CDS (I) 2024: Notification (Out), Exam Date, Eligibility, Syllabus

On its official website, UPSC released the official notification and detailed advertisement for the CDS (I) 2024 examination. This notification included all the information needed to prepare for the exam, such as the dates of importance, how to apply, and available vacancies. Given that the CDS 1 Notification 2024 is now available on for the course starting in January and April of 2025, The combined Defence Services Examination (CDS  Exam) is conducted twice a year for recruitment into the Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Indian Air Force Academy.

The Combined Defence Services Examination or CDS is divided into two phases: Written Test and SSB Interview.

The candidate needs to clear both phases in order to be recruited. Interested applicants must go through the detailed eligibility criteria for CDS (I) 2024 before filling the application form for the examination.

CDS (I) 2024 Highlights.

Exam NameCDS (I) 2024
Full-FormCombined Defence Services Examination (I) 2024
Conducted byUnion Public Service Commission
Application ModeOnline
Application FeeRs. 200/-
Exam ModeOffline
Total VacanciesTBA
Frequency of ExamTwice a year
Exam TypeWritten test ( objective type ) and Interview
Negative Marking– 0.33( for each wrong attempt)
Phases of SelectionWritten test SSB Interview

UKSSSC Recruitment: Notification, Exam Dates, Eligibility, Syllabus

CDS (I) 2024 Important Dates

The aspirants must be updated with the exam dates to plan everything accordingly. All the important dates for UPSC CDS (I) 2024 are given below:

EventsImportant Dates
UPSC CDS (I) 2024 Notification Releases along with Application Form20th December 2023
UPSC CDS (I) 2024 Application Process Ends9th January 2024 (06:00 pm)
Issuance of CDS (I) 2024 Admit Card3rd week of March 2024
Combined Defence Services Examination (I) 202421st April 2024
Answer Keys ReleaseSoon
UPSC CDS (I) 2024 ResultsMay 2024
SSB Interview DatesJuly/ August 2024
UPSC CDS (I) 2024 Final ResultOctober 2024

CDS ll 2024 Important Dates

EventsImportant Dates (Tentative)
UPSC CDS (Il) 2024 Notification Releases along with Application FormMay 2024
UPSC CDS (Il) 2024 Application Process EndsJune 2024
Issuance of CDS (I) 2024 Admit Card3rd week of August 2024
Combined Defence Services Examination (lI) 2024September 2024
Answer Keys ReleaseSoon
UPSC CDS (lI) 2024 ResultsOctober 2024
SSB Interview DatesJanuary/February 2025
UPSC CDS (II) 2024 Final ResultApril/May 2025

CDS (I) 2024 Application Form

The application forms for CDS (I) 2024 are likely to be released soon by the Union Public Services Commission along with the notification. The applications will only be invited online through the official website. Applications will not be accepted offline. The applicants are advised to submit the application form before the last date.  The applicants must fill the application form with utmost care as no correction will be allowed in future. The aspirants can look below for the detailed steps to fill the application form.

Steps to fill the Application Form for CDS (I) 2024

  • Here, the applicants are required to click on “Part 1 Registration” in order to open the CDS Registration Form.
  • The applicants must enter some basic details like candidate’s name, Date of Birth, parents’ name, address, category, mobile number, email address
  • A message containing the candidate’s registration number and password will be sent to the registered mobile number and E-mail ID.
  • Now, the applicants need to pay the registration fee, as applicable.
  • The applicants are required to enter a few details like personal details and academic details.
  • Each applicant is obliged to choose their preference for the positions among IAF, IMA, INA, and OTA.
  • The applicant must select CDS Exam Centre as per their preference. This will be considered as the most preferred venue for the written test.
  • Upload the required digitally scanned copies of the documents.

Application Fee

General/ OBC/ EWSRs. 200/-
Female (All Categories)Exempted
SC/ STExempted

The application fee for the candidates belonging to General/ OBC/ EWS categories needs to pay a registration fee of Rs. 200/- whereas the female applicants as well as reserved categories will be exempted from the registration fee.

