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8 Things You Must Know Before Applying for CDS Exam Entry

Is it for the first time that you are giving the CDS exam for the first time this time? Really, do you believe you’ll be able to pass it on your first try? In this article, we’ll clarify all of your baffling inquiries. Please read this article in its entirety and feel free to consider our advice as it is presented here.

8 Things You Must Know Before Applying for CDS Exam Entry

What is CDS Exam Entry?

Its a written test conducted by UPSC two times every year. CDS written exam has three different tests namely English, General Knowledge and Mathematics. Under the topic of “What is cds exam” we are going to discuss about required educational qualification and age limit along with instructions and preparation for the CDS written examination.


Age limit plays a crucial role in this notification. UPSC follows strict rules considering the dates. The dates given by UPSC for CDS 2024 are:


Education Qualification:

  • For I.M.A. and Officers’ Training Academy-Degree of a recognized University or equivalent.
  • For Indian Naval Academy-Degree in Engineering from a recognized University/Institution.
  •  For Air Force Academy-Degree of a recognized University (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level) or Bachelor of Engineering.

CDS 2024 Eligibility Criteria:


  1. A Citizen of India
  2. A subject of Bhutan or Nepal
  3. A Tibetan refugee who came over to India before January 1962, intending to permanently settle in India.
  4. A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, and East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, and Ethiopia or Vietnam intending to permanently settle in India. 
  • Candidates under points (2), (3), and (4), must have a certificate or proof issued by the Indian Government in favour of their statement.
  • Candidates who are Gorkha subjects of Nepal are not required to show any kind of certificate of CDS eligibility. 
  • A candidate in whose case a certificate of CDS eligibility 2022 is necessary may be admitted to the examination provisionally subject to the necessary certificate being given to him or her by the Government before the declaration of the results by the UPSC.

CDS 2024 Exam Syllabus:

EnglishSpotting Errors Sentence Arrangement Synonyms Antonyms Selecting Words Ordering of Sentence Comprehension Questions  
General KnowledgePhysics Current Affairs Politics Chemistry History Defence Related Awards Geography Sports Biology Cultural Knowledge  
Elementary MathematicsAlgebra Trigonometry Geometry Mensuration Statistics Arithmetic

CDS Exam Pattern

The candidates who want to join the Indian Military Academy, Air Force Academy and Naval Academy need to pass the following three papers:

This paper is designed for checking your knowledge of English Grammar and vocabulary as well as other necessary aspects. This paper is of 100 marks, contains 120 questions and the duration of this paper is 2 hours.

General Knowledge:
This paper is of 100 marks and its duration is 2 hours. This paper contains questions related to the geography of India and the world, civics and the polity of India, which includes constitutional acts and governance. The modern and ancient history of India. General science contains basic questions related to physics, chemistry and biology. The aspirants should be aware of the current affairs at national and international levels.

Elementary Mathematics:
Elementary mathematics includes various fields. The applicants need to be well at calculations and giving quick answers to pass this paper. This paper contains 100 questions and is of 100 marks and the time duration is 2 hours. Doing 100 questions of mathematics in 120 minutes is not easy, even though the questions are very basic in nature, one should have sufficient practice to do these questions quickly.

CDS Exam Pattern for Officer’s Training Academy:

English: The candidates must have good knowledge of English to pass this test. The maximum mark of this paper is 100 and the time duration is 2 hours.

General Knowledge: The applicants should be concerned about current events and matters of common observations. All other necessary information should be known by them. This paper is of 200 marks and the time duration is 2 hours.

CDS 2023 Live Classes 1

How to Prepare English for CDS Exam

  • Check CDS English Syllabus first
  • Mark the topics as per your knowledge and strength.
  • To prepare for English, you should develop the habit of reading. you can improve your reading habit via many sources like English Newspapers, Magazines, Notes, books etc.
  • Improve your English speaking, and English listening habits. Make a flash card on a daily basis and try to use it in many sentences.
  • Set Proper Time management for all grammar and vocabulary sections.
  • Try some CDS English online tests for an exact idea of CDS English paper. also, check and try to solve UPSC CDS Last Year’s English question papers.

