National Talent Search Examination (NTSE) is a national-level scholarship program in India to identify and recognize students with high intellect and academic talent. It is one of the most prestigious exams i
n India. Close to 500,000 students (a largely self selective group of students) appear in this scholarship exam every year, and 1000 scholarships are awarded, of which 775 are not reserved .The former Union Minister of Human Resource Development Smt. Smriti Irani announced that the number of scholarships under National Talent Search Scheme will be doubled to 2000 from existing 1000 while speaking on the occasion of 55th Foundation Day celebration of the NCERT in New Delhi on 1 September 2015. However there is nothing such according to NCERT officials. So the seats have not been doubled. The scheme is open to students of Indian nationality. Students studying in Class X are eligible to appear for the selection process. As it is organized by an official body (NCERT), it is widely regarded by the Government of India as the most prestigious and the most difficult examination at secondary level in the country.
First level exam for class X
SAT: The syllabus for Mathematics, Science and Social Science is broadly based on the prescribed respective State Board Syllabus from Std 9th to 10th class (100 questions in SAT) . Few states like Kerala refer both state board and NCERT books while few states like Maharashtra, Gujarat and Andhra Pradesh ask questions primarily from their state board books.
MAT: It has 50 questions of general nature.
Language Test: State Board books cover a lot. More focus is on vocabulary, grammar and basic understanding. Language in first stage is of qualifying purpose(40% of maximum score) only. It is the most prestigious exam of India.
Second level exam for class X
NCERT has announced new pattern for stage 2 exam, where each correctly answered question awards the student +1, while an incorrect answer deducts 1/3 marks.
NTSE PATTERN: Mental Ability test: 50 questions, 50 marks; Language test : 50 questions, 50 marks; Scholastic Aptitude test : 100 questions, 100 marks (40 questions from Science, 20 questions from Mathematics and 40 questions from Social Sciences). In SAT, the Mathematics and Science questions will be asked from the chapters in the syllabus of class 9 and 10. The Social Science questions will also be asked from the class 9 and 10 NCERT textbooks. Language test is only of qualifying purpose(40% of maximum score), its marks are not counted in the merit list.
The students who will qualify second stage (stage-2) are eligible for the scholarship. The amount of scholarship has been enhanced to Rs.1250 per month for class XI and XII and Rs.2000 per month for students studying under graduate and above. The scholarship is provided immediately after the result. In case students have not received the letter from NCERT after 5 weeks of the declaration of the result, they should contact NCERT for updates. The scholarship is expected to increase up to 4000-5000 in next few years.It was increased to Rs.1250 and Rs.2000 as per the orders in July 2014. There are no restrictions like parental income, government school, domicile etc. In case the student moves abroad for studies, the scholarship will no longer be provided.
NTSE Preparation Video