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

The NDA exam is conducted by UPSC for admission to the Army, Navy and Air Force wings of the NDA. This exam is a gateway for candidates looking forward to joining Defence Forces including Army, Navy and Air Force.

This is a national level exam conducted twice a year: NDA I and NDA II to help candidates make a career in Defence services. NDA Exam 2020 schedules for NDA I and NDA II exam has already been released by UPSC.

National Defence Academy & Naval Academy Examination 2020 will be a two-step process where candidates first need to take the exam and then qualify the SSB interview conducted by the Service Selection Board.

NDA I 2020 will be held on April 19, 2020, while NDA II will be conducted on September 06, 2020. So, candidates planning to take the exam should fill the application form before the last date and start preparation of NDA & NA 2020 exam.

The UPSC is solely responsible for issuing guidelines for selection and the final conduct of the entrance examination.

Eligibility Criteria

  • Roles and Responsibilities
  • Physical Criteria
  • Nationality
  • Educational Qualification
  • Age Limit
  • On reporting to the Academy, a cadet is allotted to one of the 18 Squadrons, which becomes his home-away-from-home for the next three years. The Squadrons are named as Alpha, Bravo, Charlie, Delta, Echo, Foxtrot, Golf, Hunter, India, Juliet, Kilo, Lima, Mike, November, Oscar, Panther, Quebec, and Romeo. No. 1, No. 2, No. 3 and No. 4 Battalions have four squadrons each while No. 5 has 2 squadrons. Each squadron has approximately 100 to 120 cadets drawn from senior as well as junior courses under training in the Academy
  • They earn INR 21,000 as stiffened. After completing three years training in Pune, they will obtain a degree from JNTU in computer science/ B.A. after that trade training is given and their career starts in Indian army lieutenant.
  • And navy candidates can start their career as a sub-lieutenant and those who selected air force start their career flying officer

Candidates must be physically and mentally fit for admission to National Defence Academy (NDA) and Naval Academy (NA) Examination (I) & (II), 2020. Every year, many candidates fail to qualify in the medical test. Hence, candidates are advised to get themselves medically examined before applying for the examination. 

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

Height And Weight

Standard The minimum acceptable height is 157 cms (162.5 cms for Air Force). The minimum height is relaxed by 5 cms for Gorkhas and individuals belonging to hills of North-Eastern regions of India, Garhwal and Kumaon. However, the minimum height is reduced by 2 cms for candidates belonging to Lakshadweep. 

Height/ Weight Standards - Army/ Air Force
Height in Centimetres (without shoes)                   Weight in Kgs
  16-17 years 17-18 years 18-19 years
152  42.5 44  45 
155 43.5  45.3  47 
157 45  47  48 
160 46.5  48  49 
162 48  50  51 
165 50  52  53 
167 51  53  54 
170 52.5  55  56 
173 54  57  58 
175 56  59  60 
178 58  61  62 
180 60  63  64.5 
183 62.5  65  66.5 


  Height/ Weight Standards - Navy
Height in Centimetres (without shoes)                   Weight in Kgs
  16 years 17 years 18 years
152 44 45 46
155 45 46 47
157 46 47 49
160 47 48 50
162 48 50 52
165 50 52 53
168 52 53 55
170 53 55 57
173 55 57 59
175 57 59 61
178 59 61 62
180 61 63 64
183 63 65 67


* Candidates have to meet the special requirement as a pilot in the Air Force. The acceptable measurements of leg length, thigh length and sitting height are given below:

  Minimum  Maximum 
Leg Length 99.00 cms 120.00 cms
Thigh Length - 64.00 cms
Sitting Height 81.50 cms 96.00 cms

Vision Standard: 

Naval Candidates

  • Uncorrected without glass 6/6, 6/9
  • Corrected with glass 6/6, 6/6 
  • Limits of Myopia –0.75
  • Limits of Hypermetropia +1.5
  • Binocular vision III
  • Limits of colour perception I 

Air Force Candidates

Candidates who are wearing spectacles habitually are not eligible for Air Force. According to the official sources, the minimum distant vision 6/6 in one eye and 6/9 in other, correctable to 6/6 only for Hypermetropia. Colour vision CP-I Hypermetropia: +2.0 D Sph Manifest Myopia : Nil Retinoscopic Myopia : 0.5 in any Meridian permitted Astigmatism : + 0.75 D Cyl (within + 2.0 D.Max) Maddox Rod Test. 

at 6 meters Exo-6 prism D at 33 cms Exo-16 prism D
Eso-6 prism D Eso-6 prism D
Hyper-1 prism D Hyper-1 prism D
Hypro-1 prism D Hypo-1 prism D

Physical Conditioning 

The aspiring candidates are advised to be in the good physical condition by following the routine mentioned below. 

1. Running 2.4 km in 15 minutes

2. Skipping

3. Pushups and sit ups (minimum 20 each)

4. Chin ups (minimum 08)

5. Rope climbing 3-4 metres. 

A candidate must be either:

(i) a Citizen of India, or (ii) a subject of Nepal, or (iii) a subject of Bhutan, or

(iv) a Tibetan refugee who came over to India before January 1, 1962, with the intention of permanently settling in India, or

(v) a person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka or East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, and Ethiopia or from Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.


