How to Join NDA? | Eligibility Criteria, Education Qualification, Selection Procedure and Documents VErification

How to Join NDA: The National Defence Academy is located in Khadakwasla, Pune. This academy was fully established in 1954 after Nehru laid the foundation stone in 1949. NDA is the only institute in India that offers training for candidates who wish to serve in the Indian Army, Indian Navy and Indian Air Force, unlike every other institute in India and around the world. A tri-service military organization was first established by the NDA and remains the only one currently functioning. ‘Service Before Self ‘is the motto of the National Defence Academy, the world’s first joint military academy.

NDA’s system differs from those of all other universities and institutes around the world. It has very diverse criteria that can be challenging. NDA provides undergraduate courses in which candidates are awarded a bachelor’s degree after completing a 3-year training program. This institute offers both science and humanities courses. Physics, chemistry, and mathematics would be among the subjects included in the science stream. Political science, geography, economics, languages, and history would be included in the humanities stream.

Refer to Course Details to know more about related courses and find details like Admission Process, Eligibility Criteria, etc.

Eligibility Criteria To Join NDA

In order to take the NDA exam, the applicant must meet the following criteria. The applicant may not be eligible to take the test if his/her data does not meet these criteria.


  • Applicants should be Indian citizens from India, Nepal, or Bhutan
  • The exam is also open to Tibetan refugees who entered India prior to January 1, 1962, in order to become Indian citizens.
  • Indian citizens who have immigrated from Sri Lanka, Burma, Pakistan, and East African countries such as Kenya, Uganda, Zambia, Zaire, Ethiopia, Malawi, Vietnam, and the United Republic of Tanzania, to become citizens of India are also eligible to take this exam.

Age, gender, and marital status

  • UPSC’s official website offers the age criteria, which may change based on the year.
  • The candidate cannot attend the exam if he/she is married. The candidate cannot be admitted to the training if he or she attends the test and marries after the test and before the training.
  • Officials will accept the date of birth indicated on the Higher Secondary Examination Certificate.

Educational Qualification to Join NDA

For the Indian Army 

  • The applicant must have completed his or her 12th standard with a state or central board recognized by the Indian Government.
  • Candidates who are currently enrolled in the 12th-grade examination may also apply.

For the Indian Navy and Indian Air Force 

  • To apply for the Indian Navy or Indian Air Force, an applicant must have passed the 12th standard from a recognized board in India.
  • In addition to physics and mathematics as core subjects, the applicant should have chosen a science stream.

Physical standards 

  • There are a number of medical conditions that prevent one from serving in the Indian Armed Forces, including Ear Wax, Pile, Tonsillitis, Undersized chest, Varicocele, Overweight/Underweight, Phimosis/Hydrocele, Deviated Nasal Septum, and Gynecomastia. There should be no pre-existing physical or psychological issues. Blood pressure should not fluctuate and heart issues should not exist.
  • Tattoos on the inner face or forearm are the only permanent tattooed body parts allowed. Others will not be allowed. A body tattoo may be permitted if the tattoo relates to a tribe or pre-existing customs or traditions.
  • Indian Air Force and Navy have minimum height requirements of 162.5 cms and 157 cms, respectively. Candidates from the hilly north-east of India or a Gurkha will receive a 5 cms height relaxation. There is a 2 cm height relaxation for applicants from Lakshadweep.

Visual requirements 

  • The applicant should not have myopia greater than 2.5 diopters and hypermetropia more than 3.5 diopters.
  • The candidate should have 6/6 vision in one eye and not exceed 6/9 in the worst eye when it comes to distance vision.

Selection Procedure to Join NDA?

The NDA does not accept direct admissions or other forms of admission. Instead, it follows the following procedures to select its students.

Entrance test

The NDA & NA entrance exams are required for admission to NDA. These exams are administered by the UPSC. The SSB interview will be held after you pass the entrance exam.

SSB interview

Based on the rank earned in the entrance test, the service Selection Board interview lasts for five days. There are two stages to the interview.

Stage 1: Screening

In the screening round, candidates have to take the OIRT (Officer Intelligence Rating Test) and PPDT (Picture Perception and Discussion Test). A question in each of these tests evaluates a candidate’s reasoning ability, intelligence, and general aptitude.

Stage 2: 5 distinct tests

To proceed to this stage, candidates must have passed stage 1. There are five tests in stage 2. All 5 exams must be passed; failing just one is not acceptable.

  • Psychological test
  • Personal interview
  • Ground tasks officer
  • Conference round
  • Medical examination.

Medical test 

SSB interviews are followed by a medical test. The candidate is only considered for this test if they have passed all the other five tests. It takes a week for the medical exam to conclude.

Final selection

Choosing the final candidate would take into account all three rounds – the entrance examination score, the SSB interview score, and the medical test score. The commission may ask him/her to appear for document verification if the results of these rounds match the commission’s criteria.

Documents Verification to Join NDA

Applicants on the list should appear before the commission for document verification if they are chosen after the final selection process. The following list contains the documents you must bring to the Service Selection Centre (SSC).

  • 10th and 12th standard certificate
  • Eligibility certificate
  • Identity proof
  • Caste or category certificate
  • Passport size photographs
  • Proof of residence

How to Join NDA?

Conclusion on How to Join NDA?

There are not many opportunities to get admitted to NDA. The competition for seats in NDA is high since all three branches of the Indian armed forces recruit from NDA. Obtaining a seat on the NDA can be difficult if you do not meet the ranking requirements. Nevertheless, you should never lose faith in yourself and strive to get admission with all your might.

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