UGC NET or NTA-UGC-NET, is the examination for determining the eligibility for the post of assistant professor or Junior Research Fellowship award in Indian universities and colleges. The examination is conducted by National Testing Agency on behalf of University Grants Commission.

Until July 2018, the Central Board of Secondary Education (CBSE) conducted the UGC NET exam, but  NTA has been conducting since December 2018. Currently, the exam is being conducted twice a year in the months of June and December in online mode.

The UGC NET Paper 1 is common for all candidates while Paper 2 is conducted for a total of 82 subjects. Candidates need to choose the subject of the exam while filling the application form.


Subject codes and Syllabus

Previous Year Papers

Youtube videos for NET-JRF History 


UGC Net Qualifying Criteria And Cut Off Percentages

UGC NET Procedure and Criteria for the declaration of result :

Obtain minimum qualifying marks with aggregate 55% marks to General and 50% to others in master's degree.

The paper will be divided into two papers: Papers 1 and 2.

The candidates would have to attempt a total of (both papers 1 and 2) 150 questions in three hours.



No of Questions

Maximum Marks 

Negative Marking

Paper 1
Paper 2


UGC NET qualifying cut off marks for General category is 40% in Paper I and II while the qualifying marks for SC/ST/OBC-NCL/PwD/Transgender categories is 35% in Papers I and II.

Amongst those candidates who have obtained Minimum marks a merit list will be prepared subject wise and category-wise using the aggregate marks of two papers secured by such candidates.

December 2020 Cut Off Category Wise

On the other hand, Top 6% of candidates will be selected for eligibility of NET Lectureship. Simultaneously, a separate list for JRF would be prepared.

A separate merit list for the award of JRF will be prepared from amongst the NET qualified candidates figuring in the above merit list prepared.

Until 2018 UGC released the certificates but from December 2018 onward, NTA releases the UGC NET e-certificate and JRF award letter on its official website for the qualified candidates. Successful candidates would be able to download their e-certificates and award letters online at


UGC NET Age Limit and Relaxation

JRF: Candidate should not be more than 31 years . There are a few relaxations as well.

Candidates (including women applicants) belonging to OBC-NCL/SC/ST/PwD/Transgender categories are provided a relaxation of up to five years.

Candidates who have research experience get a relaxation limited to the period they have spent on the research, but this relaxation is subject to a maximum of five years, only if you provide a certificate from the appropriate authority.

Candidates with the degree Master of Laws (L.L.M.) are provided with three years of relaxation in age.

Candidates who have served in the armed forces are provided with a relaxation of up to five years which is subject to the length of service in the armed forces up to the first day of the month in which the UGC NET examination is to be held.

Under any circumstances, the total relaxation of the above ground(s) shall not exceed five years.

Assistant Professor: There is no upper age limit for candidates to apply for UGC NET (Assistant Professor).


UGC NET Paper 1 Syllabus

UGC NET Paper 1 is common and compulsory for every candidate. Paper 1 will have 50 questions worth 100 marks. 

Paper 1 syllabus has 10 units and exactly 5 questions will be asked from each unit. 


UGC NET Paper 1 SectionsNo. of QuestionsMarks
Teaching Aptitude510
Research Aptitude510
Reading Comprehension510
Reasoning & Mathematics510
Logical Reasoning510
Data Interpretation510
Information & Communication Technology (ICT)510
People & Environment510

Higher Education System: Governance, Polity & Administration

Total 50100


 Unit-I Teaching Aptitude Syllabus

Teaching: Concept, Objectives, Levels of Teaching (Memory, Understanding, and Reflective), Characteristics, and Basic Requirements.

Learner’s Characteristics: Characteristics of Adolescent and Adult Learners (Academic, Social, Emotional and Cognitive), Individual Differences.

Factors Affecting Teaching Related to Teacher: Learner, Support Material, Instructional Facilities, Learning Environment, and Institution.

