List of Best NCERT Books for IAS Exam

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NCERT books are a very good source and introduction to topics in IAS prelims. Little wonder then, many coaching classes and aspirants recommend NCERT books to fresh aspirants who are just starting their preparation. But the question I receive quite often is should you refer All NCERT books and for All subjects? The answer to both is No. You have to read some NCERT books for some subjects. For other subjects, NCERT books are not required. So you should read which NCERT books for which topics or subjects, let’s find out.

Note: This post focuses only on NCERT books. For the complete list of recommended books for prelims, refer this post.

Polity NCERT Books for IAS

The following NCERT books for Indian polity are recommended:

Class NCERT Title NCERT Download 
9th Democratic Politics-I Available
10th Democratic Politics-II Available

History NCERT Books for IAS

For Indian History, please obtain the following old syllabus NCERT history textbooks, published in 1990, if you can get them somehow. They are currently out of print but are highly recommended.

Ancient India (class 11th) authored by RS Sharma. This covers the ancient Indian history syllabus completely.

Medieval India (class 12th)  for covering medieval India syllabus authored by Satish Chandra.

Modern India (class 10th) text book of old syllabus authored by Bipin Chandra.

Also combine Bipin Chandra’s India’s Struggle for Independence to cover the modern Indian history syllabus completely.

NOTE: If you cannot find old syllabus History NCERTs, read the alternatives to old NCERT History books by the same authors.

However, if you would like to read the current NCERT books on Indian History, then the following NCERT’s are recommended:

Class NCERT Title NCERT Download 
6th History-Our Past I Available
7th History-Our Past II Available
8th History-Our Pasts-III Part 1 Available
9th History-Our Pasts-III Part 2 Available
10th India and the Contemporary World – I Available
10th India and the Contemporary World – II Available

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Geography NCERT Books for IAS

The following NCERT books for Geography and Environment are recommended:

Class NCERT Title NCERT Download 
11th Fundamentals of Physical Geography Available
12th Indian Physical Environment Available
12th Fundamentals of Human Geography Available
12th India – People and Economy Available

Economy NCERT Books for IAS

The following NCERT books for Economy are recommended:

Class NCERT Title NCERT Download 
9th Economics Available
10th Understanding Economic Development Available
11th Indian Economic Development Available
12th Introductory Microeconomics Available
12th Introductory Macroeconomics Available

 Science & Technology NCERT Books for IAS

The following NCERT books for Science & Technology are recommended:

Class NCERT Title NCERT Download 
8th Science Available
9th Science Available
10th Science Available

If you any questions regarding the NCERT books, use the comment form below.

Reference Books for IAS

GS Solved Papers
General Studies Manual
Manorama Year Book
Oxford Student Atlas
Science and Technology

Topic-wise Books for IAS

Indian Polity Laxmikanth
Ecology and Environment
India's Struggle for Independence
Brief History of Modern India
Indian Art and Culture
Certificate Course in Geography

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Click Here to Leave a Comment Below 72 comments
arvind - September 7, 2013

sir, please suggest books for mains exam.
Thank You,

Kanakam M Bhogeswara Rao - September 25, 2013


    keenugarg - August 12, 2016

    Sir, ncert&ref. Books is sufficient with current affairs ,n gk

    Or another is needed

ankit - September 25, 2013

as sir i have per suing bba so which subject is best for me to choose for mains its public ad or sociology or would u recommend a other subject ??

balu - October 8, 2013

Do we need to prepare a notes while reading NCERT Books or is it sufficent to prepare notes when reading standard book after completion of NCERT like India’s Strugle For Independence incase of History.
Thanks in advance

mukesh hingane - October 12, 2013

hello sir,i have jus garaduated and started preparations with NCERT books reading….but confused as in market there are old and new NCERT books available….then what to do???? which books should i purchase for his geo eco bio ???thnx in advance

akash - October 18, 2013

Sir, can u please help me in finding the old ncert history books, like where i can find them please???

    omprashant - November 16, 2015

    please you search in sapna book house

    Anjan Pal - June 25, 2016

    College Street, Kolkata. Here You will find all the NCERT books which you want.

vivek - November 13, 2013

sir ,
is it necessary to make notes from ncert .
thank you

Nilu - November 23, 2013

Sir i am B.A graduate in hindi medium..and i want to know that which books are best for me prepration for IAS entrance exams…plz tell me

ramya - December 31, 2013

sir which books can i prepare for psychology mains and ncert books for psychology

kirubha - December 31, 2013


I have been browsing your website for the past few days and its really very useful.
You have provided with the link to download nCERT text books , is it the link to the books published in 1990’s , i mean are they old syllabus books ?

    IAS Kracker - January 5, 2014

    No it’s the link to the new syllabus ncerts

Kaustuv Mishra - January 10, 2014

Please take a lookat the following books for medieval and ancient history.Will these suffice as old NCERT editions are not available


    IAS Kracker - January 12, 2014

    Yes Kaustuv,

    These books will suffice and thanks for sharing the links.

