UPSC IFS 2020: Centre Change Option (Available), Dates, Application Form, Syllabus and Vacancies

IFS Exam

The Union Public Service Commission has announced the revised timetable for UPSC IFS 2020 examination. As per the new updates, the Prelims are now scheduled to be held on 04th October 2020 for filling up 90 vacant posts. While, on the other hand, IFS Main 2020 will be conducted on 28th February 2021. This year, the commission has decided to conduct the Prelims of IFS 2020 jointly with the IAS 2020 Prelims. Aspirants are advised to visit the official website of UPSC to check complete notification.

UPSC also conducts other examinations viz. Combined Defense Services (CDS Exam)Indian Civil Services (IAS Exam), etc.

What is UPSC IFS exam?

The Indian Forest Service is one of the three major all India level exams conducted by UPSC; the other two being the IAS and IPS exams. As the name suggests, the IFS exam is conducted to recruit potential candidates to different forest service posts of the Indian government.

Every year, UPSC conducted the Indian Forest Service examination in three phases – Preliminary, Main and Interview. The UPSC Indian Forest Service (IFS) is one of the important Civil Service Examinations conducted for recruitment to forestry services of India.

UPSC IFS 2020 Exam Latest Notification: The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on Tuesday (08th December 2020) released the schedule of Indian Forest Service Main 2020 exam. According to the released schedule, the UPSC IFS main exam will be held from 28th February to 07th March 2021. Candidates who have passed the preliminary exam are eligible to appear for the main exam. UPSC IFS Preliminary 2020 was held on 04th October and its result was declared on 23rd October.

According to the official notification, UPSC IFS Mains will comprise of questions from English, general knowledge, mathematics, statistics, physics, zoology, chemistry, geology, agriculture, animal husbandry and veterinary science, forestry, agricultural engineering, civil engineering, chemical engineering, mechanical engineering and botany papers. The e-admit card for the Mains exam will be released 3-4 weeks before the commencing of exam. Till then candidates are advised to check the official website frequently for major updates.

IFS Exam 2020 Quick Overview

This year, the commission has released 90 vacancies for the IFS recruitment exam. Check out the details below:

Name of the Exam

Indian Forest Service (IFS) Exam

Conducting Authority

Union Public Service Commission

Official Website and

Exam Occurrence

Once in a year

Stages of Examination

Stage 1: Preliminary

Stage 2: Main

Stage 3: Interview

Paper Language

English and Hindi

Mode of Examination

Offline (Pen and Paper mode)

Type of Examination

National Level

Age Limit

  • Scholastic scholars lie in between the age group of 21 to 32 years old are eligible
  • SC/ST students get the age relaxation of 5 years

UPSC CSE IFS 2020 No. of Vacancies


Available Application Forms

IFS Exam 2020 Important Dates

UPSC IFS Exam 2020 (Preliminary/Main) Important Dates -

Indian Forest Service Exam 2020

Dates To Be Remembered

Official Notification Issue Date

12th February 2020

Closing Date of Application Form Submission

03rd March 2020

Form Withdrawal Process

12th to 18th March 2020

Re-start of Application Form Withdrawal Process

01st to 08th August 2020

Submission of Revised Choices For Exam Centers

07th to 13th July 2020

20th to 24th July 2020

IFS Preliminary Exam (Admit Card)

10 days before the exam

Date of Examination (Preliminary)

04th October 2020

Declaration of result

28th October 2020

Release of UPSC IFS 2020 Mains admit card

3 to 4 weeks prior to the exam day

Date of Examination (Main)

From 28th February to 07th March 2021

Morning Shift: 9.00 AM to 12.00 PM

Afternoon Shift: 2.00 PM to 5.00 PM

Main exam result

March 2021

Filling Detailed Application Form (DAF-II)

March 2021

Date of IFS Main Interview Round 2020

April 2021

Final Result

April 2021


IFS Exam Previous Years Solved Papers

IFS Exam 2020 Pattern & Syllabus

The Indian Forest Service Examination consists of three stages -

  • The Civil Services Preliminary exam
  • The IFS Main exam
  • Interview or Personality Test

IFS Preliminary Exam Pattern -

Preliminary Exam


Number of question papers

Two (Paper-1 and Paper-2)

Type of questions

Objective type

Total marks

400 marks (200 marks each paper)

Duration of the exam

2 hours for each paper (For blind candidates - 20 minutes EXTRA)

Exam Language

Hindi and English

Scheme of negative marking

For every incorrect answer 1/3 marks will be deducted

UPSC IFS Preliminary Exam Syllabus


General studies

2 hours

200 marks


CSAT - Civil Services Aptitude test

2 hours


Scroll left or right to view full table

Note – The marks scored by the candidates in the IFS Paper-1 of the Preliminary stage is counted to get selected for the Mains exams. The Paper-2 of the exam is only qualifying in nature. The candidate is required to score a minimum 33% marks to be declared as qualified for the Mains exam.

