CDS Exam: Eligibility, Salaries, Syllabus, Cut-off, Latest News

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The Combined Defence Services Examination, often known as the CDS Exam, is administered by the Union Public Service Commission. This examination is utilised to recruit Commissioned Officers for the Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy, and Indian Air Force Academy. Typically, notification of the examination is disseminated between the months of December and May, but the examinations themselves are conducted during the months of April and September, respectively. Candidates for the exam must be single and have completed their formal schooling. Each year, two examinations are administered. Those who are considered qualified after an interview process regulated by the Services Selection Board are admitted to the relevant academies (SSB).

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General overview of the CDS examination

Name of exam Combined Defence Services Examination
Conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC)
Exam level National
Exam frequency Twice a year (April and September)
Exam mode Offline
Exam stages Written exam and SSB Interview
Number of applicants 2,343,43 (In CDS II 2020)
Number of appeared candidates 1,182,50 (In CDS II 2020)
Exam fees INR 200 for General and OBC male candidates
Female, SC, ST candidates are exempted from fee payment
Exam timing The time allotted to each paper such as English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics is two hours
Language of question paper English and Hindi
No of questions Elementary Maths: 100
General English: 120
General Knowledge: 120
No.of papers Indian Military Academy (IMA), Indian Naval Academy (INA) and Air Force Academy (AFA): Three (English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics)
Officers’ Training Academy (OTA): Two (English and General Knowledge)
Total marks Written Exam
IMA, INA and AFA: 300
OTA: 200
SSB Interview
IMA, INA and AFA: 300
OTA: 200
Marking scheme One mark for the correct answer
0.33 marks deducted for wrong answers
Exam purpose To select candidates as Commissioned Officers in Indian Army, Navy, and Air Force
Vacancies Total 341 vacancies announced for CDS I exam
No of test cities More than 70
Official website
Contact number 011-23385271/011-23381125/011-23098543


The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) administers the “Combined Defence Services” Examination (CDS Examination) twice a year to recruit candidates for the Indian Military Academy, Officers’ Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy, and Indian Air Force Academy. These institutions educate officers for the Indian military. 

The CDS test will be administered by the UPSC twice per year, once in February and once in September. Candidates who intend to serve their country by entering the armed forces can now begin the application procedure for the CDS examination. Before submitting an online application for the CDS examination, candidates must satisfy all of the qualifying requirements provided by the Commission. 

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The candidates will be selected based on their performance on a written examination, which will be followed by an interview in which their intelligence and character will be assessed. The remaining candidates will be placed to the various academies according to their choices and overall merit.

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The two stages of the CDS selection procedure are the written exam and the SSB interview. Before making the final selection, the performance of the applicants in both phases is considered. After completing training at the IMA, INA, AFA, and OTA, respectively, candidates are selected for the position of lieutenant. During their course, each candidate will receive an allowance of 56,100 INR.

What are the CDS 1 and CDS 2 Examinations?

Students who will begin their studies at the Indian Military Academy in Dehradun, the Air Force Academy in Hyderabad, and the Indian Naval Academy in Ezhimala take the CDS 1 examination in January. Students who will begin their studies at the Officers Training Academy in Chennai in April and October, respectively, will also take exams in July and October of 2023.

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CDS Age Limit Criteria

In order to take the UPSC CDS examination, it is of the utmost importance that candidates satisfy the qualifying requirements. Before completing the application form, applicants must ensure that they meet all of the prerequisites. The table below details the age requirements for the CDS examination in 2022. Verify that you have attained the minimum age requirement for the CDS, which is the same for both male and female applicants, prior to beginning preparations.

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The CDS Has an Age Limit for IMA and INA.

Male applicants are required for consideration for IMA and INA positions. The applicants must not be married and their birthdays must fall between July 1, 2004 and July 2, 1999. Additionally, they cannot be between these two dates.

IAFA’s CDS Age Limit Requirement

IAFA is now only accepting applications from male candidates.

