UPSC CDS Syllabus 2022, Check Exam Pattern

UPSC CDS Syllabus 2022: Get here latest exam pattern and detailed syllabus for UPSC CDS written exam for General Knowledge, English and Mathematics.

UPSC CDS 2022 Exam notified soon for recruitment of 344 vacancies in Combined Defence Services IMA/INA/AFA/OTA. PDF Download UPSC CDS Syllabus here.

UPSC CDS Syllabus 2020: Check Exam Pattern

UPSC CDS Syllabus 2022 [Updated]

UPSC CDS Syllabus Details: Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is going to conducts Combined Defence Services (CDS ) Examination for recruitment of various vacancies under Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Air Force Academy and Officers Training Academy. The CDS syllabus details is given below.

CDS English Syllabus : PAPER 1

The questions in the English section of the CDS exam are designed to test the candidate’s understanding of basic grammar, vocabulary and knowledge of English Language.

Questions in this section are asked from the following topics: 

  • Antonyms
  • Sentence improvement
  • Comprehension
  • Synonyms
  • Word substitution
  • Ordering of sentences
  • Spotting Errors
  • Selecting Words
  • Ordering of words in a sentence

CDS General Knowledge Syllabus : PAPER 2

General Knowledge including knowledge of current events and of such matters of everyday observation and experience in their scientific aspects as may be expected of an educated person who has not made a special study of any scientific subject. The Paper will also include questions on History of India and Geography of a nature which Candidate should be able to answer without special study.

The General Knowledge paper includes questions on various topics as mentioned below:

  1. History
  2. Geography
  3. Politics
  4. Economics
  5. Sociology
  6. Science (Physics, Chemistry, Biology)
  7. Environment
  8. Sports
  9. Awards
  10. Books & Authors
  11. Culture and Traditions

CDS Maths Syllabus : PAPER 3

Arithmetic: Number System-Natural numbers, Integers, Rational and Real numbers. Fundamental Operations addition, subtraction, multiplication, division, Square roots, Decimal fractions. Unitary method, time and distance, time and work, percentages, applications to simple and compound interest, profit and loss, ratio and proportion, variation.

Elementary Number Theory– Division algorithm. Prime and composite numbers. Tests of divisibility by 2, 3, 4, 5, 9 and 11. Multiples and factors. Factorization Theorem. H.C.F. and L.C.M. Euclidean algorithm, Logarithms to base 10, laws of logarithms, use of logarithmic tables.


Basic Operations, simple factors, Remainder Theorem, H.C.F., L.C.M. Theory of polynomials, Solutions of quadratic equations, relation between its roots and coefficients (Only real roots to be considered). Simultaneous linear equations in two unknowns-analytical and graphical solutions. Simultaneous linear in equations in two variables and their solutions. Practical problems leading to two simultaneous linear equations or in equations in two Variables or quadratic equations in one variable & their solutions. Set language and set notation, rational expressions and conditional identities, Laws of indices.


Sine x, cosine x, Tangent x when 0 ≤x ≤90 Values of sin x, cos x and tan x, for x = 0, 30, 45, 60 and 90
Simple trigonometric identities.
Use of trigonometric tables.
Simple cases of heights and distances.


Lines and angles, Plane and plane figures, Theorems on (i) Properties of angles at a Point, (ii) Parallel lines, (iii) Sides and angles of a triangle, (iv) Congruency of triangles, (v) Similar triangles, (vi) Concurrence of medians and altitudes, (vii) Properties of angles, sides and diagonals of a parallelogram, rectangle and square (viii) Circles and its properties including tangents and normal, (ix) Loci.


Areas of squares, rectangles, parallelograms, triangle and circle. Areas of figures which Can be split up into these figures (Field Book), Surface area and volume of cuboids, lateral surface and volume of right circular cones and cylinders, surface area and Volume of spheres.


Collection and tabulation of statistical data, Graphical representation, frequency Polygons, histograms, bar charts, pie charts etc. Measures of central tendency.

Download UPSC CDS Syllabus PDF

Click here for CDS Detailed Syllabus

Here is a list of recommended books for IMA, INA, AFA, and OTA candidates for their preparation:

  1. Arihant Pathfinder : Buy Now
  2. Quantum CAT by Sarvesh Verma : Buy Now
  3. Mathematics for CDS by RS Aggarwal : Buy Now
  4. Quantitative Aptitude for examinations paperback 2018 by RS Aggarwal : Buy Now

English section tests the candidates’ understanding of English and workmanlike use of words. Given below are the topics to prepare in the English section for the CDS exam.

