UGC NET Exam Pattern – Paper 1 and 2 Pattern, Marking Scheme, Syllabus

UGC NET exam pattern comprises information on mode of exam, test language, type of questions, marks allotted to each question or section, etc. This year, the NTA (National Testing Agency) will conduct the UGC NET 2021 exam. The first UGC NET exam will take place on 2nd May 2021.Β 

This exam will be held in the CBT or Computer Based Test mode in more than 255 cities in India. As per the UGC NET exam pattern, the question paper shall contain 150 questions which have to be attempted in 180 minutes.Β 

CSIR UGC NET 2021 is a national level exam, which is held twice every year (June and December) for the admission of eligible candidates for the positions of:

  • Only Assistant Professor, or
  • Both Assistant Professor and Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) in Indian universities and colleges

Buddy4Study has compiled all the information on the updated UGC NET exam pattern in this article.

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Important Updates

  • UGC NET 2021 exams for May 2021 cycle are scheduled to be held on 2nd, 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 10th, 11th, 12th, 14th & 17th of May 2021.
  • Candidates can avail the information bulletin fromΒ orΒ
  • NTA UGC NET 2021 subject-wise schedule of the exam is out. Click here.
  • UGC NET exam will be conducted in English and Hindi

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Key Highlights

Candidates who have registered and applied for the UGC NET exam should go through the exam pattern thoroughly before attempting the exam. Here are a few key points that they should keep in mind:

UGC NET Key Highlights

Exam nameUniversity Grants Commission National Eligibility Test (UGC NET)
Exam Conducting BodyNational Testing Agency (NTA)
Official Website
Duration of Exam3 hours or 180 minutes
Examination ModeCBT/ Computer Based Test (Online)
Medium of ExamEnglish or Hindi
Type of QuestionsObjective/Multiple-Choice (MCQ)
Number of Questions150
Types of Paper
  • Paper 1 – Common question for all candidates
  • Paper 2 – Subject-specific questions
Allotment of Marks
  • Paper 1 – 50 marks
  • Paper 2 – 100 marks

Total Marks – 150

Marking Scheme+2 for Every Correct Answer

No Negative Marking for Incorrect Answers or Unattempted Answers

  1. JRF (Junior Research Fellowship)
  2. Assistant Professor
AgeAssistant Professors – No upper age limit

JRF (Junior Research Fellowship) – Not more than 30 years as on 1st June (of the year of exam)

Mock Test Preparation

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Shift Timings

Candidates appearing for the UGC NET exam 2021 must have complete information regarding the exam shift timings and reporting time. As per the UGC NET 2021 Notification, the exam will be conducted in two different shifts:

UGC NET Exam TimingForenoon (FN) Shift 1Afternoon (AN) Shift 2
Exam Time9:00 AM to 12:00 Noon3:00 PM to 6:00 PM
Reporting time1.5 hour before the exam
7:30Β  AM1:30 PM
Documents Checking Before Entering30 minutes before the exam
Instructions by the Invigilators8:45 AM to 8:55 AM2:45 PM to 2:55 PM
Start of the Exam9:00 AM3:00 PM
End of the Exam12:00 Noon6:00 PM
Total Duration3 hours

Note: No break-time between Paper 1 and Paper 2

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Section-wise Distribution of Questions

As per NTA’s official announcement and official UGC NET exam pattern, there will be 2 papers in the UGC NET exam. All candidates will receive common questions inUGC NET Paper 1. In the case of Paper 2, the questions will be subject-specific.Β 

Paper 1 will have 50 questions, and Paper 2 will have 100 questions. Candidates will have the freedom to attempt or move onto the next question anytime they want. If they want, they can start with any question in Paper 1 and continue answering as per their ease. The same is also applicable for Paper 2.Β 

However, candidates cannot switch between both papers. Once they complete Paper 1 in an hour, they can begin answering the questions in Paper 2.

The questions will be objective (MCQ) and will have 4 options. Among the 4, candidates will have to select one option that they consider as the most appropriate answer.

Candidates can know more about the UGC NET exam pattern in the table below, and check the sectional distribution of questions and marks to prepare accordingly for the exam.Β 

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Distribution of Questions and Marks

UGC NET PaperMaximum QuestionsMaximum MarksDuration
Paper 1501001 Hour
Paper 21002002 hours
Total150 (MCQs)3003 Hours

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Syllabus & Section-wise Weightage of Questions

NTA has released the UGC NET syllabus along with the official UGC NTA notification pdf. Candidates can find the syllabus of both Paper 1 and Paper 2 by visiting the official website or by clicking on the given link.Β 

Coming back to the syllabus of UGC NET exam, Paper 1 is divided into 10 sections.Β 

Based on the previous years’ UGC NET exam pattern and question papers, candidates can check the weightage of questions as per topics to prepare better for the upcoming CSIR UGC NET examination.

