IES/ESE 2020 Prelims: Civil Engineering Paper and cut-off Analysis

Updated On -

Jul 23, 2020

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Exams Prepmaster

Engineering Services Examination or ESE was conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) on 5th January 2020 (prelims stage). The examination is conducted to select candidates in Indian Engineering Services (IES). The candidates who excel in the prelims are eligible to appear for the mains examination which will be held on 9th August, 2020. The exam is carried out in three distinct stages- Preliminary exam, Mains Exam, and Interview Round. Some of the government departments that employ candidates from these examination are:

  • Ministry of Railways (Railway Board) for the post of I.R.S.E, I.R.S.M.E,I.R.S.E.E,R.S.S.E, I.R.S.S.
  • Geological Survey of India for the post of Assistant Executive Engineer Gr 'A'
  • Ministry of Communication, Dep’t. of Telecommunication for the post of Indian Radio Regulatory Service Group 'A'
  • Indian Navy for the post of Indian Naval Armament Service, Asstt. Naval Store Officer
  • Military Engineering Services for the post of Indian Defense Service of Engineer

ESE 2020- Exam Highlights

Exam Name Engineering Services Examination (ESE)
Age Limit 21-30 years
Application Fee Rs.200
Frequency Once a year
Number of Vacancies 495
Official Website 
Prepp Test Series

ESE 2020 Civil Engineering- Important Topic Analysis

  1. Structural Analysis: The questions were easier and comprehensible compared to the past papers as the entire portion wasn’t considered; only three chapters are taken.
  2. Highway Engineering: There were seven questions asked from this section. Due to the lesser amount of questions, a few topics haven’t been touched this year.
  3. Environmental Engineering: There were 14 theoretical based questions asked from this section. The questions are conventional and objective, and students can thus score well in this area. Some questions are based on environmental science.
  4. RCC: This year, the questions were straightforward and taken from different topics in the syllabus. There were a total of 12 questions asked. Some questions required a profound understanding of the portion. No earthquake based is asked this year.
  5. Steel Structure: There were 13 questions asked this year from this section. Many of the questions are completely unique. It required out of the box thinking along with a firm grasp of concepts and hence, proved tricky for many candidates.
  6. Strength of Materials: This subject is the base for civil engineering. The number of questions has been increased from 17 to 20. Apart from 4-5 questions, the rest are straight-forward. All the topics have been covered in the syllabus.
  7. Fluid Mechanics: This is a vital subject. Roughly 10 questions are asked in the exam. Out of that, 6 questions were easy and the rest four were a bit tricky.
  8. Hydrology: The examination had only 4 questions based on this. The questions are simple and don’t require many calculations.
  9. Soil Mechanics: As this is an important subject, 14 questions have been asked. Out of 14 questions, 7 are numerical which doesn’t require a calculator to attempt them. Six theory-based questions are asked. Most of the topics are covered in the syllabus.
  10. Building Materials: From this section, 15 questions have been asked. 10 questions are based on cement and concrete. 30% of questions are unconventional and difficult. There are also two numericals. Compared to other portions, this is slightly tough.
  11. Survey and Geology: 13 questions had been asked from this section. The questions are theoretical and simple. Three questions have been asked from geology.
  12. Railway Engineering: This section is often ignored, but eight questions were asked from this subject. Six questions could be easily solved, whereas two are complicated.

ESE civil Engineering expected cut-off 2020

  • The overall consensus indicates that the examination is easier as compared to previous years. This can be a relief for the students, but they also need to remember that it implies that the cut off grades will be higher.
  • Previously the cut off for general category in civil engineering was 187; now it is expected to increase by 20-25 marks. The likely cut off for the general category is 205-215 in the prelims 2020.
  • For the OBC category, the expected cut-off marks are 200-208 in the prelims 2020.
  • For the ST category, the expected cut-off marks are 180-190 in the prelims 2020.
  • For the SC category, the expected cut-off marks are 175-185 in the prelims 2020.

2018 Cut-off for Civil Engineering:

Category  Marks
General  207
OBC 194
SC 169
ST 188
PH.1 114
PH.3 087

In short, Civil engineering graduates who have appeared for ESE prelims 2020 can expect a comparatively higher cut-off owing to the easier paper for this year. However, if you are confident about your attempt, there is not much to worry about and it’s high time that you start concentrating on the preparation for the Mains exam.

*The article might have information for the previous academic years, please refer the official website of the exam.