UPSC Psychology Syllabus 2024 for Paper 1 & 2, Download PDF

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UPSC Psychology Syllabus 2024

The UPSC Psychology syllabus 2024 covers key topics including biological psychology, cognitive psychology, psychosocial psychology, organizational behavior, statistics, and research methodology. The paper evaluates the ability to comprehend psychological theories and apply concepts to analyze human behaviors. Thorough preparation of developmental psychology, aptitude testing, and counseling is essential.

You can download the UPSC CSE Psychology Optional paper Syllabus from the direct link given below.

UPSC Psychology Syllabus 2024 Overview

There is a list of optional subjects for mains in which there are 48 subjects, from which candidates can choose according to their choice. Psychology is one of the optional subjects for the Civil Services Exam conducted by UPSC. The optional paper is conducted for 250 marks. The UPSC CSE optional subject Psychology Syllabus 2024 has two papers, Paper 1 and Paper 2.

Optional Psychology Syllabus for UPSC CSE 2024

The UPSC Psychology syllabus emphasizes applied concepts and theories. It is best suited for those with a psychology academic background or work experience. Strong conceptual knowledge and ability to analyze human behavior through case studies is tested in this interesting optional subject.

If you opt for Psychology optional in UPSC mains, prepare it thoroughly. Go through the UPSC CSE Syllabus and previous years’ Psychology papers. Also study relevant Psychology books for UPSC preparation.

UPSC CSE Psychology Syllabus 2024 for Paper 1

1. Introduction:

  • Definition of Psychology.
  • Historical antecedents of Psychology and trends in the 21st century.
  • Psychology and scientific methods.
  • Psychology in relation to other social sciences and natural sciences.
  • Application of Psychology to societal problems.

2. Methods of Psychology:

  • Types of research: Descriptive, evaluative, diagnostic, and prognostic.
  • Methods of Research: Survey, observation, case-study, and experiments.
  • Characteristics of experimental design and non-experimental designs.
  • Quasi-experimental designs.
  • Focused group discussions, brain storming, grounded theory approach.

3. Research methods:

  • Major steps in psychological research.
  • Problem statement, hypothesis formulation, research design, sampling, tools of data collection.
  • Analysis and interpretation, and report writing.
  • Fundamental versus applied research.
  • Methods of data collection: Interview, observation, questionnaire, and case study.
  • Research Designs: Ex-post facto and experimental.
  • Application of statistical techniques: t-test, ANOVA, correlation, regression, factor analysis, item response theory.

4. Development of Human Behavior:

  • Growth and development.
  • Principles of development.
  • Role of genetic and environmental factors.
  • Influence of cultural factors in socialization.
  • Life span development: Characteristics, development tasks, promoting psychological well-being across major stages of the life span.

5. Sensation, Attention, and Perception:

  • Sensation: Concepts of threshold, absolute and difference thresholds, signal-detection, vigilance.
  • Factors influencing attention, including set and characteristics of stimulus.
  • Definition and concept of perception.
  • Biological factors in perception.
  • Perceptual organization, perceptual defense.
  • Factors influencing space and depth perception, size estimation, perceptual readiness.
  • The plasticity of perception.
  • Extrasensory perception.
  • Culture and perception, subliminal perception.

6. Learning:

  • Concepts and theories of learning.
  • Processes of extinction, discrimination, and generalization.
  • Programmed learning, probability learning, self-instructional learning.
  • Concepts, types, and schedules of reinforcement.
  • Escape, avoidance, punishment, modeling, and social learning.

7. Memory:

  • Encoding and remembering.
  • Short-term memory, long-term memory, sensory memory.
  • Iconic memory, echoic memory.
  • The Multistore model.
  • Levels of processing.
  • Organization and mnemonic techniques to improve memory.
  • Theories of forgetting: decay, interference, and retrieval failure.
  • Metamemory.
  • Amnesia: Anterograde and retrograde.