ASHOK KUMAR BAG - January 30, 2014

sir ,

i have decided to prepare ias exam at home without the help of coaching . suggest me some strategies to crack ias exam in my first attempt .

from -Department of Economics , Barpali college , Barpali

    IAS Kracker - February 3, 2014

    First get the right books and previous years papers

Anusha - February 11, 2014

For fundamentals of physical geography, should we follow old or new ncert?
Please guide me…


    IAS Kracker - February 16, 2014

    New NCERTs are just fine.

Govind - February 24, 2014

Friends, Just found in net that Jawahar Book House in Delhi have the complete xerox copy of old NCERT. They Charge 1200/-. Its a package of complete 6 to 12th NCERT, publications before 2004 . If any one in Delhi can go and have a look in that shop. They told they will courier it to other Cities also.

Below is the link.


ramya - March 21, 2014


for prelims should we follow old or new ncert books

plz guide me sir

Dr.Abhishek - April 11, 2014

Sir, Few queries.

1. In the IAS e-book, you have given NCERT VIII to X for history. However, in this write up you have said NCERT of IX,X and XI. Kindly clarify.



    IAS Kracker - April 13, 2014

    Hi Abhishek,

    Go with NCERTs listed in this post. I will update the eBook as well.

      Dr.Abhishek - April 15, 2014

      Sir, Few queries

      1.I have NCERT Modern India (XII) by Bipan Chandra,2002, 9th reprint edition (original first edition 1990).
      Would it suffice in place of ‘Modern India (class X) text book of old syllabus authored by Bipin Chandra’, as suggested by you in this write up. Both these books are not in print now.

      2. For Polity NCERT, XI- Political Theory & Indian Constitution at Work (2 books); XII- Contemporary World Politics & Political Science-II (2 books). Your views on them?


Abhimanyu - June 2, 2014

Sir, u are doing a great job .

SK Namkhon - June 6, 2014

Suggest books for GS Mains.Thanks.

Kuldeep Singh - June 9, 2014

Hello sir ! I m a district topper in 12 class and persuing B.Sc.Phy Hons.. from D U ! I like to give tutions upto class 12 .Now i want to ask if i m teaching 9 and 10 math and science and 11 & 12 only math ! Which pair should i choose for u p s e preparation purpose .I can give only 2 hrs for teaching so plzz sujjest me that should i teach 9&10 ( math , science ,) or 11&12 ( math only )

Prasad - July 4, 2014

Sir. If Buy a new thick book of TMH GS Manual, no need to read it along with old NCERT? Does THM GS Manual contains old NCERT and a few books from history optional? The history and culture section GS manuals is written based on old NCERT?

Think you in advance.

harshal patil - July 5, 2014

sir which ncerts books are available in hindi.. please guide me

Aakash - July 15, 2014

Hello sir,
I’m just graduated i have an aspiration of becoming an IAS.I need a good mentor to guide me with all the basic and advance level of books for the IAS prelims.How shall i start and with what kind of books shall i refer to?I would request plz help me sir so that i would give my best.ty

santanu - July 16, 2014


I would like to know about the requirements for preliminary of ias 2014 means what i hv to study for clear it.

Ashu - July 18, 2014

Hi Sir,
I am having experience of near about 6 year in Software Industry.But now i am planning to prepare for Civil service.can you plz let me know from which basics books i can start my preperation.
Also please let me know the ncert books which i have to study.


deepak sharma - July 30, 2014

Sir…plzz tell me…which one is best for geography either..ncert or goh Cheng Leong book…???
Sir plzz tell me how should I start myself for preparation because I have done my btech this year in civil engineering and currently I m lecturer in engineering college???

shubham - August 2, 2014

sir,i want to start UPSC preparation and i am from marathi mediam now in UG so the NCERT books in the post are sufficient for me ? or i should read other extra NCERT books also.

Boeing 747 - August 3, 2014

When prelims only asks for modern India ! Why to read ancient and medieval history? Will class 10th ncert modern history will do ? After all it’s all about smart work .

shveta - February 11, 2015

hi sir,
i am doing b.tech in electronics and communication .plzz…suggest me how to begin the preparation for ias exam..and how to choose optional subject..
plzz rply

jayesh ppatil - March 1, 2015

sir,i am not so good in english as i think,so it is good to give exam in regional language? thank u.

    IAS Kracker - March 1, 2015

    Hello Jayesh,

    Yes you should attempt the exam in the language in which your are most comfortable.

