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National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) is a national-level scholarship program in India to identify and recognize students with high intellect and academic talent. It is one of the most prestigious exams in India.Close to 1,500,000 students appear in this scholarship exam every year. The scheme is open to students of Indian nationality. Only students studying in Class X are eligible to appear for the selection process. As it is organized by an official body (NCERT), it is widely regarded by the Government of India as the toughest and most prestigious examination at high school level in the country.

National level examination

Students who qualifies first stage are eligible to appear for the national level examination (about top 4000+ students from the entire country). The national level examination has two parts for nominating the required number of candidates. Students studying overseas but are Indian citizens can participate in NTSE second stage directly.

  • Part-I: Mental Ability Test (MAT) + Language (English / Local Language)
  • Part-II: Scholastic Aptitude Test (SAT)


I level exam for Std X

SAT: The syllabus for Mathematics, Science and Social Science will be broadly based on the prescribed respective State Board Syllabus from Std 9th – 10th class. Few states like Kerala refer both state board and NCERT books while few states like Maharashtra, Andhra Pradesh ask questions primarily from their state board books. MAT: General questions Language: state board books covers a lot. More focus is on vocabulary, grammar and basic understanding. In 2013 – 14 Language in first stage is of qualifying nature only. From 2013-14 there would be negative marking in NTSE second stage.

II level exam for Std X

NCERT has announced new pattern for stage 2 exam

Mental Ability test: 50 questions 50 marks, Language test : 40 questions 40 marks, Scholastic Aptitude test : 100 questions 100 marks ( 40 q from Science, 20 q from maths, 40 q from SST), SAT: The mathematics and science questions will be asked from the chapters in the syllabus of class 10th.The social science questions will be asked from class 10th.


The students who qualifies second stage are eligible for scholarship. The amount of scholarship has been enhanced to Rs.500/- per month for all the students and starts immediately after the result. IN case students have not received the letter from NCERT after 5 weeks of the declaration of the result, they should contact NCERT for updates. The scholarship is expected to increase up to 4k-5k in next few years. There are no restrictions like parental income, govt school, domicile etc. In case student visit abroad for studies the payment of scholarship will stop.