Indian Forest Service 2020 Main Exam Pattern -

Main Exam- IFS 2020 Exam


Total number of Papers


Type of Question Paper

Descriptive or Subjective

Main Exam Language


Marks of Main Exam


Marks of Interview Round


UPSC IFS Main Exam Syllabus 2020








3 hours


General Studies- I: Indian Heritage and Culture, History and Geography of the World and



3 hours


General Studies- II: Governance, Constitution, Polity, Social Justice and International


3 hours


General Studies- III: Technology, Economic Development, Bio diversity, Environment,

Security and Disaster Management


3 hours


General Studies- IV: Ethics, Integrity


3 hours


Optional Subject- Paper 1


3 hours


Optional Subject- Paper 2


3 hours

Interview Round



Grand Total

2025 Marks


Scroll left or right to view full table

Candidates are required to select two optional subjects from the given list of 14 subjects for the Mains exam. Each optional subject has 2 papers.

Each question paper of the optional subject contains 8 descriptive type questions. It has two sections, ‘A’ and ‘B’. Each section contains 4 questions. The candidates are required to answer only 5 questions of the question paper.

List of Optional Subjects from which a candidate should choose two subjects -

Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science

Agriculture Engineering



Chemical Engineering


Civil Engineering




Mechanical Engineering





Scroll left or right to view full table

It should be noted that candidates are not allowed to have the following combination of subjects –

Optional Subject-1

Optional Subject-2



Agriculture Engineering

Not Allowed


Animal Husbandry and Veterinary Science

Not Allowed



Not Allowed


Chemical Engineering

Not Allowed



Not Allowed

Candidate cannot take more than one Engineering subject

Agriculture Engineering, Civil Engineering, Chemical Engineering

Not Allowed

Scroll left or right to view full table

UPSC IFS Personality Test/Interview 2020 -

Candidates, who clear the Mains exam, are selected for the next stage of the selection procedure, i.e. the Personality Test. This stage of the exam carries 250 marks. Candidates are tested for their overall personality orientation, which covers their dressing style, communication skills, the presence of mind, listening skills etc. In addition to this, the board of qualified and unbiased observers checks their problem-solving and decision-making skills, leadership qualities, etc.

Candidates are advised to dress formally on the day of the interview and use formal words while being interviewed by the panel of interviewers. They should not use slangs or any informal words. While answering the questions, they should speak moderately and avoid bluffing. The marks scored during an interview by the candidates play a crucial role in determining their overall selection in the Indian Forest Service exam.

More info about IFS Exam Pattern & Syllabus.

UPSC IFS 2020 Preparation Tips & Guide

Just like the other two all India Civil Service exams, cracking the Indian Forest Service 2020 exam also requires pure dedication, focus and productive study. Every candidate has followed their own study method or strategy to do great in exam. However, instead of wasting precious time of preparation module, candidates can consider the following important tips to do well in the UPSC IFS 2020 exam.

Tip Number 1: Start Studying Earlier For Great Results 

Do not waste your precious time thinking that you can manage to cover the syllabus by studying for a month or less. One should keep a note that there is just no shortcut to passing any civil service exam, so start your preparation as soon as possible.

Tip Number 2: Set a Study Plan and Make Your Milestones

Milestones are some serious targets to achieve. That is why we advise you to set your defined schedule to achieve your study targets. Dedicate necessary study hours and effort to complete these study targets in time.

Tip Number 3: Schedule to Do Mock Tests

It is recommended to you to schedule to take mock test in periodic intervals; preferably at the end of each study milestone. This will help you to improve your problem-solving skill and make you visible to check how much prepared for the exam. Also make sure to note down weaknesses and start working on them.

Tip Number 4: Practice Previous Year Questions

Practice from previous year question papers is a key to success in the exam. Solve these papers, not only help you to prepare well in the exam but also help you to achieve excellent scores.

Tip Number 5: Refer To Good Books

Though there are several preparation and guide books available in the market, but make sure to choose according to your needs to study. Here you can go through some of the most important books to study for IFS 2020 exam.

UPSC-IFS Main Examination Guide: A Complete Book for Paper I and Paper II

Buy Now

UPSC-IFS Forestry Main Guide (Paper I & II)


Indian Forestry A Breakthrough Approach to Forest Service 7th Edition

Buy Now

The Mental Ability, Logical Reasoning & Problem Solving Compendium for IAS Prelims

Buy Now

UPSC: Civil Services & Indian Forest Service (Common Preliminary: Paper-I) Exam Guide

Buy Now

IFS Exam 2020 Eligibility

IFS Exam Age Limit -

The candidate should not be less than 21 years of age and must not be more than 32 years of age on 01st August 2019. It means the candidates who born before 2nd August 1986 or after 1st August 1997 are not eligible for the exam.

