How To Study Sociology For UPSC: Syllabus, Important Topics, Reference Books

A prospect of sociology optional papers is fairly diverse.

Aspire to learn the thinkers part in the individual paper very seamlessly and get a straightforwardness on all the sociological notions.

When putting sociology answers in writing, make effort to remember 3 things, Thinkers and their thoughts, intelligible procedure and appearance with the modern subjects in answers.

The layout of answers means the subject matter with a certain formation to be enclosed.

  1. Know the Syllabus – Sociology Paper 


First of all, put together the UPSC Mains Sociology Syllabus, its paper structure and applicable topics featuring in UPSC Mains Sociology Syllabus.

  1. Select the Best Reference Books for Sociology Paper 


Books for Sociology Optional

  • Sociology – T.B. Bottomore
  • Sociology – Harry M. Johnson
  • Sociology: An introduction and analysis – Maclver and Page
  • Handbook of Sociology – Ogburn, and Minkoff
    Social anthropology – Madan and Majumdar
  • Social Thought – Abraham and Morgan
  • Dictionary of sociology – Dunean and Mitchel or Penguin
  • Sociology Dictionary – William P. Scott
  • Introductory sociology: T.B. Buttermore
  • Basic contribution of sociological and anthropological thinkers: dictionary of sociology, Social and cultural process: Maclver and Page and Madan & Majumdar
  • Deviance and central: Social stratification – Harlambos and T.B. Bottomore
  • Political institutions – Bottomore
  • Religious and social institutions – Madan & Majumdar Niel J. Smelser- Economy and Society
  • Abraham and Francis – Sociological theory
  • Sociology – Sachdeva & Vidhya Bushan
  • Sociology Themes & Perspectives – Moralambose & R.M. Heald.
  • Social Anthropology – Madan & Majumdar
  • Political System – Smelser
  • Cultural Anthropology -Madan and Majumdar
  • Sociology – Horton, and Hunt
  • Harlambus – Introduction to Sociology
  • Social Demography – Asha & Bandhi
  • Chapters from a good book on Demography and Urban geography
  1. Prepare Important Topics 


The preparation for Mains should be ended before taking the first step with Preliminary preparation, as the Main exam syllabus includes approximately 75% of the necessities of the Preliminary examination.

If an aspirant has not accomplished their graduation with Sociology, the suggested strategy would be as follows.

(1) Looking over the syllabus of Sociology sensibly and setting apart the totally unacquainted areas.

(2)  Analysing carefully past 5 years’ Main Examination Question Papers and classifying the parts of implication.

Emphasizing the primary signifies getting thinker’s opinions, case studies et. When you have practiced the Primary material, you must explore and enhance the secondary material. They may seek new information, cases, and books and combine it with primary material notes. Similarly, the answers intend to be inclusive, renewed and with miscellaneous knowledge.

Answer writing 


  1. For elongated Answers-Introduction can be either indirect through some lines or quotes or direct with general explanation followed by the exact definition.
  2. Afterward subject has to be enlightened in a word after that starting links with other chapters and directing on the question. Here, hold over and then read the question again. Drawings can be exercised efficiently.
  3. The finish of the answers must always be quixotic or constructive and solution based on an example when required.
  4. There must be the varied usage of paras and points. Examples would be cited where conceivable but avoid using one enterprise over and over again.
  5. Aimed at brief answers, create the straightforward meaning and then unswervingly come to the depth.
  6. The ending would be key based. For merit/demerit/feature get through diagram or points.
  7. Test series may be combined for preparation.

Step 4: Prepare Previous Question papers 


  • Download UPSC Mains Sociology Question Papers – Optional
  • Question Paper of 2017 [Paper-I]
  • Question Paper of 2017 [Paper-II]

What amount does it take to prepare? 


It takes around 4-5 months when preparing for the Sociology 12-15 hours once a week. This ought to be adequate. In addition, it rests on how much can you bring the graduation ideas to mind