UPSC Exam Calendar 2021 - Notification and Recruitment Exam Dates

Published on : 1st September 2020    Author : Himanshu Basant Bhatt

UPSC, Union Public Service Commission, is a government agency responsible for the recruitment of officers in the civil services, Group A, and Group B services of the country. The commission conducts the recruitment examinations and selects the suitable candidates based on pre-defined criteria. Popular recruitment exams conducted by the Commission includes Civil Services Examination (CSE - also known as IAS exam), IES (Indian Engineering Services), IES/ISS (Indian Economic Service/ Indian Statistical Service), IFS (Indian Forest Service), NDA & NA (National Defence Academy & Naval Academy), CDS (Combined Defence Services), Combined Geo-Scientist and Geologist exam, etc.

Every year, the commission releases the annual calendar for all the exams. The annual calendar includes the dates for notification release, last date of application, and exam dates for various examinations to be conducted by the commission in that particular year. In the article here, we will be checking out the UPSC exam calendar 2021, which was recently uploaded at the official website. The detailed notifications for the examinations are uploaded at the official website and released in the Rozgar Samachar/ Employment News and the Gazette of India.

UPSC Exam Calendar 2021

S. No.

Exam Name

Notification Date

Exam Date and Day


Combined Geo-Scientist (Preliminary) Exam, 2021

7th October 2020

21st February 2021 (Sunday)


Combined Defence Services (CDS) Exam (I) 2021

28th October 2020

7th February 2021 (Sunday)


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test


21st February 2021 (Sunday)


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test


7th March 2021 (Sunday)



2nd December 2020

14th March 2021



NDA & NA Exam (I) 2021

30th December 2020

18th April 2021 (Sunday)


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test for EO/ AO in the EPFO


9th May 2021 (Sunday)


Civil Service (Preliminary) Examination 2021


10th February 2021

27th June 2021 (Sunday)


Indian Forest Service (Preliminary) Examination 2021 through CS (P) exam 2021


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test


4th July 2021 (Sunday)


Indian Economic Service/ Indian Statistical Service (IES/ ISS) Exam 2021

7th April 2021

16th July 2021 (Friday)


Combined Geo-Scientist (Main) Exam, 2021


17th July 2021 (Saturday)


Engineering Services (Preliminary) Exam 2021

7th April 2021

18th July 2021 (Sunday)


Central Armed Police Forces (ACs) Exam 2021

15th April 2021

8th August 2021 (Sunday)


Combined Medical Services Examination 2021

5th May 2021

29th August 2021 (Sunday)


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test


29th August 2021 (Sunday)


NDA & NA Exam (II) 2021

9th June 2021

5th September 2021 (Sunday)


Reserved for UPSC Recruitment Test


12th September 2021 (Sunday)


Civil Service (Main) Examination 2021


17th September 2021 (Sunday)


Engineering Services (Main) Examination 2021


10th October 2021 (Sunday)


Combined Defence Services (CDS) Exam (II) 2021

4th August 2021

14th November 2021 (Sunday)


Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination 2021


21st November 2021 (Sunday)


S.O./ Steno (GD-B/ GD-I) LDCE

15th September 2021

11th December 2021 (Saturday)

Scroll left or right to view full table

As per the official notification; “The dates of notification, commencement and duration of Examinations/ RTs are liable to alteration if the circumstances so warrant.”

Procedure for Downloading UPSC Exams Calendar 2021

The annual calendar for UPSC examination is uploaded at the official website. Candidates can download the PDF file using the following steps:

  • Visit the official UPSC website -
  • Take the mouse over the ‘Examination’ drop-down on the top of the home-page.
  • Click the ‘Calendar’ option from the list.
  • Click the PDF link ‘Annual Calendar 2021’
  • The PDF file will open; check the dates for the exam you are interested in.
  • You can take a print out of the PDF if required.

The annual calendar for UPSC 2021 exams was released on 17th August 2020 at the official website.

Available Application Forms

UPSC Exam Calendar 2020 (Revised)

UPSC has revised the dates for some examinations due to the present COVID-19 outbreak in the world. The revised calendar for 2020 exams was uploaded on 18th August 2020. Here are the revised exam dates:

Examination Name

Revised Exam Date

Notification Date

Last Date for Application Submission

Exam Date and Day

NDA & NA Exam (I) 2020



6th September 2020 (Sunday)

Civil Service (Preliminary) Examination 2020



4th October 2020 (Sunday)

Indian Forest Service (Preliminary) Examination 2020 through CS (P) exam 2020

Indian Economic Service/ Indian Statistical Service (IES/ ISS) Exam 2020

10th June 2020

30th June 2020

16th October 2020 (Friday)

Combined Geo-Scientist (Main) Exam, 2020



17th October 2020 (Saturday)

Engineering Services (Main) Exam 2020



18th October 2020 (Sunday)

Combined Medical Services Examination 2020

29th July 2020

18th August 2020

22nd October 2020 (Thursday)

Central Armed Police Forces (ACs) Exam 2020

18th August 2020

7th September 2020

20th December 2020 (Sunday)

NDA & NA Exam (II) 2020

16th June 2020


6th July 2020

6th September 2020 (Friday)

Civil Service (Main) Examination 2020



8th January 2021 (Friday)*


Indian Forest Service (Main) Examination 2020



28th February 2021 (Sunday)**

The revised calendar for UPSC 2020 exam can be downloaded following similar steps as for the UPSC exam calendar 2021 (mentioned-above). The only difference is that they have to open the ‘Revised Annual Calendar-2020’ PDF link.

