Punjab PCS Exam Pattern

The PPSC CCE preliminary examination involves two stages. the primary stage of examination includes an examination with multiple choice questions within the question papers, and within the second stage involves subjective questions and a written reply to those questions. Subsequently, on qualifying both the stages, the candidates are going to be involved interview.

Therefore, the important stages of the choice process are as follows:

  • Preliminary Competitive Examination
  • Main Competitive Examination (written and viva-voce/Interview)

PPSC Prelims Exam Pattern

The PCE will consist of two papers of 200 marks each. The question paper shall comprise of objective type (multiple choice) questions. The scheme details are as follows:

PaperSubject Numbers of QuestionDurationTotal Markes
Paper IGeneral Studies 1002 Hours 200
Paper IICSAT(Civil Services Aptitude Test) 802 Hours 200

Important Highlights:

1) Both the papers are going to be of objective type multiple choice questions.

2) Duration of every paper for preliminary exam are going to be two hours. However, Persons with disability candidates are going to be given additional 40 minutes.

3) There’ll be no negative marking within the written preliminary exam test, however there could also be negative marking for any objections to the solution Key found false/frivolous/not supported by authentic evidence.

4) The question paper shall be bilingual and shall be printed in English (Roman script) and Punjabi (Gurumukhi script)  apart from questions where candidates’ proficiency in language is to be tested.

5) The quality of questions would be to check the knowledge as is predicted of a person who has attained education a minimum of up to graduation level.

6) Preliminary exam is merely a screening test for choosing candidates who would be eligible to require the most  Examination and therefore the marks obtained during this Examination shall not be counted towards the merit of the
candidates received after the most Examination.

7) Candidates adequate to 13 times of the vacancies advertised in each category would qualify from amongst those appearing within the preliminary exam for the most Examination, as long as , such number of candidates are available and, are otherwise eligible for admission to the most Examination.

PPSC Mains Exam Pattern

 S. No.PaperMaximum Marks 
 1Punjabi (in Gurumukhi Script) Compulsory (of 10+2 Standard) 100
 2English Compulsory (of 10+2 standard) 100
 4General Studies Paper-I (History, Geography and Society) 250
 5General Studies Paper-II (Indian Constitution & Polity, Governance and International Relations) 250
 6General Studies Paper-III (Economy, Statistics and Security issues) 250
 7General Studies Paper-IV (Science & Technology, Environment, Problem Solving and Decision
Interview 150
 Total 1500

Important Highlights:

• Each paper duration are going to be of three hours and visually impaired candidates would tend an additional  hour in each paper.

• All the question papers are going to be set in English, except the language papers. except for the candidates opted for Punjabi medium are going to be given the questions set accordingly.

• The candidates will have an choice to attempt all the papers, the exception is granted to the language papers- English and Punjabi.

• The candidates who are willing to seem all the papers within the Punjabi language may give an English version within the brackets (only the outline of the technical terms), additionally to the version within the Punjabi language.

Interview stage:

• The candidates less than 3 times the amount of vacancies advertised in each category shall be involved the interview, provided they need appeared and qualified for the most Written Examination.

• The candidates who qualify the most Competitive Examination and meet all the ‘Eligibility Criteria’ as cited within the Notification shall be involved the interview.
1. If a candidate obtains 45% marks within the aggregate of all the papers (40% belonging to SC and STs) including a minimum of 25% marks in each paper. Here aggregate of all papers includes an aggregate of General Studies Paper means ‘Aggregate of Paper-I, Paper-II, Paper-III and Paper-IV.
2. If enough candidates don’t obtain 45% marks within the aggregate, the Commission may at their discretion lower the share i.e. up to 40% generally and 35% for the candidates belonging to the SC and STs. However, the minimum percentage for every paper shall remain unchanged.

• The names of the qualified candidates shall be arranged so as of merit. These arrangements are going to be  made  consistent with the mixture marks obtained from the most Examination and Interview.

Note: just in case , two or more candidates score equal aggregate marks in Main and Interview, the candidate having higher marks within the written a part of the most examination shall be ranked higher. and therefore the  candidates securing same marks within the Main exam, the one having scored higher generally studies are going to be given preference. And if that’s also found an equivalent , then in such cases, the candidates with older age are going to be given the preference.