  1. Objective General English by Arihant : Buy Now
  2. Objective General English by RS Aggarwal : Buy Now
  3. Word Power Made Easy: Norman Lewis : Buy Now

The questions in the CDS General Knowledge paper are based on current affairs, History of India, Geography, Politics, and Economy. A regular update of the past few months is necessary to score well in this section. Here is a list of books for general knowledge:

  1. Manorama Yearbook : Buy Now
  2. Lucent’s General Knowledge : Buy Now
  3. Competition in Focus (Half Yearly and Yearly) : Buy Now

Candidates can read CDS Preparation Tips here in detail for all subjects. 

NOTE: All Books in Discounted Price BUY NOW

CDS Exam Pattern 2022 [Updated]

CDS Exam Pattern Details: Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is going to conducts Combined Defence Services (CDS) Examination for recruitment of various vacancies under Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Air Force Academy and Officers Training Academy. 

The exam pattern of UPSC CDS details given below…

CDS Written Exam Pattern

i. Written Exam consists of Objective Type questions and time duration 02 hrs and maximum marks is 100 for each subject.

ii. For the candidates who are appearing for Indian Military Academy, Naval Academy, Air force Academy written test comprising of English, General Knowledge and Elementary mathematics subjects and for candidates who are appearing for officers training academy the written test comprising of English and General Knowledge.

iii. Candidates who are declared successful in the written exam will be detailed for intelligence and personality test at the Service Selection Board based on their preference, by the respective service HQ.

(A) For Admission to Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Air Force Academy

Subject Duration Maximum Marks
English 2 Hours 100
General Knowledge 2 Hours 100
Elementary Mathematics 2 Hours 100

(B) For Admission to Officers’ Training Academy:

Subject Duration Maximum Marks
English 2 Hours 100
General Knowledge 2 Hours 100

The maximum marks allotted to the written examination and to the interviews will be equal for each course. i.e the maximum marks allotted to the written examination and to the interviews will be 300, 300, 300 and 200 each for admission to the Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Air Force Academy and Officers Training Academy respectively.

The papers in all the subjects will consists of objective type questions only. The question papers of General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics will be set bilingually in Hindi as well as English.

In the question papers, wherever necessary, questions involving the metric system of Weighs and Measures only will be set.

CDS Intelligence & Personality Test

The candidates who are selected in written test are called for interview. The SSB procedure consists of two stage selection process-Stage I and Stage II. Only those candidates who clear the stage I are permitted to appear for Stage II.
a. Stage I comprises of Officers Intelligence Rating (OIR) tests are Picture Perception Description Test (PP&DT). The candidates will be shortlisted based on combination of performance in OIR Test and PP&DT.
b. Stage II comprises of Interview, Group Testing Officers Tasks, Psychology Tests and the conference. These testes are conducted over 4 days .
The personality of candidate is assessed by three different assessors viz. the interviewing Officer (IO), Group Testing Officer (GTO) and the Psychologist. There are no separate weightage for each test. The marks are allotted by assessors only after taking into consideration the performance of the candidate holistically in all the test.

Final Merit List for CDS Exam

Candidates who are able to fetch UPSC CDS Cut off Marks in the written exam and qualify the SSB Interview make into the final merit list prepared by the UPSC. Candidates selection for admission to IMA, INA, AFA and OTA courses is made through this final merit list.

CDS Exam Important Instructions

  1. Write only in Black ballpoint pen, your Centre and subject followed by the CDS 2022 test booklet series (in bracket), subject code and the exam roll number at the appropriate space provided on the answer sheet at the top.
  2. Encode your CDS 2022 booklet series (A, B, C, or D as the case may be), subject code and roll number in the circles provided for the purpose in the answer sheet.
  3. In case the CDS booklet series is not printed on the test booklet or answer sheet is un-numbered then candidates should report immediately to the invigilator and get the test booklet/answer sheet replaced.
  4. Candidates should note that any omission/mistakes/discrepancy in encoding/filling of details in the CDS 2022 OMR answer sheet, especially with regard to the Roll Number and Test Booklet Series Code, will render the answer sheet liable for rejection.
  5. Immediately after the commencement of the CDS 2022 please check that the test booklet supplied to you does not have any unprinted or torn or missing pages or items etc., if so, get it replaced by a complete test booklet of the same series and subject.
  6. Do not write your name or anything other than the specific items of information asked for, on the CDS answer sheet/test booklet/sheet for rough work.
  7. Do not fold or damage or put any extraneous marking over the CDS Answer Sheet. Do not write anything on the reverse of the answer sheet.

CDS Syllabus FAQs

How many attempts are allowed to appear for CDS exams.?

There is no such restrictions on the number of attempts of CDS.

Are the subjects and syllabus same for IMA and OTA exam?

No, The IMA have 3 subjects while OTA have only different subjects.

How many time CDS is conducted in a year?

UPSC Conduct CDS twice a year.

What is the level of Maths in CDS exam?

The level of Mathematics is till 10th standard only.
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