A Beginner’s Guide to CSS Exam in Pakistan

CSS Exam in Pakistan:
Occupational Groups in CSS
Structure of CSS Exam
Compulsory Subjects in CSS
Optional Subjects in CSS
Eligibility Criteria for CSS
Application process for CSS
Required Document for CSS
Fee Structure for CSS

Central Superior Service (CSS) Exam, as the name suggests, is a recruitment test conducted for bureaucrats by the Federal Public Service Commission (FPSC) in Islamabad. The successful candidates are appointed as gazetted government officers holding BPS-17 under the Federal Government of Pakistan. So, if you’re interested in applying for the CSS Exam in Pakistan, then we’ve compiled every essential information in this blog – from the syllabus to application process.  

Without further ado, let’s start preparing!  

Occupational Groups in CSS Pakistan 

Here is the list of Federal Government Services where you can serve after you have successfully passed the exams and viva test. Please note that these groups will be provided to you depending on your discipline of education. 

  • Commerce and Trade Services 
  • Custom and Excise Service 
  • District Management Group
  • Foreign Service of Pakistan
  • Income Tax Group 
  • Information Group
  • Military Lands and Cantonments Group
  • Office Management Group
  • Pakistan Audit and Accounts Service 
  • Police Service of Pakistan
  • Postal Service Group
  • Railways or Commercial and Transportation Group

Structure of CSS Examination 

CSS Structure
CSS exams entails a written, medical, psychological exam and a viva voce

If you’re wondering about how to prepare for CSS exams in Pakistan, you first need to understand the structure of these examinations. Central exams comprise four modules to testify the knowledge, skills, and intelligence quotient of the applicants:

  • Written Exam 
  • Medical Test 
  • Psychological Exam 
  • Viva Voce 

Now, we will take a detailed look at how these tests are conducted and some general tips for beginners. 

Written Exam 

The first module of Central Superior Services Exam in Pakistan is a theory test that comprises 12 papers – 6 papers out of which are compulsory while remaining ones are non-compulsory. Here are some additional things you should know about:

  • You need to score 40 percent in compulsory papers meanwhile 33 percent marks are required in optional subjects to qualify for next round. 
  • Candidates have the freedom to pick from the wide list of subjects specified by FPSC. 
  • The optional subjects are based on your educational background. 

For further convenience, we will compile the list of groups and subjects offered by FPSC in the latter part of this blog. 

Medical Test 

CSS features medical exams
A medical exam is conducted to decipher your physical fitness

Once you have completed the written part of the CSS examination, the next step is to undergo a medical test to declare that you are physically healthy for this position. 

On the other hand, physically challenged can appear for CSS Examination. They are shortlisted in four disciplines including Pakistan Audit and Account, Postal Service, Commerce and Trade, and Information Services. If the candidate has any physical disability, they should have a ‘disability certificate’ issued by a recognized authority. The certificates must be submitted beforehand. Further, physically impaired applicants are also provided with assistance during exams upon request.

Pro Tip: Candidates are advised to have their medical examination by a well-known medical institution.

Psychological Exam 

As much physical fitness is mandatory for candidates to appear in the CSS exam, they should also be mentally fit for this position. The psychological exam in CSS exam is conducted to assess the mental, behavioural, and attitudinal aspects of the applicant. The candidate should be competitive enough and these elements are considered extremely necessary for civil services. 

Viva Voce 

Viva-voce, on the other hand, is an interview which is conducted to evaluate the intelligence and readiness of a CSS aspirant. The candidate must possess a good mix of general knowledge and communication skills in order to pass this round. Viva-voce and psychological exam make 300 marks altogether.

Note: Candidates who fail any of the tests in the above-mentioned list, they will not be chosen. 

Compulsory Subjects in CSS Syllabus

Total Marks: 600 Marks 

These are the compulsory subjects in CSS syllabus decided by FPSC:

Current Affairs100
English (Precis and Composition)100
English Essay100
General Science and Ability 100
Islamic Studies Or Alternative Subject for Non-Muslims100
Pakistan Affairs100

Optional Subjects in CSS Syllabus 

Total Marks: 600 

FPSC has allotted seven different groups for the optional subjects in CSS Syllabus. The marks are divided to maintain uniformity. You can pick any of these subjects from respective groups. Make sure it adds up to make 600 marks. 

