CDS 2022 Syllabus: Subject-Wise Topics, Books, Prep Tips & Others

Combined Defence Services Exam 2022 ( CDS )

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Registrations: 21 Dec '22 - 10 Jan '23

Anangsha Patra

Anangsha PatraDeputy Manager – Editorial

Updated on Sep 4, 2022 01:10 IST

CDS Syllabus 2022 is declared by the Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) along with the notification on its official website-upsc.gov.in. CDS exam is conducted to recruit candidates for Indian Military Academy (IMA), Indian Naval Academy (INA), Air Force Academy (AFA), and Officer Training Academy (OTA). CDS syllabus and exam pattern for IMA, INA and AFA are similar, except OTA. The highlights related to CDS syllabus are given below:

  • CDS syllabus for IMA, INA and AFA is divided into three subjects and for OTA into two subjects
  • The standard CDS Mathematics syllabus is of Class 10 standard, while for other subjects, it is of graduation level
  • Inorder to plan for the exam strategically, it is important to have knowledge of the CDS syllabus

Aspirants willing to join the defence services through the CDS exam can check on this page the detailed syllabus, exam pattern, marking scheme, important books, preparation tips and FAQs.

Also Read:

CDS 2 2022 Result Live: UPSC CDS Merit List, SSB Interview and Result PDF Direct Link

What is CDS Syllabus 2022?

CDS syllabus 2022 consists of three subjects-Elementary Mathematics, English Language, and General Knowledge. Candidates must note that Elementary Mathematics is only for candidates who have applied for IMA, INA and OTA. Going through the CDS syllabus candidates can make out which topics and chapters to cover for the exam. Also, candidates should go through the previous years' question papers to find out the important topics for the exam.

Overview of CDS Syllabus 2022

Given below is the overview of CDS syllabus.

Parameters Details
Mode of exam Offline
Stages of exam Written exam and SSB Interview
Number of sections

Three sections for Indian Military Academy (IMA), Indian Naval Academy (INA), and Air Force Academy (AFA) 

Two sections for Officers’ Training Academy (OTA)

Exam subjects English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics
Nature of questions Objective-type
Level of questions The standard of questions in Mathematics is of Class 10 standard and other subjects is of Graduation level
Duration of test Two hours for each subject
Language of question paper English and Hindi

CDS Syllabus 2022 PDF, Download Below

CDS Syllabus 2022 PDF can be downloaded free through the link available below. Candidates must strategise their preparation according to the syllabus.

Get the latest CDS Syllabus PDF for section-wise preparation of the exam

Download Here

Is CDS syllabus the Same Every Year?

CDS syllabus remains the same every year. The syllabus for IMA, INA and AFA are the same while it is different for OTA.

CDS Syllabus 2022 for English Language

The questions in this section are designed to test the candidate’s understanding of English. CDS syllabus for the English Language is given below.

Antonyms

Sentence improvement

Comprehension

Synonyms

Word substitution

Ordering of sentences

Spotting Errors

Selecting Words

Ordering of words in a sentence

Also Read: CDS 2022 Preparation Tips for English

Get the Top Score in DI and Logical Reasoning section of Competitive Entrance Exams with Expert Prep Tips

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Prepare for Competitive Exams with Expert Tips on English Section

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CDS Syllabus 2022 for General Knowledge

The General Knowledge tests the candidate’s knowledge regarding current affairs. The paper includes questions from the History of India and the Geography of nature. CDS syllabus for General Knowledge is given below.

Economics

Physics

Current Awareness 

Politics

Chemistry

Sociology

History 

Defence

Award

Geography

Environment

Sport

Biology

Cultural

Book

Statement true/false

 --

-- 

 

 

CDS Syllabus 2022 for Elementary Mathematics

Questions in Elementary Mathematics are asked from Arithmetic, Algebra, Trigonometry, Geometry, Mensuration, and Statistics. Check below the topics for Elementary Mathematics:

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. Factorisation Theorem. H.C.F. and L.C.M. Euclidean algorithm. Logarithms to base 10, Laws of Logarithms, Use of Logarithmic Tables.

