Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity & Climate Change is the most unsettling part for civil services aspirants. There are many reasons behind this. The first & foremost being that there is no study material which can be thought of as concrete or complete in itself.


Ever since, the preliminary examination for Indian Forest Services (IFS) has been clubbed with Civil Services Prelims, the weightage allocated to this section has considerably increased.

Naturally, it calls for greater attention. IAS Aspirants can no longer afford to overlook this section. Hence, we have consolidated a concise action plan for upcoming IAS Prelims 2016 Examination for the section of Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity and Climate Change.

IAS Prelims 2016: Introduction to Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity and Climate Change.

In this blog, we attempt to suggest the best strategy to prepare for Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity & Climate Change.

Kindly remember, this blog includes ways to prepare for IAS Prelims 2016 only. Needless to say that we shall cover the IAS Mains Exam Prep later on.

If you have been reading our previous blogs on “ How to prepare for IAS Pre 2016 in 90 Days ”, you’d know by now that these figures are considerably higher than any other section. As we know 13-31 questions out of 100 have usually been asked from this section. Hence, this section cannot be ignored for IAS Prelims 2016.

If you manage to score well in this section, there’s very little additional effort required to crack IAS Prelims 2016 examination. So, how do you score well in this section?

Answer is simple. MAKE A PLAN!
Selecting the right resources:
Be it Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity & Climate Change section or any other, when it comes to IAS Prelims, your preparation depends mostly on the right resources. Hence, you first step should be identifying the correct study material.

We are listing the best set of books that would help you score well in this section of IAS Prelims 2016 Examination.

NCERT Geography – Std VI to Std XI
NCERT Science – Std VII to Std X
NCERT Economy – Std XI
NCERT Biology – Std XII
NCERT Chemistry – Std XII
Shankar IAS – Environment ( Download )
Notes from NIOS
ICSE Books- Std X & XI
India Year Book
Orient Blackswan School Atlas
Hindu Official website
Environmental Studies For Undergraduate Courses by Erach Bharucha
Ecology and environment by P. D. Sharma .
Down to Earth Magazine
Science Reporter
Economic Survey of India

Official Website of Environment Ministry:

( for short cut preparation only if you’re not able to refer these resources refer TMH GS Manual Ecology & Shankar IAS Notes and Hindu last 1 year current news)

Devote your time on the study material mentioned above. But you have to strategically place these chapters and books in your daily study hours in order to improve your chances of cracking IAS Exam 2016.

Can’t make an exam strategy on your own? Let us help you!

Correct Approach: Exam Preparation Strategy for IAS Prelims 2016

Following a series of well-defined steps towards exam preparation goes a long way. For IAS Prelims 2016, you definitely need one foolproof plan.

Here are 6 steps which every aspirant must follow if he/ she wishes to improve in the subjects of Ecology, Environment, Biodiversity and Climate Change.

Step 1: You can begin building your basics from NIOS study material. These are available for free on the internet.

Step 2: Once you are done with these, you may jump to NCERTs listed above. Only selective chapters relevant for Ecology, Environment & Biodiversity are to be read.

Step 3: After completing Step 1 & 2, look at the previously asked questions from Ecology, Environment & Biodiversity section of IAS Prelims Examination. You’d realise that there are plenty of terms and concepts, you’d still be unaware of.

To gap that bridge, take up any of these following books :

Shankar IAS’s Environment
Environmental Studies For Undergraduate Courses by Erach Bharucha

Ecology and environment by P. D. Sharma

We recommend Shankar IAS’s Environment to all our readers. It is the closest thing to a concrete material on this subject that you would find for IAS Preparation. Read it from cover to cover.

Step 4: If you find yourself stuck somewhere or need simpler explanation of various terms, treaties, conventions etc, look it up on

Meanwhile, as you complete each book step by step, never forget to practise question papers alongside. You may not be scoring as per expectations and some of the questions might come to you as totally alien. But this should not deter you. At this stage, you should focus on getting the questions on the basics of Ecology, Environment & Biodiversity right.

Step 5: After you complete the above mentioned steps, take up the India Year Book for that particular year.

For instance, if you wish to attempt CSE, 2016, you should take up IYB, 2016 only. This is because the latest edition would have the latest figures and statistics.

Read the following chapters from India Year Book for IAS Prelims 2016 preparation.

1. Land & People
2. Energy
3. Environment
4. States & UT’s

Step 6: Now that you have completed the static and partly dynamic part of Ecology, Environment & Biodiversity, it is time for you to take up the latest Economic Survey of India & the relevant Five Year Plan document. Read chapters around Sustainable Development, Environment from these sources. You’d find a lot of necessary information from the Indian Government’s Perspective. Plus, there’d be data
We hope you follow these steps in a sequential order. Here are a few additional preparation tips you should keep in mind for each and every section of IAS Prelims 2016.

IAS Prelims 2016: Additional Preparation Tips

Get Familiar with the Current Format: Following exam pattern and types of questions from the past few years, we have seen that a lot of questions are based on the location of various national parks, wildlife sanctuaries, rivers that pass through them etc. Keep a handbook of this static information ready with you. Use your School Atlas and try to recollect this information.
Keep yourself updated: Meanwhile, as you prepare from various books and reference materials, never lose track of events going on in the country and abroad. Always follow The Hindu or any other newspaper & a Magazine of your choice. Keep track of what is happening. Try and relate your knowledge with these events.

Practise as much as you can: Always remember that Ecology, Environment & Biodiversity is one section in IAS Prelims 2016 where practice is very important. Trust us, there’s much more that you’d end up learning by repeatedly attempting questions & tests than from books themselves. Ensure that you strike a fine balance between studying and evaluating yourself.

Try and practise as many questions as you can. While static questions can be prepared from numerous question banks, you’d need to enrol for a good test series to attempt questions based on current affairs.

We wrap up our How to Prepare for IAS Prelims 2016 Article for Ecology and Biodiversity here. Next in the list is
Science and Technology Preparation. If you have any queries, please mention in the comments section below.

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