broader and simplified explanations of current affairs. They present expressive articles and different viewpoints of famous people. These are some of the most obliging magazines that you can pick from:

- Civil Services Chronicle
- Civil Services Times
- The Outlook
- Frontline
- Yojna
- Competition Wizard
- Economic & Political Weekly
- The Economist
- India Today, etc.

When to read newspapers and magazines

It is a good practice to read newspapers early in the morning when the mind is refreshed and you can gasp more than the rest of the day. If you are not much of a morning person, you can pick the hour of reading according to your comfort level making sure that you do not skip any day. Since newspapers and magazines are handy and can be carried with ease, you can read them anywhere when you are free like while waiting for the bus on the stop, or during the lunch breaks at work. The important thing is planning and allotting at least an hour every day to reading newspaper and another hour to magazine at any other time of the day.

How to read

Mark in the order of importance and make notes

The best practice is to go through the headlines first and then pick out the articles that have been in news continually or more than once or twice. Mark the significant ones and allot them a serial number. Begin with the most important articles or national or international concerns and gradually descend towards the lesser significant ones. You can also make notes or cut out scrapes of the important articles and preserve them in an organized way for future references.

Pay extra attention to finance and economic section

Pay extra attention to the finance and economic section of the newspaper. Read them carefully and preserve the articles related to issues that have been in news frequently. Rise in petrol prices, allotment of subsidies, industrial growth and statuses, etc. are issues that are of significance to the common people and for the economic development of the nation. As an aspirant of civil services, the interviewer will most likely want to check your knowledge and viewpoint on these aspects.

Preserve some magazine pages and refer frequently

Magazines can be of great help when you are analyzing different viewpoints on current issues of financial and economic state of the nation. Make notes of important articles covering these topics or simply cut out the page and preserve them for reference. Go through the pages of these retained articles frequently to develop clear understanding of the issues.

Things related to your profession or hobby require more attention

Pay extra attention to articles related to your answers in the examination form. If any of the current issues are related to your work or educational field, you are most likely to be asked questions related to them. Know the current trends of those fields and additional changes, if any, which have been made. For instance current affairs that relate to your hobby or your state are most predictable questions to be asked in the interview. Prepare for them really well.

Don’t pay heed to the articles with extreme views

You will find that some of the columns hold extreme views that are most argumentative – do not pay heed to them. Criticism and blame-game are not to be a part of your viewpoint when you are aspiring for the civil services interview. If you feel criticizing the government or an organization is required in your answer, then you can do so but along with the criticism, also recommend measures that could be implemented to resolve the issues.

Try forming balanced, unbiased, and polite views. Do not let the articles of newspapers and magazines change your views. People have different views on different issues and it is important that you uphold your stand and present it well before the interview board.
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