NDA Exam Syllabus 2020 | Topic-wise weightage

NDA Syllabus
NDA Exam Syllabus

Hello aspirants, let’s begin with one of the most important articles of NDA exam preparation. You might have seen NDA GAT preparation, NDA English preparation and even NDA Maths preparation which I have released last week and getting awesome response from audience. Preparing for any competitive exam like NDA begins with detail analysis of previous year papers and exact NDA syllabus released by official sources.

Because UPSC has to stick with the syllabus which it has released at the time of Notification. NDA Maths syllabus is given in detail which can be highly helpful in your preparation, but NDA GAT paper syllabus is very generalized. That’s the reason why I have broken down NDA Exam syllabus with every important topic you must study. I have taken help of:

  • Official Notification released by UPSC
  • Previous year trends of NDA exam
  • Important topics NDA focuses in every attempt
  • Experience of many successful NDA aspirants

To make this “NDA Syllabus 2020” article a detailed guide. This detailed article on NDA exam syllabus will be highly helpful in your preparation as targeted study can be done if you have exact NDA syllabus and Chapter wise weightage of NDA exam. (especially during self study)

Let us begin with NDA Maths Syllabus.

NDA Maths syllabus 2020

Consider yourself lucky that you have detailed NDA syllabus of Paper 1, that is, Maths paper. We will first see exact syllabus of Maths paper and then focus on topic-wise weightage.

NDA Maths paper consists of following major topics: (120 questions for 300 marks)

  • Algebra
  • Matrices and Determinants
  • Trigonometry
  • Analytical geometry of two and three dimensions
  • Differential calculus
  • Integral Calculus and differential equations
  • Vector Algebra
  • Statistics and Probability

These are the 8 major pillars of NDA Maths syllabus.

Let’s have a look of detail NDA syllabus of each topic mentioned above.

(Note: Many aspirants start preparing for Maths directly from NDA specific book without knowing NDA syllabus of Maths. Knowing latest exam pattern and syllabus of nda exam is a symbol of smart working aspirant )

1. Algebra Subtopics:

Concept of set, operations on sets, Venn diagrams. De Morgan laws, Cartesian product, relation, equivalence relation. Representation of real numbers on a line. Complex numbers-basic properties, modulus, argument, cube roots of unity.

Binary system of numbers. Conversion of a number in decimal system to binary system and vice-versa. Arithmetic, Geometric and Harmonic progressions. Quadratic equations with real coefficients. Solution of linear inequations of two variables by graphs. Permutation and Combination.
Binomial theorem and its applications. Logarithms and their applications.

2. Matrices and Determinants:

Types of matrices, operations on matrices. Determinant of a matrix, basic properties of determinants. Adjoint and inverse of a square matrix, Applications-Solution of a system of linear equations in two or three unknowns by Cramer’s rule and by Matrix Method.

3. Trigonometry:

Angles and their measures in degrees and in radians. Trigonometrical ratios. Trigonometric identities Sum and difference formulae. Multiple and Sub-multiple angles. Inverse trigonometric functions. Applications-Height and distance, properties of triangles.

Also read: How to clear NDA exam in first attempt?

4. Analytical Geometry of two and Three dimensions:

Rectangular Cartesian Coordinate system. Distance formula. Equation of a line in various forms. Angle between two lines. Distance of a point from a line. Equation of a circle in standard and in general form. Standard forms of parabola, ellipse and hyperbola.
Eccentricity and axis of a conic. Point in a three dimensional space, distance between two points. Direction Cosines and direction ratios. Equation two points. Direction Cosines and direction ratios. Equation of a plane and a line in various forms. Angle between two lines and angle between two planes. Equation of a sphere.

5. Differential Calculus:

Concept of a real valued function–domain, range and graph of a function. Composite functions, one to one, onto and inverse functions. Notion of limit, Standard limits—examples. Continuity of functions— examples, algebraic operations on continuous functions.

Derivative of function at a point, geometrical and physical interpretation of a derivative—applications. Derivatives of sum, product and quotient of functions, derivative of a function with respect to another function, derivative of a composite function. Second order derivatives. Increasing and decreasing functions. Application of derivatives in problems of maxima and minima.

6. Integral Calculus and differential equations

Integration as inverse of differentiation, integration by substitution and by parts, standard integrals involving algebraic expressions, trigonometric, exponential and hyperbolic functions. Evaluation of definite integrals—determination of areas of plane regions bounded by curves—applications.

Definition of order and degree of a differential equation, formation of a differential equation by examples. General and particular solution of a differential equations, solution of first order and first degree differential equations of various types—examples. Application in problems of growth and decay (crucial part of NDA Syllabus for Maths paper)

7. Vector Algebra:

Vectors in two and three dimensions, magnitude and direction of a vector. Unit and null vectors, addition of vectors, scalar multiplication of a vector, scalar product or dot product of two vectors. Vector product or cross product of two vectors. Applications—work done by a force and moment of a force and in geometrical problems.


