The Council of Scientific & Industrial Research’s National Eligibility Test is known as CSIR NET. Students from the Science stream who want to pursue jobs in JRFs (Junior Research Fellowships) and lectureships most frequently take the CSIR NET. The National Testing Agency (NTA) administers this CSIR NET, or Council of Scientific and Industrial Research National Eligibility Test, on a national basis.

The test comprises 200 Multiple Choice Questions and is conducted separately for – Life Sciences, Physical Sciences, Chemical Sciences, Earth Sciences, and Mathematical Sciences. The test is conducted twice a year – June and December.

Eligibility Criteria

One must carefully review the qualifying requirements, which are broken down into two main categories: age requirements and educational qualifications, before submitting an application for the exam. The specifics are listed below:

Age requirements: Candidates for the CSIR UGC NET examination must be at least 28 years old. The age requirement is relaxed by five years for applicants who fall under the SC/ST/female/PwD categories. On the contrary, OBC applicants get an age relaxation of three years.

Educational qualifications:

  • Candidates must hold a degree in Science with a minimum aggregate of 55% overall in B.Pharma, BE, BTech, MSc, MBBS, or an integrated BS-MS programme. Candidates from the reserved category receive a 5% marks relaxation which means they must have a minimum aggregate of 50%.
  • Candidates in the final year of their post-graduate degree are also eligible to apply for the exam.
  • Candidates with a minimum aggregate of 55% who have completed a BS in Science or who are enrolled in an integrated MS-PhD programme are also eligible to apply

Subject-wise eligibility criteria

  • To be eligible for the exam, Mathematics majors must hold a recognised degree in the subject, such as an MSc, BS-MS, BS, or BTech, or any degree of a similar caliber
  • Students majoring in Chemical Sciences must possess an MSc/BS-MS/BS Four Years/B.Pharm degree or an equivalent degree in the field of Earth Science to meet the necessary eligibility requirements
  • Students studying Life Sciences must seek solely Life Science academic credentials
  • Students in Earth Science must hold an MSc, BS, BS four years, BS, B.Pharma, or any other degree in Earth Science that is equivalent.
  • For consideration, Physical Science applicants must have completed a BS-MS in Physics, an MSc in Physics, or an equivalent degree.

Exam Pattern

Students must understand the exam format and accordingly strategise their preparation in order to perform well on the test. The exam format does not change even if each student’s preparation plan may be unique.

The exam is broken into three sections, A, B, and C, and the number of questions varies depending on the subject. The exam is of 200 marks.

The General Aptitude test in Part A measures a candidate’s aptitude for logic, mathematics, and reasoning.

Sections B and C are subject-based.

Below is the tabular representation of CSIR UGC Net exam pattern:

Subjects Questions in Part A Questions in Part B Questions in Part C Total
Chemical Sciences 20 40 60 120
Earth Sciences 20 50 80 150
Life Sciences 20 50 75 145
Mathematical Sciences 20 40 60 120
Physical Science 20 25 30 75

The exam is of three hours and has negative marking too. 

Exam Timeline

The CSIR UGC NET exam is conducted twice a year i.e. in the months of June and December. And is also expected to be conducted in the third week of both months every year based on the past record. The results are announced in the next month of the exam.  

The NTA issued the CSIR NET 2022 answer key along with the question paper and recorded answers on October 1. The answer key can be downloaded from the official website of CSIR NET. 

The CSIR NET 2022 Results were also announced on October 28, 2022 separately for Junior Research Fellowship and Lectureship. 

Based on the CSIR NET Result / Cut-off, the applicants will be awarded E-Certificates. The Junior Research Fellowship certificate is valid for two years while the certificate for Lectureship is valid for lifetime.

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