UPSC LDCE-SO/Steno Exam 2021

Eligibility | Dates | Pattern | Syllabus

Last Updated on 12th October, 2021
UPSC

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) hosts the UPSC SO/Steno GRADE-B/GRADE-1 examination for recruitment of Section officers/Stenographers.

  • Category I– Section Officers with the grade of Central Secretariat Service
  • Category II– Section Officers Grade (Grade II and III) of the General Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service.
  • Category III- Section Officers Grade of the Railway Board Secretariat Service.
  • Category IV– Private Secretary Grade of the Central Secretariat Stenographers Service.
  • Category V– Grade I of the Stenographers’ Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, branch B
  • Category VI– Grade ‘A’ & ‘B’ merged of the Armed Forces Headquater Stenographers Service.
  • Category VII– Grade ‘B’ of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers Service.
  • Category VIII– Section Officers Grade of the Intelligence Bureau.
  • Category IX– Private Secretary Grade in Employees’ State Insurance corporation.

Assistant Section Officer (ASO) of the Central Secretariat Service (CSS) or Personal Assistant (PA) of the Central Secretariat Stenographer Service (CSSS) having 5 years of approved service and having atleast 4 Annual Performance Appraisal Report (APAS) in respective grade makes candidates eligible for the exam.

Exam Highlights
Level of Exam Graduate, National Level
Exam Medium English, Hindi
Exam Frequency Once in a year
Purpose of the Exam For recruitment of officers as Section Officer and Stenographer post (GRADE – ‘B’/ GRADE – I).
Conducting Body Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)
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UPSC LDCE-SO/Steno Exam Eligibity Criteria 2021

  1. Nationality
  2. No certain citizenship eligibility is mentioned in the official notification. However, those who will apply for this examination must be an employee under government organisation.

  3. Educational Qualification
  4. **NOTE: Since it is a SO/Steno (Grade-B/Grade-II) is a Departmental Competitive Exam, the candidates eligible for the exam must fulfil certain service requirements.

    Recruitment Post Category Current Service Grade Minimum Requirements
    Category I: Section Officers’ Grade of the Central Secretariat Service Assistants’ Grade of the Central Secretariat Service and Personal Assistants’ Grade (Stenographer Grade C) of the Central Secretariat Stenographers’ Service Not less than 5 years’ approved service and shall also have earned 4 annual performance appraisal reports in Assistants’ Grade of the Central Secretariat Service or Personal Assistants’ Grade of the Central Secretariat Stenographers’ Service. Personal Assistants of CSSS shall possess a Bachelor’s Degree from a recognised university.
    Category II: Section Officers’ Grade (Integrated Grade II & III) of the General Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’ Grade IV of the General Cadre, Grade II of the Stenographer Cadre, and Grade II of the Cypher Sub Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’ Not less than 5 years’ approved and continuous service in Grade IV or in Grade II of Stenographers’ cadre or in Grade II of the Cypher Sub Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’ or in two or all the above grades
    Category III: Section Officers’ Grade of the Railway Board Secretariat Service Assistants’ Grade of Railway Board Secretariat service and Grade C of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers’ service and Grade C of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers’ Service Not less than 5 years’ approved and continuous service in Assistants’ Grade of Railway Board Secretariat service or in the Grade C/ Grade II of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers’ Service
    Category IV: Private Secretary Grade of the Central Secretariat Stenographers’ Service Personal Assistant of the Central Secretariat Stenographers’ Service Not less than 3 years’ approved and continuous service on Personal Assistants’ Grade of Central Secretariat Stenographers’ Service and shall possess a Bachelor’s Degree from a recognised university.
    Category V: Grade I of the Stenographers’ Cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’ Grade II of the Stenographers’ cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’ Not less than 5 years’ approved and continuous service in the Grade II of the Stenographers’ cadre of the Indian Foreign Service, Branch ‘B’
    Category VI: Grade ‘A & ‘B’ merged of the Armed Forces Headquarters Stenographers’ Service Grade C of Armed Forces HQRS. Stenographers’ Service Not less than 3 years’ approved and continuous service in the Grade II/ Grade C of Armed Forces HQRS. Stenographers’ Service
    Category VII: Grade ‘B’ of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographer’s Service Grade C of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers’ Service Not less than 5 years’ approved and continuous service in the Grade II/ Grade C of the Railway Board Secretariat Stenographers’ Service
    Category VIII: Section Officers’ Grade of the Intelligence Bureau Assistants’ Grade of I.B. Stenographers’ Service Grade II of I.B. Permanent or regularly appointed temporary assistants/ Steno of Gr. II (P.As) of the I.B. with not less than 4 years’ approved and continuous service in the case of Officers appointed in the grades on the basis of Competitive Exam or LDCE as the case may be, provided that the exam should have been held not less than 5 years before the crucial date, or not less than 5 years of approved and continuous service in the case of Officers appointed in the grades on the basis of seniority in their respective feeder grades as on the crucial date of the examination year
    Category IX: Private Secretary Grade in Employees’ State Insurance Corporation Private Secretary in Employees’ State Insurance Corp. Not less than 3 years’ approved and continuous service in Personal Assistants Grade in Employees’ State Insurance Corp.