8. Thinking and Problem Solving:

  • Piaget’s theory of cognitive development.
  • Concept formation processes.
  • Information processing, reasoning, and problem solving.
  • Facilitating and hindering factors in problem solving.
  • Methods of problem solving.
  • Creative thinking and fostering creativity.
  • Factors influencing decision making and judgment.
  • Recent trends.

9. Motivation and Emotion:

  • Psychological and physiological basis of motivation and emotion.
  • Measurement of motivation and emotion.
  • Effects of motivation and emotion on behavior.
  • Extrinsic and intrinsic motivation.
  • Factors influencing intrinsic motivation.
  • Emotional competence and related issues.

10. Intelligence and Aptitude:

  • Concept of intelligence and aptitude.
  • Nature and theories of intelligence.
  • Measurement of intelligence and aptitudes.
  • Emotional Intelligence, Social intelligence.
  • Concept of IQ deviation and constancy.
  • Measurement of multiple intelligences.
  • Fluid intelligence and crystallized intelligence.

11. Personality:

  • Definition and concept of personality.
  • Theories of personality: psychoanalytical, socio-cultural, interpersonal, developmental, humanistic, behavioristic, trait and type approaches.
  • Measurement of personality: projective tests, pencil-paper test.
  • The Indian approach to personality.
  • Training for personality development.
  • Latest approaches like big 5 factor theory.
  • The notion of self in different traditions.

12. Attitudes, Values, and Interests:

  • Definitions of attitudes, values, and interests.
  • Components of attitudes.
  • Formation and maintenance of attitudes.
  • Measurement of attitudes, values, and interests.
  • Theories of attitude changes.
  • Strategies for fostering values.
  • Formation of stereotypes and prejudices.
  • Theories of attribution.
  • Recent trends.

13. Language and Communication:

  • Human language: Properties, structure, and linguistic hierarchy.
  • Language acquisition: predisposition, critical period hypothesis.
  • Theories of Language development: Skinner and Chomsky.
  • Process and types of communication.
  • Effective communication training.

14. Issues and Perspectives in Modern Contemporary Psychology:

  • Computer application in the psychological laboratory and psychological testing.
  • Artificial intelligence.
  • Psychocybernetics.
  • Study of consciousness: sleep-wake schedules, dreams.
  • Stimulus deprivation, meditation, hypnotic/drug-induced states.
  • Extrasensory perception.
  • Intersensory perception.
  • Simulation studies.

UPSC CSE Psychology Syllabus 2024 for Paper 2

1. Psychological Measurement of Individual Differences:

  • The nature of individual differences.
  • Characteristics and construction of standardized psychological tests.
  • Types of psychological tests.
  • Use, misuse, and limitation of psychological tests.
  • Ethical issues in the use of psychological tests.

2. Psychological Well-being and Mental Disorders:

  • Concept of health-ill health positive health, well-being.
  • Casual factors in Mental disorders: Anxiety disorders, mood disorders, schizophrenia and delusional disorders, personality disorders, substance abuse disorders.
  • Factors influencing positive health, well-being.
  • Lifestyle and quality of life.
  • Happiness disposition.

3. Therapeutic Approaches:

  • Psychodynamic therapies.
  • Behavior therapies.
  • Client-centered therapy.
  • Cognitive therapies.
  • Indigenous therapies (Yoga, Meditation).
  • Biofeedback therapy.
  • Prevention and rehabilitation of the mentally ill.
  • Fostering mental health.

4. Work Psychology and Organizational Behavior:

  • Personnel selection and training.
  • Use of Psychological tests in the industry.
  • Training and human resource development.
  • Theories of work motivation.
  • Leadership and participatory management.
  • Advertising and marketing.
  • Stress and its management.
  • Ergonomics.
  • Consumer psychology.
  • Managerial effectiveness.
  • Transformational leadership.
  • Sensitivity training.
  • Power and politics in organizations.