Punjab PCS Syllabus

Paper –I (General Studies)

  1. Everyday Science
 States of matter structure of atom, versatile nature of carbon. Acids, bases, salts, corrosion in metals,
action of soaps.
 Life on Earth evolution, marine & terrestrial life. Human body and life processes, nutrition,
disease – its causes & prevention, infectious diseases, lifestyle diseases.
 Public health initiatives Public health initiatives–mother and child health, immunisation & vaccination,
HIVAIDS, TB, polio etc.
 Force laws of motion & gravitation, Archimedes principle.
 Energy kinetic & potential.
 Light reflection & refraction – concepts and applications.
 Sound propagation & reflection- concepts and applications.
 Electric current concepts and applications.
Computers and telecommunicationconcepts and applications.

2. Environmental studies

 Atmospheric circulation & weather system, water cycle
 Heat balance & temperature
fossil fuels, greenhouse gases, renewable energy, clean
development mechanism, carbon credits.
 Oceans, rivers, glaciers, lakes, groundwater etc. Biodiversity &
 types, crops, food chain etc. Pollution
and toxicity etc

3. Political theory & international order

 Basic concept of freedomEquality, social justice, rights & duties, citizenship,
nationalism, secularism etc. 
 International organisations United Nations and its organs/agencies, other international organisations like the World
Bank, IMF, WTO, EU, G20, BRICS etc. and their role in the World peace, trade &

4. Indian polity

 Basic features Provisions, schedules of the Indian Constitution, key amendments.
 Panchayati Raj 
 ElectionsPeople’s Representation Act, electoral reforms. Rise of
regionalism and coalition politics

5. History of India

 The Indus valley civilisation.
The Aryan and the Vedic age. Jainism and Buddhism.
The Maurya Gupta periods.
Advent of Islam and Sultanate period (political, social & cultural). The Bhakti Movement.
The Mughals (political, social & cultural till Aurangzeb).
The coming of the European Powers and the advent of the British rule.
The Mutiny of 1857.
The British rule and the Indian National Movement (1857-1947)

6. World History

 The Renaissance and the Industrial Revolution in Europe. The American Revolution 1776.
The French Revolution 1789.
The Russian Revolution 1917.
World Wars I & II

7. Indian Economy

 Indian economic development (1950-1991)key economic policies, public sector dominance, bank nationalisation etc.
 Five year planskey goals and main achievements.
Liberalisation, privatisation and globalisation era since 1991key policies, decisions and results.
 Performance of Indian economy since 1991 Growth, fiscal & revenue deficits, trade, commerce & balance of payments, inflation, growth of service sector.
 Key challenges and responses Agriculture and food security, industrialisation, poverty alleviation & employment, rural & urban infrastructure, social sector – health, education etc.

8. Geography

 Population distribution, density, growth and comparison. Migration – types, causes and consequences.
 Human development Human settlements. Land resources and agriculture.

Water resources., Mineral and energy resources., Manufacturing industries., Planning and sustainable development in India. Transport and communication. International trade. Geographical perspective on selected issues and problems.

9. Current events of national and international importance.

10. Punjab

 GeographyGeographical and agro-climatic regions, rivers, water resources, sharing of waters,
demographics, human development indices
People, Society and CultureMajor personalities in history of Punjab, religious movements, major
religions & spiritual personalities, Punjabi literature, folklore, performing
arts, fine arts and crafts
HistorySufis, saints and gurus, Lodhis and Mughals, Sikh rulers, the British
period, nationalist movement in Punjab, Punjab in independent India.
EconomyAgriculture, animal husbandry, industrial & service sectors, major
occupations, development & economic growth, public finance (including
central-state fiscal issues), public sector institutions, cooperatives etc.

Paper –II (Civil Services Aptitude Test)

Reading comprehensionPunjabi and English language comprehension,antonyms and synonyms,
grammar and sentence formation. 
 Interpersonal skills including communication skills
 Logical reasoningAnalytical and mental ability
 Basic numerical skills Numbers, magnitudes, percentages, numerical relation
 Data analysisGraphic presentations, charts, tables, spreadsheets.

Note: The topics listed in the syllabus are only indicative for the general guidance of the candidates and cannot be deemed as exhaustive list.




1Comprehension (Unseen Passage)
An unseen passage followed by Questions to be answered 
10 Marks 
2 Precis writing
Passage to be summarized to 1/3rd
10 Marks
3 Letter writing—(200 words)10 Marks
4 Essay writing (Any general topic 300 words)10 Marks
5 Translation10 Marks


6Grammar 50 Marks

ESSAY (150 Marks)

Candidates will be required to write three short essays in English or Punjabi on specified topics. The choice of subjects will be given. They will be expected to keep closely to the subject of the essay to arrange their ideas in an orderly fashion, and to write concisely. Credit will be given for content value, effective and exact expression.