Please note that any subject carrying 100 marks has one paper. On the other hand, subjects with 200 marks are split into two papers.

Group 1: You can select one subject only.

Accountancy & Auditing200
Computer Science200
Economics 200
International Relations200
Political Science 200

Group 2: Candidates are required to select one or more than one subjects here. They need to make sure the subjects are carrying equivalent to 200 marks. 

Applied Mathematics 100
Chemistry 200
Pure Mathematics100

Group 3: You have to select one subject only from here.

Business Administration100
Government & Public Policies 100
Public Administration100
Town Planning & Urban Management100

Group 4: Select one subject from this group. 

Islamic History and Culture 100
History of Pakistan and India100
British History 100
European History100
History of the USA100

Group 5: Here you have to select one subject only. 

Subjects Marks
Gender Studies 100
Agriculture and Forestry 100
Environmental Sciences100
Zoology 100
Botany 100
English Literature100
Urdu Literature 100

Group 6: Candidates are required to select one subject only. 

Constitutional Law100
Criminology 100
International Law 100
Mercantile Law100
Muslim Law and Jurisprudence100
Philosophy 100

Group 7: Select only one subject from here. 

Journalism and Mass Communication100

Eligibility Criteria for CSS Exam in Pakistan

If you want to apply for the CSS Exam in Pakistan, take a look at the eligibility criteria:

  • Age Criterion: The age of the candidate should be between 21 and 30 years to appear in the CSS Exam.
  • Educational Criterion: The minimum requirements for CSS aspirants is a Bachelor’s Degree. The candidates must have passed their graduation with at least 2nd division from any recognised university in Pakistan [or outside Pakistan]. 
  • Nationality Criterion: The aspirant must be a Pakistani National.

Where is CSS Examination Conducted in Pakistan?

CSS Exam is conducted in different cities of Pakistan including Abbottabad, Lahore, Karachi, Islamabad, Bahawalpur, Peshawar, Dera Ghazi Khan, and Faisalabad. Some other cities such as D.I. Khan, Gilgit, Hyderabad, Larkana, Khuzdar, Gujranwala, Multan, and Okara also make it to the list. Meanwhile, Muzaffarabad, Quetta, Rawalpindi, Sargodha, Skardu, Sialkot, and Sukkur are also the examination centres for CSS exams in Pakistan.

The above-mentioned cities are only the centres for written examinations. Interviewing sessions for CSS Examination are, however, held in five major cities including Karachi, Lahore, Islamabad, Quetta, and Peshawar.

Application Process for CSS Exam in Pakistan

Have you been wondering what is the procedure of CSS exams in Pakistan? CSS Exam is conducted every year in Pakistan during the months of February and March. The dates of the application and examination are advertised in the newspapers during the month of September mostly. 

Candidates must submit their applications online bearing below-mentioned factors in mind: 

  • Information like CNIC number, bank details, optional subjects, educational and professional experience details of the applicant must be submitted clearly. 
  • Since the information can’t be altered later, provided information must be entered online with extreme care.
  • Once you’ve submitted an online application, you will get a confirmation email. You will be provided with the tracking ID for your online CSS application. 

Required Documents For CSS Application 

The hard copy of your online CSS application needs to be submitted along with the following documents

  • Bank receiving of examination fee
  • Attested copy of credentials and educational certificates
  • Experience certificates 
  • Photographs

Note: Requirements may vary from applicant to applicant. It is best to read the CSS advertisement thoroughly in the newspaper before applying.

Fee Structure for CSS Examination 

This fee structure for CSS application is declared by FPSC:

  • Exam Application Fee: PKR 2,200
  • Paper Rechecking Fee: PKR 500

Note: A candidate can only appear in CSS Examination thrice in their lifetime.

If you’re wondering when are CSS exams held in Pakistan, you can keep a check on their official website for dates, and updates.

This brings us to the end of our detailed piece on CSS Exam in Pakistan. Although we have covered everything there is to apply for the CSS exam, if you have any questions, then let us know at blog@jagahonline.com.  

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