*The Civil Services (Main) exam 2020 will be conducted on 8th, 9th, 10th, 16th, and 17th January 2021. It is a 5-days exam.

**The Indian Forest Service (Main) exam 2020 will begin on 28th February 2021 and will continue till 9th March 2021 (for 10 days).

UPSC Revised Annual Calendar 2020

UPSC Examinations

Let’s check out the details related to major UPSC examinations.

Civil Services Examination (CSE)

Civil Services include three types of services - All India Services, Group A Services, and Group B Services. After qualifying the CSE, candidates are shortlisted for these services as per their merit rank. Here are the services that come under three types:

All India Services - Indian Administrative Service (IAS), Indian Foreign Service (IFS), and Indian Police Service (IPS).

Group A Services - Indian Revenue Service, Railway Protection Force, Indian Railway Personnel Service, Indian Railway Account Service, Indian Railway Traffic Service, Indian P & T Accounts & Finance Service, Indian Audit & Accounts Service, Indian Customs and Central Excise Service, Indian Ordnance Factories Service, Indian Defence Accounts Service, Indian Defence Estates Service, Indian Postal Service, Indian Civil Accounts Service, Central Industrial Security Force.

Group B Services - Central Secretariat Service, Delhi and Andaman & Nicobar Islands Civil Service, Delhi and Andaman & Nicobar Islands Police Service, Armed Forces Headquarters Civil Service, Custom Appraisers Service, Railway Board Secretariat Service, Pondicherry Civil Service.

CSE is also known as the IAS exam and is conducted in three stages - Preliminary, Main, and Interview. It is considered as the toughest exam in the country. Check out the complete details about the exam here.

IES (Indian Engineering Services)

The exam is conducted for engineering graduates in the country. It is also known as the Engineering Service Exam (ESE). The qualified candidates are recruited as Assistant Executive Engineer in the services namely Power, Public Works, Central Water, Railways, Roads, Telecommunication, Defence, etc. The examination is conducted for four categories of Engineering - Civil, Mechanical, Electronic and Telecommunication, and Electrical Engineering. The recruitment process comprises Preliminary, Main, and Interview rounds. For complete details about the selection process, eligibility, syllabus, and more, read the complete information here.

IES/ISS (Indian Economic Service/ Indian Statistical Service)

For recruitment of eligible candidates in Indian Economic department and Indian Statistical department, UPSC conducts the IES/ ISS exam. It is a national-level exam conducted in two stages - Written Exam and Interview. In the written exam, candidates are required to appear for different economics and statistical subjects. Some papers are objective types while others are descriptive. Candidates must check the eligibility requirements before applying for the exam. For eligibility conditions, detailed exam pattern, and other information, check out the complete article here.

IFS (Indian Forest Service)

Candidates interested in joining the Indian Forest Service as officers are required to qualify the IFS exam conducted by UPSC every year. The main role of a forest officer is to protect and preserve forests and its resources. It is an offline exam comprising Preliminary, Main, and Interview phases. Candidates are required to qualify all the phases for final selection. Details such as eligibility, pattern, syllabus, application process for the IFS exam are provided here. Check out the complete article for updated information.

NDA & NA (National Defence Academy & Naval Academy)

NDA & NA exam is conducted for candidates who have passed 10+2 level education. On qualifying the exam, candidates get admission into the National Defence Academy or Naval Academy where they undergo training to become commissioned officers in different wings (Army, Navy, and Air Force) of the Indian Army. The examination is held twice a year by UPSC. Interested candidates must check out the educational qualification and age limit criteria for the exam. Written exam and interview are the two phases of the selection process. If you are interested in the exam, check out the detailed information here.

CDS (Combined Defence Services)

CDS exam is conducted for recruiting eligible candidates for all three wings of the Indian Defence Service namely Army, Navy, and Air Force. The exam is conducted for graduate candidates. It is conducted twice a year by UPSC. The selection of candidates is done based on their performance in the written examination and interview. The detailed information on exam pattern, syllabus, important dates, the application process, etc. are provided here.

Combined Geo-Scientist and Geologist Exam

This exam is conducted for recruiting candidates in the Geological Survey of India and Central Water Board. Candidates are selected for Group A posts - Geologist, Geophysicist, and Chemist and Group B posts - Junior Hydrologist. Candidates are selected based on the written exam and interview phase. Post-graduate candidates in the respective fields are eligible for appearing in the exam. For exam pattern details, syllabus, and other information related to the exam, read the complete article here.

All the exams under UPSC are very competitive and have a vast syllabus. Thus, candidates are advised to start their preparation as early as possible following a systematic strategy. Also, it is advised to check the eligibility criteria for all the exams carefully before applying for it (or even start preparing) as ineligibility determined at any stage of recruitment will result in cancellation of candidature. The UPSC exam calendar 2021 above will help you in calculating the preparation time for the exams. Refer it and make a time-table that can be followed daily. Joining a coaching class is also a good option for UPSC exams.

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