NDA Exam Pattern 2020
Updated on Dec 9, 2019 - 12:40 p.m. IST by Aayushi madavi

NDA Exam Pattern 2020 - Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will release NDA 2020 exam pattern along with the notification. NDA 2020 notification is scheduled to be released on January 8, 2020. Candidates must be familiar with exam pattern of NDA 2020 before starting preparations for the exam. NDA exam pattern 2020 is the scheme of examination. NDA 2020 exam pattern includes the mode of the examination, number of questions, total marks, time duration, etc. The NDA exam is conducted in two stages - written exam and SSB interview. As per NDA exam pattern 2020, there are two papers in NDA written examination - Mathematics and General Ability Test (GAT). Both papers hold 900 marks together. Know more about NDA 2020 exam pattern in the article below.

Latest: NDA Application Form 2020 Starts from Jan 8, 2020. Check Here!

NDA examination is conducted twice a year for the admission of candidates to the institutes of the Indian Navy, Air Force and Army. NDA 2020 will be conducted on April 19 while NDA II will be conducted on September 6.

NDA Exam Pattern 2020 - Overview

Mode of NDA written examination


Language/Medium of NDA exam

English & Hindi (Except for English section - questions in English only)

No. of Papers

2 (Mathematics & GAT)

Time allotted for each paper

2 hours 30 minutes

No. of questions and marks for mathematics

120 for 300 marks

No. of questions and marks for GAT

150 for 600 marks

Types of questions

Objective (MCQ type)

Check NDA Exam Eligibility before writing the paper.

Stages of NDA 2020 Exam Pattern

The exam pattern of NDA is provided for two stages of the exam -

  1. Written Examination

  2. SSB Interview

NDA Exam Pattern 2020 for Written Examination




No. of Questions

Maximum marks



Paper 1




2 hours 30 minutes


Paper 2




2 hours 30 minutes



5 hours

NDA exam pattern for General Ability Test is further divided into parts and sections of different subjects.

NDA 2020 Exam Pattern for General Ability Test (GAT)


Maximum marks

Part A - English


Part B - General Knowledge





General Science


History, Freedom Movement, etc.




Current Events




NDA Exam Pattern 2020 for SSB Interview

There are two stages of SSB interview - stage-I and stage-II. SSB interview holds a total of 900 marks and is conducted over a period of 4 to 5 days. Candidates need to qualify stage-I to be eligible to appear for stage-II. See details about the interview process below.

Scheme of SSB Interview for NDA 2020

Stages of SSB Interview



4-5 Days

Maximum Marks


SSB Interview - Stage-I

Candidates will have to take two tests in this stage of the interview - Officers Intelligence Rating (OIR) Test and Picture Perception & Description Test (PP & DT). Only those candidates will appear for Stage-II who have cleared this stage.

SSB Interview - Stage-II

In this stage of the SSB interview, candidates will have to go through Group Testing Officers tasks, Psychology tests, and the Conference. These tests will be conducted over 4 days.

Stages of SSB Interview




Screening Test

Verbal and non-verbal tests.



Psychological Test

Thematic Apperception Test (TAT)

Word Association Test (WAT)

Situation Reaction Test (SRT)

Self Description Test (SD)

Group Testing Officers Test






Command Task

Snake race/Group Obstacle Race

Individual lecture


Personal Interview


NDA Exam Pattern 2020 - Marking Scheme

Negative marking will be applicable if the candidates incorrectly answer the questions asked in NDA written examination. One-third of the marks allotted to each question will be deducted if the responses made are incorrect. Candidates must also note that no marks will be deducted or awarded for unanswered questions. Check NDA marking scheme in the table below.

NDA 2020 Marking Scheme



Total Questions



Total Marks



Marks allotted to each question



Negative marking for each incorrect response



NDA Syllabus 2020

UPSC prescribes the syllabus of NDA for written examination. NDA 2020 syllabus includes topics based on which the questions will be framed. Candidates can check the topics and subjects of mathematics and GAT in the table below.

NDA 2020 Syllabus




Algebra, matrices and determinants, Trigonometry, Analytical Geometry of two and three dimensions, differential calculus, Statistics and Probability, Vector Algebra and Integral calculus and differential equations


English (Grammar, vocabulary, comprehension, etc.), Physics, Chemistry, General Science, Social Studies, Geography, and Current Events

Best Books To Prepare For NDA 2020

It is essential that the candidates make use of the best resources to prepare for NDA 2020. Along with thoroughly going through NDA exam pattern 2020, candidates must also go through the syllabus and get the best books to prepare for NDA 2020. Some of the best books to get for class 12 level mathematics are R.S Aggarwal, and exam-specific NDA Entrance Exam by E.S. Ramasamy. For GAT, candidates can get General Science Guide for Competitive Exams – CSAT/NDA/CDS/Railways/SSC/UPSC/State PSC/Defence by Disha Publications, Social Problems In India (Indian Society – GS1) by Ram Ahuja and others.

How To Prepare For NDA 2020

Candidates must strategise their preparations well before time to ace NDA 2020. First and foremost, candidates must get all the prerequisites in order like books, sample papers, previous years’ question papers, NDA 2020 exam pattern, and complete syllabus. Candidates must allot a specific amount of time to study for each subject. While solving NDA question papers, candidates must time themselves and evaluate themselves to identify topics that they find difficult and hard to score in. To know more about how to prepare for NDA 2020, click on the link above.

Check NDA Selection Process for getting into SSB interview.

Frequently Asked Question (FAQs) - NDA Exam Pattern 2020

Question: What is the negative marks in NDA written exam?


