All You Need To Know About UGC NET Exam


Done with your post graduation? Planning to prepare for UGC NET Exam?  Here is a brief about the exam pattern, syllabus and other necessary details to help the aspirants for the smart and efficient preparation. In this competitive world, where everybody is trying to put in their best to achieve their dream jobs, it the one who prepares smartly, wins the race. But before the preparation, it is necessary that you know about all the details about the exam.

What is UGC NET exam?

The National Eligibility Test (NET) conducted by University Grants Commission (UGC) is a test for ensuring the minimum basic standards of the entrants in teaching profession. It determines eligibility for college and university lectureship and for award of Junior Research Fellowship for the Indian nationals. The Central Board of Secondary Educations holds the test on the behalf of UGC. According to the 2013 guidelines issued by UGC, the NET qualified persons are eligible for lucrative jobs in Public Sector Undertakings (PSUs).

Eligibility for the test:

  • The candidate must have completed the post graduation in the subject he/she is opting for.
  • The candidate must have scored 50% in the post graduation.

UGC NET Syllabus:

The test covers total 94 subjects. The Paper is based on general abilities but Paper 2 and 3 are based on the subject chosen by the candidate, covering the entire syllabus (including all electives, without options). The detailed UGC NET syllabus for each subject was released by UGC which can be checked on the official website.

UGC NET Exam Pattern:

PAPERS Number of questions Maximum Marks Compulsory Attempts Duration
Paper 1 60 100 50 75 minutes
Paper 2 50 100 50 75 minutes
Paper 3 75 150 75 150 minutes


  1. PAPER 1:

The paper is a General Aptitude Test which consists of following section:

  • Reasoning Ability
  • Comprehension Reading
  • Mental Ability
  • General Awareness

There are 60 questions in the entire paper, out of which answering 50 questions are compulsory. Each question carries 2 marks. In case of attempting more than 50 questions, the first 50 attempts will be marked as the valid questions for marking. The maximum marks are 100. Time duration is 1 hour 15 minutes (9:30 AM to 10:45 AM).

  1. PAPER 2:

The paper carries 50 questions, 2 marks each. That makes the maximum marks to be 100. This paper is also of 1 hour 15 minutes (10:45 AM to 12:00 noon) and is based on the subject chosen by the candidate. Attempting all the questions is compulsory.

  1. PAPER 3:

The paper carries 75 questions. Each question carries 2 marks. Like paper 2, it is compulsory to attempt all the questions. The paper will be based upon the selected subject of the candidate. The duration of the test is 2 hours and 30 minutes (1:30 PM to 4:00 PM).

All the questions of paper 2 and 3 are “compulsory”. It will be covering the entire syllabus (including the electives). In all the three papers, the candidate needs to mark the answer on the Optical Marker Reader (OMR) sheet, provided along with the test booklet.

The candidates need to know that there is no negative marking for any wrong answers. The candidate who does not appear for Paper1 will not be allowed to appear for the rest of the papers. This is the detailed UGC NET exam pattern according the guidelines of UGC. While attempting the exam, if there is any discrepancy found between the Hindi and English version, the English one is considered to be correct.

Minimum Qualifying Marks:

There is a minimum qualifying marks limit that has been set up by UGC for the JRF and the post of Assistant Professors, awarded only to the qualified candidates.

Category Paper 1 Paper 2 Paper 3
General 40 (40%) 40 (40%) 75 (50%)
OBC (non-creamy layer)/ SC/ST/


35 (35%) 35 (35%) 60 (40%)

Selection Procedure:

Amongst the candidates who qualify Paper 1, a merit list is prepared, subject-wise and category-wise. The list is prepared on the basis of the aggregate marks obtained by the candidates in all the three papers.

Among these candidates, only 15% will be considered UGC NET qualified, on the basis of the ranking in the merit list in each category and each subject. The qualified candidates will be qualified for the post of only the Assistant Professor. The JRF will be awarded to the candidates among the merit list prepared under the above procedure.

Guidelines For Differently Able Candidates:

For the visually handicapped candidates, 30 minutes compensatory time is provided in Paper 1 and 2. For Paper 3, the compensatory time provided in 45 minutes. The scribe is also provided by UGC. The scribe will be a graduate in the subject different from that of the one chosen by the candidate. The candidate will even be provided the test booklet in Braille script along with the one provided to other candidates.

For the physically challenged candidates, the university provides the scribe. But for the provision, candidate needs to make a prior request to the Co-ordinator of NET Coordinating institute in written. Those candidates, who get their own scribes, have to present them to the Co-ordinator along with his/her educational qualifications and certificate at least a day before the test.

Previous Exam Analysis:

The exam that was conducted on June 10, 2016 was said to have a higher difficulty level, when compared to the previous exams. Most of the candidates found the exam to be lengthy and challenging. Making correct attempts in Paper 1, which is basically to assess your teaching and research abilities, was one of the most challenging task.

The aspirants, who gave the attempt for January 2017, have found the paper comparatively easier than the last attempt. According to the candidates, the difficulty level of the Paper 1 was lower in comparison to the other two tests. The question picked from different topics in Paper 1, were almost similar to the last exam conducted in June, 2016, thus retaining an almost similar pattern.

As the exam is among one of the most competitive exams, the candidates are recommended to be thorough with the syllabus and the pattern. The exam needs to be taken seriously and preparation should not be done under stress. It is advised that all the aspirants must make a handbook for the revision few hours before the exam. Remember not to skip the practice test to master time management in the exam, where many candidates lack inspite of being well prepared with the course. All the best!

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