5. Application of Psychology to Educational Field:

  • Psychological principles underlying effective teaching-learning process.
  • Learning styles.
  • Gifted, retarded, learning disabled, and their training.
  • Training for improving memory and better academic achievement.
  • Personality development and value education.
  • Educational, vocational guidance, and career counseling.
  • Effective strategies in guidance programs.

6. Community Psychology:

  • Definition and concept of Community Psychology.
  • Use of small groups in social action.
  • Arousing Community consciousness and action for handling social problems.
  • Group decision making and leadership for social change.
  • Effective strategies for social change.

7. Rehabilitation Psychology:

  • Primary, secondary, and tertiary prevention programs—role of psychologists.
  • Organizing services for rehabilitation of physically, mentally, and socially challenged persons including old persons.
  • Rehabilitation of persons suffering from substance abuse, juvenile delinquency, criminal behaviors.
  • Rehabilitation of victims of violence.
  • Rehabilitation of HIV/AIDS victims, the role of social agencies.

8. Application of Psychology to Disadvantaged Groups:

  • The concepts of disadvantaged and deprivation.
  • Social, physical, cultural, and economic consequences of disadvantaged and deprived groups.
  • Educating and motivating the disadvantaged towards development.
  • Relative and prolonged deprivation.

9. Psychological Problems of Social Integration:

  • The concept of social integration.
  • The problem of caste, class, religion, and language conflicts and prejudice.
  • Nature and manifestation of prejudice between the in-group and out-group.
  • Causal factors of such conflicts and prejudices.
  • Psychological strategies for handling the conflicts and prejudices.
  • Measures to achieve social integration.

10. Application of Psychology in Information Technology and Mass Media:

  • The present scenario of information technology and the mass media boom and the role of psychologists.
  • Selection and training of Psychology professionals to work in the field of IT and mass media.
  • Distance learning through IT and mass media.
  • Entrepreneurship through e-commerce.
  • Multilevel marketing.
  • Impact of TV and fostering value through IT and mass media.
  • Psychological consequences of recent developments in Information Technology.

11. Psychology and Economic Development:

  • Achievement motivation and economic development.
  • Characteristics of entrepreneurial behavior.
  • Motivating and Training people for entrepreneurship and economic development.
  • Consumer rights and consumer awareness.
  • Government policies for the promotion of entrepreneurship among youth including women entrepreneurs.

12. Application of Psychology to Environment and Related Fields:

  • Environmental Psychology: effects of noise, pollution, and crowding.
  • Population Psychology: Psychological consequences of population explosion and high population density.
  • Motivating for small family norms.
  • Impact of rapid scientific and technological growth on degradation of the environment.

13. Application of Psychology in Other Fields:

  • Military Psychology: Devising psychological tests for defense personnel for use in selection, training, counseling; training psychologists to work with defense personnel in promoting positive health; Human engineering in defense.
  • Sports Psychology: Psychological interventions in improving performance of athletes and sports persons participating in Individual and Team Games.
  • Media influences on pro and anti-social behavior.
  • Psychology of Terrorism.

14. Psychology of Gender:

  • Issues of discrimination.
  • Management of diversity.
  • Glass ceiling effect.
  • Self-fulfilling prophecy.
  • Women and Indian society.

Candidates should focus on honing analytical thinking and structured essay writing skills. Practicing answer formulation within the prescribed word limit is crucial. Current affairs application provides an edge. Strong conceptual foundations paired with real-world examples help aspirants maximize scores in this theory and case study-based optional subject.

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UPSC Psychology Syllabus 2024 FAQs

1. What is the syllabus of Psychology for UPSC CSE?

The UPSC Psychology syllabus 2024 covers key topics including biological psychology, cognitive psychology, psychosocial psychology, organizational behavior, statistics, and research methodology. The paper evaluates the ability to comprehend psychological theories and apply concepts to analyze human behaviors. Thorough preparation of developmental psychology, aptitude testing, and counseling is essential.
Get Syllabus PDF here: UPSC CSE Psychology Syllabus

2. How much marks is allotted for UPSC Mains Optional subject Psychology?

There is 250 marks is for one optional paper.


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