• Written By Aaron_K
  • Last Modified 14-12-2023

What is CDS? Know About Eligibility Criteria and Exam Pattern


The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will conduct the CDS 2 test in 75 cities across India on September 3, 2023. The CDS 2 result will be released in a PDF file. It will include the names, birth dates, and other information about the people who passed.

The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) will post the CDS 2 Answer Key on their website, upsc.gov.in, after the screening process. The candidates can, however, download the CDS Answer Key from the different coaching schools to determine their likely scores. The candidates can also check the CDS 2023 eligibility and exam pattern on the page below.

What is CDS?

Combined Defence Service is what CDS stands for. The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) gives this test to find new officers for the Armed Forces of India. English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Math are the topics for the CDS exam. If candidates choose Officers Training Academy as their first choice, they don’t have to take the Elementary Mathematics test.  

CDS Eligibility: Nationality/Citizenship

In the CDS Notification, the government gives all the essential information, such as the conditions for eligibility. Here is a list of the nationality requirements for CDS.

  • An Indian citizen,
  • Something about Bhutan or Nepal
  • A Tibetan refugee who came to India before January 1962 with the intention of staying there for good,
  • A person of Indian descent who has moved to India from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka, the East African countries of Kenya, Uganda, Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire, and Ethiopia, or Vietnam, to stay there forever.

CDS Age Limit, Gender & Marital Status

CDS rules say that women can only apply for OTA (non-technical) positions, while men can apply for any job on the CDS Examination if they meet other eligibility requirements. Information about the age limit and whether or not you need to be married is given below.

AcademiesCDS Educational Qualification
Indian Naval Academy (INA)An engineering degree from a recognised university/institute
Air Force Academy (AFA)Bachelor of Engineering or Graduation (with Physics and Mathematics in Class 12)
Indian Military Academy (IMA) and Officers’ Training Academy (OTA)Graduation from a recognised university

CDS Eligibility: Physical & Medical Standards

The UPCS rules say that candidates must be both physically and mentally fit. A good number of eligible candidates are turned down because of their health. Before registering for the CDS Exam, candidates are strongly encouraged to get a medical exam. Here are some of the most common reasons why someone would be disqualified.

  1. Wax (ears)
  2. Hydrocele/Varicocele/Phimosis 
  3. Overweight/Underweight
  4. Piles 
  5. Deviated Nasal Septum
  6. Gynaecomastia

CDS Heights and Weight Standards

The minimum acceptable height for male candidates is 157.5 cm. (157 cm for the Navy and 162.5 cm for Air Force), and that for female candidates is 152 cm. For Gorkhas and individuals belonging to hills of the North-Eastern region of India, Garhwali and Kumaon, the minimum acceptable height will be 5 cm less. In the case of candidates from Lakshadweep, the minimum acceptable size can be reduced by 2 cm. 

Body Mass Index should be below 25. The Waist Hip ratio should be below 0.9 for males and 0.8 for females. Waist Circumference should be less than 90 cm for males and 80 cm for females. All biochemical metabolic parameters should be within normal limits.  

CDS Exam Pattern 2023 for Written Test

The IMA, INA, and AFA writing tests have three parts: English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Math. On the other hand, the OTA written test has two parts: English and General Knowledge. 

Mode of Exam: Offline means that each individual will be given an OMR sheet to colour to show the correct answer.

Type of Questions: Questions will be of the objective type, which means that each question will have four choices. The candidate needs to choose the best answer.

The language of the exam is both Hindi and English.

CDS Exam Pattern for SSB Interview

The candidates are chosen based on how well they did in the interviews and how many points they got. The interview for the Indian Military Academy, the Naval Academy, and the Air Force Academy is worth 300 points. The interview for the OTA is worth 200 points.

There will be two parts to the SSB Interview: Stage 1 and Stage 2. Candidates who pass Stage 1 will be asked to return for Stage 2.

Stage 1: It’s an Officer Intelligence Rating (OIR) Test with a Picture Perception and Description Test (PP & DT). The candidates will be chosen based on their performance on the OIR Test, the PP, and the DT.

Stage 2: Those who reached Stage 1 will be called to this round. Group Testing Officer Tasks, Interviews, Conferences, and Psychology Tests are all a part of this. These tests are set up over the course of four days.

Q: How many times can someone take the CDS test?

Ans: People can take the CDS test as often as they want. But the rules about schooling and age must be met.

Q: Can a doctor take the CDS test?

Ans: No. Doctors aren’t allowed to take the CDS test. After getting their MBBS (Bachelor of Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery) degrees, however, they can become Medical Officers through the Armed Forces Medical College (AFMC) in Pune.

Q: When will the CDS test for 2023 be held?

Ans: The CDS 1 test for 2023 will be given on April 16, 2023. On September 3, 2023, the CDS 2 test will be provided.

Q: How does recruitment for the CDS differ between the Officers Training Academy and the Indian Military Academy?

Ans: Officers are given a Short Service Commission (SSC) in the Indian Army when they join the CDS through the Officers Training Academy. It can be made longer based on a number of factors. Officers are given a Permanent Commission (PC) in the Indian Army to join the CDS through the Indian Military Academy.

Stay tuned to Embibe for the latest updates related to CDS Exams.

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