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NATIONAL LEVEL OFFLINE TEST

NEST 2019 Exam Pattern

Last Updated - January 24, 2018

NEST Exam Pattern 2019 describes the paper pattern, subject-wise marking scheme, distribution of marks, time duration and others such. It is announced by the examination conducting authority along with syllabus, recommended books and marks distribution online on the official website of NEST. Candidates can check in detailed NEST Exam Pattern further in the article.

NEST 2019 is an online exam to be completed in 3 hours duration. A total of 230 objective type questions will be asked. The question paper comprises 5 sections – General Aptitude, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology. Each section is of 50 marks except General Aptitude which consists of questions for 30 marks. NEST syllabus contains 11th and 12th grade level Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics and Biology. There is no fixed syllabus for the General Aptitude section.

It is conducted jointly by National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER), Bhubaneswar and Mumbai University - Department of Atomic Energy Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences (UM-DAE CEBS), Mumbai. Students who are interested in getting admission in five-year integrated MSc. programme in basic sciences (Physics, Chemistry, Biology, and Mathematics) offered at NISER as well as UM-DAE CEBS.


NEST 2019 Exam Pattern Highlights

Exam modeOnline mode
Number of papers1
Number of questions230
Number of sections5
Question paper typeObjective
NEST total marks230
Exam duration180 minutes
Exam languageEnglish

NEST 2019 Exam Pattern in Detail

NEST 2019 exam is conducted in the online mode by National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER), Bhubaneswar and Mumbai University - Department of Atomic Energy Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences (UM-DAE CEBS), Mumbai at a center allotted to candidates mentioned on their respective NEST Admit Card. A total of 230 multiple choice questions will be asked in the test, which need to be completed within a duration of 3 hours. The five sections in NEST question paper have different weightage as tabulated below:

SectionNumber of questions
General Aptitude30
Physics50
Mathematics50
Chemistry50
Biology50

The examination conducting authority designs NEST questions in order to evaluate the understanding ability of candidate in a subject or section.

NEST 2019 Marking Scheme

National Entrance Screening Test 2019 will be of 230 marks in total. The question paper will be divided into 5 sections wherein all questions carry equal weightage except General Aptitude. General Aptitude will be for 30 marks whereas Physics, Mathematics, Chemistry, and Biology will carry 50 marks each. Marking scheme of NEST 2019 differs from section to section. Few key points for the marking scheme are bulleted below:

  • Section 1-General Ability has no negative marking. No marks are deducted for any wrong answer.
  • Other sections like Physics, Chemistry, Mathematics, and Biology have negative marking.
  • Some questions might have one or more correct answers for which marks can only be earned by marking all correct answers and no incorrect answer.
  • The Number of questions might change every year for NEST exam.

Note: All the details mentioned in this article are tentative and subject to change as per discretion. Candidates are recommended to check with them on the official website of NEST.


NEST 2019 Syllabus

The syllabus of NEST 2019 exam is segregated into five sections respectively and it is mandatory for candidates to be from Science background so that they’d be at ease in attempting all the sections in the question paper.

The syllabus decided by National Institute of Science Education and Research (NISER), Bhubaneswar and Mumbai University - Department of Atomic Energy Centre for Excellence in Basic Sciences (UM-DAE CEBS), Mumbai, needs to be understood by candidates in order to score good marks.

General Ability Syllabus

  • There is no specific syllabus prescribed for this section.
  • Questions from subjects like History, Geography, Science, Mathematics, English, General Knowledge, and Current Affairs are asked.
  • There would be questions about the history of Science and Mathematics.
  • Passage type questions from science will also be there in this section.
  • Additionally, it includes Class 10th mathematical ability questions.

Physics Syllabus

  • General: Dimensional analysis, Units and dimensions, significant figures, least count, measurement of length, time, mass, temperature, potential difference, Methods of measurement (Direct, Indirect, Null) , current and resistance.
  • Mechanics: Projectiles. Uniform circular motion. Relative velocity. Newton’s laws of motion. Inertial and uniformly accelerated (linear only) frames of reference, Kinetic and potential energy, Impulse, Systems of particles, Kinematics in one and two dimensions (Cartesian coordinates only).
  • Fluids: Rigid body, Stoke’s and Poiseuille’s law, Reynolds number, Buoyancy, Surface energy and surface tension. The pressure in a fluid, Dynamics of rigid bodies with fixed axis of rotation, Pascal’s law, capillary rise. Viscosity –Terminal velocity, Bernoulli’s theorem, Qualitative understanding of turbulence, Streamline flow, the equation of continuity.
  • Rotational Dynamics: Moment of inertia, the moment of inertia of uniform bodies with simple geometrical shapes. Angular momentum, Torque, Equilibrium of rigid bodies, parallel and perpendicular axes theorems, Young’s modulus.
  • Sound: Longitudinal and transverse waves, Resonance (qualitative understanding), superposition of waves. Progressive and stationary waves, Plane wave motion, Beats, Vibration of strings and air columns, Speed of sound in gases, Doppler Effect.
  • Thermal physics: Blackbody radiation - absorptive and emissive powers, liquids and gases. Calorimetric Problems, Stefan’s law, latent heat. Heat conduction in one dimension, Newton’s law of cooling.
12th Standard topics at a glance
ElectricityMagnetismCapacitance
Electromagnetic InductionModern PhysicsX-rays
Ray OpticsWave OpticsSemiconductors

