The CDS Examination facilitates the graduates to seek careers in the defence forces as direct entry officers. Another opportunity, to the bright and energetic deserving candidates is available as NDA/Naval Academy Entry officers. This avenue is open to relatively younger candidates with 10+2 qualifications. NDA and Naval Academy (Executive Branch) provides assured career at young age with no financial burden of four-year training in the various training academies. The training at NDA culminates with a graduation degree from the Jawahar Lal Nehru University. Three-year training at NDA is followed up by one-year professional training at Indian Military Academy (IMA) for the Army, Naval Academy for the Indian Navy and Air Force Academy for the Air Force.
All these wings of Defence Forces offer very good career opportunities blended with adventure. Besides offering one of the best pay structure in the government service, the forces also offer facilities like free rations, free medical facilities, free/concessional travel by rail during leave, provident fund, group insurance and concessional residential accommodation. Besides, defence forces also offer a good social and regimented life. Time-bound promotions, upto a particular level, for all officers and selective top promotions to the meritorious and bright officers is the hallmark of a career in the defence forces.
The following will be subjects for the written examination (each of 2 hours duration):
- The candidates are tested in two papers of 21/2 hours duration each. First paper is of "Mathematics" and carries a maximum of 600 marks. The question papers consist of objective type questions and are set in English only. There is no fixed pass percentage of marks and depending on the number of candidates appearing in the examination and their overall performance, the qualifying marks are determined.
- The paper-I on Mathematics is of Matriculation Examination standard and consists questions on Arithmetic, Mensuration, Algebra, Geometry, Trigonometry and Statistics. Paper-II on General Ability consists of two parts. Part-A comprises of the test of English Language to judge the general understanding of English Language by the candidates and carries 200 marks. Part-B of Paper-II consists of General Knowledge carrying 400 marks and has six sections. The weightage given to these six sections of General Knowledge is: Physics 25% Chemistry 15%, General Science 10%, History, Freedom Movement etc 20%, Geography 20% and current Affairs 10%.
- General Knowledge - This tests the general knowledge, current events, history of India, geography of nature and other matters of everyday observation.
- Elementary Mathematics - This paper covers arithmetic, algebra, geometry, trigonometry, and statistics.
Agartala, Ahmedabad, Aizawl, Allahabad, Bangalore, Bareilly, Bhopal, Bombay, Calcutta, Chandigarh, Cochin, Cuttack, Delhi, Dharwar, Dispur, Gangtok, Hyderabad, Imphal, Itanagar, Jaipur, Jammu, Jorhat, Kavaratti, Kohima, Lucknow, Madras, Madurai, Nagpur, Panaji, Patna, Port Blair, Raipur, Sambalpur, Shillong, Shimla, Srinagar, Tirupati, Trivandrum, Udaipur and Vishakhapatnam.
Preparations for the written examination needs special attention, Mathematics paper, being theoretical in nature
is comparatively easy to prepare. Paper-II (General Ability) needs special attention and preparation which consists
of English and General Knowledge. Regular reading of "The Competition Master" is particularly useful for Paper-II
as it effectively helps the candidates to prepare for English Language and General Knowledge. Similarly,
SSB interview being different from routine interviews needs special preparations. There are certain academies,
particularly those run by former officers of the defence forces, which provide useful coaching to the candidates
preparing for the interview. The candidates may choose genuine academies and undergo coaching for the interview.
Further details about the examination are available in the detailed advertisment which appears in the Employment
News. Information about the examination is also given in the "Candidates Information Manual" which gives details
about objective-type tests. This booklet is supplied by the UPSC to all the candidates alongwith the admission