Service Selection Board (SSB)
SSB Interview is the most comprehensive and authentic way of assessing the personality profile of potential defence officer aspirants. The assessors are extremely competent, unbiased and have high degree of moral courage. The assessment is highly accurate as the various aspects of personality dimensions have been kept in mind while designing the SSB Interview.
The Human personality comprises of personal qualities which a person acquires during his life. In SSB, the focus is on 15 qualities called Officers Like Qualities (OLQs). These qualities have been chosen by keeping the working environment of defence services in mind. The emphasis is on problem solving ability and utilisation of these OLQs during the process..
There are three aspects of human personality which come into play while solving the problems. These aspects are verbal, written and action. These three aspects are transformed into three techniques, which are utilised in SSB. The personality of the potential candidate is assessed by three assessors separately utilising largely these aspects. The assessors and techniques are as under:
(a) Interviewing Officers Technique: The focus is largely on verbal aspects.
(b) Psychological Test Technique: The focus is largely on written aspects.
(c) Group Test officers Technique: The focus is largely on physical action though there are verbal as well as written components also in GTO Technique.
As the system is extremely fair and unbiased it gives immense confidence to the candidates attending the SSB. In addition, the focus during assessment is not on the number of vacancies but on the desired personality profile of the candidates.
Coaching Schedule: The coaching starts twice a month i.e. 01st and 16th of the month. The duration of the coaching is for two weeks each. The batch strength of each batch has been planned to be of not more than 20 students. Initially students are put through the complete SSB process to correctly assess the student’s personality profile. In the next stage, the personality development process is undertaken to build on personality traits and remove the gray areas to enable them success.
It is recommended that the students should attend SSB coaching as early as possible to imbibe the essence of the coaching and develop the personality traits adequately.
Fees: The coaching fee has been fixed at the lowest possible level keeping the demographic pattern of the area in mind. The coaching fees for two weeks coaching is Rs. 7500/-. The Students are also given a refresher course prior to moving for SSB.
The wards of serving/retired defense personnel and serving defense personnel, Sainik/Military school students are given a concession of Rs.500/-. The identity proof of the above category is essential to claim the concession.
SSB: 2 weeks, full day sessions – INR 7,500/
Note: INR 500 fee relaxation for wards of defense personnel.
National Defense Academy Entrance Exam
Recruitment of candidates to Army, Navy and Air force wings of the National Defence Academy (NDA), is through National Defence Academy Entrance Exam which is held twice a year, generally in the month of April and September. NDA exam is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC). A candidate must be an unmarried male. The course of training is for three years.
The candidate is required to give his preference for the service he wishes to join, however the final decision also depends on the rank he secures in the merit list. The candidate should first decide their preference for the two academies i.e. National Defence Academy and Naval Academy (Executive Branch) . If a candidate opts for NDA as his first choice, he has to then give his preferences for the three wings of the NDA i.e. Army, Navy, Air force, followed by his preference for Naval Academy. Alternatively, if he gives his first preference for Naval Academy, he has to follow it with his preference for the three wings of the NDA. The Indian Army is a place where you’ll never stop learning. Nowhere else can you get such phenomenal opportunities to constantly hone and upgrade your skills. NDA awards you a Bachelor’s degree in Arts, Science or Computer Science on completion of your training. If you join the technical stream, you will be offered a Graduate and Post Graduate degree in Engineering from one of the finest institutes of technology in the country.
If you are selected for the prestigious Defence Services Staff College course. You’ll be awarded a Master of Science degree in Defence and Strategic Studies. The Indian Army also runs some of the country’s most prestigious academies and institutes. This covers a wide range of subjects from engineering to medicine, administration to strategy, and armament technology to management. The choice is indeed limitless. In fact, you can even get into Research & Development, if you desire. That’s not all. You can also take a study leave amidst your tenure for an added educational qualification.
Candidates who desire to join Air Force Academy must indicate AFA as first choice, as they have to be administered pilot aptitude battery test at one of the AFSB and AF Medical at Central Medical Establishment/ Institute of Aviation Medicines.
NDA (Crash Course): 30 days, 6 hrs per day – INR 7000/
NDA (Regular): 100 days, 3 hrs per day – INR 10,000/
Combined Defense Services Examination
The “Combined Defense Services” (CDS) Test is conducted twice a year by the Union Public Service Commission for recruitment at the Indian Military Academy, the Officer Training Academy, the Indian Naval Academy and the Academy of the Air Force of India. The Notice for the exam is usually published in the months of October and June, and the exams are held in February and November, respectively. Only unmarried graduates are eligible to take the exam. Successful candidates are admitted to the respective Academies after an interview conducted by the Service Selection Board (SSB).
Those candidates qualified on the written exam. They are then pre-selected for an interview by a Services Selection Committee that evaluates the suitability of a candidate for a career in the Indian Armed Forces. The SSB interview lasts approximately one week, during this process a candidate undergoes several physical and psychological tests to determine if it is official or not. In addition to the SSB interview, candidates from the Air Force Academy (only those who have requested a flight branch) are tested for PABT. After these tests, the candidates undergo a medical examination before finally being admitted to the aforementioned academies, and after successfully completing the training, they are admitted to the armed forces.
