NDA and NA Entrance Exam

Entrance Exam for admission to the National Defense Academy and the Naval Academy, for students who want to join the armed forces - Army, Navy or Air Force.

The NDA (National Defense Academy) and NA (Naval Academy) entrance examination is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission for school students who want to get into the National Defense Services including the Army, Navy and the Air force. The exam is generally held twice a year, generally between the months April to May and September to October. It is a national level examination and provides school students with the opportunity to join the NDA or the NA. It is considered to be one of the most prestigious and competitive entrance examinations in the country.

Find out what to do If You Can't Make It To NDA.

What are the eligibility criteria?

You should not be less than 16 and a half years of age and not more than 19 years of age as of the first day of the first month in which the course is due to commence.

To be eligible for this course, you should be an unmarried male till the training ends.

To join the Army wing of the NDA, you should have passed your 12th Class examination or its equivalents in any discipline from an institution recognized by a Central/State education board.

To join the Air Force and Naval wing of the NDA, you should have passed your 12th class examination or its equivalents with Physics and Math as your main subjects from an institutions recognized by any Central/State education board.

Candidates who are scheduled to appear for their 12th class or equivalent exam in the same year as the NDA/NA exam are also eligible, provided that they can produce their exam results before the specified date by the UPSC.

It is to be noted that candidates who have failed INST (Institute of Nano Science and Technology) or PABT (Pilot Aptitude Battery Test) earlier will not be eligible to join the Air Force.

The PABT is a test conducted by the Air Force to select candidates who want to become pilots in the Air Force. It judges you on your mental awareness, physical control, judgment and responses.

You must be physically fit as per the physical standards for admission to National Defense Academy and Naval Academy examination.

For any further information, you can visit the following website: http://www.nda.nic.in

How to apply?

You can only apply for the NDA/NA examination online.

The application forms are available at the following website: www.upsconline.nic.in

The online application form will have two parts. You can only fill the Part 2 of the online form once you’ve completed Part 1.

The written examination will be followed by an interview. The results of the written examination and the interview will be taken into account during the admission process.

You will have to specify the Services you wish to be considered for in your order of preference in the Online Application Form.

Eligible candidates will be issued an E – admission certificate 3 weeks prior to the examination.

For any further information, please visit the following websites: http://www.upsc.gov.in or www.upsconline.nic.in 

What is the pattern of the examination?

The written examination consists of two parts. Part 1 is a Math based exam and Part 2 is a General Ability Test.

Part 1 (Math) is a 300 mark paper and the duration is 2 and a half hours.

Part 2 (General Ability) is a 600 marks paper and the duration is 2 and a half hours. The General Ability Test includes questions on a wide variety of topics, including English, Physics, Chemistry, Math, General Knowledge, History, Geography and Current Events.

The papers will only consist of objective type questions in the multiple choice format. There will be four options for every question with only one correct answer.

Please do not attempt questions you do not know the answers to as there will be negative marking. For every wrong answer, 1/3rd of the marks assigned to that question will be deducted.

Your admission will be based on your marks in the written examination as well as your performance in the interview conducted by the Services Selection Board at a specified date after the examination. Both the interview and the written examination will be given equal weightage.

Only the candidates who qualify in the written examination are eligible to give the interview.

The interview will consist of an Intelligence and Personality Test. Candidates for the Army/Navy wings of the NDA and the 10 + 2 cadet entry scheme of Indian Naval Academy will be assessed on Officer Potentiality. Air Force aspirants will be assessed on the basis of a Pilot Aptitude Test and Officer Potentiality.

The selection procedure is based on a Psychological Aptitude Test and an Intelligence Test. All candidates will be put through the stage 1 of the test. Only those candidates who pass the stage 1 of the test will be allowed to attempt the stage 2 of the exam.

To gain admission, you should have scored the minimum required marks in the written examination as well as in the Officer Potentiality Test.

Read the brochure or visit the following websites for more information: http://www.nda.nic.in, http://www.upsc.gov.in/ and http://www.upsconline.nic.in

The Next Steps
Depending on your first choice of Army, Air Force or Navy, if you are shortlisted after the written test, you will learn about your SSB centre and date of interview from http://joinindianarmy.nic.in/ for Army, http://nausena-bharti.nic.in/ for Navy or http://careerairforce.nic.in/ for Air Force. You will go through intelligence test, personality test or pilot aptitude test (for Air Force or pilot branch of Navy) during this stage. Those who qualify the first stage of the SSB process, will move into the second stage and be eligible for shortlisting based on number of aplicants and vacancies.   

What are the prospects?

The NDA/NA entrance examination is the most important entrance examination for candidates who want to join the armed forces (Army, Navy and Air Force). It is a prestigious and competitive examination. Thousands of candidates attempt the NDA/NA exam annually. Candidates who join the Indian Naval Academy are given a B.Tech degree upon completion of the course and are provided with the opportunity to join Executive and technical branches of the Navy subject to vacancies. 

Important Dates for NDA/NA Entrance Exam 2014:

Application forms available


Last date for receipt of application forms


Date of Commencement of Exam




Defense Services Entrance

Entrance Exam


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