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Success rate of law optional in UPSC

Success ratio of law optional in UPSC, have been increasing year by year. in last three year (UPSC 2017, 2018 and 2019) there have been at least two candidate in top ten. This is not surprising given the various advantages of law optional , when it is compared to other subjects.

For UPSC Mains 2021 [result in 2022] 72nd UPSC report Law optional again has the highest success rate [13.8 %] among popular optional. Have a look at ScreenShot from UPSC Official Report.

Law optional Sucess Ratio- UPSC CSE 2023
Law UPSC mains success ratio

Among popular optional of mains of 2019[Excluding engineering and language] law has the highest passing percentage. Even though number of candidates opting law is far less, the actual number comparatively is quite high. 

Anthro, Geography and PSIR optional taking students are higher that doesn't mean your chance of Qualifying is high. Statistically your chance to qualify with law optional is better than other popular optional. 

In this article we will also do a comparative analysis of success rate of law optional with other optional subject as well.

The success rate of law optional is around 16 % which is average of last five year (See Graph Below). It is defined by UPSC as the ratio of people appeared with law as a optional subject in mains to the final candidate in final list. UPSC Annual Report published each year gives a detail account of these data sets.

Success ratio on any subject should be compared only among those subject which are taken in large number by candidates. As some time, Smaller Number of candidate in a particular subject achieve spectacular success rate but is not consistent at all.

Let's Have A look at the Data for Last 8 years is as follows

law optional Success ratio

Looking at above data, it can be safely concluded that law optional have been consistent performer. You can verify each date from UPSC annual Report.

In 68th report there have been dip. This is not unique as that year all major optional had a less success rate. This is because that year there were multiple odd subjects such as pali, maithili had a large success rate. SO it can be safely assumed that was not the norm but an aberration

Comparative Analysis With Other Optional Subjects

Comparative analysis with other subject should be done, keeping the consistency of success rate in mind. And Leaving aside literature and engineering subjects, law optional is always in top five. I have Skipped Literature and Engineering subject because of there limited number of candidate appearing with them.

2017 mains law sucess ratio
success ration upsc 2015 law
Sucess Rate UPSC (2014)
Sucess Rate UPSC law (2013)

If you are wondering why law is constantly in top 5 of the most common optional subjects. I will give you five reason, 

1. Short Syllabus

2. It is Very Scoring

3. More than 50 percent overlap with GS mains, Saves a lot of time.

4. Increases your Writing Ability

Read more benefit of  law as a optional in UPSC for more detail.

Who Should Take Law Optional ?

Law optional have this notion attached that only law graduate can take this. People often forget that any issue in contemporary time always involve legal aspect of it. No matter what subject you take you will necessarily need to study law in some sense. so why not take it.

Studying law requires a person to be intuitive and reasonable thinker. It is aptly suited for student having deep interest in polity and indian constitution.

Law Graduate have an added advantage of law optional in upsc as the syllabus coincides with graduate level of any typical university program. be it five year or 3 year llb programs. There is no procedural laws, making it much easier of law graduates as compared to there graduation courses.

Where to Start ?

If you choose law because of success rate of law optional in upsc. i would suggest you start with upsc law optional syllabus, Understand the structure of syllabus and major subject in syllabus. 


To determine upto what depth you have study each subject in syllabus, analysing subject wise Previous year paper will of great help.


To start from scratch with step by step process read this law optional strategy for law and non law graduate written separately.

Any question do visit us on quora space for more answers to similar questions.

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