Age relaxation –

  • The SC/ST category candidates are given age relaxation of 5 years in the upper age limit.
  • The OBC candidates are given a maximum of 3 years of age relaxation.


Age Relaxation (in upper age limit)


5 years


3 years

Ex-servicemen (Commissioned Officers and ECOs/SSCOs)

5 Years

Low Vision/ Partially deaf

Up to 10 Years

J&K Domicile Candidates (1 January 1980 to 31 December 1989)

5 Years

UPSC IFS Nationality Criteria -

  • A candidate should be an Indian citizen.
  • The subject of Nepal or Bhutan is also eligible for the exam.
  • Tibetan who have migrated to India as a refugee before 1st January 1962 are also eligible for the exam.
  • In addition, PIO (People of Indian Origin) candidates migrated from some countries of the world are also eligible for this exam, if they have migrated to India with an intention to permanently settle down. These countries are Vietnam, Pakistan, Myanmar, Sri-Lanka, or from the East African countries of Tanzania, Uganda, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, Ethiopia, and Kenya. It is required that the government of India should have issued a certificate in their favour.

Educational Qualifications for IFS Exam 2020

The candidate should have done Bachelor’s degree from a recognised University with at least one of the following subjects:

  • Animal Husbandry & Veterinary Science
  • Botany
  • Chemistry
  • Mathematics
  • Geology
  • Physics
  • Zoology
  • Statistics

Candidates with Bachelor’s degree in Agriculture or Forestry are also eligible.

Candidates possessing a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering are also eligible for the exam.

Number of Attempts Allowed for Indian Forest Service Exam -


Number of Attempts

General candidates

6 attempts

OBC Candidate

9 attempts

SC/ST Candidates

Unlimited attempts

General candidates with Benchmark disability

9 attempts

Physical Standards Specification for IFS Officer –

Candidates, who qualify for the written test, will have to go for the physical standard test. This test will be carried out following the physical standards laid down in Appendix-III of the rules of Indian Forest Service Examination. They should note that this test is very important for their selection. If they do not fulfil the physical standards, they will be considered unsuitable for the Indian Forest Service.

Download the official Appendix-III

Recommended Books for IFS Exam

IFS Exam 2020 Application Process

How to Fill UPSC IFS Application Form

Candidates should visit the official website of the UPSC for filling the IFS 2020 Exam application form. Here, they will be provided with the guidance to fill the Application form correctly.

Note: The application deadline for the 2020 session has been over now.

  • Candidates should first of all reach the official website or portal of the commission.
  • They must try to fill the Application form without making any mistake. For which, they are required to read the instructions carefully. They must understand what is to be filled and in which format.
  • Candidates are required to register themselves first on the official website of the Commission. For this, they are required to provide information about their basic details like name, address, mobile number and their valid email id.
  • The commission sends updates and communicates with the candidate through his email id. So candidates must keep their email id until the end of the process of the exam.  
  • They must upload their photo and signature in the given size. They are required to keep the scanned copy of their photo and signature in the jpg format. The size of which should not be less than 3kb and must not exceed 40kb. This is to validate the Application of the candidate to the commission.
  • They must pay the requisite amount of Application fee to the Commission.

IFS Exam Application Fee

  • Candidates should pay an Application Fee of ₹ 100/.
  • However, the reserved category candidates (SC/ST and Physically handicapped) are exempted from paying any Application fee. Female candidates are also not required to pay any Application fee.
  • Candidates can pay the fee thru cash, net banking or credit/debit card.
  • For net banking, candidates can use only State Bank of India.
  • Candidates can also pay the application fee by cash in any branch of the SBI. They should also take a print of the Pay Slip.

UPSC IFS 2020 Application Form Withdrawal Process

The Commission allows candidates with the facility to withdraw applications if they do not wish to appear in the exam. For those who desire to withdraw their UPSC IFS applications, they can do the same through the website of the Commission within the specified schedule i.e. 01st to 08th August 2020. Consider the following important points to withdraw the application form.

  • Must have submitted the application in the first place to withdraw the application, which means incomplete or applications that were not submitted cannot be withdrawn.
  • Once you completed the withdrawal process, you will not be refunded the application fee.

Candidate need to enter the registration number and registered mobile number in order to withdraw the application. Besides, an OTP is sent at the registered email id and mobile number of the applicant.

