CDS Exam is held twice a year, in April & September. Union Public Service Commission every year announces the UPSC CDS Exam for Combined Defence Service Examination at on. The online registration process for given vacancies are given in official notification and the eligible candidates begin their preparation for the written exam.

Every year UPSC conducts CDS Exam twice a year for the candidates who wish to begin their career in the Indian Air Force, Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Officer’s Training Academy. The candidates qualifying for the written test will be called for an interview round and medical examination for final selection.

CDS Exam Application Fee

The examination fee for CDS Exam is Rs. 200/- for all categories except SC/ST/Females (exempted from fee payment). The payment can be done through online/offline mode (Net Banking, Mastercard/Debit Card or cash deposit in any branch of SBI Bank.)

Steps to Fill CDS Exam Registration Form

Follow the steps as mentioned below to complete your CDS Exam Registration process.
Step 1: Visit the official website of UPSC i.e.
Step 2: On the homepage, click on Examination >> Active Examinations >> Online Application For UPSC CDS Exam.
Step 3: Click on "Part-1" against Combined Defence Examination
Step 4: Read all the instructions carefully and proceed by clicking on "Yes"
Step 5: You will be redirected to a new page, start filling in your details correctly.
Step 6: Select your preferences carefully and continue to Part-II.
Step 7: Pay the required application fee through online/offline mode as discussed above.
Step 8: Select the desired examination center from the list.
Step 9: Upload scanned documents as required in the application form.
Step 10: Check all the details and click on "Submit". Download a copy of the application form for future reference.

CDS Exam Eligibility Criteria

The candidates must meet the eligibility standards as set by the Union Public Service Commission for Defence recruitment. Check detailed eligibility (nationality, education, age, marital status, sex) from below.

A candidate should hold The Citizenship of India, subject of Nepal/Bhutan, or Tibetan refugee who had been migrated to India before January 01, 1962, with the intention of Permanent Settle, or An individual of Indian Origin migrated from Pakistan, Sri Lanka, Burma, Uganda, Kenya, Tanzania, Ethiopia, Malawi, Zambia, Zaire & Vietnam for permanent settle purpose in India. .

Education Qualification
For I.M.A. and Officers’ Training Academy - The candidate should have a graduation degree (any subject) from a recognized University or equivalent.
For Indian Naval Academy- The candidate should have completed their Graduation in Engineering from a recognized University/Institution.
For Air Force Academy- The candidate should hold a bachelor's degree from a recognized University (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level) or Bachelor of Engineering.
Age Limit
The candidate should fall in the age group of 20 to 24 years. The detailed age limit details are mentioned on the official notification pdf.
Marital Status & Sex • For Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, only Unmarried males are eligible to apply for CDS Exam • For Indian Air Force Academy, both married and unmarried males can apply, however marriage during the training is not permitted • For Officer Training Academy, unmarried males & females can apply for CDS Exam. .

CDS Exam Selection Procedure

The recruitment of AFA, IMA, INA & Officers Training Academy posts will be conducted on the basis of: 1. Written Exam 2. SSB Interview/Personality Test 3. Document Verification 4. Medical Examination

CDS Exam Pattern

The candidates have to clear CDS Written Examination to get selected for the interview round. Check the exam pattern for each position below.
• There will be Multiple-Choice Questions in each paper
• The question paper for General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics will be set in Hindi as well as English
• There will be a penalty of 1/3 marks for a wrong answer. However, if a question is left unanswered there will be no negative marking.
• Duration of each exam is separate i.e. 2 hours.

For Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Air Force Academy

S.No Subject Maximum Marks Duration
1 English 120 2 hours
2 General Knowledge 120 2 hours
3 Elementary Mathematics 100 2 hours

For Officers’ Training Academy

S.No Subject Maximum Marks Duration
1 English 100 2 hours
2 General Knowledge 100 2 hours

Note The maximum marks allotted to the written examination and to the interviews will be equal for each course i.e. the maximum marks allotted to the written examination and to the interviews will be 300, 300, 300 and 200 each for admission to the Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Air Force Academy and Officers’ Training Academy respectively.

