UPSC IAS Main Written Exam 2013: Psychology Paper II

A large number of candidates opt for Psychology subject for UPSC IAS Main Written Exam. The annual report of UPSC mentions that in UPSC IAS Civil Services Exam 2012, 1163 candidates had opted for the Psychology optional out of which 94 were recommended for the UPSC IAS Civil Services.

Psychology optional consists of Paper I and Paper II. Paper II of Psychology optional consists of topics under Psychology: Issues and Applications. The Paper II of Psychology optional is of 250 marks. The duration of the exam is 3 hours. Candidates can find the question paper of Paper II of Psychology optional as asked in UPSC IAS Civil Services Main Written Exam 2013 on

Read More: UPSC IAS Main Written Exam: Tips for Essay Paper

Psychology Paper II(2013)


1. Answer the following questions in about 150 words each:

(a) How will you ensure that a newly constructed personnel selection test measures that it purports to measure and predicts what it intends to predict?
(b) Reflect on the major issues and contradictions related to the understanding of well-being. Discuss with reference to current social trends.
(c) How would you identify gifted children? Explain with examples.
(d) Discuss the steps that can be taken to improve the quality of group decision-making.
(e) India rates very high on carbon emission. What use can be made of psychological knowledge to reduce the level of carbon emission in India?

2. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) What is your understanding of organizational politics? Discuss how it impacts decision-making processes in bureaucratic organizations.
(b) Discuss the psychological implications of the ‘glass ceiling’ effect from the perspective of an administrator.
(c) Reflecting on the status of education in India, state whether it can help in reducing the gap which has been experienced due to social inequality.

3. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) Discuss the relative efficacy of psycho-social and community-based rehabilitation models in case of the physically challenged.
(b) Identify relevant indices for understanding the emergence of ingroup and outgroup processes. Discuss with the help of a suitable theoretical framework.
(c) Discuss the key determinants of consumer behaviour in India. How do cultural values influence it.

4. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) What psychological approach/approaches can be used to persuade those who oppose family planning on religious grounds?
(b) Identify the factors in arousal of community consciousness and also the strategies for handling social problems keeping in view some of the recent protest movements in India.
(c) What are the necessary conditions required in client-centred therapy? Discuss the therapeutic process involved in it.


5. Answer the following questions in about 150 words each:

(a) Discuss how the psychological training given to sports persons can be useful for administration with reference to maintaining team spirit and group morale.
(b) How can psychological resilience of the personnel of the armed forces be enhanced? Discuss.
(c) Discuss how cognitive and motivational factors influence entrepreneurial behaviour.
(d) How can psychological principles be used to conserve water? Develop a plan.
(e) Define ‘self-fulfilling prophecy’. Can it affect the students performance belonging to special categories?

6. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) Discuss the relative significance of group factors versus personality factors in explaining the behaviour of terrorists.
(b) Identify the ethical and non-ethical used of psychological tests especially measuring individual differences. Provide suitable examples.
(c) What bases of power are used by successful leaders to exercise influence within organizations? Discuss.

7. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) What lessons can be drawn from psychological research to promote gender equality in the workplace?
(b) What explanations are offered by psychological theories about the manner in which media influences antisocial behaviour?
(c) Discuss the influences of information technology in modifying the career perspective of young adults with special reference to the values of life.

8. Answer the following questions in about 200 words each:

(a) Reflect on the possibility of fostering positive mental health through indigenous therapies along with cultural practices.
(b) Is religion in India at the root of social conflicts? Discuss and provide suitable ways to deal with such conflicts.
(c) “Poverty alleviation is a dream spread with ulterior motives.” Do you agree?

Importance of Psychology Question Paper

It is advisable for candidates to look at questions asked in Psychology optional previous years of UPSC IAS Civil Services Main Written Exam. It would be beneficial for candidates to arrange questions asked in previous years according to the topics metnioned in the syllabus. Candidates will then be able to recognise the most important topics as well as the expertise level required for different topics. Practice of writing answers of the  questions asked in previous years is also highly recommended.

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