CDS 2023: Combined Defence Services Important Dates, Application Form, Syllabus, Exam Pattern, Admit Card, Results, Cut off

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CDS 2023 Overview

ExamType Format Language
National Level Online/CBT, Offline/PBT English

The Combined Defence Services (CDS) exam is conducted by Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) to helps candidates get admission in Indian Naval Academy, Officers' Training Academy, Air Force Academy and Indian Military Academy. The exam also helps in recruitment of Army, Navy and Air Force officers. CDS is conducted twice a year, once in February (CDS I) and once in September (CDS II), the application form for which is released in November and August respectively.

Qualification to appear for the exam for various posts is different. However, the minimum qualification is common, which is graduation from a recognized university. Candidates interested in joining Defence Services should take this national level entrance exam. Check all the details about CDS 2023 including exam notification, exam dates, application form, eligibility criteria, exam pattern, admit card and syllabus to apply for the exam.

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CDS 2023 Eligibility Criteria

Candidates who wish to apply for CDS 2023 exam should first check the eligibility criteria and make sure that they meet every condition. Admission to the examination at every stage will be purely subject to meeting the given eligibility conditions. 


(I) A Citizen of India

(II) A subject of Bhutan

(III) A subject of Nepal

(IV) A Tibetan refugee who came over to India before the 1st January 1962

(V) A person of Indian origin who has shifted base from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, the United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire and Ethiopia

Educational Qualification:

Indian Military Academy:

The candidate must have a degree from a recognised university, preferably Engineering and/or Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level.

Indian Naval Academy:

Candidate should have completed B.Sc. with Physics & Mathematics as subjects or Bachelor of Engineering from a recognised university.

Air Force Academy:

Applicants should have B.Sc. Degree with Physics and/or Mathematics as subjects or Bachelor of Engineering Degree from a recognised university.

Age Limitations:

The applicant should be minimum 19 years of age to apply for the UPSC Exams, and the maximum age limit is as per the Academy. The candidate must be unmarried.

Age Bar


20-24 Years

Indian Military Academy

20-22 Years

Naval Academy

20-23 Years

Air Force Academy

20-25 Years

Officers’ Training Academy


CDS 2023 Application Details

CDS 2023 application process is completely online where candidates need to fill the application form by visiting the official website of UPSC. Make sure to read Appendix-II to understand the process of filling up the online Application Form.  Though multiple applications are allowed, candidates should try to fill only one application form to avoid any chances of cancellation of application due to confusion.

The online registration process for CDS 2023 exam has been divided into two parts: Part I and Part II. To successfully submit the application form, candidates should fill all the details carefully.

CDS 2023 Important Dates


Schedule for CDS 1

Schedule for CDS 2

Announcement of official notice

November 8, 2023

August 8, 2023

Commencement of online application process

November 8, 2023

August 8, 2023

Last date for application

December 4, 2023

September 3, 2023

Admit card issuance

January- February 2023

November 18, 2023

Entrance exam

February 4, 2023

November 2023

Result announcement

May 2023

Will be notified later


Application fees detail

Candidates except Female/SC/ST are required to pay a fee of Rs. 200. Applicants can make payment either by depositing the fee direct in any Branch of SBI in cash or by using net banking facility or by Debit/Credit card.

Applicants who opt for cash payment need to get a printout of the system generated Pay in-slip during Part-II registration and deposit the fees in the SBI branch on next working day.

Fee once paid can neither be refunded nor can be reserved for any other government entrance exam

(Note: Female candidates and applicants belonging to SC/ ST/ Physically Handicapped categories are NOT required to pay the exam fee.)

CDS 2023 Counselling/Interview

Candidates will be shortlisted for the next phase of selection process after CDS exam 2023 result. Selected candidates need to face SSB/Interview followed by medical examination. Document verification will also a part of CDS 2023 counselling process.

CDS Cut-off Top Management Colleges

Candidates will be shortlisted for the next phase of selection process after CDS exam 2023 result. Selected candidates need to face SSB/Interview followed by medical examination. Document verification will also a part of CDS 2023 counselling process.

CDS 2023 Exam Syllabus

The Union Public Service Commission will set CDS 2023 syllabus. The question paper includes questions from English, General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics. The questions in section Elementary Mathematics will be of Matriculation level. Sections based on other subjects will contain questions of graduate level from Indian universities. The English section will comprise questions of basic understanding of English and workmanlike use of words.


General Knowledge

Elementary Mathematics








For detailed information on UPSC CDS 2023 Exam Syllabus, read more.

CDS 2023 Exam Centers

CDS exam 2023 will be held at 41 centres across India. There will be an upper limit on the number of candidates allotted to the CDS 2023 exam centers except for Chennai, Delhi, Dispur, Kolkatta, and Nagpur. The examination authorities will allot centres on the first-apply-first-allot basis and those you don’t get a centre of choice need to choose a different centre from the remaining options. To get a centre of choice, candidates should apply for CDS 2023 as early as possible.  

CDS 2023 Test Centres















Panaji (Goa)








Port Blair




















CDS 2023 Contact Details

UPSC’s Facilitation Counter near Gate ‘C’

Union Public Service Commission
Dholpur House, Shahjahan Road,
New Delhi - 110069

Ph: 011-23098543 / 23385271 / 23381125 / 23098591


Frequently Asked Questions

NDA exam is required for recruitment of the Army, Naval, and Air-Force while CDS is necessary to recruit for IMA, Naval Academy, Air Force Academy and OTA.

No, you can apply for CDS exam through online mode by visiting the official website of UPSC only.

UPSC provides all the guidelines in the advertisement as well as the exam notification. Before filling the application form, you should go through Annexure II carefully to understand the form filling process.

You are allowed to bring a clipboard or hardboard on which nothing should be written and a good quality black ball pen only. 

CDS selection process is divided into multiple steps. Candidates need to qualify in each process for admission in IMA, INA, AFA and OTA.

1. Written exam

2. Personal Interview

3. Verification of the documents and the candidate

4. Medical examination of the selected applicants

The best source to check updated notifications about CDS exam, admit card, result, counselling etc. is the official website of UPSC.