NEW DELHI: Aimed at overhauling civil service examinations, a new pattern giving more emphasis on assessing general studies and aptitude skills of aspirants has been notified by the government.

The Civil Services (Mains) exams for the first time will also have a separate paper on "ethics, integrity and aptitude", according to a gazette notification issued by Department of Personnel and Training (DoPT) on the changes about the test conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).

"This paper (on ethics, integrity and aptitude) will include questions to test the candidate's attitude and approach to issues relating to integrity, probity in public life and his problem solving approach to various issues and conflicts faced by him in dealing with society," it said with regard to the 2013 civil services exams.

DoPT has also changed the marks distribution of papers and increased number of compulsory subject papers of general studies for the main examination.

From Civil Services (Mains) exams, 2013, there will be four compulsory general services papers of 250 marks each, in addition to two optional papers of 250 marks each.

Earlier, there were two compulsory papers on general studies and two optional papers of 300 marks each.

Total marks for the main exams will be 1,800. The paper on essay and English comprehension will continue to be of 300 marks.

The civil services preliminary examination will be held on May 26, this year and the last date for filing online application is April 4.

Keywords: UPSC , education, Civil Services exams,DoPT