One-third of the marks allotted to the question are deducted if answered incorrectly. In mathematics, each question carries 2.5 marks and 0.83 marks are deducted for incorrect answers. Similarly, in GAT, each question carries 4 marks and 1.33 marks are deducted for wrong responses. Candidates must note that no marks are deducted for unattempted questions.  

Question: What is the total marks allotted to GAT & Mathematics?


The total marks allotted to GAT is 600 whereas Mathematics will be conducted for 300 marks.

Question: What are the total marks allotted for NDA 2020 exam?


NDA written examination is conducted for a total of 900 marks, out of which 300 are for mathematics and 600 are for GAT. Candidates who qualify written exam appear for SSB interview which is conducted for 900 marks.

Question: What happens if I score the total cutoff marks of NDA examination but do not score 25% in Mathematics?


It is mandatory that all candidates score the minimum qualifying marks and NDA cutoff marks in order to clear the written exam. Candidates must score 25% in both mathematics and GAT.

Question: How difficult is mathematics in NDA examination?


Candidates are asked class 12 level mathematics in NDA written examination.

Question: What is the usual cutoff of NDA exam?


NDA cutoff is decided on the basis of difficulty of the exam, number of candidates appearing for the exam, and vacancies. The cutoff of NDA-I 2019 was 704 out of 1800. Candidates are required to score at least 25% marks apart from the cutoff marks in both mathematics and GAT.

Question: What are the total marks allotted for NDA 2020 exam?


NDA written examination is conducted for a total of 900 marks, out of which 300 are for mathematics and 600 are for GAT. Candidates who qualify written exam appear for SSB interview which is conducted for 900 marks.

Question: What happens if I score the total cutoff marks of NDA examination but do not score 25% in Mathematics?


It is mandatory that all candidates score the minimum qualifying marks in order to clear the written exam. Candidates must score 25% in both mathematics and GAT.

Question: How much salary does a candidate get on qualifying NDA?


Cadets get a stipend of Rs. 21,000 per month. In hand salary is given based on ranks. Basic pay for the post of lieutenant is Rs. 15,600 - 39,100 per month while military fund is Rs. 6000 and grade pay is Rs. 500.

More like NDA

Questions related to NDA

Showing 1467 out of 1467 Questions

can i give nda in class 11th if my present age is fulfilling the nda age criteria

Aishwarya Kadam 18th Jan, 2020


As a 11th standard student you are not eligible for NDA exam as the candidate must have passed or must be appearing for the 12th standard exams from any recognized board. It is important as you will be required to produce the proof for passing the 10+2 in the month of December 2020.

You can check the eligibility criteria on the link given below:


Hope this addresses


Hii,I am a student of standard 11. Please,give me complete information about NDA exam. How to registered? How many phase of exam? Exam date ,etc. Also give me Syllabus

Sanjay Khandelwal 16th Jan, 2020
NDA Exam is conducted by UPSC for selecting candidates for indian army, Navy and AirForce. You can only apply after 12th, if you are from commerce background then you can only apply for indian army, if you are from science background in 10+2 then you can apply for all three, yearly exam is conducted twice. You can register at website of upsc official site. 3phases are there , first is written test after you qualify that you will be called for ssb interview after you qualify that you will have to undergo medicals, once you clear all three a merit list is prepared and you will be called for joining the academy. Exam dates will be given in notification. Syllabus is maths, English and general awarness. For detailed you can have in notification, usually it is of 10+2 level.

nda current affairs syllabus 2020

Pankhuri Kumari 16th Jan, 2020
Dear Student!
NDA has not given syllabus norms as such for Current Affairs. Current affairs itself means the recent happenings going around in the world. So, as a matter of fact, tou can prepare for topics such as important dates, important and current happening in India and around the world, prominent personalities, geography, history, and basic science as a whole, and basic knowledge about Indian armed forces. Hope this helps.
Good luck!

i have hypermetropia with a corrected vision using 3.5D corrective glasses(cylindrical or spherical matters?). am I eligible for SSB medical test for vision?

tarun kumar 16th Jan, 2020

Here is the full details for health conditions:

Visual Standard

Entry Uncorrected Vision Corrected Vision Limits of Myopias Limits of Hypermetropia Binocular Vision Colour Perception
NDA 6/6,  6/9 6/6,  6/6 -.75 +1.5 III I
GS (X)
6/12,  6/12 6/6,  6/6 -1.5 +1.5 III I
CDSE 6/12,  6/12 6/6,  6/6 -1.5 +1.5 III I
AVIATION 6/6,  6/9 6/6,  6/6 -.75 +1.5 III I
10+2 (B.Tech) 6/6,  6/9 6/6,  6/6 -.75 +1.5 III I
NAIC 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 III II
LAW 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 II III
EDU 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 II III
LOG 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 II III
IT 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 II III
ATC 6/9,  6/9 6/6,  6/6 -.75 +3.0 III II
TECH 6/24,  6/24 6/6,  6/6 -3.5 +3.5 III II
NCC 6/12,  6/12 6/6,  6/6 -1.5 +1.5 III I
NA 6/60,  6/60 6/12,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 III II
MUSICIAN 6/60,  6/60 6/6,  6/12 -3.5 +3.5 II III

hello, I am 12th PCB student can i go in defence without give nda. please tell me about any exam in officer ranking

Vikas gehlot 15th Jan, 2020

If you want to go into defence services as an officer just after class 12th then the only option is to appear for National defence academy exam and qualify the SSB interviewthe qualification is you need to have physics as your subject in class 12th and mathematics if you are applying for airforce and navy.

Other option is technical entry scheme in which you need to have physics chemistry and mathematics for subject in class 12th.

if you wish to join defence forces as an officer after your graduation then there are multiple entry option technical entry , general entry by cdse.

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