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About the Course
About the programme
The total training period for IFS Officer Trainees in India is around one year, comprising of:
- Foundation Course: Foundation Course is organised by Lal Bahadur Shastri National Academy of Administration, Mussoorie for IFS Officer Trainees along with other civil servants selected by UPSC through Civil Services Examination. The duration of the Course is around three and half months. As the Officer Trainees are fresh entrants into the administrative system, the focus is on familiarizing them with the environment of political, economic, social and administrative issues.
- Induction Training Programme: Induction Training Programme is organized at the Sushma Swaraj Institute of Foreign Service (SSIFS), New Delhi. It equips the IFS Officer Trainees with requisite knowledge and skills to shoulder the responsibilities and challenges of an Indian diplomat in the 21st century. The total duration of the programme at SSIFS is around six months. It comprises of:
- Orientation Phase: Orientation Phase is a short module of two weeks. The programme begins with interactive sessions with Ministers and Secretaries of MEA. It aims to familiarize the Officer Trainees with the organizational structure, mandate, and functioning of the Ministry. The major components of Orientation Phase cover Administration, Establishment, Welfare, Finance and Account matters of the Ministry/Missions abroad.
- Phase-I: The duration of Phase-I is eight weeks and its primary focus is political and strategic diplomacy. It includes sessions on India’s foreign policy, basics of bilateral & multilateral relations, defence diplomacy, and consular, passport, visa (CPV) and diaspora matters. Phase-I also aims to hone diplomatic skills focusing on improving oral communication skills, persuasion skills, negotiation skills, analytical skills, problem solving and decision making skills, and critical & strategic thinking.
- Phase-II: The duration of Phase-II is eight weeks and it focuses on economic-commercial diplomacy, soft power projection, protocol issues, etc. It includes sessions on India’s trade, investment, tourism facilitation and promotion, trade agreements, cyber security, Mission security, international law, cultural diplomacy, appreciation of art forms, personality development, etc.
Phase-II aims to hone social skills, media (including social media) skills, public speaking skills, event management, crisis management, and written communication skills.
The Induction Training Programme concludes with calls on VVIPs in the last week of the programme.
The Induction Training Programme also includes short attachments/modules: Mission orientation attachment, Army attachment, State attachment, Bharat Darshan, protocol attachments, etc.
The Induction Training Programme encompasses a wide array of co-curricular activities that include Swachh Bharat Abhiyan, shramdaan, annual sports meet, photography competition, quiz competition, cultural programmes, appreciation of world cinema, and mentoring.
The methodology of Induction Training Programme is increasingly focusing on skills development through simulation exercises, role play, case studies, success stories, workshops and hands-on sessions with interactive lectures for essential knowledge.
- Desk Attachment: Following the Induction Training Programme, IFS Officer Trainees are deployed in Divisions of the Ministry for a period of around two months with an objective to familiarize them with functioning of the Ministry. During this period, the Officer Trainees are given exposure of functions and hands-on experience under the supervision of senior officers. This is preparatory to their posting in Missions abroad to study the Compulsory Foreign Language (CFL) allocated to each IFS Officer Trainee.