  • Candidates must be between 20 and 24 years old as of July 1, 2022, in order to be considered. (that is, the applicant’s date of birth could not have been earlier than July 2, 1999, or later than July 1, 2004)
  • If an applicant currently holds a valid and current commercial pilot licence issued by DGCA (India), they are eligible for an age limit relaxation up to 26 years old. (This indicates that the candidate’s birthday could not have been earlier than July 2, 1997, or later than July 1, 2003.)
  • Candidates under the minimum age requirement of 25 must establish that they have never been married.
  • In addition, applicants will be prohibited from getting married throughout their training period.
  • Candidates over the age of 25 and who are married are also able to apply; however, housing will not be provided for their wives throughout the training term, nor will they be authorised to reside with their families off-site.

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CDS Age Requirement in OTA

The CDS-established age limit parameters for OTA assignments are explained. If a woman meets the CDS eligibility requirements in 2022 and is interested in pursuing a career in this field, she may submit an application for one of the non-technical positions. Examine the illustrated CDS qualifying requirements for both women and men, and ensure you meet all of them prior to commencing your test preparations.

SSC Instruction for Adult Men

The applicants must not be married and their birthdays must fall between July 1, 2004 and July 2, 1999. Additionally, they cannot be between these two dates.

For Women Enrolling in the Non-Technical SSC Course

  • The applicant’s date of birth must have occurred between the second of January 1998 and the first of January 2004.
  • The applicant cannot be married, a widow who has not remarried, or a divorcee who has not remarried and is in possession of their divorce papers.


  • The candidate must be either a native of India or a citizen of Nepal or Bhutan in order to begin.
  • The candidate may also be a Tibetan immigrant who entered India before January 1, 1962.
  • In addition, they could be an Indian who has relocated back to India from another country.
  • Lastly, they must be in possession of an India government-issued certificate. In contrast, Gorkha residents in Nepal are not needed to obtain this document.

Educational Qualifications 

Education Qualification for CDS
Indian Military Academy (IMA) and Officers’ Training Academy (OTA) Bachelor’s Degree From a recognised university
Indian Naval Academy (INA) Bachelors in Engineering from a recognised University
Air Force Academy (AFA) Graduation (with Physics and Mathematics at Class 12) or Bachelor of Engineering

The Union Public Service Commission has specified a minimum degree of education that a candidate must possess in order to be qualified for the NDA examination.

  • A high school diploma or bachelor’s degree from a government-recognized university is the bare minimum requirement for taking the CDS exam.
  • Graduates who have selected the Army, Navy, or Air Force as their first preference must present proof of graduation or temporary certificates to the SSB on the designated interview day.
  • Candidates in their final year of college may also apply, assuming they have not fallen behind in the application procedure. In addition, prior to the start of the course, they are required to submit proof that they passed the degree exams.
  • If the test were administered, candidates with professional and technical credentials recognised by the government as being equivalent to degrees in professional and technical subjects would also be eligible for admission.

If you are a General Category student then the cut off will be higher in Government exams.

Eligibility Standards for the CDS, Including Physical Requirements for Men and Women

In compliance with UPCS regulations, candidates must demonstrate that they are both physically and psychologically fit. A considerable number of otherwise qualified candidates are removed from consideration on the grounds of their health. Therefore, applicants are strongly urged to get a medical exam before to submitting their CDS Exam applications. 

Following is a list of the most commonly seen disqualifying factors.

Physical appearance criteria for both men and women:

  • Wax (ears)
  • Septum of the Nose With a Deviation
  • Hydrocele/Varicocele/Phimosis
  • Overweight/Underweight
  • Piles
  • Gynaecomastia

Permanent body tattoos are completely banned anywhere else on their bodies, excluding the inner face of the forearm (from the inside of the elbow to the wrist) and the reverse side of palm/back (dorsal) side of the hand. In accordance with the pre-existing customs and traditions of specific tribes, candidates with tattoos symbolising such tribes on their faces or bodies will be authorised under certain conditions.

