CDS full form is Combined Defence Service. It is conducted by UPSC. It’s conducted twice a year. UPSC CDS recruits personnel for all three defence forces. UPSC releases its notices for CDS every year. Hence, students can apply as per the notice. It is a very imp exam in India. Hence, we will look at the UPSC CDS Exam in detail. Moreover, we will also check the CDS syllabus, full form, eligibility, and age limit. It’s a very popular exam among young candidates. Hence, there’s a lot of struggle. However, with the right guidance, it’s not tough to crack the UPSC CDS exam. UPSC CDS Exam I is held in Feb. Whereas, UPSC CDS Exam II is held in Sept. Candidates who clear the exam, are allowed to enter different defence academies. Hence, it acts as an entrance exam.
UPSC CDS Exam Pattern
UPSC sets the UPSC CDS Exam Pattern. The exam has two stages. Firstly, there’s a written exam. Then there’s an interview. Let’s first look at stage one. There are 3 sections to this stage. Firstly, there’s an English section. Secondly, there’s a GK section. Lastly, there’s elementary math. Further, there are 2 stages to enter OTA. OTA stands for Officer’s Training Academy. It is a written exam as well. There are 2 parts to this exam. Hence, the first sect is English. Then, there’s GK. The exam carries 500 total marks. 300 marks are for IMA, INA, AFA. Whereas, 200 are allotted for OTA. IMA, INA, AFA stands for Indian Military, Navy, and Airforce Academy.
Each section lasts for 2 hours only. Hence, the total exam duration is 6 hours for the first section. That is IMA, INA, AFA. On the other hand, OTA exams last for 4 hours. Moreover, the complete UPSC CDS Exam is MCQ type. That is, it’s an objective type exam. Each section is for 100 marks. Each correct answer earns one mark. However, there’s a negative marking of 0.33 marks for incorrect answers. There’s no negative marking for unattempted questions. Successful candidates qualify for SSB Interview. Here SSB stands for Service Selection Board. It is conducted over 4 days. There are 2 stages to it. Hence, it checks the candidate’s mental aptitude. Now let’s look at the CDS syllabus in detail.
As we saw, there are 3 sections to the UPSC CDS Exam. Let’s discuss the CDS Syllabus for each sect. Firstly, let’s talk about English. This section involves basic grammar. It also includes comprehension. Moreover, the questions are of graduation level. You can expect topics like synonyms and antonyms. Hence, you can refer to easy grammar notes from school and university level books. Next, let’s talk about GK. GK stands for General Knowledge. It’s an imp part of the UPSC CDS Exam. Moreover, it’s similar to the UPSC prelims GK section. Read daily current affairs for GK. The newspaper covers all the aspects of GK. Make short GK notes. However, you can refer to compiled GK notes for revision. But don’t take GK lightly. Focus on it equally.
Lastly, there’s elementary math. The questions are matric level. Hence, it’s easy to score here. Firstly, there’s algebra. Secondly, there are Arithmetic problems. Thirdly, there is Geometry. Further, there are trigonometry problems. Then there’s statistics. Lastly, there are mensuration problems. Refer to NCERT books for this section. Read more about UPSC CDS Exam: Click Here.
Firstly, let’s look at the educational criteria. Graduation is the minimum requirement for the UPSC CDS Exam Eligibility. IMA and OTA need a bachelor’s degree. This degree can be from any field. INA requires a degree in Engineering. This too can be from any branch. AFA has special needs. Firstly, you must opt for Physics and Math in Class 12. Secondly, you must hold an engineer’s degree. Further, let’s look at the nationality criteria. CDS Eligibility differs as per the nationality. Not every national is eligible. Firstly, you must be an Indian Citizen. However, you can also be a subject of Bhutan or Nepal. Tibetan refugees permanently settled in India are also eligible. Lastly, Indian origin candidates from different nations are eligible.