UGC NET Paper 1 Syllabus

Teaching AptitudeLogical Reasoning
Research AptitudeData Interpretation
ComprehensionInformation and Communication Technology (ICT)
CommunicationPeople, Development and Environment
Mathematical Reasoning and AptitudeHigher Education System

UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021 –Β  Section-wise Distribution of Questions in Paper 1Β 

UnitsUGC NET Paper 1 – SubjectsNumber of QuestionsMaximumMarks Allotted
Unit 1Teaching Aptitude510
Unit 2Research Aptitude510
Unit 3Comprehension510
Unit 4Communication510
Unit 5Mathematical Reasoning and Aptitude510
Unit 6Logical Reasoning510
Unit 7Data Interpretation510
Unit 8Information and Communication Technology (ICT)510
Unit 9People, Development and Environment510
Unit 10Higher Education System510

UGC NET Paper 2 Syllabus

General Paper on Teaching & Research Aptitude (Paper -I)LinguisticsWomen StudiesPrakritArabic
Economics / Rural Economics /Cooperation / Demography / Development Planning/ Development Studies / Econometrics/ Applied Economics/Development Eco./Business EconomicsManagement (including Business Administration Management/Marketing/ Marketing Management/Industrial Relations and Personnel Management / Personnel Management/Financial Management/Co-operative Management)Sanskrit traditional subjects (including) Jyotisha/Sidhanta Jyotish/ Navya Vyakarna/ Vyakarna/ Mimansa/ Navya Nyaya/ Sankhya Yoga/ Tulanatmaka Darsan/ Shukla Yajurveda/ Madhav Vedant/ Dharmasasta/ Sahitya/ Puranotihasa /Agama)Human Rights and DutiesEnglish
Political ScienceFrench (French Version)CriminologyTourism Administration and ManagementChinese
PhilosophyAdult Education/ Continuing Education/ Andragogy/ Non-Formal EducationTribal and Regional Language/LiteratureYogaDogri
PsychologyPhysical EducationFolk LiteratureSindhiNepali
SociologyArab Culture and Islamic StudiesComparative LiteratureMaithiliManipuri
HistoryIndian CultureVisual Art (including Drawing & Painting/Sculpture Graphics/Applied Art/History of Art)BengaliAssamese
AnthropologyLabour Welfare/Personnel Management/Industrial Relations/ Labour and Social Welfare/Human Resource ManagementPolitics including International Relations/International Studies including Defence/Strategic Studies, West Asian Studies, South East Asian Studies, African Studies, South Asian Studies, Soviet Studies, American StudiesHindiGujarati
CommerceLawSocial Medicine & Community HealthKannadaMarathi
EducationLibrary and Information ScienceForensic ScienceMalayalamSpanish
Social WorkBuddhist, Jain, Gandhian and Peace StudiesPaliOriyaRussian
Defence and Strategic StudiesComparative Study of ReligionsKonkaniPunjabiPersian
Home ScienceMass Communication and JournalismComputer Science and ApplicationsSanskritRajasthani
Public AdministrationPerforming Art – Dance/Drama/TheatreElectronic ScienceTamilGerman
Population StudiesMuseology & ConservationEnvironmental SciencesTeluguJapanese

UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021 – Distribution of Questions in Paper 2Β 

Paper 2Type of QuestionsNumber of QuestionsMarks Allotted per QuestionTotal Marks
Selected Subject from the 81 Subject OptionsObjective/Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQ)1002200

Click to know the detailed UGC NET Syllabus pdf here.Β 

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UGC NET Exam Pattern – Marking Scheme

Candidates will get 4 options for every question. For every correct answer, they will be awarded 2 marks. Besides, UGC NET does not follow the negative marking system.Β 

UGC NET Marking Scheme

Type of AnswersMarks Allotted
Correct Answer+2
Unattempted questionNo marks awarded or deducted
Wrong Answer0 (No Negative Marking)

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Previous Years’ Question Papers

Buddy4Study has compiled previous years’ question papers in the below table. Candidates can download these to understand the UGC NET exam pattern thoroughly and prepare for the upcoming examination accordingly.Β 

UGC NET Solved Question Paper (2012 – 2019)

UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (2019)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (December 2018)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (July 2018)
UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (November 2017)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (January 2017)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (June 2016)
UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (August 2016)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (December 2015)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (June 2015)
UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (December 2014)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (June 2014)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (December 2013)
UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (June 2013)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (December 2012)UGC NET Solved Question Paper 1 (June 2012)