8. Statistics and Probability:

A) Statistics syllabus:

Classification of data, Frequency distribution, cumulative frequency distribution—examples. Graphical representation— Histogram, Pie Chart, frequency polygon—examples. Measures of Central tendency—Mean, median and mode. Variance and standard deviation— determination and comparison. Correlation and regression.

B) Probability syllabus:

Random experiment, outcomes and associated sample space, events, mutually exclusive and exhaustive events, impossible and certain events. Union and Intersection of events. Complementary, elementary and composite events. Definition of probability—classical and statistical— examples. Elementary theorems on probability—simple problems. Conditional probability, Bayes’ theorem—simple problems. Random variable as function on a sample space. Binomial distribution, examples of random experiments giving rise to Binominal distribution.

UPSC strictly follows NDA syllabus for Maths paper which is given in Notification. Even pattern of questions repeat in this paper.

NDA Maths paper Chapter-Wise weightage

It is necessary to give preference to chapters based on its weightage in actual exam. I have made the topic-wise weightage table for ease of study.

Maths TopicsExact number asked in examMarksWeightage of topic in Maths paper
Differential Calculus and Integral calculus24-26 Questions60-6520% approx.
Trigonometry20-22 Questions50-5516.66%
Algebra20-22 questions50-5516.66%
Statistics and Probability10-12 Questions25-308.33%
Vector Algebra8-10 questions20-256.66%
Analytical Geometry18-20 Questions45-5015%
Determinant and Matrices8-10 Questions20-256.66%
Total120 questions300 Marks100 percent

NDA Maths Chapter-wise weightage (Minimum questions)

  • Differential calculus and Integral calculus
  • Trigonometry
  • Algebra
  • Statistics and Probability
  • Vector Algebra
  • Analytical Geometry
  • Determinant and Matrices

You have the NDA Maths syllabus as well as chapter-wise weightage with you. Now read the NDA Maths preparation article and start NDA exam preparation from best sources to score 135+ marks in upcoming NDA Maths paper.

NDA GAT syllabus 2020 (150 questions for 600 marks)

We will bifurcate NDA GAT Paper syllabus into NDA English section syllabus and NDA GK section syllabus, as 50 questions are asked from NDA English section which needs special attention for preparation.

A) NDA English Syllabus 2020 (For 50 Questions)

NDA English paper syllabus given in notification is very generalized. But done worry, I will tell you the best topics to study for NDA English section. And luckily pattern of NDA English paper is same for every attempt with very minute changes.

This is NDA English Syllabus given by UPSC,

“The question paper in English will be designed to test the candidate’s understanding of English and workman like use of words. The syllabus covers various aspects like=Grammar and usage, vocabulary, comprehension and cohesion in extended text to test the candidate’s proficiency in English.”

This syllabus will take you nowhere. So, I have made list of topics of NDA English Syllabus:

  • Ordering of sentences (5-10 questions)
  • Ordering of words in a sentence (5 questions)
  • Idioms and Phrases (5 questions)
  • Comprehension (5 questions)
  • Spotting the error (10 questions)
  • Fill in the Blanks (5 questions)
  • Antonyms (10 questions)
  • Synonyms (10 questions)

NDA English Chapter-wise weightage

  • Spotting the errors
  • Synonyms
  • Antonyms
  • Idioms and Phrases
  • Ordering of Sentences
  • Comprehension
  • Fill in the Blanks

Total 50 Questions will be asked from these 8 topics. Out of 50 questions, you can solve 40+ correct questions if you will follow NDA English paper strategy.

B) NDA GK Syllabus 2020 (For 100 Questions)

Out of 600 marks GAT paper, 200 marks are allotted to English section and remaining 400 marks for GK paper. In case of GK paper, major chunk constitutes Physics, Chemistry, Biology (General Science), Geography and History.

Let’s have a look at detailed NDA GK syllabus.

‘Section A’ = Physics

Physical Properties and States of Matter, Mass, Weight, Volume, Density and Specific Gravity, Principle of Archimedes, Pressure Barometer. Motion of objects, Velocity and Acceleration, Newton’s Laws of Motion, Force and Momentum, Parallelogram of Forces, Stability and Equilibrium of bodies, Gravitation, elementary ideas of work, Power and Energy. Effects of Heat, Measurement of Temperature and Heat, change of State and Latent Heat, Modes of transference of Heat. Sound waves and their properties, Simple musical instruments. Rectilinear propagation of Light, Reflection and refraction. Spherical mirrors and Lenses, Human Eye.