Online Mode: Application Fees can be paid in online mode via Debit/ Credit/Master/Visa Card or SBI Netbanking. If you are paying online, take a printout of the payment receipt for future reference.

Offline Mode: The applicants will generate a bank challan during the CDS registration process and submit the same along with the fees at any SBI bank whichever branch they prefer.

Size and Format of Documents to be uploaded:

Photograph20 – 300 Kbs350×350 – 1000×100024.jpg
Signature20 – 300 Kbs350×350 – 1000×100024.jpg
Photo Identity Card20 – 300 Kbs__.pdf
Relevant Links
NDAAFCATHaryana Police
TNUSRBRajasthan PoliceTerritorial Army

CDS (I) 2024 Exam Centres

The applicants are required to choose exam centres for CDS (I) 2024 from the below-mentioned cities:

Panaji(Goa)PatnaPort Blair
Prayagraj(Allahabad)RaipurRanchi Sambalpur

CDS (I) 2024 Eligibility Criteria

The Eligibility Criteria for CDS (I) 2024 consist of four parts: Nationality, Age, Marital Status, and Gender. Although applicants from both genders can appear for this exam, however, the criteria are different. The physical fitness of the applicant is also mandatory and plays an important role. The detailed eligibility criteria for CDS (I) 2024 is mentioned below:


The applicant must be unmarried and must be any of the following:

  1. A Citizen of India,
  2. A subject of Bhutan,
  3. A subject of Nepal,
  4. A Tibetan refugee who came over to India before January 1962 with the intention of permanently settling in India,
  5. A person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire and Ethiopia or Vietnam with the intention of permanently settling in India.


  • The applicants under 2, 3, 4, and 5 must-have a certificate or proof issued by the Indian Government in favour of their statement.
  • The applicants who are Gorkha subjects of Nepal are not required to show any kind of certificate of eligibility.
  • The applicant in whose case a certificate of eligibility is necessary may be admitted to the examination provisionally subject to the necessary certificate being given to him/her by the Govt. before the declaration of result by UPSC.

Age Limits, Sex, and Marital Status

Both male and female applicants are eligible to apply for CDS (I) exam. The applicants must be unmarried in order to be eligible for CDS (I) Exam. Specifically, the widows and divorcee applicants will be considered ineligible for CDS (I) Exam. The eligibility criteria for different categories in the CDS (I) Exam is unique and mentioned below:

CategoryAge (years)GenderMarital Status
Indian Military Academy (IMA)19 – 24MaleUnmarried
Indian Naval Academy (INA)19- 22MaleUnmarried
Air Force Academy19- 23Male<25 years unmarried or >25 years both married and unmarried
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Course for Men)19- 25MaleUnmarried
Officers’ Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course)19- 25FemaleUnmarried Women, issueless widows who have not remarried and issueless divorcees (in possession of divorce documents) who have not remarried are eligible.

Educational Qualification

All the applicants applying for CDS (I) must be a graduate or at least appearing the final exam of eligible degrees.

  • The applicants applying for I.M.A. and OTA must have a degree of a university or equivalent degree from Central/State Government recognized institutions.
  • The applicants applying for INA( Indian Naval Academy), must have a Degree in Engineering from a recognized University/institution or its equivalent.
  • The applicants applying for the Air Force Academy must have a degree of a recognized university (with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2) or a Bachelor’s degree in Engineering.

Note: The applicants in their final year of graduation are also eligible to apply for CDS exam, given that they need to produce the proof of passing the qualifying exam by a date to be specified in the Commission’s Notice for the CDS Exam.

CDS (I) 2024 Admit Card

The Admit Card for CDS (I)  is expected to be released 3 weeks before the exam. Admit Card will not be sent to any applicants through SMS or email. They need to log in on the official website of UPSC and download individual admit card. The details mentioned on the admit card includes:

  1. Name and address of the allotted exam centre.
  2. Roll number
  3. Category
  4. Photograph
  5. Signature
  6. Name, etc.