Other Details

IFS 2020 Main Exam e-Admit card

The IFS Main 2020 admit card will be released in the month of February 2021, as the exam is going to happen from 28th February 2021 to 07th March 2021. The Commission does not send hard copy of admit card to the postal address of candidates. They can only download the admit card from the "Admit Card" page of the official website of UPSC To download the IFS e-Admit card candidates are required to enter their ‘Application number’ and ‘Date of Birth’. The admit card carries the roll number, date of exam, the centre of exam, name, and address of the candidate. It is mandatory to carry the admit card to the examination hall. Without the admit card candidate cannot be allowed to take up the IFS Main exam.

How to download UPSC IFS Main admit card?

  • Visit the official website at
  • A link to download e admit card for IFS Mains will be displayed under what’s new section on the homepage.
  • Click on the link.
  • Key in your login credentials.
  • Your UPSC IFS main admit card will be displayed on the screen.
  • Download and take it’s print out.

How to download IFS admit card if forgot registration ID?

Candidates can follow the steps mentioned below to recover/ re-generate their registration ID:

Step 1: Visit the official website of UPSC -

Step 2: Click on the Admit Card link available on the Home page of the website.

Step 3: Read the instructions given on the page and click on the Yes button.

Step 4: Click on the link, "Forgot Registration ID'

Step 5: Enter the following details:

  • Name
  • Father's name
  • Mother's name
  • Date of birth
  • Captcha code as shown on the screen

Step 6: Click on Submit.

On clicking the button, a registration ID will be re-generated.

IFS 2020 Exam Result (Prel. & Main)

The result of the IFS Exam comes in various stages. First, comes the Preliminary exam result and after that the Main exam result. Qualifiers of the Preliminary exam will get a chance to sit and appear for Main Exam which will be conducted on 28th February 2021.

IFS 2020 Final Result –

A total of 90 will be selected to recruit for the eligible posts and have been selected for appointment to the posts in IFS. The result will also be available on the UPSC Website i.e. The mark sheets of candidates are likely to be made available on the Commission’s website within fifteen days from the date of declaration of the result.


Number of Candidates






31 (including 01 PwBD-2)




27 (including 01 PwDB-2)


88 (including 02 PwBD-2)

UPSC IFS Personality Test/ Interview 2020 –

Candidates, who clear the Mains exam, are selected for the next stage of the selection procedure, i.e. the Personality Test. This stage of the exam carries 250 marks. Candidates are tested for their overall personality orientation, which covers their dressing style, communication skills, the presence of mind, listening skills etc. In addition to this, the board of qualified and unbiased observers checks their problem-solving and decision-making skills, leadership qualities, etc.

Candidates are advised to dress formally on the day of the interview and use formal words while being interviewed by the panel of interviewers. They should not use slangs or any informal words. While answering the questions, they should speak moderately and avoid bluffing. The marks scored during an interview by the candidates play a crucial role in determining their overall selection in the Indian Forest Service exam.

IFS Exam FAQs (Frequently Asked Questions)

UPSC conducts the IFS exam for recruitment in the Indian Forest Services. Here are the answers to the frequently asked questions related to the IFS 2020 exam.

Q. What is the date of IFS (Indian Forest Service) 2020 Pre Exam?

The 2020 Prelims exam for IFS is scheduled to be held on 04th October 2020.

Q. What is the date of IFS 2020 Main Exam?

The Main exam will be held on 28th February 2021.  

Q. When can one get the application form for the IFS exam 2020?

Candidate can get the Application form for IFS 2020 from 12th February 2020 to 03rd March 2020.

Q. How many stages are there for the Indian Forest Service Exam?

There are 3 stages. The Preliminary exam, the Main exam and the Personality test or the Interview stage.

Q. How many papers are there in the Preliminary exam of the IFS?

The Preliminary stage of the IFS exam has two papers:

  • Paper-1 - General Studies
  • Paper-2 - CSAT (Civil Services Aptitude Test)

Q. What is the question pattern of IFS Preliminary exam?

It is mainly objective type in nature.

Q. Is there any scheme of negative marking in the IFS Preliminary Exam?

Yes, there is a scheme of negative marking in the IFS exam. For every incorrect answer, 1/3 marks will be deducted.

Q. What is the question pattern of the Mains exam of IFS?

The Mains exam is a descriptive or summative type.

Q. What is the age limit for the 2020 UPSC IFS Exam?

The candidate should be between the age group of 21 years to 32 years.

Q. What should be the educational qualification for the IFS Exam?

The candidate should have done a bachelor’s degree from any recognized university or institution.

Q. IFS exam Interview is conducted for how many marks?

The personality test or interview is the final stage of the IFS officer selection process, and it carries 250 marks.

Q. What is the Application fee for the IFS 2020 Exam?

The candidate should pay ₹100 as the Application fee for the IFS Exam. However, the reserved category candidate SC/ST/PH and the Female candidate are exempted from paying any application fee for the exam.