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Psychology Optional

I didn't find a thread for Psychology Optional, so starting a new one!

Please do mention your resources, strategy and any good test series, if you're taking one

My resources

Paper 1

1. Robert Baron and Cicarelli

2. AK Singh

Paper 2

1. Smarak Swain 

GaryVee , Freakhoto and 6 others like this


Thanks @Kasturi22 for creating this page. 

I am completely new to the subject. Started my preparation from basics. Went through some basic video lectures on Youtube to understand the evolution of Psychology. I also watched a few lectures of Yale psychology course as mentioned by Metali Sethi in one of her articles but didn't find it much relevant. I have started with NCERT and would be continuing with Baron and Smarak Swain after completing NCERT as mentioned by most of the toppers. 

@shubham543 You can skip NCERT and read Baron directly. May be once you complete Baron, you can have a look at NCERT.

@shubham543 You can skip NCERT and read Baron directly. May be once you complete Baron, you can have a look at NCERT.

Aftwr going through learning chapter from baron and ciceralli ... i think cocerralli is very far better than baron of on has no class acess.

@PSY Both are good. Few chapters are explained well in Cicarelli and few in Baron. We can cover both the books


as seen syllabus and toppers short notes for psychology based upon my interest after seeing the syllabus 

here i want to know about steps for clear pscyhology optional 

1. Test series 

2.paper 2 additional startegy

3. myth removal startegy on psychology optional since not number of persons are opted 


Getting 104-107 from various keys but CSAT is hanging in the balance, so maybe or maybe not! :P

How did your exam go?


Same. 106- 108

But csat is troubling

Anyways, whats your plan of action for psychology?

GaryVee, Un_Worded
Same case with me, getting 100+ in GS but I don't think I will be able to cross 66.66 marks in CSAT. Currently, I am getting around 65 marks and only passages can save me, all depends on UPSC key now.
Still, I will study baron at least till result.
GaryVee, Un_Worded

@Oasis @Todd_Chavez 

There's nothing we can do about CSAT (keys are bound to vary). We would have to accept that there will be no clarity for the next 40 days.

The best course of action is to move forward with the assumption that we will be in, otherwise if we squander these crucial days, the regret will haunt us forever, if we do clear.

I have not decided on the course of action as such (was taking a break of a day or two) but I feel the approach should be heavily based on PYQs and answer writing.

Analysing the PYQs (sorted by topic) would give us a list of focus areas and so we can prepare those areas first and augment what we read in books from further internet research on these topics (for recent studies, etc).

We can also prepare a list of important studies and experiments that can be used in our answers. There are some fundamental theories like those on attitude change and so on, which can be used in different answers, especially in Paper 2. So we can compile a list of such things as well.

Do let me know what have you guys planned! :blush:

Also, please tag me in your comments on this thread. I don't get any notifications from this thread (even though I am following this thread) unless someone tags me!
@Oasis @Todd_Chavez  @GaryVee same situation of borderline. didn't take 2nd paper seriously. Lets wait. I am Doing pyq and practice.


Congrats! I am also IN. :grin:


Congrats guys. All the best for mains. I am preparing for next year. Please suggest me some good online practice test series . 

How you guys are making notes of paper 1

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