Steps for Downloading Admit Card for CDS (I) 2024

  • The applicant must visit the UPSC official website-
  • On the homepage, the applicant must check the ‘What’s New’ Section and click on “e-Admit Card-CDS Examination(I) 2024” link.
  • In the new page, applicants must click “ Download”
  • The applicants must read all the instructions and must take a printout for future reference and click “Yes”.
  • In this new page, the applicants are required to enter the following details: Registration Number and Date of birth Or Roll number and date of birth Or Name, Father’s name and date of birth
  • Then the applicant must click on the “Submit” button.
  • The Admit card for CDS 2024 will appear on-screen.
  • The applicant must not forget to download the admit card for future reference.

CDS (I) 2024 Exam Pattern

The applicants applying for IMA, INA, and AFA need to give the test of 6 hours containing 300 marks whereas the OTA applicants require to attempt 4 hours of exam containing 200 marks. The exam pattern for IMA, INA, and AFA consists of 3 sections: English language, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics. While the exam pattern of OTA consists of 2 sections: English and General knowledge. There will be a negative marking of -0.33 for each incorrect attempt.

CDS Exam Pattern for IMA, INA, and AFA:

SectionNumber of QuestionsDurationMaximum Marks
English1202 hours100
General Knowledge1202 Hours100
Elementary Mathematics1002 hours100
Total6 hours300

CDS Exam Pattern for OTA (officer’ Training Academy)

SectionNumber of QuestionsDurationMaximum marks
English1202 hours100
General Knowledge1202 hours100
Total4 hours200

CDS Exam Marking Scheme

The marking scheme is different for each section of the CDS Exam:

  • In both sections English and General Awareness, for each correct answer, candidates will obtain +0.83 and for each wrong attempt will be deducted -0.27 marks.
  • In Mathematics, candidates will gain +1 marks for every correct answer and will be deducted – 0.33 for each wrong attempt.

CDS (I) 2024 Syllabus

The syllabus for the exam helps the aspirants to discover the various topics that they need to prepare for the exam in hand. The syllabus for CDS (I) is divided into three sections: English Language, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics. Further, Elementary Mathematics is divided into 7 parts such as Arithmetic Ability, Trigonometry, Algebra, Mensuration, Geometry, Statistics, and Numbers System. The detailed syllabus for CDS (I) is mentioned below:

EnglishActive & Passive Voice, Usage of words, Parts of Speech,  Direct & Indirect Speech, Grammar, Vocabulary,  Antonyms & Synonyms, Idioms & Phrases, Ordering of words in a sentence,  Spotting Errors, etc.
General KnowledgeIndian History, Indian Geography,  Indian Economy, Indian Culture & Heritage, Indian Constitution, Defence-related, Current Events (National & International), Physics, Chemistry, General Politics, Biology Statement true/false, Environment, Current Awareness, Sociology, Sports, Book, Award 

Subsection and Topics of Elementary Mathematics

Arithmetic AbilityFundamental operations, Number System, Time and Distance, Time and Work, Percentages, Tests of divisibility, Factorization Theorem, applications to simple and compound interest, Profit and Loss, Ratio and proportion, Variation, Unitary method, Division algorithm, Elementary Number Theory, Prime and composite numbers, H.C.F. and L.C.M, Euclidean algorithm, Logarithms
Algebra:Basic Operations, Solutions of quadratic equations, Simple factors, Remainder Theorem, H.C.F. & L.C.M., analytical and graphical solutions, Simultaneous linear inequations, Practical problems – simultaneous, linear equations or inequations, Theory of polynomials, Rational expressions, conditional identities, Laws of indices
Trigonometry:Use of trigonometric tables, Simple cases of s and distances, Simple trigonometric identities, Sine ×, cosine ×, Tangent × when 0° < × < 90° Values of sin ×, cos × and tan ×, for × = 0°, 30°, 45°, 60° and 90°
Mensurationsurface area and volume of cuboids, Areas of squares, rectangles, parallelograms, triangle, and circle, Areas of figures, surface area and volume of spheres, lateral surface and volume of right circular cones and cylinders.
GeometryLines and angles, Plane and plane figures, Theorems on:- Properties of angles at a point Parallel lines Sides and angles of a triangle Similar triangle, Congruency of triangles The concurrence of medians and altitudes Properties of angles, sides & diagonals of a parallelogram, rectangle, and square. Circles and its properties including tangents and normals,  Loci.
StatisticsMeasures of central tendency, Collection and tabulation of statistical data, Graphical representation frequency polygons, histograms, bar charts, pie charts, etc., 
Numbers SystemIntegers, Natural numbers, Rational and Real numbers