The armed forces offer a very exciting career to young men and women in various fields. The race in force is also an adventure in itself. To ensure that the appropriate candidates are selected, the armed forces adopt a thorough selection process through the interview with the Service Selection Board (SSB). This selection system is based on the “trait theory” of leadership, which assumes that each leader must have some specific and predetermined leadership traits. It also assumes that such traits can be acquired by a candidate over time, which means that a person once rejected in an SSB interview will succeed if he acquires some of the traits over time. The present selection system, although it is long and lasts four to five days, is based on an objective evaluation of each candidate in which the qualities such as initiative, alertness, judgment, courage, physical resistance, cooperation, group planning, decision, knowledge, etc. they are judged. In addition, the psychological and mental strength of the candidate is judged in relation to the requirements of the Armed Forces and finally a general evaluation of a candidate’s personality is carried out through exhaustive personal interviews.
CDS (OTA): 75 days, 2 hrs per day – INR 7000/
CDS (Regular): 75 days, 3 hrs per day – INR 10,000/
Air Force Common Admission Test
AFCAT stands for Air Force Common Admission Test. This test is conducted by the Indian Air Force for selection of officers in all branches of the IAF (except medical and dental) viz. Flying Branch (Short Service Commission only), Technical Branch (Permanent Commission and Short Service Commission) and Ground Duty Branch (Permanent Commission and Short Service Commission). AFCAT is conducted twice a year (in the month of February and August). The advertisement for the same is published in the months of December and June respectively. Both men and women are eligible for AFCAT examination.
Graduate (minimum three years course) in any discipline from a recognized university who have attained minimum 60% marks in aggregate (all papers put together) and have passed Maths and Physics at the 10+2 level are eligible to apply.
Flying Branch: the age should be between 23 years at the time of the beginning of the course. The candidate must be a graduate (minimum three years of bachelor’s degree) in any discipline of a recognized university that has obtained a minimum score of 60% in total in all articles assembled and has passed mathematics and physics in level 10 + 2 or technology BE / B grade (four-year course) of a recognized university with a minimum of 60% of grades as a whole in all documents collected.
Technical branch: the age must be between 18 and 28 years old at the time of the beginning of the course. For more information about candidates for education, you can check the announcement.
Ground Duty Branch: the age must be between 20-23 years for graduates, 20-25 years for postgraduates, 20-26 years for LLB (three years course after graduation) and 20-27 years for M.Ed / PhD / CA / ICWA. For details on the qualification of education, you can check the official announcement.
The written exam is a 2-hour exam. It consists of 100 questions and each question has 3 points. Therefore, for each correct answer, a candidate gets 3 points, for each incorrect answer, a mark is deducted and no question is left blank. The document consists of a mixture of a variety of fields. There are current questions, mathematics, reasoning, English, history, geography, science, politics, economics, etc.
After the written examination, the results are declared and a cut off is established. Candidates who score above the limit are summoned for an AFSB interview. This interview is a personality test conducted for a duration of 6 days. This personality test is carried out in two stages and consists of tests such as intelligence test, psychological tests, group tasks and personal interview.
AFCAT (Crash Course): 75 days, 2 hrs per day – INR 7000/
AFCAT (Regular): 75 days, 3 hrs per day – INR 10,000/
ACC, PC(SL), SCO & TA Examinations
Army Cadet College Wing trains soldiers of the regular army, navy and air force for commission as officers in the Indian Army. The ACC entries train at IMA, Dehradun. The nature of the training in ACC and NDA is almost identical, both carry out a three-year course in science and humanities. The additional advantage that ACC cadets bring to the army as officers is a deep understanding of the lives of the soldiers and, consequently, a better appreciation of the men’s task.
The ACC has now been renamed the Siachen Battalion in the IMA.
The selection for admission to ACC is based on a written test and a subsequent selection through the Service Selection Board. ACC has been in operation for 80 years and has graduated some notable alumni. The first IMA course comprising 40 GCs included 15 of the former Kitchner College that became ACC. The first Sword of Honor at IMA was Smith Dun, later COAS Burma.
The ACC base dates back to Kitchener College, founded in 1929 in Nowgong, Madhya Pradesh. Kitchner College became ACC in 1960, and in 1964 it moved to Ghorpuri, near Pune, to take over the campus of the former OTI (merged into OTA Madras). The institute moved again in July 1977, this time to Dehradun, to become a wing of the Indian Military Academy.
- Education Requirement: Higher Secondary (11th Pass)
- Training Academy: Four weeks at OTA
- Age: 32-40 Year
- Martial Status: Married or Unmarried
SCO entry is another type entry for soldiers, through this entry soldiers with 32 years for age can also apply. They get the chance even when they have reached the ranks of Hav and JCOs. More details on SCO entry are given below.
- Education Requirement: Class XI CBSE pattern
- Training: One year at IMA
- Age: 27-32 years
- Martial Status: Married or Unmarried
The Indian Territorial Army (TA) is a second line of defense after the Regular Indian Army; it is not a profession, occupation or a source of employment. It is only meant for those people who are already in mainstay civilian professions; in fact, gainful employment or self-employment in a civil profession is a prerequisite for joining the Territorial Army. Volunteers of the Territorial Army usually serve in uniform for a few days every year, so that they can bear arms for national defense in times of dire need or national emergencies.
Place of Registration: Pathankot, India
Basement, Nanda Complex, Dhangu road, Pathankot, Punjab, India 145001