How to Prepare General Knowledge for CDS Exam

  • Check CDS General Knowledge Syllabus first
  • Read Newspapers on a daily basis with consternation this habit increases your overall General knowledge
  • Buy CDS GK Preparation Books
  • Do more practice with the Online GK test for CDS Exam via CDS mock test.
  • Socialize with friends, colleagues, and professionals. The more people you come into contact with, the higher possibility to engage in intelligent and informative conversations where you can gain additional knowledge.
  • Sign up for news alerts. Several news outlets that post updated information regularly often have a special notification system that you can subscribe to. Anytime news appears under a category that interests you, the alert will notify you on an electronic device like a cell phone, keeping you updated with current information.

How to Prepare Maths for CDS Exam

  • Check CDS Maths Syllabus first
  • Make a list of important formulas, theorems and tips check some of here Geometry formulas for circles, Rectangles, squares, tangents etc. Speed Distance and Time-related questions, Math Formula For Area & surface area, Math Formula For Volume, Maths Formulas Of Number System etc to prepare for CDS.
  • Work on example problems and check your answers to gain practice with every lesson.
  • When beginning to work on a Math problem, do map out a path from problem to answer in your head before writing anything down.
  • Look for patterns & connections. After you have done the math for a while, you will begin to see patterns and connections that you cannot experience as an observer. By getting involved in the problem, you get to see and feel how problems are solved. The answer to all problems, be it math or otherwise lies within the problem itself.
  • Join Study groups, It will give you a chance to merge ideas and concepts with a group of peers. You will be able to teach and learn from each other. Math clubs will help you exercise your ability to learn.

CDS 2024 Selection Process:

Step 1: Written Examination

  • The first step is the written exam.
  • The question pattern of the written exam for the Indian Naval Academy (INA), Indian Military Academy (IMA), and Air Force Academy (AFA) is divided into three sections which are English, Maths, and GK.
  • The question pattern of the written exam for the Officers’ Training Academy (OTA) consists of English and General Knowledge.

Step 2: SSB Interview

  • Aspirants who clear the written exam are eligible for the SSB Interview which includes the Personality Test/Interview.
  • The Personality Test/Interview includes two steps to test the aspirants’ efficiency, that is their personality and psychology.
  • The first part is an intelligence and personality test.
  • The second step is a psychology test which consists of an interview, group discussion, and conference round.
SSB Interview Live Classes 3

Step 3: Medical Test

  • Aspirants who clear both interview and document verification rounds are eligible for the last step which is the medical tests.

Training Procedure for CDS Exam Entry

If you are going to apply for Indian Army then there are two terms with which you’ll come across a number of times. These two terms are OTA and IMA. OTA stands for Officers Training Academy and IMA stands for Indian Military Academy.

  • OTA is where ladies and gentlemen both are trained into officers but in IMA only gentlemen can be inducted.
    There are two OTA’s one in Chennai and the other one in Gaya (Gentleman Cadets of NDA and 10+2 TES are sent here in the last year of their training), there is only one IMA which is in Dehradun.
  • IMA provide you with the opportunity to join the army and serve for 30 years maximum. Whereas OTA is for only 14 years and not for life-term service (in some cases the service is extensible to Permanent Commission).
  • If you are willing to join Indian Army through CDSE then the candidates who are willing to go for OTA do not have to appear for the paper of Mathematics whereas those who are for IMA have to appear for the Mathematics exam.
CDS 2023 Live Classes 3 2

To crack the SSB Interview, You can join our SSB interview live classes batch and we recommend you Enroll SSB INTERVIEW ONLINE COURSE. Trusted by thousands of defence aspirants.

CDS 2024 Frequently Asked Questions:

1: How many times is the exam conducted in a year?

The CDS Exam is conducted twice a year and can be attempted in Hindi or English.

2. How many attempts can one give?

There are no restrictions on the number of attempts but one must adhere to the age limit.

3. When can I give the CDS Exam?

One can attempt the CDS Exam in the last semester of their graduation or can give the exam after the completion of the course.

4. When CDS 2024 exam will be conducted?

The CDS 2024 exam will be conducted on 21 April 2024 and 1 September 2024.

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