Central Universities' PG Courses: Entrance test applications open until April 19

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Applications have been invited for the Common University Entrance Test for admissions to postgraduate courses in Central Universities for 2023-24 (CUET-PG-2023) by the National Testing Agency (NTA). The dates for the computer-based entrance exam will be announced later.

142 universities covered

According to the notification for the entrance test given on the NTA’s website www.nta.ac.in, 142 universities across the country are covered under CUET-PG-2023. These institutions include the Central University of Kerala, Digital University of Kerala, JNU, Central University of Hyderabad, Pondicherry University, University of Delhi, and Avinasalingam Institute at Coimbatore. Basic details of courses offered by each university are given on the NTA website. For elaborate details, applicants should check the website of the respective universities.

Exam centres

The entrance exam will take place at 313 centres in India, including all districts in Kerala. In addition, there are 24 centres abroad. Dubai, Kuwait, Bahrain, Muscat, Doha, Sharjah, Riyadh, and Singapore are among the test centres.

In the application, two choices for exam centres could be mentioned. However, they should be in the state where the permanent address of the applicant is located or where the applicant currently resides.

Exam pattern

There are two exam slots of a two-hour duration each. The first slot is from 10 am, and the second is from 2 pm.

Applicants should ensure that they are eligible to join a particular course in a university by checking Annexure 9 in the brochure. This is because different universities have distinct requirements for admission to the same course.

There is no upper age limit to apply for NTA’s entrance test. However, various universities impose certain conditions.

The reservation norms are: Economically Weaker Sections (EWS) 10%; Backward Classes 27%; Scheduled Castes 15%; Scheduled Tribes 7.5% and differently-abled in each category 5%. Special quotas will be decided by the respective universities.

How to Apply

Applications can be submitted on the website https://cuet.nta.nic.in until 5 pm on April 19. The entrance exam fees can be submitted online until 11.50 pm on the same day.

The fees are as follows: Rs. 1,000 for up to three papers and Rs. 500 for each additional paper. The corresponding amounts for Backward Class and EWS candidates are Rs. 800 / 400. Scheduled Caste / Tribe and transgender applicants need to pay Rs. 700 / 400. Meanwhile, the fees for differently-abled applicants are Rs. 700 and Rs. 400. Applicants for an exam centre abroad have to submit Rs. 5,000 for up to three papers and Rs. 1,500 for each extra paper. Goods and Services Tax (GST) and bank charges are to be paid in addition to these amounts. Applicants can attempt a maximum of seven papers by submitting the extra fees.

After submitting applications, corrections can be made from April 20 to 23. Step-by-step instructions on submitting applications are given on pages 6-9 of the information bulletin. Among the conditions is that one person can submit only a single application.

Structure of the Question Paper

Each paper would be designed to evaluate the competence of candidates seeking admission to PG programs in related subjects. For example, a test paper with a common code of MTQP10 should be attempted by applicants seeking entry to M Tech in Electrical Engineering, Power & Energy Engineering, Electrical Drive & Control, Power & Control, Power & Energy Systems, and Energy Science & Technology. Up to 20 test paper codes could be mentioned in the application.

Most of the papers would have two sections: A and B, each with 25 and 75 multiple-choice objective questions, respectively. While Section A would comprise questions dealing with general topics, those in Section B would test the candidate’s in-depth knowledge of the subject. However, according to Page 11 in the Bulletin, some papers would have a single section with 100 questions. By answering each answer correctly, the candidate will earn four marks, while a wrong answer would carry one negative mark.

As the exam for the same paper is conducted in various shifts, scores received by candidates will be converted to NTA scores. Details of this unification of scores are given in Annexure 4 of the Bulletin.

The syllabus of each paper would be uploaded on the NTA website.

A major characteristic of the entrance exam is that there is no revaluation of answers or results.


Rank lists will be prepared by universities based on either the total score or marks obtained in Section B. In other words, high scores alone do not ensure admissions. To join a particular university, candidates should send a proper application to that institution. The NTA score could be utilized by any institution to conduct admissions.

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