NDA- National Defence Academy & Naval Academy

NDA- National Defence Academy & Naval Academy

NDA- National Defence Academy & Naval Academy (I) and (II) Exam (NDA & NA (I) and (II))

What is NDA & NA (I) and (II) Exam?

NDA is one of the popular exams conducted by UPSC for admission to the Army, Navy, and Air Force wings of the National Defense Academy(NDA). For candidates aspiring to join defense forces like Army, Navy, and Air– cracking this exam can lead to you achieving your dreams!

             Its a national level exam conducted two times in a year: NDA I and NDA II, in the month of April and August respectively.  

           Candidates qualifying for NDA get the opportunity to make a career in Defence services. NDA and NA (Naval Academy) exam is a two-process where first the candidates need to qualify the exam and then qualify for the personality test which is conducted by the SSB or Service Selection Board. The UPSC issues guidelines for selection and the final result of the entrance examination.

NDA & NA (I) 2022

The NDA and NA (1) notifications for online applications has been released in the month of December 2021 and acceptance of forms was available until January 11, 2022.

The notification had released for the 147th course of NDA and 109th course of the Indian Naval Academy Course (INAC). The number of vacancies for these courses is given below:

NDA and NA (1)Vacancies
National Defence Academy (NDA)370 (Army- 208Navy- 42Air Force- 120) (28 for Ground Duties out of 120 for Air Force)
Naval Academy (NA)30

NDA & NA (II) 2022

The NDA & NA (II) for online applications will be released in the month of May 18, 2022, and the application form will be accepted until June 14, 2022. The notification had released for the 146th course of NDA and 108th course of the Indian Naval Academy Course (INAC) and will commence from June 2nd, 2022. The number of vacancies for these courses is given below:

NDA and NA (2) Vacancies
National Defence Academy (NA)370(Army- 208Navy- 42Air Force- 120)
Naval Academy (NA)43

Women candidates for this UPSC Exam

On 18th August, the Supreme Court passed an interim order where women got the allowance to join UPSC National Defence Academy & Naval Academy (NDA & NA) exam. The Supreme court has asked the concerned authority to make required arrangements that allow women to sit for the UPSC NDA (II) exam 2021 on 14th November.

Eligibility Criteria 

Physical Criteria

Candidates need to be physically and mentally fit to get admitted to National Defence Academy and Naval Academy Examination (I) & (II), 2022. Every year, many candidates do not qualify for the medical test. Thus, candidates are advised to get themselves medically examined before they apply for the examination. 

         They are also advised to correct a few minor defects/ ailments such as Wax (ears), Deviated Nasal Septum, Hydrocele/Phimosis, Overweight/Underweight, Under Sized Chest, Piles, Tonsillitis and Varicocele, etc.

Height And Weight Standard

Height and Weight Standard for Female Candidates joining NDA

Height (cms)Minimum Weight (kg)Age: 17 to 20 yearsAge: 20 to 30 yearsAge: 30 to 40 yearsAge: Above 40 years
Height and Weight Standard for Male candidates joining NDA
Vision Standard 
Army Candidates
Distance Vision6/6 (Better Eye), 6/9 (Worse Eye)
Color VisionCP-3 (Defective Safe)
Limit of Myopia-2.5D
Limit of Hyperm+3.5D
Naval Candidates
Uncorrected without glass6/6, 6/9
Corrected with glass6/6, 6/6
Limits of Myopia-0.75
Limits of Hypermetropia+1.5
Binocular Vision3
Limits of color perception1
Air Force Candidates
Candidates habituated to wearing spectaclesNot eligible for joining the air force
Minimum Distant Vision6/6 in one eye, 6/9 in other correctable; 6/6 for Hypermetropia
Physical Conditioning 

Candidates aspiring for NDA are advised to have good physical condition and to achieve this, a routine has been accordingly instructed to be followed:

 1. Running 2.4 km in 15 minutes

 2. Skipping

 3. Pushups and sit-ups 

4. Chin-ups (minimum 08)

 5. Rope climbing (3-4 meters). 


The candidate should be a citizen of India, Nepal, or a migrant of Pakistan, Burma, Ethiopia, Zambia, Zaire, Kenya, Uganda, Vietnam or should decide to permanently settle in India.

Educational Qualification:
1) For Army Wing of NDA

Candidates must have passed class 12th (10+2 pattern) of School Education or from a recognized State Board/institution.

2) For Air Force and Naval Wing of NDA

Candidates must have passed class 12th (10+2 pattern) of School Education or from a recognized State Board/institution with Physics and Mathematics.

Age Limit
For NDA & NA 1

Only unmarried male / female candidates born not earlier than 2nd July 2003, and not later than 1st July 2006, are eligible for appearing for this examination.

For NDA & NA 2

Only unmarried male candidates born not earlier than 2nd July 2003, and not later than 1st July 2006, are eligible for appearing for this examination.

NDA Exam Pattern

The NDA Exam has 2 parts. A written exam and an interview. The written exam consists of 2 papers: Mathematics and GAT (General Ability Test).

