Sociology Optional Syllabus for UPSC- Syllabus Paper-1 and Paper-2

The Union Public Service Commission has published the sociology optional syllabus for 2021 exams through the notification on its official website. Sociology is a popular choice as an optional subject among IAS aspirants. It is easy and provides knowledge about various aspects of society, which proves to help them. Sociology Paper 1 considers the fundamentals of Sociology while Sociology Paper-II explains the society of India, changes occurring within it, and the structure of the society. Each optional paper in UPSC Mains Exams carries 250 marks out of a total of 500 marks.

Why do many opt for sociology as an optional paper?

Sociology is one of the 48 optional papers proposed by UPSC. Many tend to opt for this due to the easy availability of the study material for this subject. It is simple and easy to learn, the syllabus is less, it is scoring and interesting, and it will also help get through the interview round.

Sociology optional syllabus for UPSC

Sociology optional syllabus: PAPER– I 

Fundamentals of Sociology 

1. Social science – The Discipline: (a) Modernity and social changes in Europe and development of Sociology. 
(b) Scope of the subject and examination with other sociologies. 
(c) Sociology and good judgment. 
2. Humanism as Science: (a) Science, logical strategy, and investigation. 
(b) Major hypothetical strands of exploration procedure. 
(c) Positivism and its scrutinize. 
(d) Fact worth and objectivity. 
(e) Non-positivist systems. 
3. Exploration Methods and Analysis: (a) Qualitative and quantitative strategies. 
(b) Techniques of information assortment. 
(c) Variables, testing, theory, dependability, and legitimacy. 
4. Sociological Thinkers: (a) Karl Marx – Historical realism, method of creation, distance, class battle. 
(b) Emile Durkheim – Division of work, social fact, suicide, religion, and society. 
(c) Max Weber – Social activity, optimal sorts, authority, administration, the protestant ethic, and the soul of private enterprise. 
(d) Talcott Parsons – Social framework, design factors. 
(e) Robert K. Merton – Latent and show capacities, similarity, and abnormality, reference gatherings. 
(f) Mead – Self and personality. 
5. Separation and Mobility: (a) Concepts – correspondence, imbalance, a chain of importance, exclusion, poverty, and hardship.
(b) Theories of social delineation – Structural functionalist hypothesis, Marxist hypothesis, Weberian hypothesis. 
(c) Dimensions – Social definition of class, status gatherings, sex, nationality, and race. 
(d) Social versatility – open and shut frameworks, sorts of portability, sources, and reasons for portability. 
6. Works and Economic Life:  (a) Social association of work in various kinds of society – slave society, primitive society, mechanical industrialist society (b) Formal and casual association of work. (c) Labor and society. 
7. Governmental issues and Society: (a) Sociological hypotheses of force. 
(b) Power first-class, organization, pressure gatherings, and ideological groups. 
(c) Nation, state, citizenship, popular government, common society, ideology. 
(d) Protest, tumult, social developments, collective-action, transformation. 
8. Religion and Society: (a) Sociological hypotheses of religion. 
(b) Types of strict practices: animism, monism,pluralism, factions, cliques. 
(c) Religion in present-day culture: religion and science, secularisation, strict revivalism, fundamentalism. 
9. Frameworks of Kinship: (a) Family and marriage. 
(b) Types of family. 
(c) Lineage and plummet. 
(d) Patriarchy and sexual division of work. 
(e) Contemporary patterns.
10. Social Change in Modern Society: (a) Sociological speculations of social change. 
(b) Development and reliance. 
(c) Agents of social change. 
(d) Education and social change. 
(e) Science, innovation, and social change.


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Sociology optional syllabus: PAPER-II 

Indian Society – Structure and Change 

A. Presenting Indian Society:

(I) Perspectives on the Study of Indian Society: (a) Structural functionalism (M. N. Srinivas).
(b) Indology (G.S. Ghure). (
c) Marxist social science (A. R. Desai). 
(II) Impact of pilgrim rule on Indian culture: (a) Social foundation of Indian patriotism. 
(b) Modernization of Indian practice. 
(c) Protests and developments during the pilgrim time frame. 
(d) Social changes. 

B. Social Structure: 

(I) Rural and Agrarian Social Structure: (a) The possibility of Indian town and town examines. 
(b) Agrarian social construction—the advancement of land residency framework, land changes. 
(II) Caste System: (a) Perspectives on the investigation of rank frameworks: G. S. Ghurye, M. N. Srinivas, Louis Dumont, Andre Beteille. 
(b) Features of the rank framework. 
(c) Untouchability-structures and viewpoints 
(III) Tribal Communities in India: (a) Definitional issues. (b) Geographical spread. (c) Colonial strategies and clans. (d) Issues of joining and independence. 
(IV) Social Classes in India: (a) Agrarian class structure. 
(b) Industrial class structure. 
(c) Middle classes in India. 
(V) Systems of Kinship in India: (a) Lineage and plummet in India. 
(b) Types of connection frameworks. 
(c) Family and marriage in India. 
(d) Household measurements of the family. 
(e) Patriarchy, privileges, and sexual division of work. 
(VI) Religion and Society: (a) Religious people group in India. 
(b) Problems of strict minorities. 

C. Social Changes in India: 

(I) Visions of Social Change in India: (a) Idea of improvement arranging and blended economy. 
(b) Constitution, law, and social change. 
(c) Education and social change. 
(II) Rural and Agrarian Transformation in India: (a) Programs of provincial turn of events, Community Development Program, cooperatives, destitution easing plans. 
(b) Green upset and social change. 
(c) Changing methods of creation in Indian horticulture. 
(d) Problems of provincial work, servitude, relocation. 
(III) Industrialisation and Urbanisation in India: (a) Evolution of present-day industry in India. 
(b) Growth of metropolitan settlements in India. 
(c) Working-class: structure, development, class preparation. 
(d) Informal area, youngster work. 
(e) Slums and hardship in metropolitan regions. 
(IV) Politics and Society: (a) Nation, majority rule government, and citizenship. 
(b) Political coalitions, pressure gatherings, social and political world-class. 
(c) Regionalism and decentralization of force. 
(d) Secularisation. 
(V) Social Movements in Modern India: (a) Peasants and ranchers developments. 
(b) Women’s development. 
(c) Backward Classes and Dalit developments. 
(d) Environmental developments. 
(e) Ethnicity and Identity developments. 
(VI) Population Dynamics: (a) Population size, development, piece, and appropriation. 
(b) Components of populace development: birth, passing, movement. 
(c) Population Policy and family arranging. 
(d) Emerging issues: maturing, sex proportions, youngster and baby mortality, regenerative wellbeing. 
(VII) Challenges of Social Transformation: (a) Crisis of improvement: relocation, natural issues, and manageability. 
(b) Poverty, hardship, and imbalances. 
(c) Violence against ladies. 
(d) Caste clashes. 
(e) Ethnic struggles, communalism, strict revivalism. 
(f) Illiteracy and inconsistencies in instruction.


To score well and crack the UPSC exams in one go, you should solve many previous year’s question papers and give various mock tests to gain confidence and judge one’s performance. Follow this UPSC sociology optional syllabus and prepare accordingly. This subject has so many topics in common with General studies for the IAS aspirants, so candidates can simultaneously prepare both. 


Is it advisable to take sociology as an optional paper in UPSC?

Yes, it is prudent to take sociology as the paper is scoring and the syllabus is less. It is also simple and easy to grasp compared to other optional subjects.

Which books to cover for the sociology paper? 

It is suggested to follow the NCERT book for sociology papers for UPSC exams.

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