The National Eligibility Test (NET) is held twice every year. This exam is organized by the University Grant Commission (UGC) Joint with the Council of Scientific & Industrial Research (CSIR).

The CSIR and UGC provide CSIR/UGC Research Fellowship to bright young men and women for training in methods of research under the expert guidance of faculty members/scientists working in University Departments/ National Laboratories and Institutions in various fields of Science.

How to prepare for CSIR NET Life Science Tips from Expert

This article provides the best tips and suggestions on How to Prepare for NET Exam.

How to Prepare for NET Exam (Life Science)?

Preparing for CSIR NET-LS & JRF

From June 2011 CSIR-UGC (NET) Exam for Award of Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) and Eligibility for Lecturership (LS) shall be a Single Paper. The Exam should be conducted in one session of 3 Hours. The question paper is divided into three parts.

  • Part-A (MCQ)   30-Marks
  • Part-B  (MCQ)  70-Marks
  • Part-C (MCQs) 100-Marks

Writing the Examination Part/ Section A & B (100 marks)

These sections of NET contain multiple-choice questions you have to finish 50 out of 70 questions in 90 minutes.

  • A-Section contains 20 questions out of these we have to attempt 15 questions each carrying 2 marks, total Score = 30. This section comprises (MCQs) on General Aptitude.
  • B-Section is of Life Sciences, 50 MCQs are asked in the examination; we have to attempt 35 questions each carrying two marks, Total Score = 70. Thus, Section A (30) & B (70) score for 100 marks.

Section B now includes the entire Life sciences syllabus given by CSIR. This examination pattern demanding more from the candidates. But there is more time and you can choose at your disposal, for the A-section 5 questions and 15 questions from B-section you can keep optional. This could be a blessing in disguise as one need not study the subject objectively and then subjectively.

First, attempt the questions that you are sure about and then attempt others. There is a 0.25% negative marking so that you should avoid questions that you cannot sure. Don’t be hurry and overlook the questions and their options, read them carefully and understand, go through all options and select the appropriate one.

With regard to section-A (General Aptitude), apply your best logic and sense to conclude your answer. If you are not comfortable with a few of these, don’t worry; put some common sense and logic to attempt the question. Let us set the target for this section as at least 10 correct answers out of 20 questions.

Syllabus for Part-A

This Part Includes:

  • General Aptitude with emphasis on logical reasoning,
  • Graphical analysis,
  • Analytical and numerical ability,
  • Quantitative comparison,
  • Series formation,
  • Puzzles etc.

Under this section total, 20 MCQs will be asked, students are expected to attempt any 15 questions.

Maximum Score = 15 × 2 = 30 marks

Section A shall contain 20 General Aptitude questions. These questions shall be common to all. A candidate shall be required to answer a maximum of 15 questions from Part A. In case a candidate answers more than 15 questions, only the first 15 answered questions will be taken up for evaluation. All questions shall be of 2 marks each. There will be negative marking for wrong answers.

Mental Ability:

Individuals differ in their styles of application of intellect. Some excel in one while others excel in other styles. The various applications of intellect are:

(a) Comprehension: This includes grasp and understanding the given material only without going beyond the material provided. This can also be called ‘cognitive style’. Recognition of familiar objects, sounds, melodies, etc., is included here but the analytical ability is not.

(b) Retention: After comprehension, some individuals are able to transfer the material into ‘retention’ and are able to recall it quickly. Recalling the right matter at the right time, with accuracy and speed, is a key to success. This is also called ‘memory ability.

(c) Reasoning: This includes the logical application of comprehended and retained material. The ability to grasp object relations, relations of ideas, the ability of analysis and synthesis, and convergent and divergent thinking are included in this area. Reasoning is a style of higher-order complex mental ability.

(d) Evaluation: This means reaching an outcome, conclusion, and implication, after reasoning, analysis and logical thinking have been applied. The evaluative style helps the individual’s problem-solving ability and insight and foresight regarding problems. This is most helpful usually while dealing with other persons and social situations like group conflicts and communal tensions.

