Candidates appearing for JEST (Joint Entrance Screening Test) are requested to submit their applications between January 11th to February 14th through www.jest.org.in. The PhD, Integrated MSC-PhD, MTech-PhD programmes are available in Physics, Theoretical Computer Science, Neuroscience and Computational Biology.
The entrance exam will be held on April 11th at over 37 centres, including Kochi, Thiruvananthapuram, Kozhikode, Mangalore, Bengaluru, Chennai, Mumbai, and Delhi.
Around 33 National Research institutes will pick their candidates according to their final scores. And the institutes are Aryabhatta Research Institute Nainital, Bose Institute Kolkata, Homi Baba Mumbai, Harish Chandra Allahabad, International Centre for Theoretical Science Bengaluru, Indira Gandhi Centre for Theoretical Atomic Research Kalpakkam, Indian Institute of AstroPhysics Bengaluru, Indian Institute of Science Bengaluru, TIFR Mumbai, National Brain Research Centre Gurgaon, Institute of Mathematical Science Chennai, Thiruvananthapuram, 6 IISER branches and IIST Thiruvananthapuram.
The institutes will differ regarding the entrance eligibility. The integrated PhD can be classified as BSC and PHD as MSC. But those who have BTech, MTech, MCA are also eligible for admission, along with those who have a degree in Math, Electronics, Opto-Electronics and Astronomy. For more details, you can check the institutes official websites. Even those who pass their final exams next year are also fit for admission.
Though one can do their Higher Studies Research in several subjects, at JEST only Physics and Theoretical Computer Science are available, and candidates can only pick one paper. Though high marks are not required for entrance exams, they need to have a good academic background. For admissions, some institutes might insist on minimum marks. Though there is no age limit to write the exams; some institutes might assert an age limit for admissions. JEST can be written any number of times.
You can check their websites for information on the research subjects available and other details. Model questions are also available.
You might not get a research scholarship simply based on your JEST scores. You can file applications as and when each institute issues their admission notifications. JEST score is only valid for a year.