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Height and Weight Standards According to the CDS

  • 157.5 centimetres is the minimum acceptable height for a male applicant. The minimum height requirement for male candidates is 157 centimetres for the Navy and 162.5 centimetres for the Air Force, while the minimum height requirement for female candidates is 152 centimetres.
  • The minimum permissible height will be reduced by 5 centimetres for Gorkha, Garhwali, and Kumaon individuals, as well as those from the hills in the north-eastern region of India. Candidates from the island of Lakshadweep are eligible for a two-centimeter reduction in the minimum acceptable height.
  • The optimal body mass index number is less than 25.
  • The waist-to-hip ratio should be less than 0.9 for men and less than 0.8 for women.
  • Men should have a waist circumference of less than 90 cm, while women should have a waist circumference of less than 80 cm.
  • It is essential that all biochemical metabolic parameters remain within normal limits.

Diverse Illustrations of Physical Standards

In addition to the height-to-weight ratio, candidates must meet a number of other physical standards in order to establish that they are physically fit:

Visual Standards

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) has prescribed for all academies the following visual requirements:

With respect to the IMA and OTA

  • 6/60 uncorrected vision (the maximum allowed) in both eyes
  • BCVA – Rt 6/6 & Lt 6/6
  • Myopia is characterised by a sph less than -3.50 (with a maximum astigmatism of +/- 2.0 D Cyl).
  • The term “hypermetropia” refers to a prescription larger than +3.50 diopters of spherical equivalent (with the maximum amount of astigmatism falling between +/- 2.0 diopters cylindrical).
  • Surgical procedures comparable to Lasik or their counterparts are permitted.
  • Colour perception: CP II

With respect to Joining the Navy

  • Without glasses or corrective lenses: 6/12 and 6/12.
  • 6 out of 6 with the aid of corrective lenses
  • Myopia cannot exceed -1.5 diopters.
  • +1.5D for hypermetropia’s upper limits
  • Binocular Vision: III
  • Perception of Color: Limits I

With respect to the Air Force

Applicants to the Air Force who wear eyeglasses regularly will be denied. 

Minimum distance vision requirements are 6/6 in one eye and 6/9 in the other, both correctable to 6/6.

CP-1 colour vision with hypermetropia:

  • +2.0 d Sph – Hypermetropia
  • Manifest Myopia: Nil
  • Retinal myopia — 0.5 diopters in any meridian
  • With a maximum value of +2.0 D-, astigmatism is +0.75 D Cyl.

Maddox Rod Test:

  •  at 6 meters:
  1. Exo-6 prism D
  2. Eso-6 prism D
  3. Hyper-1 prism D
  4. Hypo-1prism D 
  •  at 33 cms:
  1. Exo-16 prism D 
  2. Eso-6 prism D 
  3. Hyper-1 prism D
  4. Hypo-1 prism D

* Lasik/equivalent surgery

Candidates who have undergone any type of kerato-refractive surgery must present a certificate or operating records from the hospital detailing the date, type of surgery, and technique. For the candidates to be considered qualified, they must meet the following standards.

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  • A patient must be at least 20 years old before undergoing surgery.
  • Minimum 12 months post LASIK
  • Greater than or equal to 450 microns for the thickness of the central cornea
  • IOL Master reports an axial length of less than or equal to 26 millimetres.
  • residual index of refraction less than or equal to +/- 1.0 D inclusive of cylinder (provided acceptable in the category applied for).
  • A normal and healthy segment of the retina
  • Other potential additions to the list of supplementary criteria include corneal topography and ectasia markers.

Air Force Hearing Standards and Regulations

The following disorders are associated with hearing standards and the ear:

  • As part of the speech test, hearing loss in the free field is grounds for rejection. It is unacceptable to reduce the CV/FW by less than 600 cm in any manner.
  • The audiometric test demands that there be no hearing loss greater than 20 dB in the frequency range of 250 to 8000 Hz. On the recommendation of an ENT doctor, a unilateral hearing loss of up to 30 DB may be authorised if the ENT evaluation is otherwise normal.
  • Even if the mastoid is completely epithelialized and the patient has normal hearing following a radical or modified radical mastoidectomy, the patient will still be rejected. It is feasible to accept historical cases in which a cortical mastoidectomy was performed but the tympanic membrane was left intact, the patient had normal hearing, and no illness was present.
  • Chronic otitis externa cases with exostoses or excessively narrow meat will not be accepted. When there is an excessive degree of tortuosity in the canal, the anterior view of the tympanic membrane may be obscured, which is grounds for rejection.