Algebra

Basic Operations

Simple Factors

Remainder Theorem

HCF & LCM

Theory of Polynomials

Solutions of Quadratic Equations

The Relation Between its Roots and Coefficients (Only real roots will be considered)

Simultaneous Linear Equations in two Unknown-Analytical and Graphical Solutions

Simultaneous Linear Inequations in Two Variables and their Solutions

Practical Problems Leading to two Simultaneous Linear Equations or Inequations in two Variables or Quadratic Equations in one

Variable & their Solutions

Set Language and Set Notation

Rational Expressions and Conditional Identities

Law of Indices

Trigonometry

  • Sine ×, cosine ×, Tangent × when 0°
  • Simple Trigonometric Identities
  • Use of Trigonometric Tables
  • Simple Cases of Heights and Distances

Geometry

Lines and Angles, Plane and Plane Figures, Theorems on Properties of Angles at a Point, Parallel Lines, Sides and Angles of a Triangle, Congruency of Triangles, Similar Triangles, Concurrence of Medians and Altitudes, Properties of Angles, Sides, and Diagonals of a Parallelogram, Rectangle and Square, Circles and its Properties including Tangents and Normal and Loci. 

Download CURRENT AFFAIRS Guide - Click Here

Mensuration

  • 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
  • Volume of Right Circular Cones, Cylinders and Surface
  • Area and Volume of Spheres

Statistics

Collection and Tabulation of Statistical Data

Graphical Representation Frequency Polygons

Histograms

Bar charts

Measures of Central Tendency

-          

Get the Top Score in Numerical Ability section of Competitive Entrance Exams with Expert Prep Tips

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Also Read: 

UPSC CDS Syllabus 2022: Topic-Wise Distribution of Questions

The topic-wise distribution of questions under each section of the UPSC CDS exam is given below.

Elementary Mathematics
Topic No. of Questions

Logarithm

2

Trigonometry

16

Number System

12

Percentage

2

Time & Distance

2

Profit & Loss

2

Simplification

11

Statics

5

Triangle

10

3D Mensuration

16

Data Interpretation

4

Average

2

Quadrilateral

3

Circle

1

Polynomial

3

Sequence & Series

1

Divisibility Rule

2

Remainder Theorem

1

LCM & HCF

2

Time & Work

2

2D Mensuration

1

General Knowledge
Topics Number of Questions

Current Affairs

12

Economics

13

Geography

18

Medieval History

5

Modern History

16

Polity

20

Physics

9

Chemistry

12

Biology

9

Defence

3

Static GS

3

English
Topics Number of Questions

Comprehension

10

Synonyms

10

Antonyms

10

Parts of Speech

10

Cloze Test

10

Spotting Error

10

Fill in the blanks

10

Ordering of words in a sentence

10

Ordering of sentence

10

Completion of sentence

10

Preposition & Determinants

10

CDS Exam Pattern 2022

CDS exam pattern is prescribed by the UPSC for IMA, INA, AFA, and OTA. The exam is conducted offline, i.e. through pen and paper mode. The question paper of Mathematics and General Knowledge are set bilingually, i.e. Hindi and English. The written exam carries objective-type questions only. For admission to IMA, INA, and AFA, the written exam comprises three sections: English, General Knowledge, and Elementary Mathematics. The test carries a total of 300 marks and is held for six hours. For admission to OTA, the written exam comprises two sections: English and General Awareness. The duration of the test is four hours and carries 200 marks. There is also a penalty for wrong answers. 1/3 marks are deducted for every incorrect answer by the candidates. Candidates qualifying the written exam are called for the SSB interview. CDS exam pattern for the written exam is given below.

CDS Exam pattern for IMA, INA and AFA

Subject

Duration (In hours)

Maximum marks

English

100

General Knowledge

100

Elementary Mathematics

100

CDS Exam Pattern for OTA

Subject Duration Maximum marks

English

2 hours

100

General Knowledge

2 hours

100

CDS Exam Pattern for SSB Interview

Candidates qualifying the CDS written exam are called for SSB interview. The SSB interview comprises two stages and is conducted over a period of four days. The stages of SSB interview are given below:

Stage I comprises Officer Intelligence Rating (OIR) tests and Picture Perception Description Test (PP&DT)

Stage-II consists of Interview, Group Testing Officer Tasks, Psychology Tests and Conference

CDS Marking Scheme

The marking scheme of CDS is given below:

  • For the correct answer, candidates score one mark
  • For incorrect answers, 1/3 marks are deducted
  • More than one option is treated as incorrect
  • There is no negative marking for questions left unanswered

How to Prepare for CDS 2022?