Punjabi (in Gurumukhi Script) Compulsory (of 10+2 Standard)  100 Marks 



Section- 1: HISTORY

History of the world : Events from 18th century; industrial revolution, world wars, redrawal of national boundaries, colonization, decolonization, political philosophies like Communism, Capitalism, Socialism etc. -their forms and effect on society.
Indian culture- Salient aspects of Art Forms, Literature and Architecture from ancient to modern times.
Modern Indian history from the middle of the eighteenth century until the present- significant events, personalities and issues.
Socio-religious reform movements with special reference to Punjab.
The Freedom Struggle – its various stages and important contributors/contributions from different parts of the country with special reference to Punjab.
Post-independence consolidation and reorganization within the country.
History of Punjab:
1. Ranjit Singh’s rise to power, civil and military administration and relations with the British
2. Annexation of Punjab with special reference to the causes and consequences of the Anglo-Sikh wars.

Section-2: GEOGRAPHY

  1. Physical Geography: Salient features of world’s physical geography. Distribution of key natural resources across the world (including South Asia and the Indian subcontinent); factors responsible for the location of primary,
    secondary, and tertiary sector industries in various parts of the world (including India)
  2. Important Geophysical phenomena such as earthquakes, Tsunami, Volcanic activity, cyclone etc., geographical features and their location changes in critical geographical features (including water-bodies and icecaps) and in flora and fauna and the effects of such changes.
  3. Geography of Punjab:
    1. Physiographic details of Punjab; Geomorphic features of Punjab, Punjab’s strategic location with reference to International Border;
    2. Crops of Punjab; Modern concepts of Farming; Problems faced by agriculturists/ Issues in Agriculture: Depletion of ground water, etc;

Section-3: SOCIETY

  1. Salient features of Indian Society, Diversity of India.
  2. Role of women and women’s organization, population and associated issues, poverty and developmental issues, urbanization, their problems and their remedies
  3. Effects of globalization on Indian society
  4. Social empowerment, communalism, regionalism & secularism
  5. Ethics and Society: Essence, determinants and consequences of Ethics in human actions; dimensions of ethics; ethics in private and public relationships.
  6. Human Values – Role of family, society and educational institutions in inculcating values; lessons from the lives and teachings of great leaders and reformers- Gautam Buddha, Mahavira, Kabir, Guru Nanak; Swami Vivekananda, Jyotibha Phule, Ishwar Chandra Vidya Sagar and Mahatma Gandhi.
  7. Vulnerable sections of the population – Welfare schemes by the Centre and State of Punjab and their performance; Mechanisms, laws, institutions and Bodies constituted for their protection and betterment.
  8. Issues relating to development and management of Social Sector- Health, Education, Human Resources; Issues relating to Poverty and Malnutrition.




  1. Indian Constitution- historical underpinnings, evolution, features, amendments, significant provisions and basic structure.
  2. Functions and responsibilities of Union and the States, issues and challenges pertaining to the federal structure, devolution of powers and finances up to local levels and challenges therein.
  3. Separation of powers between various organs; Dispute redressal
    mechanisms and institutions.
  4. Comparison of the Indian constitutional scheme with that of other countries.
  5. Parliament and State Legislatures – structure, functioning, conduct of business, powers & privileges and issues arising out of these.
  6. Structure, organization and functioning of the Executive and the Judiciary; Ministries and Departments of the Government; pressure groups and formal/informal associations and their role in the Polity.
  7. Salient features of the Representation of People’s Act.
  8. Appointment to various Constitutional posts; Powers, functions and responsibilities of various Constitutional Bodies.
  9. District Administration – Evolution of District Administration; Panchayati Raj Institutions and Urban Local Bodies.

1. Statutory, regulatory and various quasi-judicial bodies
2. Government policies and interventions for development in various sectors and issues arising out of their design and implementation; Development processes and the development organizations- the role of NGOs, SHGs, donors, charities, institutional and other stakeholders
3. Important aspects of governance, transparency and accountability, egovernance- applications, models, successes, limitations and potential; citizens charters, transparency & accountability and institutional and other measures; Role of civil services in a democracy; Changing trends in Governance
4. Values and Ethics in Governance- Ethical concerns and dilemmas in government and private institutions; laws, rules, regulations and conscience as sources of ethical guidance; accountability and ethical governance; strengthening of ethical and moral values in governance; ethical issues in international relations and funding.
5. Probity in Governance: Concept of Governance; Philosophical basis of and probity; corporate governance; Information sharing and transparency in government, Right to Information, Codes of Ethics, Codes of Conduct, Citizen’s Charters, Work culture, Quality of service delivery, Utilization of public funds, challenges of corruption.


