NDA Exam 2024 -Eligibility Criteria & Preparation Tips

The National Defence Academy (NDA) Exam is a highly competitive examination conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to select candidates for entry into the Indian Army, Navy, and Air Force. It is an esteemed opportunity for young aspirants who dream of serving their country and pursuing a career in the defence forces. To appear for the NDA Exam, candidates must meet specific eligibility criteria, which encompass various aspects such as age, education, nationality, and physical fitness. This article will provide a comprehensive understanding of the eligibility criteria for the NDA Exam 2024.

NDA Exam,

NDA Exam 2024 Eligibility Criteria

Age Limit

The age limit for candidates applying for the NDA Exam is crucial to ensure that the candidates possess the required maturity and physical capabilities. As of 1st January 2024, the candidate’s age should be between 16.5 and 19.5 years. This means the candidate must be born between 2nd July 2004 and 1st July 2007. The age relaxation for certain categories, such as SC/ST and OBC, is also applicable as per government rules.

Educational Qualification

To be eligible for the NDA Exam, candidates must have completed their 10+2 education from a recognized board or university. The candidates appearing for the final examination of 10+2 are also eligible to apply for the exam. It is essential to note that candidates must have studied Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics as their main subjects in 10+2.


Candidates must be Indian citizens to be eligible for the NDA Exam. Candidates from Bhutan, Nepal, and Tibetan refugees who came to India before 1st January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India are also eligible. Candidates of Indian origin who have migrated from Sri Lanka, Pakistan, Burma, or East African countries can apply for the exam with certain conditions.

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Physical Standards

Physical fitness plays a significant role in the selection process for the NDA Exam 2024. Candidates must meet the prescribed physical standards to be considered eligible. The physical standards for the NDA Exam include the following:

Height and Weight

Candidates must have a minimum height of 157 cm (162.5 cm for Air Force) and a weight proportional to the height as per the medical standards. The acceptable range of weight depends on the Body Mass Index (BMI) calculation.


Candidates must have good eyesight without color blindness or any other visual impairments. The minimum acceptable visual standards are specified by the authorities conducting the examination.

Physical Fitness

Apart from meeting the height, weight, and eyesight criteria, candidates must also possess a certain level of physical fitness. Regular exercise, physical training, and a healthy lifestyle are essential to maintain the required fitness level.

Selection Process

The selection process for the NDA Exam consists of three stages: a written examination, an interview, and a medical examination.

Also Check- UPSC NDA Previous Year Papers 

Written Examination

The written examination comprises two papers: Mathematics and General Ability Test (GAT). The mathematics paper evaluates the candidate’s mathematical aptitude, while the GAT paper assesses their English proficiency, general knowledge, and logical reasoning.


Candidates who clear the written examination are called for an interview conducted by the Services Selection Board (SSB). The interview consists of various tests, including intelligence tests, group discussions, and personal interviews, to assess the candidate’s personality, leadership qualities, and suitability for a career in the defense forces.

Medical Examination

Candidates who pass the interview stage undergo a comprehensive medical examination to determine their physical and mental fitness for service in the armed forces. The medical examination includes various tests and assessments conducted by medical professionals.

Also Check – UPSC NDA Syllabus and Exam Pattern 

Preparation Tips for NDA Exam 2024

The NDA Preparation Tips include dedication, discipline, and strategic planning. Here are some essential tips to help you prepare effectively:

Study Material

Refer to reputable study materials and books specifically designed for the NDA Exam. Solve previous years’ question papers to understand the exam pattern and practice time management.

Time Management

Create a study schedule that allows you to cover all the subjects effectively. Allocate sufficient time for each subject and maintain a balance between theory and practical exercises.

Physical Fitness

Apart from academic preparation, focus on enhancing your physical fitness. Engage in regular physical exercise, such as jogging, running, and strength training, to improve endurance, stamina, and overall fitness.


The NDA Exam 2023 provides a gateway for aspiring candidates to embark on a rewarding career in the defence forces. Meeting the eligibility criteria is crucial to participate in this prestigious examination. By fulfilling the age limit, educational qualifications, nationality requirements, and physical standards, candidates can take the first step towards realizing their dream of serving the nation.