Tips, Hints, Tricks, and Shortcuts to solve mental ability questions

  • Read every question very carefully to know clearly the logical relationships and be aware of any twist or turn which may be part of the question.
  • Preferably, read the answers (alternatives) first and then the text of the question. This technique will help you to save on time spent per question. When you read the question first then answer, you are bound to go back and read the question again.
  • Do not assume information that is not given. Remember this warning especially while tackling ‘logical reasoning’ and ‘data analysis questions.
  • Do not waste time in guessing because in ‘mental ability questions’ there is only a clear-cut answer. You can take the risk of guessing only towards the end of the paper if you are acutely short of time and more questions are left, then too, only when you are able to clearly rule out two alternatives and have to guess between similar-looking answers.
  • Do not worry unnecessarily about finishing the paper. Many people may not be able to complete the paper, but worrying about it will not only cloud your reasoning but it will also break your concentration.
  • For questions dealing with ‘logical reasoning’, ‘geometry’, and ‘data analysis, if you are not provided with a diagram then you must draw one for yourself. Diagrams always help in clarifying questions as they help you’re to visualize relationships between different parts of the question or that of the data analysis. Especially in ‘geometry’, if an incomplete figure is given and the question relates to the connection between complete and incomplete parts, draw the missing parts yourself and complete the figure. This will help you to reach the correct solution.
  • In questions relating to tables or graphs, be sure to read the complete table or graph along with units in which data is expressed. Remember also to express your answer clearly in the same units as given in the question.
  • In all questions, make sure that your answer makes sense. Do not avoid the obvious possibility as too simple. For all that you know, the obvious may be the most sensible answer.
  • Do not start calculating unless it is definitely required. Many times, approximation or inference may be all that is required. Even when you have to calculate in a mathematical question, first look at the alternative answers provided and not just the numbers or data given in the question.
  • If you skip a question make sure you skip it on your answer sheet also or else your answer order will be all wrong.
  • Remember to do all questions that you know well on the first attempt. To begin with, do not waste time in working out questions that you do not really know. This may lead to some such questions that you really knew very well, being sacrificed due to a shortage of time in the end.

Syllabus for Part-B

Under this section total, 50 MCQs will be asked, students are expected to attempt any 35 questions.

Maximum Score = 35 × 2 =70 marks

Part B shall have 50 questions. A candidate shall be required to answer a maximum of 35 questions. In case a candidate answers more than 35 questions, only the first 35 answered questions shall be evaluated.

All questions shall be of 2 marks each. There will be negative marking for wrong answers. The entire syllabus of the Life Sciences of this examination is applicable to this section.

Syllabus for Part-C

This part shall contain 75 MCQs., each carrying FOUR marks, that are designed to test a candidate’s high-level authentic knowledge of scientific concepts and/or application of the scientific concepts. The questions shall be of analytical nature where a candidate is expected to apply the scientific knowledge to arrive at the conclusion to the given scientific problem/question. A candidate shall be required to answer any 25 questions. The total marks allocated to this section shall be 100 out of 200.

Preparing for this section is a really challenging task (But don’t worry, I am with you). And I feel it required, if everything is simple, each candidate can qualify for this exam. This section is designed to select those candidates, who really eligible for the title exam. Please be aware you will be a future Scientist and/or Professor in the concerned Subject area, then don’t worry about how thought is the exams, you really do your excellence, I am sure you will enjoy and have to it.

Follow the syllabus thoroughly. If you are not able to finish all the content given, at least make confident that you know some of the concepts in each unit. Sometimes worrying too much may lead you absolute confusion. Develop a genuine interest in the subject, need full absolute devotion, and make available at least 6 – 8 hours daily to prepare for this exam. Refer to previous year’s question papers (you can freely download them from our websites) to practice before the exam.

How to Prepare for NET Exam for this paper:

For this paper detailed syllabus is provided under these titles:


It is important to answer to the point with all relevant points so that one gets a good score for this Section. Accuracy, brevity, and clarity are the scorer here. Give graphical, diagrammatic representation wherever possible. Draw well-labeled figures/ diagrams wherever necessary.

This section-C is very significant because the same syllabus is also applicable for B-Section, therefore, a better study of these topics may give you 170 marks easily.

The best time for an aspirant to start preparation for this examination is from M. Sc. second year. Aspirants have to make a proper strategy before starting the preparation and must be under the guidance of qualified individuals for the proper guidance. First of all, he/she should collect the syllabus of the CSIR-UGC exam and then start preparing according to the syllabus.

Preparing for this section is a really challenging task (But don’t worry, I am with you). And I feel it required, if everything is simple, each candidate can qualify for this exam. This section is designed to select those candidates, who really eligible for the titled exam. Please be aware you will be a future Scientist and/or Professor in the concerned Subject area, then don’t worry about how thought is the exams, you really do your excellent, I am sure you will enjoy it.

While starting the study, the good source material must be in hand as a ready reference, as you know the Life Science syllabus is multidisciplinary, (here, I say it is 13 times more than your M.Sc. Specialization). Each topic specified in the syllabus contains detailed topics of the title, it is impossible to depend on only one book of that title, therefore multiple books have to refer to perform a complete study of that topic.

Read the content from source study material with deep interest and devotion. Give maximum stress on UNDERSTANDING than to do just it by heart. Make the habit to think and imagine with scientific aptitude on that content and create its concept in your mind, mark the key scientific terms (understand it with suitable example), and focus on a statement in support of that.

Don’t bother about complex Chemical structures of biomolecules, if you can recall them easily, well! If you can’t not bad? But understand these structures and their significance. Divide every description of that specific content in: Structural, Functional, Significant, and Extraordinary and give specific importance, note down it in your notebook in short (as a running note), it helps you to revise later on.

Do the revision of that day’s study on the same day. On a weekday (Sunday), revise all topics you covered in that week, and re-read if you do not yet confirm the concept.