1. India and its neighborhood- relations;
2. Bilateral, regional and global groupings and agreements involving India and/or affecting India’s interests;
3. Effect of policies and politics of developed and developing countries on India’s interests, Indian Diaspora
4. Important International institutions, agencies and fora- their structure and mandate.
Note: The candidates are expected to be aware about the current developments related to the topics mentioned above.



Section-1: Indian Economy

1. Issues relating to planning, mobilization of resources, growth, development and employment; sustainable development; Inclusive growth and issues arising from it; Government Budgeting;
2. Major crops, cropping patterns in various parts of the country, different types of irrigation and irrigation systems; storage, transport and marketing of agricultural produce- issues and related constraints; e-technology in the aid of farmers; Issues related to direct and indirect farm subsidies and minimum support prices; Technology missions; economics of animal rearing.
3. Public Distribution System- objectives, functioning, limitations, revamping; issues of buffer stocks and food security;
4. Food processing and related industries in India- scope and significance, location, upstream and downstream requirements, supply chain management
5. Land reforms in India; Effects of liberalization on the economy, changes in industrial policy and their effects on industrial growth.
6. Infrastructure- Energy, Ports, Roads, Airports, Railways etc; Investment models
7. Human Resource Development:
1. Importance of Human capital in economic development
2. Nature, types and problems of unemployment in India, Trends of Employment in India, Skill development and demographic dividend
8. Punjab Economy: Planning- various aspects of developmental planning; Industry; Infrastructure.

Section-2: Statistical analysis, graphs and diagrams

This part will test the candidate’s ability to draw conclusions from information presented in statistical, graphical or diagrammatical form and to interpret the same.

Section-3: Issues related to Security

  1. Linkages between development and spread of extremism;
  2. Role of external, State and non-State actors in creating challenges to internal security; Challenges to internal security through communication networks; role of media and social networking sites in internal security
  3. Basics of cyber security; money-laundering and its prevention;
  4. Security challenges and their management in border areas; linkages of organized crime with terrorism.
  5. Various Security forces and agencies and their mandate.
    Note: The candidates are expected to be aware about the current developments related to the topics mentioned above.



Section-1 : Science and Technology

  1. Science and Technology
    1. Developments and applications of science and technology and their effects in everyday life
    2. Achievements of Indians in science & technology; indigenization of technology and developing new technology.
    3. Recent developments in the fields of IT, Space, Computers, robotics, nanotechnology, etc.
    4. Issues relating to intellectual property rights.
  2. Modern Trends in Life Sciences
    1. Progress of Agricultural Science and its impact– Introduction to Biotechnology and its applications; Veterinary and Animal Sciences- latest developments.
    2. Introduction to and applications of Genetic Engineering & Stem Cell Research
    3. Human Diseases and Microbial infections; Common infections and preventive measures; preventive measures during out breaks; Immunity and vaccination

Section-2: Environment
1. Conservation, environmental pollution and degradation, Issues related to Climate change; environmental impact assessment
2. Water management- Issues in India; Present scenario, Methods and importance of water conservation
3. Definition, nature, types and classification of disasters
4. Natural Hazards: Floods, earthquakes, tsunamis, landslides, etc., Risk reduction and mitigation measures

Section-3: Situations in Civil Service -Problem Solving and Decision Making
1. Tackling situations of Natural disasters/ Major Accidents/ Law and order Controlling riots, Handling public protests and dharnas, Land Acquisition and Rehabilitation, Designing Projects, Implementation of National Flagship Schemes/ Programmmes, Public Private Partnership in effective service delivery, Managing and financing Municipal services e.g. Solid waste management, Conservation of natural resources- water, forests, etc, Pollution control, Reviving a loss making PSU, Planning and target achievement, Gender sensitization and women empowerment, Empowerment of vulnerable sections of the society, Improving Education and Enhancing Skill development, Urban settlement-Slums and Housing issues, Managing Issues related to Urban/ Rural drinking water supply and sanitation, etc.

Note: A duly structured situation will be presented to the candidates and they will be asked to analyze and suggest their own solution to the problem arising out of situation.