Natural and Artificial Magnets, Properties of a Magnet, Earth as a Magnet. Static and Current Electricity, conductors and Non-conductors, Ohm’s Law, Simple Electrical Circuits, Heating, Lighting and Magnetic effects of Current, Measurement of Electrical Power, Primary and Secondary Cells, Use of X-Rays. General Principles in the working of the following: Simple Pendulum, Simple Pulleys, Siphon, Levers, Balloon, Pumps, Hydrometer, Pressure Cooker, Thermos Flask, Gramophone, Telegraphs, Telephone, Periscope, Telescope, Microscope, Mariner’s Compass; Lightening Conductors, Safety Fuses.

‘Section B’= Chemistry

Physical and Chemical changes. Elements, Mixtures and Compounds, Symbols, Formulae and simple Chemical Equations, Law of Chemical Combination (excluding problems). Properties of Air and Water.


Preparation and Properties of Hydrogen, Oxygen, Nitrogen and Carbondioxide, Oxidation and Reduction. Acids, bases and salts. Carbon— different forms. Fertilizers—Natural and Artificial. Material used in the preparation of substances like Soap, Glass, Ink, Paper, Cement, Paints, Safety Matches and Gun-Powder. Elementary ideas about the structure of Atom, Atomic Equivalent and Molecular Weights, Valency.

‘Section C’= General Science

Difference between the living and non-living. Basis of Life—Cells, Protoplasms and Tissues. Growth and Reproduction in Plants and Animals. Elementary knowledge of Human Body and its important organs. Common Epidemics, their causes and prevention.
Food—Source of Energy for man. Constituents of food, Balanced Diet. The Solar System—Meteors and Comets, Eclipses. Achievements of Eminent Scientists.


‘Section D’ = History, Freedom Movement etc

A broad survey of Indian History, with emphasis on Culture and Civilisation. Freedom Movement in India. Elementary study of Indian Constitution and Administration. Elementary knowledge of Five Year Plans of India. Panchayati Raj, Co-operatives and Community Development. Bhoodan, Sarvodaya, National Integration and Welfare State, Basic Teachings of Mahatma Gandhi. Forces shaping the modern world; Renaissance, Exploration and Discovery; War of American Independence. French Revolution, Industrial Revolution and Russian Revolution. Impact of Science and Technology on Society. Concept of one World, United Nations, Panchsheel, Democracy, Socialism and Communism. Role of India in the present world.

“Section E” = Geography

The Earth, its shape and size. Lattitudes and Longitudes, Concept of time. International Date Line. Movements of Earth and their effects. Origin of Earth. Rocks and their classification; Weathering—Mechanical and Chemical, Earthquakes and Volcanoes. Ocean Currents and Tides Atmosphere and its composition; Temperature and Atmospheric Pressure, Planetary Winds, Cyclones and Anti-cyclones; Humidity; Condensation and Precipitation; Types of Climate, Major Natural regions of the World. Regional Geography of India—Climate, Natural vegetation.

Mineral and Power resources; location and distribution of agricultural and Industrial activities. Important Sea ports and main sea, land and air routes of India. Main items of Imports and Exports of India.

‘Section F’ = Current Events

Knowledge of Important events that have happened in India in the recent years. Current important world events. Prominent personalities— both Indian and International including those connected with cultural activities and sports.

Section-wise weightage of NDA GK section

  • Section A= 25% Questions
  • Section B= 15% Questions
  • Section C= 10% Questions
  • Section D= 20% Questions
  • Section E= 20% Questions
  • Section F= 10% Questions

We will see topic-wise weightage of NDA GK paper (part of GAT) in more simplified table format:

NDA Exam GAT paper TopicsExact number askedMarksWeightage of topic in Maths paper
English50 Questions20033.33%
Physics23-25 Questions10016.66%
Chemistry13-15 questions6010%
General Science (Biology)8-10 Questions406.66%
History, freedom struggle18-20 questions8013.33%
Geography18-20 Questions8013.33%
Current events8-10 Questions406.66%
Total150 questions600 marks100 percent

NDA GK Chapter-wise weightage (Minimum Questions)

  • English
  • Physics
  • Chemistry
  • Biology
  • History, Freedom struggle
  • Geography
  • Current Affairs

Hopefully A to Z details of NDA syllabus pdf and Chapter wise weightage of each paper is clear to you. If you still have any doubt, feel free to comment below. I will answer your query in less than 24 hours.

Conclusion of this article

We have seen breakdown of NDA syllabus 2020 for all subjects for simplification purpose. Also Chapter-wise weightage was provided by our experts. Hopefully you have made some quality notes from this detailed article.

Now its time to study for upcoming NDA exam with following detailed strategies which are designed considering syllabus for nda exam.

Best luck for your quality preparation.

Jai Hind !!

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