Twelve weeks following surgery, a type I tympanoplasty is deemed successful if the ear clearance test in the altitude chamber yields normal findings. 

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The following middle ear disorders will cause rejection:

  • Holes in the attic, the middle, or the sides
  • Significant retraction of a scar on the tympanic membrane.
  • The tympanoplasty procedures kinds II and higher, but not type I.
  • When calcareous plaques, also known as tympanosclerosis, occupy more than a third of the pars tensa, they are present.
  • Infection of the ear canal.
  • Granulation or polyp is seen in the external auditory canal.
  • The operation referred to as a stapedectomy.
  • Otosclerosis
  • Meniere’s sickness
  • Inadequate functioning of the vestibular system, including vestibular nystagmus.
  • Due to an ear infection, Bell’s palsy is developed.

Spinal Conditions For Air Force

A sickness or injury of the spine or sacroiliac joints in the medical history of the candidate, with or without external indicators that have hindered the candidate from leading a physically active life, is grounds for denial of commissioning in the IAF. This ailment can manifest at any time during the candidate’s lifetime. A patient will be rejected if they have a history of spinal fracture or prolapsed intervertebral disc, or if they require surgical treatment for either of these conditions. 

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A candidate for the Air Force who is found to have one of the following conditions during the medical examination will be disqualified.

  • Granulomatosis spinalis 
  • Arthritis/Spondylosis
  • Rheumatoid arthritis and other associated disorders
  • Ankylosing spondylitis
  • Degenerative joint diseases, such as osteoarthritis, spondylosis, and other associated disorders
  • Rheumatism that is not associated with the joints (e.g. lesions of the rotator cuff, tennis elbow, recurrent lumbago, etc.)
  • Diseases including systemic lupus erythematosus, dermatomyositis, polymyositis, and vasculitis.
  • Spondylolisthesis is sometimes referred to as spondylolysis and spondylosis.
  • Vertebral fracture caused by compression
  • Scheuermann’s disease (Adolescent Kyphosis)
  • Loss of cervical lordosis when accompanied by clinically limited movements of the cervical spine.
  • Injuries to the cervical region that are unilateral or bilateral and clearly damage the nervous system or circulation.
  • Conditioning and Strengthening

Physical Conditioning:

Candidates in the waiting period are highly urged to maintain their physical fitness by adhering to the programme outlined below.

  • Running: 2 to 4 km in 15 minutes
  • Push-ups and Sit-ups: At least 20 of each
  • At least eight chin-ups
  • Three to Four Meters of Climbing the Rope
  • Skipping
  • Disorders of the Teeth

Dental Conditions:

The following conditions relevant to dental standards and issues must be met by CDS candidates:

  • Initial stages of pathological abnormalities of the jaw that are known to worsen or recur.
  • Significant differences between the upper and lower jaws that limit appropriate mastication or speech will be grounds for rejection.
  • The discomfort and clicking associated with a sick Temporomandibular Joint render it susceptible to rejection.
  • A mouth opening of less than 30 millimetres at the borders of the incisors; dislocation of the TMJ when the mouth is opened too widely.
  • All conditions that have the potential to cause cancer.
  • Clinical diagnosis of submucous fibrosis, with or without mouth opening restriction.
  • Inadequate oral health condition characterised by the presence of calculus, periodontal pockets, and/or gum bleeding.
  • A candidate will be disqualified if they have more than two loose teeth.
  • Patients who have received maxillofacial cosmetic surgery or post-traumatic maxillofacial surgery/trauma shall be classified UNFIT for at least 24 weeks following the procedure or injury, whichever occurs first.
  • If your teeth are not properly aligned, you may have trouble chewing food, keeping good oral hygiene, obtaining adequate nutrition, and performing your work effectively.

Chest Conditions

  • Even if they meet all other eligibility standards, candidates with any of the following medical conditions will be disqualified:
  • Lesions of the lungs, heart, or chest wall musculoskeletal lesions
  • Hernia, undescended testis, varicocele, organomegaly, single kidney, horseshoe kidney, and cysts in the kidney/liver, gall bladder stones, renal and ureteric stones, lesions/deformities of urogenital organs, piles, sinuses, and lymphadenitis/pathy.