  • Provided that a candidate belonging to categories (ii), (iii), (iv) and (v) above shall be a person in whose favour a certificate of eligibility has been issued by the Government of India
  • Certificate of eligibility will not, however, be necessary in the case of candidates who are Gorkha subjects of Nepal

1. For Army Wing of National Defence Academy:   

The candidates must have the Class 12 pass of the 10+2 pattern of School Education or equivalent examination conducted by a State Education Board or a University.

2. For Air Force and Naval Wings of National Defence Academy and for the 10+2 Cadet Entry Scheme at the Indian Naval Academy:     

The candidates must have the Class 12 pass of the 10+2 pattern of School Education or equivalent with Physics and Mathematics conducted by a State Education Board or a University.


  • Candidates who are appearing in the 12th Class under the 10+2 pattern of School Education or equivalent examination can also apply for this examination. Such candidates who qualify the SSB interview but could not produce Matriculation/10+2 or equivalent certificate in original at the time of SSB interview should forward duly self-attested Photocopies
  • Candidates appearing in the 11th class exam are not eligible for this examination
  • Those candidates who have yet to qualify in the 12th class or equivalent examination and are allowed to appear in the UPSC Examination should note that this is only a special concession given to them. They are required to submit proof of passing the 12th class or equivalent examination by the prescribed date of UPSC (i.e. for NDA (I) is December 24, 2019, and for NDA (II) is June 24, 2020) and no request for extending this date will be entertained on the grounds of late conduct of Board/University Examination, delay in declaration of results or any other ground whatsoever
  • Candidates who are debarred by the Ministry of Defence from holding any type of Commission in the Defence Services shall not be eligible for admission to the examination and if admitted, their candidature will be cancelled
  • Those candidates who have failed INSB/PABT earlier are not eligible for Air Force

Age Limits, Sex and Marital Status:

For NDA & NA (I):

Age Limit: Only unmarried male candidates born not earlier than July 2, 2000, and not later than July 1, 2003, are eligible.

For NDA & NA (II): Age Limit: Only unmarried male candidates born not earlier than January 2, 2001, and not later than January 1, 2004, are eligible.


  • The date of birth accepted by the Commission is that entered in the Matriculation or Secondary School Leaving Certificate or in a certificate recognised by an Indian University as equivalent to Matriculation or in an extract from a Register of Matriculates maintained by a University which must be certified by the proper authority of the University or in the Higher Secondary or an equivalent examination certificates.  
  • Candidates should note that only the date of birth as recorded in the Matriculation/Higher Secondary Examination Certificate available or an equivalent certificate on the date of submission of applications will be accepted by the Commission and no subsequent request for its change will be considered or granted
  • Candidates should also note that once a date of birth has been claimed by them and entered in the records of the Commission for the purpose of admission to an examination, no change will be allowed subsequently or at any subsequent examination on any ground whatsoever
  • The candidates should exercise due care while entering their date of birth in the respective column of the Online Application Form for the examination. If on verification at any subsequent stage any variation is found in their date of birth from the one entered in their matriculation or equivalent examination certificate, disciplinary action will be taken against them by the Commission under the Rules
  • Candidates must undertake not to marry until they complete their full training. A candidate who marries subsequent to the date of his application though successful at this or any subsequent Examination will not be selected for training. A candidate who marries during training shall be discharged and will be liable to refund all expenditure incurred on him by the Government.

Examination Pattern

National Defence Academy & Naval Academy Examination (I) and (II) 2020 shall be conducted according to the following plan: The subjects of the written examination under Part-I, the maximum marks allotted to each subject/paper, the time allowed and for Part-II shall be as follows:

Subject Date Code Duration Maximum Marks
Part I - NDA and NA Examination (I)
Mathematics 19-04-2020 (Sunday)  1 21/2 Hrs 300
General Ability Test 2 21/2 Hrs 600
Total 900
Part II - SSB Test/Interview 900
Part I - NDA and NA Examination (II)
Mathematics 06-09-2020 (Sunday) 1 21/2 Hrs 300
General Ability Test 2 21/2 Hrs 600
Total 900
Part II - SSB Test/Interview 900


  • The papers in all the subjects will consist of objective type questions only. The question papers (test booklets) of Mathematics and Part 'B' of General Ability Test will be set bilingually in Hindi as well as English
  • In the question papers, wherever necessary, questions involving the metric system of Weights and Measures only will be set
  • Candidates must write the papers in their own hand. In no circumstances will they be allowed the help of a scribe to write answers for them
  • The Commission has the discretion to fix qualifying marks in any or all the subjects at the examination
  • The candidates are not permitted to use the calculator or Mathematical or logarithmic table for answering objective type papers (test booklets). They should not, therefore, bring the same inside the examination hall


NDA Syllabus contain various topics from the subjects of Mathematics, English and General Knowledge. Complete syllabus can be checked by the students by online mode.

Below we have provided various topics included various subjects coming in the written test:


Matrices and Determinants, Algebra, Analytical Geometry of two and three Dimensions, Trigonometry, Integral calculus and Differential Equations, Differential Calculus, Statistics and Probability, Vector Algebra


The question paper of English will be designed for testing the candidate’s understanding of English and workman like use of words. The syllabus covers various aspects like: Vocabulary, comprehension, Grammar and usage and cohesion in extended text to test the candidate’s proficiency in English

General Knowledge:

The question paper on General Knowledge will broadly cover topics from the subjects: Physics, Chemistry, General Science, Social Studies, Geography and Current Events.

Candidate’s answers will show their intelligent understanding and knowledge of the subject.

You can download detailed syllabus by clicking on the notification :  CLICK HERE