Anitha - March 2, 2015


I am a final year ECE student. I am aspired to get through IAS preparation. But people are suggesting me to approach some coaching centres.
I am from economically backward family and so I cannot approach any such centres as quite as easy… Is it good to start my preparation on my own or not?

abhinav abrol - March 20, 2015

sir i m persuing mba……i want to go for ias exam ……..i m bit confused that i will get very less time for the preparation…..will u plze suggest me the books for prelims and mains with which i hav 2 begin and go 4 further preparation……also guide me with the strategy to prepare 4 the exam

DILIP MISHRA - April 6, 2015

Sir i want in hindi medium material for civil service exam 2015 plz

    arun - December 12, 2015

    sir..plz help am I supposed to read science that is all phy chem bio ncerts from claß 11 nd 12

vaghela sunil Kumar rameshbhai - July 12, 2015

Please. Make list of important ncert books and which class. For which subject. Plz.

Jancy - November 2, 2015

Sir, I am a B.Com graduate and i want to prepare for IAS Exams. Will you suggest me which subject should i choose??

krishn - December 11, 2015

Sir mai btec 2nd year ka student hu app mujhe ye bataiki.mai 3rd year se taiyari kar sakta hu aur kaun sa acha coaching hai vaji ram$ravi ya phir chankaya ias acadmy.

Tanu Shree Singh - December 12, 2015

Wonderful content Sir.

M.Abhilash - January 29, 2016

Respected sir,
Is complete 6th to 10th all subjects ncert text books are needed? Please inform me sir.

parimal - March 18, 2016

sir i need old ncert history of class 8 & 9, if you have these stuff please provide us.
thank you

Jadeja amee - April 21, 2016

I want to buy books for ias preparation.. The books u suggested are available at what price?

Rohit - May 3, 2016

I am B.A Grduate Student and i want to know which books Help For Krack IAS exam

vishal virani - May 21, 2016

sir i m done mba with finance specialization……i want to go for ias exam ……..i m bit confused that i will get very less time for the preparation…..will u plze suggest me the books for prelims and mains with which i hav 2 begin and go 4 further preparation……also guide me with the strategy to prepare 4 the exam

Manish - May 21, 2016

Thanks Sir! for valuable source of information. But the question is for science The Hindu also publish some booklet, isn’t it ? And from where can I get this TMH GS Manual .

Keshav Bhardwaj - May 24, 2016

Dear sir this is keshav bhardwaj and i want to tell u that i have to read ncert books only for knowing basics or i have to make notes also from them.

Anjan Pal - June 25, 2016

Dear Sir,
There are more than One NCERT text books for same class ( eg. Class 11 has two Economics text book ). Please Sir Suggest me which NCERT text books I should follow. And aslo please make me aware of how many NCERT textbooks are available in Market from Class 9-12 ( Specially History, Geography, Science and Economics ) .

Anjan Pal - June 25, 2016

Being a Bengali medium student I’m confused about how many NCERT books are available in market. In some cases there are more than one textbook for same class.. Please give me the details . Thanks in advance.

Ayeshah - August 27, 2016

I m a 19 year old mbbs student so plz cn u tell me dat should i read all the ncert books now from 6 to 12 or only some of them and which subject

And should i choose medical science as an optional subject or anyother

Saltnat Naseem - September 6, 2016

sir I m preparing for IAS from the NCERT but in a vry different manner.
I m making notes topic wise as I used to take one topic and collect information on that particular topic from all NCERT’s.
is it the right way??
and plz guide me about the best optional subject for a begginner to take in UPSC??

Saltnat Naseem - September 6, 2016

plz help me abt optional sub??

Ashish Jha - June 30, 2017

As far as IAS examinations are concerned, NCERT books are of great help.But, it should not be mandatory in CBSE schools.

NCERT books mandatory in CBSE schools

Raj - November 18, 2017

Sir plz give material in Kindle format ….

JYOTHIKA - July 18, 2018


Pooja patel - September 25, 2018

Is toi is good news paper for preparation. Is speaking tree of editoral page is important??

    IAS Kracker - September 25, 2018

    Hello Pooja,
    You should avoid ToI for civil services preparation as the articles are not of high quality and are often biased towards one political viewpoint. Speaking tree serves no purpose for civils.

Imthiyaz ali - October 7, 2018

In your six main books u did not mention ncert books..but in all the topper reviews they suggest ncerts as a first choice?

    IAS Kracker - October 16, 2018

    I also refer NCERTs for IAS preparation but only for fundamentals not for Mains preparation. IAS toppers also don’t refer NCERTs for Mains.

Ashwin Galhotra - October 12, 2018

very nice Collection to clear IAS can you suggest some basic references for a beginner?

Abhishek - October 27, 2018

Hey bro, hi this Abhishek Dubey here, I needed old ncert, Democracy in India by A S Narang pdf, it will b highly helpful, if u have it kindly send dubeyperiodontist@gmail.com

Thanks in anticipation…

Praveen kumar - November 29, 2018

Sir, please tell me the importance of world history of class 11th . Is is necessary for UPSC . Plzzz suggest with your views

    IAS Kracker - December 31, 2018

    World History is not required for Prelims preparation. What I have referred on this page is sufficient.


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