Nervous System Conditions

  • Unacceptable behaviours include trembling, trouble communicating verbally, and unsteadiness.
  • Common skin disorders include vitiligo, haemangiomas, warts, corns, dermatitis, and various skin infections.
  • It is prohibited to have growths or to perspire excessively.

Additional Essential Information

  • The candidate shall be excluded from the Army and Navy if any of the following conditions are detected during the X-ray examination:
  • Granulomatous spinal disorder Granulomatous spinal disorder
  • Arthritis includes rheumatoid arthritis, ankylosing spondylitis, and associated diseases.
  • According to Cobb’s method of measurement, scoliosis with a degree more than 100 degrees.
  • Kyphosis and lordosis that are more severe than moderate cases.
  • Spondylolisthesis/Spondylosis/Spondylolysis.
  • The herniation of the nucleus pulposus.
  • Fracture of the vertebrae induced by compression. [Medline+]
  • Pathology of Sacralization
  • Ribs in the cervical area displaying obvious signs of neurological or circulatory malfunction.
  • There are multiple occurrences of Schmorl’s node on various levels.
  • Atlanto-occipital and atlantoaxial abnormalities.
  • Incomplete sacralization that is either unilateral or bilateral.
  • Spina bifida is unique from both SV 1 and LV 5 conditions.

Registration for the CDS

Prior to enrolling for CDS, candidates interested in the role should evaluate whether or not they meet all of the Commission’s eligibility requirements. Candidates must register for the CDS examination by visiting the UPSC’s official website, located at Candidates are required to furnish information from one government-issued photo identity card, such as an Aadhaar Card, Voter Card, PAN Card, Passport, or Driving License. The information provided on the ID card is required to complete the CDS online application form. Candidates are reminded to always have a scanned copy of their photo identity ready to upload. Up until the final selection, the same photo identification card is required.

CDS (I) and CDS (II) Application Forms, as well as Procedure

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will administer the Combined Defence Services (CDS) test in order to fill posts in the Indian military, the Indian Naval Academy, the Air Force Academy, and the Officer’s Training Academy. There will be two administrations of the examination per year. Candidates interested in applying can do so by visiting the UPSC’s official website.

After determining whether or not applicants have completed the standards for CDS 1 and CDS 2, the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) conducts an interview with candidates who have passed the written examination. After it has been decided that a candidate meets the requirements for an interview or personality test, only then will the eligibility requirements be verified using the original documents.

Candidates must submit their applications via the official UPSC website, which may be accessed at On the official website, candidates can find basic instructions for completing the online application form. The online application form consists of two parts: the first and second. Applicants are asked to ensure that the application form is filled out in accordance with the instructions published on the official website.

The fee for candidates is INR 2022 [except for SC/ST candidates, who are exempt from payment]. The fee can be paid in one of the following ways: by making a cash deposit at any SBI branch; by using the net banking facility of the State Bank of India/State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur/State Bank of Hyderabad/State Bank of Mysore/State Bank of Patiala/State Bank of Travancore Applicants who select the “Pay by Cash” mode during Part-II registration are required to print the system-generated Pay in-slip and bring it One day before to the transaction date, the option to “Pay by Cash” will be deleted.

A applicant is required to have his or her photograph and signature scanned in the.jpg format prior to filling out the online application. Each file must not be larger than 40 KB and must not be smaller than 3 KB for the photograph and 1 KB for the signature. Before the candidate can continue filling out the online application, this must be completed. It is strongly advised that applicants avoid submitting multiple applications. In the event that a single applicant must submit numerous applications due to unforeseen circumstances, the applicant is responsible for ensuring that the applications with higher RIDs are exhaustive in every respect.

Candidates may make direct contact with the facilitation counter located near Gate ‘C’ of the UPSC campus in person or by calling the following numbers on weekdays between 10:00 AM and 5:00 PM: 011 – 23385271 / 011 – 23381125 / 011 – 23098543.