Candidates can follow the tips and tricks given below to crack CDS exam:

  • Candidates' target should be both securing CDS cut off and scoring high marks
  • Hard work and dedication will surely give candidates the best CDS result 
  • Candidates should practice different types of questions from each topic
  • Candidates must spend three to four hours regularly for study
  • Candidate must revise all the topics given in CDS syllabus properly
  • Candidates should work towards improving the weak areas, equally dedicating time for the strong areas
  • Candidates should attempt sectional and full-length mock tests
  • Candidates must clear their concepts and basics for each and every topic

Also Read:

CDS 2022 preparation tips

CDS Toppers Tips

Books for CDS Exam

The subject-wise best books for CDS exam are given below:

Best books for CDS English Language

Candidates can refer the following books for English Language section:

  • Objective General English by RS Aggarwal
  • Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis
  • High School English Grammar and Composition

Books for General Knowledge and Current Affairs

Candidates need to read the newspapers regularly in order to keep themselves updated with recent events. The books that candidates can refer to for this section are given below:

  • Manorama Yearbook
  • Lucent’s General Knowledge
  • Competition in Focus (Half Yearly and Yearly)

CDS books for Elementary Mathematics

For this section, candidates can refer to the following books:

  • Mathematics for CDS by RS Aggarwal
  • Quantitative Aptitude for examinations paperback by RS Aggarwal

Also Read: CDS books

CDS Exam Analysis

The level of CDS (I) 2021 exam was moderate. The overall paper of English and General Knowledge was moderate. The Mathematics paper was difficult. The overall paper of CDS II 2021 exam was moderate. CDS (II) 2021 GK and English papers were moderate. The Maths paper of CDS II 2021 exam was tough. Candidates can check below the feedback shared by candidates regarding the difficulty level of the CDS exam.

CDS I 2021 Exam Analysis for Maths

CDS I 2021 Exam Analysis for English and GK

CDS II 2021 Exam Analysis for English and GK
CDS II 2021 Exam Analysis for Maths
Also Read:  CDS Exam Analysis

CDS Question Papers

Candidates must solve previous years' CDS question papers as much as they can to get an idea regarding the type of questions asked in the exam. Solving question papers will also help candidates to build speed and accuracy.

Other Defence Exams Syllabus

NDA Syllabus AFCAT Syllabus UPSC CAPF Syllabus

CDS Syllabus 2022 FAQs

Q. What is the ideal time to start preparation for CDS?

A. It is ideal that candidates must begin their preparation six months prior to the release of CDS notification. 

Q. What is the level of CDS syllabus?

A. The level of CDS syllabus is of Class 10 and Graduation levels. The syllabus for Elementary Mathematics is of Class 10 standard, while the syllabus for other subjects is of graduation level.

Q. What are the important topics for CDS Elementary Mathematics?

A. The important topics for Elementary Mathematics of CDS exam are Number System, Algebra, Trigonometry, Geometry, Mensuration, Statistics, etc.

Q. What are the important topics for CDS General Knowledge?

A. The important topics for CDS General Knowledge are Economics, Politics, History, Geography, Physics, Chemistry, Current Affairs, etc.

Q. What is the syllabus CDS syllabus for English?

A. The English Language for CDS basically comprises Grammar and usage, vocabulary, comprehension and cohesion.

Q: Are the NDA and the CDS syllabus the same?

A: No, NDA syllabus and CDS syllabus are different. The syllabus for NDA is a bit more lengthy than CDS. The level of Mathematics for NDA is of Class 12 standard while it is of Class 10 standard in CDS. General Awareness, General Science, and English are tough in NDA compared to CDS.  

Q: Can I complete CDS syllabus in 60 days?

A: You can complete the CDS syllabus within 60 days if you have in-depth knowledge of Maths, English, and General Science. Each subject has its own importance. If you are talking about completing each subject from the scratch, then it is very difficult. You need to understand the exam and what all topics are asked. You need to learn shortcuts in Maths. You need to learn vocabs, grammar rules, synonyms and antonyms, one-word substitution, etc. GS covers topics such as history, geography, science, polity, economics, current affairs, etc.  

Q: What is the Geography syllabus for CDS?

