Karnataka Administrative Service (KAS) is the civil service of Karnataka State in India. The Karnataka Public Service Commission conducts various exams to recruit candidates for KAS and other civil services across the state of Karnataka.

Below is the complete detail of the KAS Exam Pattern and Syllabus.

KAS Exam Pattern
The exam is conducted in three stages
1. Prelims – Preliminary Examination (objective type questions)
2. Mains – Written and descriptive type
3. Interview/Personality Test – Face to face discussion

KAS Preliminary Examination
The preliminary examination consists of two papers and both the papers are of objective type (MCQs). Each paper carries 100 questions with each question carrying two marks.

  • Each paper carrying 100 Questions with each question carrying two marks.
  • Each paper is for 200 marks for a duration of 2 hours each.


Sl. No. Subject Area No. of Questions Marks
1 General Studies related to National and International importance 40 80
2 Humanities 60 120
Total 100 200


Sl. No. Subject Area No. of Questions Marks
1 General Studies related to State Importance 40 80
2 General Science & Tech, Environment & Ecology 30 60
3 General Mental Ability 30 60
Total 100 200
  • The question papers are set in both Kannada and English.
  • The standard of General Mental Ability questions of preliminary examination (aptitude test) is that of 10th / SSLC level and the remaining papers are that of Degree Level.
  • There shall be negative marking for incorrect answers (as detailed below):
    • There are four alternative answers for a question and for every incorrect answer given by a candidate 1/4th or 0.25 marks assigned to that question will be deducted as penalty or negative marking.
    • If a candidate gives more than one answer for a question the it will be treated as incorrect answer and a negative marking of 0.25 will awarded to that question.
    • If a question is left blank that is if no answer is given to a question there will be no penalty for such questions.

B. Main Examination: The Main Examination shall consist of written examination and personality test.

Written Examination:

Papers Subject Nature of the Paper Marks Duration
        I. Kannada Qualifying 150 2 Hours
      II. English 150 2 Hours
    III. Essay Compulsory 250 3 Hours
   IV. General Studies 1 250 3 Hours
     V. General Studies 2 250 3 Hours
   VI. General Studies 3 250 3 Hours
 VII. General Studies 4 250 3 Hours
VIII. Optional Paper 1 250 3 Hours
    IX. Optional Paper 2 250 3 Hours


  • The Mains Examination is conventional type i.e. descriptive type and all the 9 papers are mandatory.
  • The marks obtained in qualifying papers i.e. in Kannada and English is only of qualifying nature. A candidate should secure a minimum of 35% in each qualifying paper as prescribed by the Karnataka Public Service Commission (KPSC). The marks obtained in these two papers will be not considered in the final selection or merit. Candidates who fail to secure the minimum qualifying marks will not qualify for the next stage of the exam.
  • The question papers are set in both Kannada and English. A candidate may answer the papers either in Kannada or English entirely.
  • The questions asked in the main examination papers are of degree level except the qualifying papers (Kannada and English) which are that of SSLC or Class 10 level.
  • All seven papers are compulsory i.e. from paper III to Paper IX.
  • Only the marks secured in compulsory papers and in interview will be taken into account for the final ranking.
  • Written and Personality test marks will be declared along with the final selection list.

The candidates who are selected in the final selection will be recruited for various administrative posts at the district and state level. Initially, they will join as Sub-Divisional Magistrate and will go to different level like Additional District Magistrates and then on promotion to IAS they will take up as Deputy Commissioners at the district level and also IAS cadre jobs at the state level just similar to the IAS Officers.