CDS Application Withdrawal Capabilities

The UPSC has implemented a withdrawal of application option for those who do not wish to take the examination. The Commission will accept application withdrawals until 6 p.m. To withdraw an application, one must provide their login credentials. The request to generate an OTP for application withdrawal will only be accepted until 5:30 PM.

CDS Salary

Rank Level Pay Scale/ Salary
Lieutenant Level 10 INR 56,100 – 1,77,500
Captain Level 10 B INR 61,300 – 1,93,900
Major Level 11 INR 69,400 – 2,07,200
Lieutenant Colonel Level 12 A INR 1,21,200 – 2,12,400
Colonel Level 13 INR 1,30,600 – 2,15,900
Brigadier Level 13 A INR 1,39,600 – 2,17,600
Major General Level 14 INR 1,44,200 – 2,18,200
Lieutenant General HAG Scale Level 15 INR 1,82,200 – 2,24,100
HAG + Scale Level 16 INR 2,05,400 – 2,24,400
VCOAS/ Lieutenant General (NFSG) / Army Cdr Level 17 INR 2,25,000 (Fixed)
COAS Level 18 INR 2,25,000 (Fixed)

After being appointed, a Lieutenant’s monthly salary ranges from INR 56,100 to INR 1,77,500. Other applicants receive a monthly payment of INR 56,100/- for the duration of the training programme. From Lieutenant to Brigadier, one receives a monthly wage of INR 15,500/- for military service.

CDS Exam Pattern

Specifications Characteristics
CDS Selection procedure 1. Theoretical Exam
2. SSB Interview
3. Medical Exam
Method of the examination Offline
The timespan of the examination 2 hrs
Subject papers 1. Eng
2. GK
3. Elementary Maths
Highest score 100 marks for all the papers
Question Type MCQs
Negative marks One third for each wrong answer
Exam paper language Eng and Hindi

Military Academy, Air Force Academy, and Naval Academy of India

All papers are objective in nature.

Officers’ Training Institution

Each paper has objective type questions.

Some Important things concerning Exam:-

  • For each course, the maximum points assigned to the written exams and the interviews will be identical.
  • All examinations will consist solely of multiple-choice questions.
  • In the Objective Type Question Papers, a candidate will be penalised (Negative Marking, One-Third (0.33)) for marking incorrect answers.
  • The test booklets (Question Papers) for General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics will be printed in both Hindi and English.
  • Candidates are required to compose their papers by hand. Under no circumstances will a scribe be permitted to write their replies for them.
  • The Commission has the ability to establish qualifying scores for any or all examination subjects.
  • Candidates are not permitted to use calculators when responding to objective-type examinations (Test Booklets). Therefore, they should not bring such items into the Examination Room.
  • The maximum marks assigned to the written examination and the interviews will be the same for each degree, i.e. 300, 300, 300, and 200 respectively for admission to the Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Air Force Academy, and Officers’ Training Academy.

Time Management

  • First, applicants should have time management skills. Therefore, students can complete the topic paper within the time limit.
  • Then, candidates should begin preparations at least three to six months beforehand.
  • Additionally, students should have a consistent study regimen.
  • In addition, they must create a schedule and provide 6 to 8 hours.
  • They should also devote sufficient time to preparing their weekly revisions.
  • They should actually take breaks in between. So, they can maintain a level head and composure during the exam.
  • Additionally, they should boost their confidence. Therefore, people should become involved in all India’s current concerns.

Solving Previous Year’s Examinations

  • The applicants must pass the examinations from the previous year. As a result, they will benefit from it. Additionally, they will be well-prepared for any exam questions.
  • In addition, the applicant should use the timers on their watches to simulate exams.
  • Therefore, it aids candidates in time management.
  • In addition, it gives the applicant the experience of taking the actual exam.

Tests of Intelligence and Personality

The SSB interview procedure consists of two stages: stage I and stage II of the Selection process. Only candidates who pass stage I of the SSB interview are permitted to participate in stage II.