A: Candidates in Geography should cover Agriculture, Air Drainage, Earth: Core and Surface, Environment, Forest and Wildlife Resources, Globe: Latitudes and Longitudes, Human Resources, Human Settlement, India: Climate, Vegetation and Wildlife, India: Physical Features(Size and Location), Industries, International Trade, Land, Soil, Water, Natural Vegetation and Wildlife Resources, Landforms of the Earth, Life on the Earth (Deserts, Ocean, Jungles, Mountain, Antarctic), Lifelines of National Economy, Maps, Minerals, and Energy Resources, Natural Hazards and Disasters, Natural Vegetation and Wildlife, Physiography, Population (Distribution, Density & Growth), Primary, secondary, Tertiary & Quaternary Activities, Resource and Development, Solar System, Topographic and Weather, Transport & Communication, Tropical, and the Subtropical Region, Water Resources.     

Q: What is CDS syllabus for Indian Polity?

A: Candidates should prepare Indian Constitution, President and Vice President, Governor, Prime Minister and Cabinet, Emergency provisions, Chief Minister, Chairman and State Council Ministers, Legislative Assembly, SC & HC, Tribunals, Auditor General, Finance Commission and Election Commission, Centre-State and Inter-State Relations, Fundamental Rights and Duties, Amendments, Preamble, Panchayati Raj and Municipalities.

Q: How do I understand the CDS Maths syllabus?

A: In CDS Maths, Mensuration carries high weightage. Apart from that, you need to have a strong hold on basic topics such as Algebra, Geometry, Height, and Distance, Number System, etc. You can have a look at the previous years' CDS Maths question paper and prepare accordingly.

Q: Is the syllabus for CDS and AFCAT same?

A: Yes, the syllabus is almost the same. The syllabus for General Awareness and English is the same. But the Mathematics section in the CDS exam has a wide syllabus that includes T rigonometry, Algebra, Statistics, and Geometry. In AFCAT, there is a section of  Military Aptitude which is not present in the CDS exam.

Q: What is CDS syllabus for IMA?

A: CDS syllabus for IMA comprises topics from English, General Knowledge and Elementary Maths.

Q: What is CDS syllabus for OTA?

A: CDS syllabus for OTA comprises two subjects: General Knowledge and English.

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Comments

B

How can I prepare for CDS OTA exam 2023?

46288535
Surbhi Sahu

Contributor-Level 9

2 weeks ago

CDS 2023 aspirants must begin their preparations as per the exam schedule at least six months before the exam by going through the previous years' question papers, exam pattern and syllabus. Candidates must also attempt mock test to improve speed and accuracy. Some more ways to prepare :-1. Make ...CDS 2023 aspirants must begin their preparations as per the exam schedule at least six months before the exam by going through the previous years' question papers, exam pattern and syllabus. Candidates must also attempt mock test to improve speed and accuracy. Some more ways to prepare :-
1. Make a plan.
2. Assimilate the syllabus.
3. Update your general knowledge.
4. Time Management.
5. One subject at a time.
6. Practice is the key.
7. Personality Development.
8. Fostering a positive attitude.

b

Which standard book can I refer to prepare for CDS exam?

41134127
Surbhi Sahu

Contributor-Level 9

2 weeks ago

The books you can refer to prepare for CDS exam are :-1. Wren & Martin's High School English Grammar & Composition - S. Hand. 2. Word Power Made Easy - Norman Lewis (Goal Publishers). 3. Objective General English - S. P. Bakshi (Arihant Publication). 4. General Awareness - Man...The books you can refer to prepare for CDS exam are :-
1. Wren & Martin's High School English Grammar & Composition - S. Hand.
2. Word Power Made Easy - Norman Lewis (Goal Publishers).
3. Objective General English - S. P. Bakshi (Arihant Publication).
4. General Awareness - Manohar Panday.
5. Manorama Yearbook.
6. Magazines such as Pratiyogita Darpan, Competition Success Review (CSR) and Yojana.
7. Newspapers.
8. Mathematics by RS Agrawal.
9. Quantitative Aptitude by RS Agrawal.
10. Pathfinder by Arihant Publications.

39670279
Surbhi Sahu

Contributor-Level 9

2 weeks ago

CDS refers to Combined Defence Services. Tips to pass CDS exam and become a part of the professional uniformed services :-1. Make a plan. 2. Assimilate the syllabus. 3. Updating your general knowledge. 4. Time management. 5. One subject at a time. 6. Practice is the key. 7. Personality developmen...CDS refers to Combined Defence Services. Tips to pass CDS exam and become a part of the professional uniformed services :-
1. Make a plan.
2. Assimilate the syllabus.
3. Updating your general knowledge.
4. Time management.
5. One subject at a time.
6. Practice is the key.
7. Personality development.
8. Fostering a positive attitude.