CDS Exam Syllabus

The aspirants preparing for CDS Exam must be familiar with the detailed syllabus and must prepare according to that only. The standard of Elementary Mathematics in the CDS Exam will be of Matriculation level. However, for other subjects, the difficulty level will of graduation level. A syllabus is important so that candidates do not miss out on any important topic for the upcoming UPSC CDS Exam. Candidates can check the UPSC CDS Syllabus in the table given below.

• Spotting Errors Questions
• Sentence Arrangement Questions
• Synonyms & Antonyms
• Selecting Words
• Ordering of Sentence
• Comprehension Questions
• Ordering of words in a sentence
• Fill in the blanks questions
• Idioms and Phrases
General Awareness (GK)
• Economics
• Physics
• Current Affairs
• Politics
• Chemistry
• Sociology
• History
• Defence related Award
• Geography
• Environment
• Sport
• Biology
• Cultural
• Book
• Statement
• true/false
Elementary Mathematics Algebra
• Basic Operations
• simple factors
• Remainder Theorem
• H.C.F.
• L.C.M.
• Theory of polynomials
• solutions of quadratic equations
• relation between its roots and coefficients (Only real roots to be considered)
• Simultaneous linear equations in two unknowns—analytical and graphical solutions
• Simultaneous linear inequations in two variables and their solutions
• Practical problems leading to two simultaneous linear equations or inequations in two variables or quadratic equations in
• one variable & their solutions
• Set language and set notation
• Rational expressions and conditional identities
• Laws of indices
• Number System: Natural numbers, Integers, Rational and Real numbers.
• Fundamental operations: addition, substraction,
• multiplication, division, Square roots, Decimal fractions
• Unitary method
• time and distance
• time and work
• percentages
• applications to simple and compound interest
• profit and loss
• ratio and proportion
• variation
• Elementary Number Theory: Division algorithm
• Prime and composite numbers
• Tests of divisibility by 2, 3, 4, 5, 9 and 11
• Multiples and factors. Factorisation Theorem
• H.C.F. and L.C.M.
• Euclidean algorithm
• Logarithms to base 10
• laws of logarithms
• use of logarithmic tables
• Sine ×, cosine ×, Tangent × when 0° < × < 90°
• Values of sin ×, cos × and tan ×, for ×= 0°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 90°
• Simple trigonometric identities
• Use of trigonometric tables
• Simple cases of heights and distances
• Lines and angles
• Plane and plane figures
• Theorems on Properties of angles at a point
• Parallel lines
• Sides and angles of a triangle
• Congruency of triangles
• Similar triangles
• Concurrence of medians and altitudes
• Properties of angles
• sides and diagonals of a Parallelogram
• rectangle and square
• Circles and its properties including tangents and normals
• Loci
• Areas of squares
• rectangles
• parallelograms
• triangle and circle
• Areas of figures which can be split up into these figures (Field Book)
• Surface area and volume of cuboids
• lateral surface and volume of right circular cones and cylinders
• surface area and volume of spheres
• Collection and tabulation of statistical data
• Graphical representation frequency polygons
• histograms
• bar charts
• pie charts etc
• Measures of central tendency

CDS Important Instructions

• Write only in Black ballpoint pen, your Centre and subject followed by the CDS test booklet series (in bracket), subject code and the exam roll number at the appropriate space provided on the answer sheet at the top.
• Encode your CDS booklet series (A, B, C, or D as the case may be), subject code and roll number in the circles provided for the purpose in the answer sheet.
• In case the CDS booklet series is not printed on the test booklet or answer sheet is un-numbered then candidates should report immediately to the invigilator and get the test booklet/answer sheet replaced.
• Candidates should note that any omission/mistakes/discrepancy in encoding/filling of details in the CDS OMR answer sheet, especially with regard to the Roll Number and Test Booklet Series Code, will render the answer sheet liable for rejection.
• Immediately after the commencement of the CDS please check that the test booklet supplied to you does not have any unprinted or torn or missing pages or items etc., if so, get it replaced by a complete test booklet of the same series and subject.
• Do not write your name or anything other than the specific items of information asked for, on the CDS answer sheet/test booklet/sheet for rough work.
• Do not fold or damage or put any extraneous marking over the CDS Answer Sheet. Do not write anything on the reverse of the answer sheet.