  • Officer Intelligence Rating (OIR) Picture Perception* Description Tests comprise Stage I. (PP&DT). The candidates will be narrowed down based on their performance in both the OIR Test and PP&DT.
  • Phase II includes the Interview, Group Testing Officer Tasks, Psychology Tests, and Conference. These examinations span four days. This information is available on the Indian Army’s career website.

The candidate’s personality is evaluated by three distinct evaluators: The Interviewing Officer, the Officer of Group Testing, and the Psychologist. There is no individualised weighting for each test. Assessors only issue marks after considering the candidate’s performance in all examinations holistically.

Test and Interviews by the Air Force Selection Board

All applicants who have submitted their resumes to the Air Force through several channels will be required to participate in only one round of testing and/or interviews. Common applicants who do not pass the Computer Pilot Selection System (CPSS) and/or the Pilot Aptitude Battery examinations as an NCC or Airmen candidate will only be summoned for OLQ testing for the Army/Navy/OTA if they have applied through the CDS Exam.

CDS Syllabus

Subject Marks
English 100
General Knowledge 100
Elementary maths 100
Total 300

Candidates’ intelligence, personality, and grammatical aptitude will be tested using the CDS curriculum, which was designed by the relevant Central Defense Services authorities.

Candidates for this examination must be familiar with all of the CDS syllabus 2022 topics and should have adequate preparation for this examination. Those with a thorough understanding of the CDS curriculum will have a greater chance of passing the examination.

The CDS curriculum includes Reading Comprehension, Vocabulary, Economics, History, Number System, and Percentages, among other disciplines. The applicants must read the entire page and produce a list of the major subjects included in the CDS curriculum for 2022. The portions featured in the CDS curriculum for candidates pursuing positions at IAFA, INA, and IMA are as follows:

  • English
  • General Knowledge
  • The Fundamentals of Mathematics

The English and topic expertise of applicants for OTA positions are examined to determine whether or not they match the position’s qualifications.

General Knowledge Examination for CDS 

During this phase of the screening process, candidates are evaluated based on their level of acquaintance with current global events. The applicants are responsible for maintaining a current awareness of world events. Questions often concern topics such as Indian history, politics, economics, general science, and similar topics.

The English section of the CDS Curriculum.

Typically, applicants may perceive this section to be difficult; nevertheless, if they approach the primary components of the CDS curriculum with the proper approach, they will be able to pass this exam with ease. In this round of the screening procedure, candidates are evaluated based on their grammatical proficiency and English language proficiency. Candidates for the CDS can establish their areas of skill and difficulty spots by working through the curriculum-less topics and then organising their study time accordingly.

  • Fill in the blanks
  • Reading Comprehension
  • Vocabulary (Synonyms/ Antonyms/ Phrases)
  • Sentence Rearrangement (Jumbled sentences)
  • Spotting Error
  • Sentence Improvement/ Correction

Elementary mathematics for CDS Exam

The topics of arithmetic, trigonometry, geometry, measurement, and statistics, among others, are intensively emphasised throughout the elementary mathematics curriculum of the CDS. If you want to increase your preparation and outcomes in this area, you must engage in consistent practise and make a concerted effort. In order to complete these questions within the allocated time and achieve the desired outcomes, the applicants must maintain their accuracy and speed.

CDS Syllabus: Exam Preparation Suggestions

For applicants to perform extraordinarily well on the examination, it is necessary that they prepare enough. The candidates must create a failsafe method for covering the essential curriculum material in the allowed time and also be able to complete the examination within the allotted time. For the purpose of assisting applicants in excelling in the examination, we have made available on this page the professional preparation tips.

  • They must familiarise themselves with the CDS curriculum and examination format.
  • Create a strategy that accounts for this, taking into account both the subjects that carry the highest weight and the candidates’ areas of weakness.
  • They should consistently practise the questions from the previous year in order to assess and enhance their level of preparation.
  • They must continue to review the previously gathered information.
  • They will need to review the foundations in order to obtain the speed and accuracy required to complete the examination within the allocated time.

CDS Cutoff

The CDS cut off 2022 is influenced by a variety of factors, and as a result, it fluctuates annually. In spite of this, the range in which the cutoff is typically adjusted due to these variables. The applicants are responsible for understanding every factor that goes into determining the CDS cutoff. Examine the items mentioned in the list that follows.

