NET Exam Pattern

NET Exam Pattern

If you want to see yourself teaching at a college or a university, then you should probably have already started your preparations. Teaching is not everyone’s cup of tea. A teacher shoulders a greater responsibility of shaping the society, so it is necessary that the right person is given the opportunity to do the job. If you have the knack for pedagogy and you love to engage students in a healthy discussion, then you have a career in teaching. Every year thousands of aspirants complete their PhDs and apply for very limited openings in the field of teaching. To ensure that the highly competent candidate is given the responsibility to teach, the NET exam is conducted. In this blog, we will discuss the NET exam pattern. 

Exam Overview

NET or National Eligibility Test is an exam which is conducted to fill the posts of Assistant Professor or Junior Research Fellow(JRF) pan-India. Administered by the University Grants Commission (UGC), the exam is conducted twice a year. Earlier, the CBSE conducted the test on behalf of UGC but after 2018, the responsibility was shifted to NTA or National Testing Agency, an autonomous body under the Government of India. Considered to be the license for teaching at college and university level in India, the NET exam pattern is very diverse and covers 81 subjects. 

Also read: Primary Teaching courses

NET Exam Pattern: Eligibility

Before understanding the NET exam pattern, it is important to understand the eligibility criteria. Given below are the important prerequisites which have to be satisfied to appear for the exam:

  • In order to appear for the test, a candidate must have scored a minimum of 55% in the post-graduation program. 
  • Those who are awaiting their final-year results are also eligible to apply. 
  • The Ph.D. degree holders who completed their Master’s exam by 19 September 1991 needs a minimum of 50% marks to appear for the exam. 
  • The award of NET or JRF to the student depends on the aggregate marks obtained in Paper-I and Paper-II. 
  • If the candidates qualify for Assistant Professor only, they are not considered for the JRF award which involves the stipend for the period of studies which is a minimum of two years. 
  • UGC has not set the upper age limit for the candidates applying for the post of Assistant Professor, however, for JRF, the candidate must not be above 30 years.

Also read: GMAT Paper Pattern 

NET Exam Pattern 

The NET exam is a computer-based, online test that consists of Paper-I and Paper-II. The exam for both papers is conducted on the same day without any break, in the allotted exam centers. A total of 150 questions are asked in the exam which has to be completed in 3 hours. From this, 50 questions are asked in Paper-I, while 100 in Paper-II. The NET exam pattern consists of multiple-choice questions for which four options are given. Further, attempting all the questions is compulsory but there is no restriction on shifting between the two papers. For every correct answer, two marks are awarded and there is no negative marking. 

NET PaperNo of QuestionsMarks


The Paper-I in the NET exam is common for all subjects. It consists of 10 sections with 5 questions asked from each. This paper is highly scoring as it requires no specialization apart from the general information about current affairs and mathematical reasoning. The sections included in this paper of the NET exam pattern are listed below: 

  • Teaching Aptitude
  • Research Aptitude
  • Comprehension
  • Communication
  • Mathematical Reasoning and Aptitude
  • Logical Reasoning
  • Data Interpretation
  • Information and Communication Technology
  • People, Development and Environment
  • Higher Education System


The Paper-II of the NET exam pattern consists of questions that examine the candidate’s knowledge in their field of specialization. You can select 1 form a list of 81 subjects that are mentioned on the UGC-NET website. It is important to note that the choice of subject should be the one which was a part of your curriculum in postgraduation. The paper will have 100 compulsory, multiple-choice questions that are diverse in nature and cover the practical, theoretical and research aspects of the subject. 

How to Ace The Exam?

Since the NET exam pattern consists of questions from an array of topics, It is advised to thoroughly go through the subject curriculum. Further, to ace the exam, you should try to solve previous year NET exam papers and attempt as many mock tests as possible. Keeping in mind the pattern, you should frame your timetable in such a way that the curriculum of both the papers is covered properly. Last but not least, revising regularly will help you retain information for a longer period of time.

Hopefully, this blog helped you understand the NET exam pattern in detail. Even though qualifying this entrance exam is tough but it will open doors to many possibilities. If becoming a teacher is your dream but you lack the motivation or the guidance then the experts at Leverage Edu will lend you a helping hand in taking your career to the next level. You can also book a free 30 minutes career counseling session with our mentors who will guide you throughout the process to help you reach pinnacles. 

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