UGC NET Exam Pattern – General Instructions for Online Test

Candidates must follow the online test instructions and guidelines set by the UGC NET authority. The test instructions will help the candidates to attempt the computer-based exam without any hassles. Given below is a list of online test instructions set by the IGNOU panel:

  1. The candidate/s must report at the examination centre at least an hour before the allotted exam time
  2. Candidates arriving at the examination centre after 8:45 AM in First Shift and after 2:45 PM in Second Shift will not be allowed to sit for the examination
  3. The candidate/s must compulsorily bring the admit card (hard copy). The test centre officials will verify it and then allow the candidate to sit for the examination.
  4. The candidate must show, on-demand, the Admit Card downloaded/printed from the NTA’s website
  5. Admit cards must be in good condition. Dismantled, disfigured or mutilated admit cards compromising the details of the candidate will not be accepted
  6. A seat with Roll Number will be allotted to each candidate. They should find and sit on their allocated seats only
  7. No baggage is allowed inside the examination hall
  8. Candidates will only be allowed to carry a photo ID proof and hard copy of admit card inside the examination hall
  9. Candidates will not be allowed to carry mathematical/log tables, electronic watches, calculator, slide rules, pager, pen,Β  bits of papers and cell phone inside the examination hall

UGC NET Exam Pattern – COVID-19 Guidelines for UGC NET 2021

Candidates must check out these COVID-19 related guidelines and follow them at all the UGC NET exam centres:

  • The body temperature of candidates will be checked using thermo guns
  • A student with a body temperature above 99.4Β°F or 37.4Β°C will be taken to a separate room where they have to give the test alone.
  • Social distancing will be maintained strictly at the exam centres. Candidates will have to maintain at least 6 feet or 2-metre distance from other candidates.
  • Exam authority will ensure that monitor, keyboard, mouse, webcam, desk, chair, etc. are thoroughly sanitised.
  • A significant gap will be present between two seats inside the exam hall.
  • Hand sanitizers will be present at the entrance door and various places inside the exam centre for both candidates and the staff.
  • Invigilators will distribute rough sheets to candidates wearing gloves.
  • UGC NET admit cards of the candidates will be scanned through barcode readers, present at the entry.
  • To avoid crowing, exam room numbers will not be displayed outside the centre.
  • Exam centres will keep stock of fresh masks to ensure hygiene and stop unfair means during the exam.
  • Candidates violating COVID-19 directives/advisories will not be allowed to sit for the exam
  • Candidates will be allowed to leave the test centre one at a time to avoid the rush and maintain social distancing.

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Recommended Books

Candidates need to prepare well from the topics highlighted as per the UGC NET syllabus to score well in the upcoming entrance test on 02nd May 2021.

Buddy4Study advises candidates to prepare well for their upcoming exam with the help of the below-mentioned books that are recommended by candidates who cracked the exam successfully in the previous years.

NTA-UGC-NET (Paper-I) Exam Guide: with Previous Years’ (Solved) PapersRamesh Publishing HouseDr. M S Ansari & RPH Editorial Board
UGC NET/ SET Paper 1McGraw Hill Education
CBSE UGC NET/SET/JRF – Paper 1: Teaching and Research AptitudePearson EducationKVS Madaan
UGC NET/ JRF/ SLET General Paper-1 Teaching & Research AptitudeArihant PublicationArihant Express
Trueman’s UGC NET/ SLET General Paper IDanika Publishing CompanyM. Gagan (Author), Sajit Kumar

UGC NET Exam Pattern – FAQs

In which format are the questions asked in the UGC NET 2020 exam?

As per the UGC NET exam pattern, candidates will find questions asked in Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ) format.

What is the duration of the UGC NET exam?

According to the UGC NET exam pattern, the duration to complete Paper 1 is 1 hour. Candidates will be given 2 hours to complete Paper 2. This will be a continuous exam with no breaks between both the papers and hence, the total duration of the UGC NET exam will be 3 hours.

Is there any negative marking in the UGC NET exam?

No. UGC NET does not follow the negative marking system.

Is it mandatory to appear for both the papers?

Yes. It is mandatory to take both the UGC NET Paper 1 & 2.

What is the age limit for UGC NET?

There is no upper age limit to apply for the post of Assistant Professor. However, candidates applying for the JRF (Junior Research Fellowship) post should not be more than 30 years of age. Candidates are also provided with age relaxation benefits, which is highlighted in the UGC NET syllabus article.

How many times is UGC NET conducted in a year?

UGC NET entrance test is conducted twice every year, generally in the month of June and December.

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