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How to Score Excellent Marks in CSS

How to Score Excellent Marks in CSS

By: Waqas Rafiq (PSP)

Mr Waqas Rafiq has been allocated to the Police Service of Pakistan after he qualified the CSS examination 2017-18 by securing 38th position overall in Pakistan. His allocation to this prestigious group has been possible largely by his score in Current Affairs paper, which he topped with an outstanding score of 89, highest marks in this paper. His score in Gender Studies, too, was 89. So, for the greater benefit of the CSS 2019 aspirants, we requested Mr Rafiq to share with our readers, especially the aspirants who are going to appear in CSS 2019 exam, the strategy he followed for these very papers. Following is his write-up that contains some very effective tips that will, surely, help you in the exam.

CSS 2019 exam is scheduled to start from 14th of February. The nerve-racking ordeal of candidates is just about to begin. The exam will entail a competition where even a single mark will create a huge difference in getting you to qualify the exam as well as to determine your group allocation. In order to score excellent in this exam, you need to follow a comprehensive strategy. Three General Knowledge papers hold a key in this regard as they carry 300 marks.

In this write-up, I will be sharing a few tips that will enable you to score maximum. These are applicable to all papers, be it the compulsory or the optional ones.


Since you are almost done with your content preparation, I will focus on how to attempt the paper. This is an area where the focus of candidates is, unfortunately, the least. Excellent paper presentation can award you extra 1-2 marks for each question. You are required to answer four questions in each paper, except those of Essay and English (Précis and Composition). You can calculate that for the other 10 papers, it will create a difference of 40 to 80 marks in your total score. This will make a huge impact in your allocation. So, focus on presentation. And, for that you need to follow these things while writing your answers:

  • Attempt one question in 35 minutes. You have to do it. Equal distribution of time for all the questions is very important. Remember, each question carries equal marks. You will not get any advantage if you write too lengthy an answer to the first question, as compared to the other three. Keep a wrist watch with you and constantly follow time. In case you know the answers of, say, two questions better than the others, you may give 5 minutes extra to both, not more than that.
  • The length of the answers to each question should be more or less the same. And, if you are following your time constraints, you will do it easily. If answer to the first question spans 5 pages, try to write 4-6 pages for the others. It should not be like that you write one answer on 10 pages while others are spread on 3-4 pages. Try to have a balance in your answers.
  • Make an apt use of markers. Remember, examiner does not have enough time to go through each word of your answer sheet. He will take, hardly, 4-5 minutes to assess your paper. So, show him as much as you can by using maximum headings, by underlining or highlighting any important fact(s). Your paper should not look a monotonous one; it should be eye-catching. Use blue marker for headings, pen or ballpoint for content and a pointer for underlining or highlighting facts, figures or quotations.
  • Your paper should be neat. Your writing should be legible and clear enough to understand.
  • In order to maintain neatness, you may use 1 ballpoint and 1 marker for attempting each question – 4 ball points and markers for one paper. You may find it silly, but it does work effectively in maintaining neatness of your paper. Since most of the ballpoints start leaking inks on paper after you have attempted one or two questions, marring the neatness. Try to avoid it.

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