Methods of Teaching in Institutions of Higher Learning: Teacher-centered vs. Learner-centered Methods; Offline vs. Online Methods (Swayam, Swayamprabha, MOOCs, etc.).

Teaching Support System: Traditional, Modern, and ICT-based.

Evaluation Systems: Elements and Types of Evaluation, Evaluation in Choice Based Credit System in Higher education, Computer-based Testing, Innovations in Evaluation Systems.


Unit-II Research Aptitude Syllabus

Research: Meaning, Types, and Characteristics, Positivism, and Postpositivistic Approach to Research.

Methods of Research: Experimental, Descriptive, Historical, Qualitative and Quantitative Methods, and Steps of Research.  

Thesis and Article Writing: Format and Styles of Referencing,  Application of ICT in Research, Research Ethics.


Unit-III Comprehension

A passage of text is given.

Questions related to the passage are asked.


Unit-IV Communication

Communication: Meaning, Types, and Characteristics of Communication.

Effective Communication: Verbal and Non-verbal, Inter-Cultural and Group Communications, Classroom Communication, Barriers to Effective Communication, Mass-Media, and Society.


Unit-V Mathematical Reasoning and Aptitude

Types of Reasoning: Number series, Letter series, Codes, and Relationships.

Mathematical Aptitude: Fraction, Time & Distance, Ratio, Proportion and Percentage, Profit and Loss, Interest and Discounting, Averages, etc. 


Unit-VI Logical Reasoning

Understanding the Structure of Arguments: Argument Forms, Structure of Categorical Propositions, Mood and Figure, Formal and Informal Fallacies, Uses of Language, Connotations and Denotations of Terms, Classical Square of Opposition, Evaluating and Distinguishing Deductive and Inductive Reasoning, and Analogies. 

Venn Diagram: Simple and multiple uses for establishing the validity of arguments.  

Indian Logic: Means of Knowledge, Pramanas- Pratyaksha (Perception), Anumana (Inference), Upamana (Comparison), Shabda (Verbal testimony), Arthapatti (Implication) and Anupalabddhi (Non-apprehension), Structure and Kinds of Anumana (Inference), Vyapti (Invariable Relation), Hetvabhasas (Fallacies of Inference).


Unit-VII Data Interpretation

Sources, Acquisition, and Classification of Data.

Quantitative and Qualitative Data.

Graphical Representation (Bar-chart, Histograms, Pie-chart, Table-chart, and Line-chart)

Mapping of Data, Data Interpretation. Data and Governance.


Unit-VIII Information and Communication Technology (ICT) 

General Abbreviations and Terminology, Basics of the Internet, Intranet, E-mail, Audio and Video-conferencing, Digital initiatives in Higher Education, ICT and Governance. 


Unit-IX People, Development and Environment

Development and Environment: Millennium Development and Sustainable Development Goals.

Human and Environment Interaction: Anthropogenic activities and their impacts on the environment.

Environmental Issues: Local, Regional and Global issues; Air Pollution, Water Pollution, Soil Pollution, Noise Pollution, Waste (Solid, Liquid, Biomedical, Hazardous, Electronic), Climate Change, and its Socio-Economic and Political Dimensions, Impacts of Pollutants on Human Health.

Natural and Energy Resources: Solar, Wind, Soil, Hydro, Geothermal, Biomass, Nuclear, and Forests.

Natural Hazards and Disasters: Mitigation Strategies, Environmental Protection Act (1986), National Action Plan on Climate Change, International Agreements/ Efforts -Montreal Protocol, Rio Summit, Convention on Biodiversity, Kyoto Protocol, Paris Agreement, International Solar Alliance.


Unit-X Higher Education System

Institutions of Higher Learning and Education in Ancient India.

Evolution of Higher Learning and Research in Post Independence India.

Oriental, Conventional, and Non-conventional Learning Programs in India.

Professional, Technical, and Skill-Based Education.

Value Education and Environmental Education.

Policies, Governance, and Administration.


Download syllabus and previous year papers from official website according to your subject.

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By Naresh IAS