Further, there are physical criteria to the CDS Eligibility as well. The min-height for male candidates is 157.5 cm. However, for women, it’s 152 cm. Moreover, a lower height of 5 cm is acceptable for Gorkhas and North Eastern candidates. However, the average height for all is 148cm minimum. There’s one more imp factor of the exam. Hence, let’s look at the UPSC CDS Exam Age Limit.
UPSC CDS Exam Age Limit
Further, let’s look at the UPSC CDS Exam Age Limit. This is an imp aspect of the exam. There are 3 defense forces. Hence, the CDS Age Limit differs for each of them. The minimum age limit for INA is 19 years. Whereas, the max-age limit for the UPSC CDS Exam is 22 years. Secondly, there’s the Air Force Academy(AFA). The min age limit is 19 years. However, the max-age is 23 years. Thirdly, there’s the Indian Military Academy. The minimum IMA CDS age limit is 19 years. The max-age is 24 years. Further, the min age is the same for OTA. But, the max CDS OTA age limit is 25 years for women. However, it’s the same for men.
One must check this before applying for the exam online. There are a lot of similarities b/w the UPSC civil service and CDS exams. Hence, one can attempt both. The UPSC CDS Exam Syllabus overlaps. Check UPSC Syllabus: Read More. However, CDS Exam is much lighter. You can pick some basics and then go for a higher level prep. Moreover, you can undertake a coaching class for the exam. An added advantage is it’s conducted twice a year. However, one must strictly follow the CDS Age Limit. CDS Full Form is Combined Defense Services. The CDS Syllabus is limited. Hence, it can be easily covered. However, don’t forget the physical requirements. Focus on your prep for the written exam. However, don’t skip physical fitness.
Defense personnel is expected to be physically and mentally fit. Hence, balance your routine as per the eligibility. Practice previous year’s question papers regularly. This will help you prevent some negative marking.
There’s no limit to the number of attempts. One can attempt as many times as possible. However, one must follow the CDS Age Limit. Therefore, you’ll minimize your disqualification chances.
UPSC CSE recruits civil servants. That is, it selects IAS, IPS, IFS and some other officers. However, the same body conducts the UPSC CDS Exam. CDS Full Form is Combined Defense Service. Hence, it selects candidates for Indian Military, Navy and Air force academies. It acts as an entrance exam into these defense academies.
The CDS Syllabus is quite manageable. Hence, you can dedicate around 6 months to your prep. Moreover, the difficulty level of the exam is less. However, daily practice is needed to avoid negative marks. The questions are either matriculate or university level.
Yes, you can attempt the exam. The minimum age limit is 19 years. Hence, you can attempt the exam. The average max age limit is 25 years. Hence, you have to apply for the exam as per this age limit.
Editor’s Note | UPSC CDS Exam
We will now conclude the article with a few imp tips. Firstly, don’t stress about the exam. Focus more on your weaker sections. To stay organized make a timetable. Moreover, follow this timetable. Make sure you add rest to the schedule as well. Secondly, don’t go for last min prep. This will just add to your stress. Further, it will also create a pre-examination anxiety phase. To avoid this, start beforehand. Analyze the CDS syllabus. Select the right source of preparation. If you self study, choose detailed books. If you go for coaching, ask for study materials.
Further, make your own notes as well. This will help you in revision. Thirdly, focus on your physical fitness as well. This is one of the most imp parts of the UPSC CDS Exam. CDS Full Form is Combined Defense Service. A lot of candidates pass the exam but fail in the physical criteria.
Moreover, check your age before applying for the exam. Lastly, prepare yourself for the interview. This entrance has a lot of competition. Hence, don’t miss to practice as much as possible Avoid negative marking. Refer to compact and concise notes. However, don’t rush towards multiple sources. Stick to some static books. This will reduce confusion and save your time. Start your prep from a basic level. Once you get well versed with the syllabus, go for a higher level. Finally, try solving the previous year’s question papers. It will give you a clear idea of the type of questions you can expect in the UPSC CDS Exam.