The Combined Defence Services exam is held twice in a year in the months of February and November. It is conducted by the union public services commissions (UPSC) and enables the aspirants to apply for Indian Army, Indian Air Force, and Naval Academy. The age limit to apply for this exam is 19-25 years. A candidate can appear for CDS Exam, while he/she is appearing for 3rd year of Graduation. Both Male and Female candidates can apply for CDS Exam. Female candidates can only apply for Short Service Commission i.e. OTA. CDS Exam has three papers i.e. GK, Maths and English for Permanent Commission i.e. IMA, AF & NA and two i.e. English & GK for candidates applying for Short Service Commission i.e. OTA. Candidates with Arts/Commerce background are eligible for ARMY only. One can appear for CDS Exam, when he/she is appearing for 3rd year of Graduation. The Cavalier, provides a Comprehensive 45 days and 3 months written coaching and has achieved the best success rate. The exam starts at 9 a.m. and winds up at 5 p.m. on the same day. Most college students lack mental physical stamina to sit for almost 8 Hours. So, build it up and be prepared for long hours.



    Questions / Duration

    Max. Marks

    Maximum Marks

    Elementary Mathematics

    120 minutes

    1/3 negative marking


    General Knowledge

    120 minutes

    1/3 negative marking



    120 minutes

    1/3 negative marking






Notification Release Date

22 December 2021

18 May 2022

Application Start

22 December 2021

18 May 2022

Application Last Date

11 January 2022

14 June 2022

Release of Admit Card

22 February 2022 (Tentative)

14 August 2022 (Tentative)

Exam Date

10 April 2022

04 September 2022


CDS Mathematics:

The standard of Mathematics paper will be of Matriculation level. Total 100 questions. Therefore, a student gets about a minute plus to solve each question. It is essential for candidate to practice shortcut techniques, At Cavalier all possible short cuts are taught and practiced in detail.

General Knowledge:

The syllabus for the General Knowledge paper is very vast and generic. Analyzing the past five years papers would help or else, you may focus on unnecessary, bulky details that are difficult to comprehend and remember. For example, in History one needs to drastically cut down effort on Ancient and Medieval History. The Cavalier, provide students with Sample Paper and recent Current Affairs Notes prior to the Exam Day.


The English paper is often ignored by candidates who speak reasonably good English. They however, forget that spoken English is quite different from the Pure Application of Correct Grammar in Objective Type Questions. Those candidates who revise and practice the Basic English Grammar sufficiently can secure almost 100% marks in the grammar section, which is almost 70% of the paper. UPSC gets innovative and at times asks you to indentify the wrong statements too. So be prepared for surprises.

The remaining 30% paper comprises Comprehensions, Antonyms, Synonyms, Analogy. The candidates usually spend a lot of time on this section. It is very difficult to mug up Antonyms and Synonyms; this is something that one builds over a period of time. The Cavalier teaches you some innovative techniques to solve your paper in a short span of time.

  • Latest Updates:



Indian Military Academy- 100

Indian Naval Academy- 45

Air Force Academy- 32

Officers Training Academy (Men)- 175

Officers Training Academy (Women)- 15 - 25

Availability of Forms

July & November

Exam Schedule

CDS I - April
CDS II - September

Age Limit, Gender & Marital Status

20 to 24, Unmarried Male and Female

Educational Qualification

IMA & OTA (Men & Women)- Graduation passed or appearing in any stream.

Indian Naval Academy (INA)- B.E or B. Tech passed or appearing.
Air Force Academy (AFA)- Graduation passed or appearing in any stream with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level or Bachelor of Engineering/B.Tech.

Selection Procedure

Written Exam conducted by UPSC

SSB Interview conducted by Service Selection Boards of Army/Navy and Air Force

Medical Examination


IMA/INA/AFA-18 Months
OTA-11 Months


What is CDS?

Combined Defence Services (CDS) is an examination which is conducted twice a year by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) for the recruitment of candidates into the Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Indian

What Is the Selection Procedure for CDS?

Selection Procedure For CDS contains the following tests : - Written Exam, SSB Interview, Medical Test

What Is The Syllabus for CDS?

The syllabus of CDS is divided into three sections- English, General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics

What is exam schedule for CDS?

Form Release Date- Paper I - December | Paper II - June Exam Date- Paper I April | Paper- II - September

Which Stream Student Can Apply For CDS?

Indian Military Academy/Officers’ Training Academy:The candidates must possess a degree from a recognized university or equivalent. Indian Naval Academy:The candidates must possess a Bachelor of Engineering degree. Air Force Academy:The candidates must

Can an NRI apply for CDS?

A person having foreign citizenship cannot apply for CDS but If He/She has an Indian passport and documents supporting his/her claim of Indian citizenship then they can apply for CDS.

How Tough is CDS?

The toughness level varies from easy to difficult depending upon a candidate’s approach and preparation.

Marking Scheme for CDS?

For CDS paper, each question carries 4 options and out of which only 1 option is correct. For each incorrect answer, 1/3 of the marks will be deducted. More than one option marked is treated as incorrect.

Minimum Percentage For CDS?

The written exam of CDS is of total 300 marks and each section is 100 marks. The minimum qualifying marks of each section are 20% of the total marks. It becomes compulsory for candidates to score a minimum of 60 marks to qualify the exam.

What is Training Process in CDS?

The training in the academy is approximately for 74 weeks