Karnataka Public Service Commission Examination

The KPSC (Karnataka Public Service Commission) was established in 1951 under the provisions of the Constitution and recruits candidates to the various civil services across the state of Karnataka.
The selection of the candidates for the KPSC is done on the basis of marks scored by candidates in the commission's examination (preliminary and main) and personality test.

For some services in Karnataka, the Service Commission conducts only written competitive examination or takes a personality test of the candidate. For an effective government administration, it is the policy of the Karnataka Government to recruit dynamic youngsters in the administration of the State.
For this purpose the Gazetted probationers Rules of 1966 has been introduced. It is provided in the Rules that the Commission should invite applications from the eligible candidates for recruitment to the posts coming under Group A & B Civil Service posts.

List of services in KPSC

Group - A

Sno: Service Cadre
01 The Karnataka Administrative Service. K.A.S. Group-'A' (Junior Scale)
02 The Karnataka Commercial Tax Service Asst. Commissioners of Commercial Tax
03 The Karnataka Treasury Service Treasury Officer
04 The Karnataka Labour Service Asst. Labour Commissioners
05 The Karnataka General Service (Development Branch and Local Government Branch) Executive Officer/ Assistant Secretary, Panchayat Raj
06 The Karnataka Police Service Deputy Superintendents of Police.
07 The Karnataka General Service Directorate of Youth Services. Deputy Directors of Youth Services.
08 The Karnataka Reserve Police Service Asst. Commandants of KSRP
09 The Karnataka General Service (Social Welfare Branch) District Social Welfare Officer
10 The Karnataka Food and Civil Supplies Service Deputy Directors of Food and Civil Supplies
11 Karnataka Backward Classes and Minorities Services Commissioner for Backward Classes and Minorities

Group - B

Sno: Service Cadre
01 The Karnataka Administrative Service Tahsildar Grade-II
02 The Karnataka Commercial Tax Service Commercial Tax Officer
03 The Karnataka Service for Labour Administration Labour Officer
04 The Karnataka Service for Jails Administration. Assistant Superintendents of Jails
05 The Karnataka Co-operative Service Assistant Registrars of Co-operative Societies
06 The Karnataka Excise Service Deputy Superintendents of Excise
07 The Karnataka Employment and Training Service. Employment Officers
08 The Karnataka General Service (Directorate of Youth Services). Assistant Directors of Youth Services/District Youth Service Officers/ Manager, Ravindra Kalakshetra.
09 The Karnataka General Service (Survey Settlement and Land Records branch) Assistant Director of Land Records and equivalent posts.
10 The Karnataka Municipal Administrative Service Chief Officers Grade-I
11 The Karnataka Treasury Service. Assistant Treasury Officers.
12 The Karnataka Marketing Service Assistant Directors Agriculture Marketing Dept.
13 The Karnataka Food and Civil Supplies Service (Food Wing) Assistant Directors of Food and Civil Supplies
14 The Karnataka Co-operative Audit Service Assistant Director
15 The Karnataka Tourism Services. Assistant Director of Tourism
16 The Karnataka Government Secretariat Service. Section Officer
17 The Karnataka General Services. (Social Welfare Branch). Taluk Social Welfare Officer

The competitive examination shall comprise of two stages:-

  1. Preliminary Examination (Objective type) for the selection of candidates for the main examination and
  2. Main Examination (written examination and Personality Test) for selection for candidates for various services and posts.

(A)Preliminary Examination :- The Preliminary Examination shall consist of two papers of objective type (multiple choice).

  1. Each paper carrying 100 Questions with each question carrying two marks.
  2. Each paper shall be of a maximum of 200 marks and a duratio


Sl. No. Subject Area No. of Questions Marks
1 General Studies related to National and International importance 40 80
2 Humanities 60 120
Total 100 200


Sl. No. Subject Area No. of Questions Marks
1 General Studies related to State Importance 40 80
2 General Science & Tech, Environment & Ecology 30 60
3 General Mental Ability 30 60
Total 100 200

  1. The question paper shall be set both in Kannada and English.
  2. The standard of General Mental Ability questions of preliminary examination (aptitude test) shall be that of X / SSLC level and the remaining papers are that of Degree Level.
  3. The number of candidates to be admitted to the main examination shall be 20 times the vacancies notified for recruitment in the order of merit on the basis of the performance in the preliminary examination, subject to accommodating the same ratio in adequate number of candidates belonging to the categories of Scheduled Castes , Scheduled Tribes, each of the other Backward Classes and others.
  4. There shall be negative marking for incorrect answers (as detailed below) for all questions except some of the questions where the negative marking shall be inbuilt in the form of different marks being awarded to the most appropriate and not so appropriate answer for such questions, namely:-
    1. There are four alternative answers to every question. For each question, of which a wrong answer has been given by the candidate, one fourth (0.25) of the marks assigned to that question shall be deducted as penalty;
    2. If a candidate gives more than one answer to a question, it shall be treated as a wrong answer even if one of the given answers happen to be correct and there shall be same penalty in accordance with clause (i);
    3. If a question is left blank i.e. no answer is given by the candidate, there shall be no penalty for that question.



