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Approach to Prepare DAF questions In Interview

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  • Published
    25th Mar, 2021

UPSC Interview is the last and most vital phase of civil services exam. This is the step where a candidate is supposed to express his knowledge and ideas before a panel that has usually comprising of 5 members. The panel is having a chairman and 4 other members. The panelists hail from diverse backgrounds and most often they are senior bureaucrats, UPSC members, distinguished academicians and psychoanalysts. The interview carries 275 marks out of 2025 marks. The marks obtained by the candidate in the Civil Services Mains Exam does not decide the course of interview however the marks obtained in the IAS Interview is added in the final list of merit. The interview phase of the civil services exam is intended to assess certain merits in the civil services aspirants that are required him to become a future bureaucrat. The interview usually lasts for 30 minutes and in this time one has to prove himself suitable before an interview board that he is capable of becoming a good civil servant.

Most of the civil services aspirants usually have a misconception that the UPSC Interview is a test of knowledge. However personality test is not intended to test individual’s knowledge but certain traits in his personality that are required to make him a skilled administrator. The interview panel usually observes how a candidate approaches a problem put before him. Another rumor that mongers is that the panel awards marks subjectively. The members of the panel are highly objective and marks awarded are based on his/her performance and personality traits.

During personality test the candidates are tested on the basis of intelligence, attentiveness, balance of judgment and certain human qualities like honesty, integrity and leadership. The Union Public Services Commission constituted Kothari Committee. The committee recommended certain set of qualities that should be rated during personality test of a candidate. These qualities are as follows:

  1. Expression Clarity
  2. Reasoning ability
  3. Appreciation of different point of views.
  4. Awareness and concern for socio-economic problems
  5. Range and depth of interests and personal attributes relevant to interaction with people.

While approaching for UPSC DAF or detailed application form there are certain set of guidelines to be followed while filling up this form as most of the questions raised by interview panel based on individual’s DAF. Sometimes it has been seen that the entire personality test revolves around the questions based on DAF. Now the very obvious question arises that how to fill the DAF so that one doesn’t commit any mistake while filling DAF. DAF is a horoscope of one’s personality. We are sharing some basic guidelines that is needed to be kept in mind at the time of filling DAF

Analysis of vital details asked and given in DAF:

Personal Details: This is the area having maximum potential. The entire personality test is based on this portion. As the interview starts the panelists try to assess certain personality traits from individual’s personal details. Personal details can raise multiple questions. For e.g., meaning of your name, your date of birth and its historical importance, the place you were born in, the state to which you belong etc. Sometimes questions may hover from the choice of the UPSC Examination centre such as why have you chosen this centre?

Questions from the chosen UPSC Optional Subjects are also common especially if they are different from the subjects of graduation. If you have changed your optional subject in the last attempt you should be ready with the questions about changing optional.

They may also enquire about the reason of choosing the particular optional subject.

Educational Qualifications: Interview panel may also be curious about educational achievements, educational institutions attended by an individual. If any individual have some great educational accomplishments then the panelists may raise questions regarding the selection of civil services as a career option.

Sometimes an individual may not have extraordinary performance in their academics, this might invoke curiosity among the panelists and they will try to know the reasons behind such bad performance. In this scenario it is important to be honest and stop try to manipulate the answer of such questions. In the case of any kind of fabrication in the answer may cast bad impression upon the panelists.

If an aspirant is having technical or medical background the question may arise that why is he willing to join civil services as he can serve the nation by becoming a good engineer or doctor too.  The most potent question may also be that how can he be helpful by becoming civil servant as an engineer or doctor if he succeed. The most pertinent question may be about the brain drain before an aspirant passed out from IIT or IIM.

Employment Details: Most of the candidates have service background or they are in the employment at the time of interview. The questions may be asked from your job profile and responsibilities

Order of Preferences Details: In case of unusual preferences in the DAF for example- IPS over IAS or, IRS over IPS, the questions might be asked regarding such unusual preferences.

Hobbies and Interests: The candidates are often supposed to convince the interviewers about the hobbies and interests mentioned by him in his DAF. It is advisable not to manipulate hobbies or concocting stories about hobby as it may result you to stick in an uncomfortable situation and finally getting lesser marks in personality test. So it is extremely important to defend hobbies and interests and that should be of genuine nature too.

It is very important to revise your DAF as many times as possible as DAF describe your personality and traits. If you are not able to answer the questions based on DAF it may cast a bad impression on the interviewers.


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