The details about the paper pattern are given below in the table:

TopicsWritten and Interview
No. of papers in the exam2
No. of stages in the interview2
Time Duration of maths paper2 hours 30 minutes
Time Duration of GAT paper2 hours 30 minutes
Total Marks of written exam900 (300 for Maths, 300 for GAT)
Total Marks of SSB interview session900
Type of questions in the written examMCQs
Mode of the examPen and Paper (Offline)

NDA Syllabus Structure

Syllabus for Maths Paper:

AlgebraVector AlgebraOperations on MetricsDeterminants
TrigonometryIntegral CalculusDifferential CalculusDifferential Equations
ProbabilityOperations on StatisticsAnalytic Geometry——————–

Syllabus for GAT Paper:

English Grammar, Vocabulary, Comprehension, CohesionPhysics (12th level)Chemistry(12th level)General ScienceIndian and World HistoryGeographyCurrent Affairs

NDA Application process

Candidates can check below the whole process for filling up the application form.

The registration is done in 2 parts.

Part 1

  1. Visit the official website of UPSC
  2. Click on the UPSC NDA Application Link.
  3. You will be redirected to the registration page for NDA and NA. Now, click on the “Part 1 registration.” Part 1 registration is divided into 4 pages:

      Page 1: Page 1 contains the candidate’s details like Name, Date, Date of Birth, Mother’s and Father’s Name, Marital Status, Nationality, Community, Fee Remission, Educational Qualification, Address, and Email ID. Candidates must be careful while filling in personal details. 

Page 2: Page 2 contains Preference Order for Army, Navy and Air Force, and Naval Academy and candidates have to mark their preference in 1-4 order. Candidates can mark 0 for the subject they do not prefer.

 Page 3: On this page, candidates have to verify the details filled on the previous page. So, check the details carefully as this would be the final submission and no changes shall be entertained further. Click on “I agree’ if the details are confirmed and if you want to make changes, click on “I do not agree”.

 Page 4: The Registration ID will be generated on this page and you will be able to view your Registration Id along with other details like Name, DOB, Mother’s and Father’s Name, Email ID, etc. The registration details will be sent to you at your given email address. Now, you have to print the NDA Application form by clicking on the “Print Application Part-1’button.

Part 2

 After printing the application for Registration Part-1, click on the button which says “Part 2 Registration”. Part 2 consists of 3 stages:

Stage 1: Fee Payment-  The application fee can be paid through both offline and online modes. The fees for General and OBC are Rs.100/- They can pay fees in cash through any branch of SBI or through NET Banking/Visa/Master Card/Rupay Credit/Debit Card.

Stage 2: Selecting Exam Center- A list of exam centers is allotted by UPSC in different states for candidates. Candidates need to select the centers for written examination from the given lists of exam cities according to their location preference.  Centers will be allotted on a first-apply-allot basis and thus, you should apply at the earliest.

Stage 3: Uploading Photographs and Signature-  Lastly, you must keep your scanned photograph and signature ready to be uploaded in the .jpg format. The file for the photograph should not be more than 40 KB and must not be less than 3 KB in size and it should be 1 KB for the signature. At the bottom of the application page, candidates need to agree to the declaration and submit the form. Next, the Registration ID is generated. For viewing the application, candidates have to click the link which shows “View/Print”.

NDA Roles and Responsibilities

Once a candidate is selected in the NDA exam and reports to the army, each cadet gets allotted to one of 18 Squadrons, which becomes his/her sort of home for the next three years. The Squadrons are called Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo, Foxtrot, Golf, Hunter, India, Juliet, Kilo, Lima, Mike, November, Oscar, Panther, Quebec, and Romeo. Battalions No. 1, No. 2, No. 3, and No. 4 have four squadrons each while No. 5 has only 2 squadrons. 

          Each squadron has an average of 100 to 120 cadets from senior and junior courses under training in the Academy. The stipend earned by them is INR 21,000. 

          After completion of three training years in Pune, they receive a degree from JNTU in computer science/ B.A. after which trade training is given, and thus start their career as an Indian army lieutenant. Navy candidates can start their career as a sub-lieutenant and selected air force candidates can start their career as flying officers.

Career Prospects

UPSC NDA candidates have great future prospects and career growth in terms of the promotion are detailed in the table below:

ArmyNavyAir ForceMinimum Service Required for Promotion
Lieutenant Sub LieutenantFlying OfficerOn Commission
CaptainLieutenantFlight Lieutenant2 years
MajorCommanderSquadron Leader6 years
BrigadierCommodoreAir CommodoreOn Selection
Major GeneralReal AdmiralAir Vice-MarshalOn Selection
GeneralAdmiralAir Chief MarshalOn Selection

Preparation tips

1) Be thorough with your NCERT Syllabus and text material, as NCERT asks most of the questions based on the NCERT syllabus up to class 12th.

2) Too many materials and reference books are available of NDA, and by reading too many of them, things might mess up for you. So, to retain necessary information- focus more on the basics, fundamentals, and theory.

3) You can opt to read Lucent’s book for General Knowledge.

4) Focus on General Knowledge and English subjects as they will help you score marks.

5) Practice Maths regularly, especially in your weak areas.

6) Solve NDA question papers on a daily basis to know which topics are given more weightage in exams and prepare those topics better. Solving question papers is a good study habit and it helps you to track your time management and progress.

7) For the interview session, try practicing picture tests at home to improve your quick thinking abilities.

8) Last, but not least. Stay calm.  And move towards your ambitions with fresh energy and determination. “PRACTICE, DON’T PANIC.”

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