( Raj Pandey, Via: E-Mail )
Dear Raj, Yes! This exam can be cleared without taking any help from coaching institutes. It can be cracked with the help of self preparation. There have been many success stories where the aspirants have cracked this exam without taking any coaching. With their sheer hard work and determination, they were able to clear this exam.
Coaching classes can provide direction and will be able to save you some time. But the onus of study is you only. You are the one who have to determine your own future rather than hankering after some reputed institutions.
You can study by first sorting out your basics. Prepare a schedule for Prelims and Mains. Complete the syllabus and optional. Read newspapers wisely and make notes.
You can also look at some websites which offer some advice to the students on how to go through this examination. A word of caution – don’t go too deeply into these websites, as you might suffer from information overload.
In the end, also take mock tests so that you will able to know how far who have come and how well do you fare with respect to your contemporaries.
To prepare for Political Science, refer to some websites or past political science toppers, whose strategy you could adopt.