CDS (I) Preparation Tips:

  • The student must create a time table covering the whole syllabus in a stipulated time and strictly follow that.
  • The student must read daily journals as well as newspapers to enrich the “General Knowledge” section.
  • The student must try to solve as many questions of Elementary Mathematics as possible.
  • The student must not forget to focus on the English Language section of the exam.
  • The student must try to solve different sample papers, previous year papers to get an exact idea about the exam.

CDS (I) Answer Key

The authorities will publish the Answer Key on the official website. The Answer Key helps the aspirants to form an idea about the estimated marks. It helps them to estimate their chances of qualifying the exam. The applicants can find the Answer Key by following the given steps:

Steps to Download the CDS (I) Answer Key

  1. The applicant must visit the official website of UPSC that is
  2. Here, the applicant must click the “Examination” tab from the Website Menu Bar.
  3. Now, the applicants are required to select and click the “Answer Key” option.
  4. Applicants need to choose the particular set of paper answer key link
  5. The Answer Key will be displayed in PDF format on-screen.
  6. Lastly, the applicants must download the PDF and then can take a printout of the answer key for future reference.

CDS (I) 2024 Cut-offs

We have estimated the cut-offs for CDS (I) 2024 as per previous year pattern for the applicants to have an idea about it. These cut-offs are for reference purpose only. The actual cut-off may differ from the given cut-offs.

AcademyExpected Cutoff
OTA(Women and Men)85-99
IMA115- 125
INA110- 120

CDS (I) 2019 Cut-off

CDS (I) 2019 had a sectional cutoff also. From the previous year cutoff candidates will have an idea of the cutoff range:

AcademyWritten ExamFinal Exam

Steps to check the CDS (I) 2024 Cut-off

  • The applicant must visit the official website
  • Here, the applicant is required to go to the cutoff section from the ‘Examination’ tab
  • Now, click on the provided link for CDS (I) 2024 Cut-off.
  • Course wise cutoff will be in the PDF format ( download and save it if needed)

CDS (I) 2024 SSB Interview

CDS (I) 2024 SSB Interview basically involves 2 stages:

  • Stage 1: It consists of officer intelligence rating, picture perception, and description test.
  • Stage 2: It involves interview, group testing officer task, psychology test, and conference

CDS (I) 2024 Selection Procedure

The applicants must have secured a minimum of 20% marks to qualify in each subject. The qualified applicants will only be able to attend SSB Interview. After the interview process, applicants will be called for document verification. Documents like Qualification Certificates, Birth Certificate, Passport-size Photograph, Proof of Identity( PAN, Aadhar, Voter Card), Category Certificate if belong to Reserve category and Residence Proof will be required in the document verification procedure.

CDS (I) 2024 FAQs

u003cstrongu003eQ: Which authority conducts the CDS Exam?u003c/strongu003e

A: The CDS Exam is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC).

u003cstrongu003eQ: What is the mode of conducting the CDS Exam?u003c/strongu003e

A: The CDS Exam is conducted offline.

u003cstrongu003eQ: What is the application fee for the CDS Exam for different categories?u003c/strongu003e

A: The application fee for General/OBC/EWS category candidates is Rs. 200/-, while candidates belonging to other categories are exempted from the application fee.

u003cstrongu003eQ: What does CDS stand for in the context of the exam?u003c/strongu003e

A: CDS stands for Combined Defence Services.

u003cstrongu003eQ: When will the application form link be activated for the CDS Exam?u003c/strongu003e

A: The application form link will be activated on the official website after the notification is released by the authorities.

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