  1. Current events of National and International importance.
  2. Humanities - History of India – Emphasis shall be on broad general understanding of the subject in its social, economic, cultural and political aspects with a focus on Indian national movement with special emphasis on Karnataka.
  3. World Geography and Geography of India with a focus on Karnataka.
  4. Indian Polity and economy, including the country's political system, rural development, planning and economic reforms in India-sustainable development, poverty alleviation, demographics, social sector initiatives etc.,


  1. Current events of State importance and important State Govt. programmes.
  2. General Science & Technology, Environment & Ecology – contemporary developments in science and technology, and their implications including matters of everyday observations and experience, as may be expected of a well-educated person who has not made a special study of any scientific discipline, general issues on Health, environmental ecology, biodiversity, and climate change- that do not require subject specialisation.
  3. General Mental Ability – Comprehension, Logical reasoning and Analytical ability, Decision making, problem solving, Basic innumeracy (numbers and their relations, order of magnitude etc.,) and data interpretation ( charts, graphs, tables, data sufficiency etc., (class X / SSLC level).

B. Main Examination: The Main Examination shall consist of written examination and personality test.

Written Examination:

Qualifying Papers



150 Marks

2 Hours











150 Marks

2 Hours














Compulsory Papers


Total Marks per

















Paper I





3 Hours









Paper II

General Studies 1




3 Hours









Paper III

General Studies 2




3 Hours









Paper IV

General Studies 3




3 Hours









Paper V

General Studies 4




3 Hours









Paper VI

Optional Subject




3 Hours









Paper VII

Optional Subject




3 Hours









Total Marks for Written Examination








Note-I: The marks obtained in qualifying papers i.e. in Kannada and in English shall be of qualifying nature. For qualifying in these papers, a minimum of 35% in each paper is prescribed. The marks obtained in these two papers shall not be considered for determining the merit for selection. Candidates who do not secure the prescribed minimum marks in the qualifying papers, namely, Kannada and English, shall not be eligible for personality test and selection.

Note-2: The Examination shall be of conventional type, Descriptive type in nature and all papers are compulsory.

Note-3: The question papers shall be set both in Kannada and in English. A candidate may answer a paper either entirely in Kannada or in English.

Note-4: The standard of the main examination except Paper-I Kannada and Paper-II English shall be that of Degree level. The standard of paper-I Kannada and paper-II English shall be that of First Language Kannada and First Language English respectively at SSLC level.

Note-5: All seven papers are compulsory. Paper II to V consists of three sections. Each Paper carries a maximum of 250 marks and duration of three hours only.

Note-6: Written and Personality Test Marks will be announced along with the final select list.

C. Personality Test: The candidate will be interviewed by a board who will have before them a record of his or her career except marks secured in their Main Examination. He/She will be asked questions on matters of general interest. The object of the interview is to assess the personal suitability of the candidate for a career in public services by a bard of competent and unbiased observers. The test is intended to judge the mental caliber of a candidate. In broad terms, this is really an assessment of not only his/her intellectual qualities but also social traits and his/her interest in current affairs. Some of the qualities to be judged are mental alertness, critical powers, of assimilations, clear and logical exposition, balance of judgment, variety and depth of interest, ability for social cohesion and leadership, intellectual and moral integrity. The technique of the interview is not that of a strict cross examination but of a natural, though directed and purposive conversation which is intended to reveal the mental qualities of the candidate. The interview test is not intended to be a test either of the specialized or general knowledge of the candidate which has been already tested through written papers. Candidates are expected to have taken an intelligent interest not only in their special subjects of academic study but also in the events, which are happening around them both within or outside their own state or country as well as in modern current of thoughts and in new discoveries which should rouse the curiosity of well educated youth. The Commission shall call for a personality test, as far as may be, three times the number of candidates as there are vacancies in the Group-A and Group-B services. The candidates are invited for personality test in the order of merit on the basis of the results of the Main Examination ensuring the reservations for candidates belonging to Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and Other Backward Classes in the same ratio of vacancies reserved for them. Personality Test shall carry a maximum of 200 marks.