National Talent Search Examination or commonly abbreviated as NTSE is a National Level Talent Search Examination which is conducted by NCERT (National Council of Educational Research and Training) in which it awards a scholarship to meritorious students of Class 10, which then continues to Ph.D. level. NTSE is a two-tier examination conducted in two stages. Stage 1 is a qualifying examination in which only a certain no. of students are selected from each state and Stage 2 is a final round in which there is no limit on no. of students that can be selected from each state. The exam was first held in 1963 for class 11 students and then it was shifted to students of class 8. Then in the session of 2012-13, the scheme was again changed and now it is conducted for class 10 students. Every year around 1000 students is awarded in this scheme.
NTSE Paper consists of three sections in the paper at both stage 1 and stage 2:-
MAT (Mental Ability Test)
SAT (Scholastic Ability Test)
The paper is made on MCQ (Multi-Choice Questions) where students are given four options for answers for each question. There is a total of 200 hundred questions which are to be answered in 180 minutes.
Mental Ability Test section has 50 questions and allotted time is 45 minutes, for language test section also the no. of questions and time allotted is same. Scholastic aptitude Test section consists of 100 questions has 90 minutes allotted to it. Mental Aptitude Test Section contains questions on reasoning which judge the students understanding and use of facts given to him. Language Test sections judge’s students on their command over the language. Scholastic Aptitude further has several sections which contain 35 questions on Science, 35 questions on Social Science and 30 questions of Mathematics. The questions on Science and Social Science also have questions regarding Current-Affairs or General Knowledge apart from questions from NCERT book of class 9th and 10th.
All students studying in Class X in any recognized school is eligible to appear in Stage-I NTSE. Additionally, State/UT can impose any eligibility criteria to appear in Stage-I. For stage-II, there is a quota for each State and Union Territory computed based on Student enrollment at the secondary level. Students with Indian Nationality studying abroad need to secure 60% marks in the previous examination to apply for NTSE. Such students, if selected, need to appear for Stage-II NTSE directly.
Applications process is usually declared open in the month of August. Last Date to submit application forms is in the month of September. Stage 1 exam date usually lies around in Mid-November, the result for which is announced by the month of January. Candidates qualifying stage 1 examination have to give stage 2 exams in the month of March or April for which the result is announced by the month of May.
Candidates should apply for Stage 1 NTSE as per the circular issued by the State/ UT Government body or CBSE. For applying, the students have to submit the application form and the fees as per CBSE rules to the Liaison Officer of the State/UT board as per the dates mentioned in the notice declared by CBSE. After the process of applying is over, NCERT sends the examination roll number and venue of exams directly to the students through the post. The fee submitted earlier is the final fee and there will no extra fee for the students who get selected in NTSE Stage 2. Students with Indian Nationality studying abroad need to apply through the Head of the Institution where they are presently studying. These applications need to be sent to Head Educational Survey Division, NCERT, and Delhi – 16 with the attested copy of Class IX.