  5. Age Limit
  6. No particular age limit is mentioned in the official notification.

  7. Restrictions on Attempts
  8. No well-defined number of attempts has been stated by the recruiting body as long as the candidate fits into the age criteria stated by the recruiting body.

UPSC LDCE-SO/Steno Exam Important Dates 2021

Event Date
Starting Date of Application September 15, 2021
Last Date of Application October 5, 2021
Starting Exam date December 11, 2021
Announcement of exam results To be notified.

UPSC LDCE-SO/Steno Exam Pattern 2021

Important points regarding the pattern of the examination:

  • The selection process of SO/Steno officers is done on the basis of two rounds- the Written Exam and the Evaluation of record of service.
  • The written examination has three papers.
  • A qualifying Shorthand test in Hindi or English at 100 words per minute will be conducted.
  • Candidates qualifying the written examination and shorthand test, according to the criteria set by UPSC, are eligible for the Evaluation round.
  • In the Evaluation round, the evaluation is done based on the record of their service out of 100 maximum marks.
  • Candidates getting less than 40% marks during the evaluation of record of service will not be considered for the ranking.

**Note 1- To apply for UPSC LDCE SO/Steno candidates must have prior experience in relevant cadres.

Pattern for Written exam

Evaluation of record of service will be done of only those candidates who qualify both in the Written Examination.

Sl. No. Name of the Paper/Section Nature Nos. of Questions Question Type Duration Negative Marking Marks
1 Paper-I

General Studies & General Knowledge of Constitution of India and Machinery of Government, Practice and Procedures in Parliament and Knowledge of RTI Act, 2005.

Qualifying Nature Objective (Multiple Choice) 120 mins 0.33 150
2 Paper-II

Procedure and Practice in the Govt. of India Secretariat and attached offices and General Financial and Service Rules duly taking into account the requirement of relevant categories of services.

Qualifying Nature Objective (Multiple Choice) 120 mins 0.33 150
3 Paper-III

Candidates need to prepare notes and drafts of precise writing from the given passage.

Merit Ranking Nature Descriptive 180 mins 200
4 Evaluation of record of service
100
Total Marks* 600

*The total marks shown here are considered for merit ranking purposes.

UPSC LDCE-SO/Steno Exam Syllabus 2021

Syllabus for Written exam

1 Paper-I

  • Knowledge about the salient features of the Five Year Plans, Indian Economy and Major Developmental Schemes.
  • General Studies and General Knowledge about the Constitution of India and Machinery of the Government, Practice and Procedures in the Parliament and Knowledge of Act RTI 2005.
  • Intelligence awareness of current affairs of both national and international importance.
  • Allocations of subjects between Ministries Department and attached Subordinate offices and their relations.

2 Paper-II

Procedure and Practice in the Government of Indian Secretariat and attached offices and General Financial and Service Rules duly taking into account the requirement and relevant categories of services.

  • Manual of office procedure.
  • Notes on offices procedure issued by Institute of Secretarial training and Management (ISTM)
  • The supplementary and fundamental rules.
  • The central civil services (pension) rules.
  • The central civil services (conduct) rules.
  • The central Civil services (control, classification and appeal) rules.
  • The central Civil Service (leave) rules.
  • A combination of the General Financial Rules.
  • Delegation of financial power.

Handbook of orders issued by the Home Affairs Ministry regarding the use of Hindi for official purpose of the union issue.

3 Paper-III

Candidates need to prepare notes and drafts of precise writing from the given passage.

  • Noting,
  • drafting
  • precise writing.

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