Guidelines Of NDA Merit List Revealed

Guidelines Of NDA Merit List Revealed
10-July 2019...........


Be daring to be different! You certainly are different if you are an aspirant of NDA because NDA has an aura of itself: excellent discipline, excellent service, excellent personality, and excellent hard work.

National Defence Academy (NDA) is not just any academia; rather it is an archetypal of worldwide excellence. Thousands of students from nook and corner of India endeavour to join this esteem institution each year but only few of them get selected. The competition is throat- cutting and merit is your only visa. So here is a little know how of NDA and its merit game:

WHAT ???

National Defence Academy is a service academy that provides training to 3 sectors of Indian Armed Forces:  the Army, the Navy, and the Air Force. NDA is situated in Khadakwasla, Pune.

The objective of NDA is to provide high quality academic as well as technological training to its cadets in order to enable them to provide best service in their respective careers. Furthermore, the pay and benefits start along with the training itself!

The training period includes:

  • For Navy cadets- 3 years at NDA and 1 year at Naval Academy
  • For Air Force cadets- 3 years at NDA and 1 and a ½ year at AFA, Hyderabad
  • For Army cadets- 3 years at NDA and 1 year at IMA


HOW  ???

If you invest nothing, the reward is also nothing. To get to NDA you need to put in substantial effort. There is a two stage procedure for this: written exam and interview.

The eligibility criteria require minimum age to be 16 and ½ years and maximum to be 19 and ½.

Candidate must possess a minimum qualification of 12th class, with 10+2 system of education. Physics and mathematics are mandatory for Air Force applicants.

STAGE 1: This stage involves a written exam conducted by UPSC twice a year. One paper is of Mathematics, lasting for 2.5 hours and constitutes 300 marks. Second paper is of General Ability, lasting for 2.5 hours and constitutes 600 marks. Total marks are therefore 900.

There is a negative marking of 0.33 marks for every wrong answer.

Questions are objective.

Most of the paper is bilingual, that is, in Hindi and English.

The qualifying marks for written examination are fixed by UPSC as per its discretion and the selected candidates then qualify for the SSB interview.

STAGE 2: An extensive interview of 900 marks is conducted by SSB (State Selection Board) which lasts for 5 days. Let me warn you this interview is not a cinch, it’s quite back- breaking but surely not impossible.

Stage 1 is a screening test. Few of the registered candidates are selected and sent for Officer Intelligence Rating (OIR); Verbal, non- verbal, Picture Perception and Description Test (PP and DT); Stage 2 involves a 4 day procedure comprising of psychology test that involves TAT, WAT, SRT, SD. Group test based on general topics and current affairs is the next step followed by personal interview and conference. In conference, candidates come face to face with all SSB members who enquire general information and assess the candidate's personality suitable. Air Force candidates also have to pass Pilot Test.

SSB then declares the merit as per its discretion and the names are announced in merit order up to 3 lists as per availability of seats.


Merit stands for the combined score of written exam plus the interview. The more you score the better it is! Here is a little tip:

Give your best in written exam. Try for 450 marks out of 900 although currently the score revolves around 350.

It is mandatory to get 30% marks in each subject in the written exam so don’t lay your base on just 1 subject. Give balanced time and dedication to both the subjects in written exam.

Deal smartly with section cut-off wherein it is essential to pass in each paper. Scoring high marks in one paper while failing in the 2nd paper will disqualify you. For instance, often, candidates find maths difficult so get the minimum30% in it by scoring up to 130 out of 300 and compensate the rest in general ability by securing at least 350 out of 600 or vice- versa.

Just as the written exam, the interview is also of 900 marks so get a descent score in it. The trio of a psychologist, a GD officer and an interview officer assess you on different parameters. It is crucial to give an excellent performance in all three areas.

  • Just a handful of students know about merit- out tactic. A candidate can fail to be under the merit list due to: medical reasons;
  • unwillingness to appear in SSB interview after qualifying written exam;
  • directly entering into Navy instead of going through SSB interview.

There is a good chance for you if few students skip the 2nd stage of interview due to above reasons. That's how merit- out of some candidates may prove fruitful for others!

Furthermore, past few years have witnessed how candidates after 430 rank in the merit list are kept on border. This survey warns that you must reach a good rank (Upto 400) to reduce the risk of failure.

Also, UPSC has recently started to reveal written and interview marks on its official website before declaring the merit. So you can fairly get an update of your status and plan further.

An analysis of past few years will further clarify your doubts:
















On the other hand, if you want to be a real achiever then aim for top marks. Following are the topper’s marks of past 2 years:

YEAR 2018




Rank 1




Rank 2












YEAR 2017




Rank 1




Rank 2




Rank 3




In addition to above tips take care of your diet and time management. For expert books and notes log in to

What separates a talented individual from a successful one is hard work! So realise your potential, use it effectively and then nothing can stop you from winning!


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