Don’t let your talent go unnoticed, exhibit it on a national platform instead. National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) is giving you an opportunity to pit your intelligence as well as knowledge against that of scores of students across India. Apart from accolades and appreciation, you will be awarded with a scholarship if you clear all the stages of the exam.
NTSE, a national-level scholarship program, is aimed at recognizing talented young minds. It is one of the most sought-after exams in the country, with the Government of India regarding it as a prestigious and tough exam for high school students in the country. NTSE is conducted by National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT), with about 300,000 students appearing in it every year.
Selection Process & Eligibility Criteria for NTSE
There are two stages of the NTSE selection process:
Stage I: All Class X students from recognized schools are considered eligible for the Stage I examination. States/UTs conduct the examination, with no domicile restrictions.
Stage II: This is a national-level examination organized by NCERT. Students who successfully qualify the state-level exam are eligible for this examination.
For Indian students but studying abroad: Indian students studying abroad can also appear in NTSE. However, they can directly appear in Stage II of the examination. Visit NCERT website to know more about the criteria for such students.
More insights into the NTSE exam
As mentioned earlier, the examination is conducted in two stages:
Stage I: This part of the examination contains the following two parts:
Part I: Mental Ability Test (MAT): This test helps in evaluating students’ reasoning skills and their ability to judge, think, and visualize.
Part II: Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT): The questions in this part are based on Civics, History, Geography, Math, Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Economics, with Language Comprehensive Test also included.
Stage II: Students scoring more than the percentage required at the state-level exam (Stage I) and securing their place within a specified number of top ranks are considered eligible for the national-level or Stage II examination. This stage also comprises two parts, which include:
Part I: Mental Ability Test (MAT): At this stage, students’ reasoning and other skills are evaluated. Questions are mainly based on coding-decoding, problem solving, and pattern perception.
Part II: Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT): SAT, which also includes Language Comprehensive Test, is based on Science and Math questions from class IX and X syllabi, while the Social Science questions are mostly based on NCERT books (CBSE) for IX and X.
Usually, multiple choice questions are asked at both the MAT and SAT stage, with each question having four options. Students need to mark every correct answer on the answer sheet, according to the instruction given. A student will score one mark for every correct answer. Therefore, his/her total score will be the same as the number of his/her correct answers.
State quotas: Every state/UT has been provided with a quota to suggest a certain number of candidates for the Stage II examination.
Results: Respective states/UTs announce the results of the Stage I examination, while the results of Stage II examination are declared by NCERT.
Details about NTS Scholarship Scheme: Scholarships are provided to 1,000 students appearing in the NTSE examination, with the scholarship amount fixed as:
- A scholarship of Rs. 1,250/ per month for students of class XI and XII.
- A scholarship of Rs. 2,000/ per month for undergraduates and postgraduates.
- The scholarship amount for Ph.D. is decided according to the UGC norms.
Furthermore, 15% scholarships are available for students from the SC category, 7.5% are for those from the ST category, and 3% for physically challenged students. These scholarships are granted once candidates fulfill certain conditions. Please visit NCERT’s website to know more. The scholarship amount is sent directly to all the awardees. Usually, it is transferred to an awardee account via e-banking. At times, where e-banking facility is unavailable, the amount is sent in the form of bank draft.
To get the scholarship amount, the awardees need to send the claim bill to NCERT in a certain format. Besides, the signatures of the principals/ heads of their institutions are required in the claim bill. The awardees also need to submit the mark sheets of their previous final examinations, along with the bill.
Tips to prepare for NTSE
If you want to become an NTSE scholar, you should expand your knowledge base. More specifically, your conceptual knowledge of the syllabi up to class X should be clear and in-depth. Equally, your analytical thinking skills should be honed for you to come up with a logical solution to any given problem. To perform well in Social Studies, you should enrich your general knowledge bank. Last but not the least, keep practicing previous years’ question papers to gain more insights into the types of questions usually asked during the exam.