Foundation Programs (NTSE & Olympiads)

  • NTSE
  • NSO
  • NCO
  • TCY-K12 MBT


(National Talent Search Examination)

The National Council of Educational Research and Training (NCERT) was established by the Government of India in the year 1961 with a view to bringing about qualitative improvement in school education in the country. National Science Talent Search Scheme (NSTSS) was established in the year 1963, which provided for the identification of talented students and awarding them with scholarships. In1976 it was renamed as National Talent Search Scheme (NTSS). Over the years it had underwent several changes and the most recent change in the scheme has been made in the year 2012 wherein the NTS examination will now be held at the end of Class X.

The scholarships under the present scheme are awarded to the candidates for pursuing courses in Sciences and Social Sciences up to doctoral level and in professional courses like medicine and engineering up to second-degree level subject to the fulfillment of the conditions provided.


Identification of talent comprises two-stage selection process. While the individual State/UT conducts the first stage selection, the second stage selection at the national level is carried out by the NCERT.

State Level Examination

Each State/UT conducts its own examination. They have the autonomy to lay down their own norms for the purposes of determining the eligibility of the candidates. This examination is primarily used to recommend a given number of candidates for the second level test to be conducted by the NCERT. The state level screening examination is conducted in all States/UTs on third Sunday of November except in Nagaland, Andaman and Nicobar Islands, Meghalaya and Mizoram where it will be conducted on second Saturday of November every year until and unless some special circumstances occur. State level examination may have two parts: Part-I Mental Ability Test (MAT) and Part-II Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT) for nominating the required number of candidates for the second level test to be conducted by the NCERT.


The result of State Level Talent Search examination is declared in months of January/February by the States/UTs themselves.

National Level Examination

There is no fee of any kind for appearing in the National Level Examination. Only the candidates selected by the States/UTs on the basis of their screening examination shall be eligible to appear in the National level examination to be conducted by the NCERT on the Second Sunday of May each year(unless otherwise notified).Negative marking is introduced in MAT (Mental Ability Test), SAT (Scholastic Aptitude Test) and LCT (Language Component Test) in II stage. 1/3 mark will be deducted for a wrong answer and no deduction for unattempted question.

Special provisions for Candidates Studying Abroad

Students of Indian nationality studying abroad at the Class X level may also compete for Talent Search Award under the following conditions:

(i) The Indian students studying abroad in Class X or equivalent class shall be exempted from the first level-screening test and shall be permitted to appear directly at the second level examination conductedby the Council.

(ii) A candidate shall be eligible to appear in the second level NTS examination only if he or she has obtained at least 60 per cent marks (in aggregate) at the previous annual examination.

(ii) A candidate shall be eligible to appear in the second level NTS examination only if he or she has obtained at least 60 per cent marks (in aggregate) at the previous annual examination.

(iii) A candidate will have to appear in the NTS examination at a centre in India at her/his own cost.

(iv) A candidate desiring to appear in the NTS examination may request through the Head of the Institution where he or she is studying along with an attested copy (by the Head of the Institution ) of the marksheet of Class IX. The request should reach the Head, Department of Educational Measurement and Evaluation, NCERT, New Delhi-110016 latest by 31st March of the concerned year.


All students studying in Class X in any type of recognized school including Kendriya Vidyalaya, Navodaya Vidyalaya, Sainik School etc. will be eligible to appear at the State Level.

Examination from the State in which the school is located. However, no domicile restriction shall be imposed. The state may impose any other eligibility condition for appearing in the screening examination like any qualifying percentage of marks in the previous annual examination etc.


The syllabus for NTSE will be broadly equivalent to the syllabi followed in Class 9 & 10 of NCERT & STATE Curriculum. The syllabus is only a broad guideline. Questions and problems in Talent Search exams are usually non-conventional and of high difficulty level.


  • The written examination shall consist of Part I MAT and Part II SAT. Both the tests will be administered separately with a short interval in between.
  • The SAT and MAT will have 100 items given in the NTS Scheme.
  • Each question will carry 1 mark. The total marks will be 100 for each test.
  • The duration of the tests will be 90 minutes each


How to Apply

You can download the Common Application Form from the NCERT website www.ncert.nic.inand send it through your school to the State Liaison officer.


Since the syllabi of the test is not strictly defined and is broadly based on, the curriculum of class 9 & 10, it is essential that you should first develop a firm grasp on the fundamentals of class IX & X curriculum. Once you are thorough with the fundamentals, you may work on gaining more depth and breadth on the subject matter. There are numerous books, websites and other resources, which may help you in this. You may also enroll for the online programs and Classroom programs offered by STEPS.