Mathematics Syllabus

  • Algebra: Algebra of complex numbers, addition, multiplication, conjugation, polar representation, properties of modulus and principal argument, triangle inequality, cube roots of unity, geometric interpretations.
  • Quadratic equations with real coefficients, Logarithms and their properties, computation of the probability of events using permutations and combinations, the formation of quadratic equations with given roots, relations between roots and coefficients solutions of simultaneous linear equations in two or three variables, symmetric functions of roots.
  • Arithmetic, Permutations and combinations, geometric and harmonic progressions, arithmetic, geometric and harmonic means, sums of finite arithmetic and geometric progressions, infinite geometric series.
  • Probability: Addition and multiplication rules of probability, conditional probability, Bayes Theorem, symmetric and skew-symmetric matrices and their properties, independence of events.
  • Binomial theorem for positive integral index, properties of binomial coefficients.
  • Matrices as a rectangular array of real numbers, equality of matrices, addition, multiplication by a scalar and product of matrices, transpose of a matrix, determinant of a square matrix of order up to three.

Chemistry Syllabus

Physical Syllabus
Mole ConceptAtomic StructureChemical Bonding
ThermodynamicsChemical KineticsSolid State
SolutionsSurface ChemistryColloids
Hydrogen ElementPeriodic Tables-block Elements
p-block Elementsd-block Elementsf-block Elements
Coordination CompoundsMetallurgyMetals and Non-Metals

Organic Chemistry

  • Hybridizations of carbon, hyperconjugation, Sigma and pi-bonds, Representation of organic compounds, Shapes of simple organic molecules, electromeric effect, resonance effect, Inductive effect, Determination of empirical and molecular formulae.
  • Reactive intermediates: structure and stability of - carbocation, carbanion and free radical, Formation, Hemolytic and heterolytic bond cleavages.
  • Isomerism: Geometrical isomerism, Racemic mixture, Chirality Structural and stereoisomerism, Conformations of ethane and butane (Newman projections), Optical isomerism of compounds.
  • Nomenclature: IUPAC of only hydrocarbons, monofunctional and bi-functional compounds, including benzene derivatives, IUPAC nomenclature of simple organic compounds.
  • Alkanes: Wurtz reaction, Preparation, Combustion and halogenation of alkanes, properties and reactions, Idea of homologous series, Mechanism of photo-halogenation.
  • Alkenes and Alkynes: Acid-catalyzed hydration of alkenes and alkynes (excluding the stereochemistry), Ozonolytic, Markownikoff rule, Reduction of alkenes and alkynes, Addition reactions of alkynes, Isomerization.
  • Aromatic compounds: Friedel-Crafts alkylation and acylation (No mechanism) Huckel theory of aromaticity, Aromaticity, Structure of benzene, Isomerism in substituted benzenes.
  • Haloalkanes (Alkyl halides): Alcohols, Halogen exchange reaction, olefins, Nucleophilic substitution reactions of alkyl halides with different nucleophilic species, Grignard reagent and its reaction.

Biology Syllabus

BiotechnologyHumans and EnvironmentGenetics
EvolutionBiology of Animal SystemsReproduction
EcologyBiology of Plant SystemsAnatomy
Human Health and DiseasesEcosystemsPhysiology

NEST 2019 Recommended Books

Below-mentioned are some books recommended for candidates appearing for NEST 2019 exam.

Book NameAuthor
Problems in PhysicsA.A Pinsky
Practice Problems in Physics for Engineering and Medical Entrance ExamsS. Mishra
An Objective Approach to Organic ChemistryR.K. Gupta
Higher AlgebraHall and Knight

NEST 2019 Important Exam Day Instructions

There are few important guidelines proposed by the examination conducting authority that candidates need to abide by to avoid any sort of issue on the exam day. All are bulleted below:

  • All answers need to be marked on the OMR sheet.
  • Candidates have to darken the round bubble against the answer number properly.
  • They must make the use of a pen (black or blue ballpoint) on the OMR.
  • Any sort of writing or stray marking is not allowed on the question paper or OMR sheet.
  • Candidates must read the instructions carefully on the first page of the NEST 2019 question paper.
  • Candidates must not fold or damage the OMR Sheet.
  • OMR sheet must be handed it over to invigilator after completion of the test.

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