  • The number of applicants to the CDS examination in 2022
  • Vacancies that have been publicised by the appropriate authorities
  • The degree of difficulty of the examination, categorised as easy, moderate, or severe.

The Best Study Books for the CDS 1 Exam

Best books for English CDS 1

The primary purpose of the English section of the examination is to evaluate the applicants’ understanding of grammar and vocabulary. Students may study the following publications to prepare for the English section of the CDS examination:

  • Wren & Martin’s High School English Grammar & Composition by S Chand
  • Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis
  • Objective General English by SP Bakshi

The Top General Knowledge Books for the CDS 1 Exam in 2022

Due to the impossibility of keeping books current, the Current Affairs element of the General Knowledge section should be explored using online sources. Prepare for the GK section by consulting the books and other resources indicated below.

  • General knowledge by Manohar Pandey
  • Manorama Yearbook by Malayala Manorama publishers
  • Daily newspapers like The Hindu, Indian Express etc

2022’s Leading Mathematics Textbooks for the CDS 1 Exam

In order to perform well on the mathematics section of the exam, it is necessary to have a thorough comprehension of the concepts presented in each section as well as to engage in substantial practise. The following books will assist you in accomplishing your objective:

  • Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examinations by RS Aggarwal
  • Mathematics for CDS Examination by RS Aggarwal

Duties and Accountabilities

If you are fortunate enough to be selected for duty in one of the military branches, the remainder of your life will be organised for you.

In addition to a salary, you receive benefits, a pension, and a number of other benefits that are unavailable in the private sector.

Depending on which branch of the armed forces you choose to join, your duties may at times be challenging.

Due to the possibly rigorous and regimented nature of your employment, you must prepare yourself for it.

Candidates who successfully complete the Combined Defense Services training programme and graduate with the rank of a designated officer are entitled for the salary and allowances associated with that rank.

Frequently Asked Questions(FAQs)

1. How many opportunities does a candidate have to take the CDS Exam?

Ans: There is no limit on the number of times you can take the CDS exam if you are within the required age range. The applicants may take the examination until they reach the maximum age permitted by the CDS criteria.

2. Annually, does the CDS curriculum undergo revisions?

Ans: No, neither the CDS curriculum nor the types of questions commonly asked on the exam have changed substantially over time. The CDS curriculum is not revised annually; however, the General Awareness curriculum has no boundaries because it evaluates applicants based on their acquaintance with current events and ongoing affairs. Consequently, the questions in this section have been adjusted accordingly.

3. Is the CDS cutoff number disclosed differently for the written examination and the final selection?

Ans: It is true that the CDS cutoff is published after the written exam, and only those applicants who meet it will be permitted to move on to the SSB interview. The combined score from both the written examination and the SSB interview will be utilised to generate the final merit list.

4. How much time should I devote to preparation for the CDS exam, and are the NCERT books useful?

Ans: It is feasible to pass the CDS exam with only six to eight months of preparation. NCERT Books must be utilised for the preparation of all competitive examinations. These publications are commonly recognised as the most reputable sources of information on any subject that may appear on a government examination, such as the CDS, AFCAT, or CAPF, or other government examinations.

5. Is a high school diploma necessary to apply for CDS?

Ans: No, Class 12 graduates are not eligible to apply for the CDS examination. After completing the 12th grade, candidates are entitled to apply for the NDA examination.

6. Does the CDS curriculum differ from the IAS programme?

Ans: No, the CDS and IAS examinations have distinct course frameworks. The major purpose of the examinations is to assess which applicants are best prepared to achieve the end objectives. For instance, the CDS is responsible for hiring individuals to work in strategy and defence, while the IAS is responsible for filling positions within the civil service. Some of the papers on both sets of exams are identical, but the subject matter, marking scheme, and level of difficulty are distinct.

7. Must CDS 1 certification be obtained before moving on to CDS 2?

Ans: No, the CDS 1 and CDS 2 exams are components of the same annual examination. A candidate must score well on at least one of the two CDS examination sessions per year in order to be considered for employment.