N

How to prepare for CDS exam?

N

NISHA NA

Beginner-Level 5

3 weeks ago

For preparing for CDS exam. First you need to go through the syllabus and last year exams paper. It's helps to find the strong and weak subject's of yours. Then you can make a timetable by dividing your time for different subjects as time plays an important role in the exam.

A

How can I prepare for NDA Maths and current Affairs for CDS exam?

32916079
Eksha Sunderka

Contributor-Level 9

3 weeks ago

You can use the following approach to Current Affairs for the CDS:WATCH TV- Spend a couple hours watching TV every day. It offers information on every subject in an engaging manner that is simple to remember. Watch reputable news stations like CNN and BBC for the daily bulletin. It serves as the ...You can use the following approach to Current Affairs for the CDS:
WATCH TV- Spend a couple hours watching TV every day. It offers information on every subject in an engaging manner that is simple to remember. Watch reputable news stations like CNN and BBC for the daily bulletin. It serves as the greatest and the simplest method to understand current events.
NEWSPAPER READING
The oldest and most popular method for increasing understanding about current issues is to read newspapers. Local, regional, national, and international news can all be found there. Get a subscription to a reputable newspaper, such as "The Hindu, " and make reading the newspaper a morning ritual. USE THE INTERNET SMARTLY: Use your time online more wisely by avoiding time-wasting websites like Facebook and Instagram. In terms of websites, there are several, however practically all of them require payment. As a result, I would prefer to advise you to use reputable YouTube channels, such as Study IQ instruction. Write because you tend to forget what you've read easily. Writing aids in memory retention and strengthens information in the brain. Therefore, put what you learn in writing and take brief notes that you can refer to later.
For NDA Maths
Prioritize the preparation of the crucial topics first while allocating time for the challenging ones. Determine how much time to spend on each sort of question by taking practise exams. Additionally, in order to have a sense of the kinds of questions that will be in the exam, candidates must complete prior year's question papers. Candidates must acquire time management shortcuts, suggestions, and techniques. Recall basic computations like squares and cubes. Make a list of formulas and shortened forms to keep on hand for last-minute revision. Due to the exam's negative marking policy, they should only mark an answer if they are certain about it. During the exam, avoid making educated guesses. Candidates should consult quality mathematics textbooks when preparing for the NDA.

M

What is the age limit for boys to be eligible for NDA1 2023?

41317729
Surbhi Sahu

Contributor-Level 9

a month ago

The age eligibility criteria to be eligible to appear for NDA is that a candidate's age must be in between 16.5 years to 19.5 years. To be eligible to NDA1 2023, a candidate must be born in between July 2, 2004 - July 1, 2007.

V

I want to crack CDS. How do I do it? How should I study? What study material should I prefer?

d

deepika maurya

Contributor-Level 10

a month ago

The Combined Defence Services Examination CDS Exam) is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission UPSC for recruitment of Commissioned Officers in the Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Academy. Examination is conducted twice a year. Successful cand...The Combined Defence Services Examination CDS Exam) is conducted by the Union Public Service Commission UPSC for recruitment of Commissioned Officers in the Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Academy. Examination is conducted twice a year. Successful candidates are admitted into the respective Academies after an interview conducted by the Services Selection Board (SSB). Preparation tips that can help you pass the CDS exam
1-Make a Plan
2-Assimilate the Syllabus
3-Updating your General Knowledge
4-Time Management
5-One Subject at a Time
6-Practice is the key
7-Personality Development
8-Fostering a positive attitude. CDS is one of the exams which is difficult to qualify, but it can be qualified without coaching as well. For this paper, you must study Ancient, Medieval, and Modern History, Economics, General Science, Civics, and Geography. The CDS preparation tips for General Knowledge are as follows: Make sure you follow the latest domestic and international news to stay updated with Current Affairs. Also, you must practice the previous year's questions and mock tests religiously. In addition, highlight the important points and revise them every day. Best Books for CDS Preparation:
English- Wren & Martin's High School English Grammar & Composition by S. Hand, Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis, Objective General English by S. P. Bakshi
General Knowledge- General Knowledge by Manohar Pandey, Manorama Yearbook by Malayala Manorama publishers. Newspapers- The Hindu, Indian Express
Maths Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Examinations by R. S. Aggarwal, Mathematics for CDS Examination by R. S. Aggarwal.

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