UGC NET 2021 Syllabus, Exam Pattern, Application Form & Apply Online

Topics Covered: UGC NET Exam Pattern & Syllabus for Paper 1 & Paper 2, Steps to Apply Online & Application Form Correction Steps

Are you starting the preparation for the UGC NET Exam? If you are then, welcome to the world where you can get all the information you need.

Let me ask you, were you the kid who always thought that graduation and post-graduation marks don’t matter? Were your parents constantly giving you a hard time during those exams?

Well, you’d do well to know that UGC wants you to be consistent throughout your life too. They want an aspirant with consistent grades.

Talking about the UGC NET application process, applying for exams through snail mail was such a pain for all the students. But now the task of applying online is not that difficult.

All that is needed to apply for the UGC NET exams now is a laptop and an internet connection. 

However, the online registration dates & application form correction dates for the 2021 UGC NET were closed on 5th September 2021 & 12th September 2021 respectively. 

If you are preparing for the next UGC NET Exam, I have mentioned the steps of online registration & application correction dates in a section further down below in the article. 

Anyway, getting back, even though our generation is privileged because of the internet, you’d be shocked to know that we can still face issues while filling the UGC NET 2021 application form online.

To explain to you the various topics mentioned above, I have divided the whole blog into various categories.

In this blog, I have also talked in detail about the UGC NET syllabus for Paper 1 and have given the links to the syllabus for the various subjects of Paper 2. 

Therefore, if you read through the blog thoroughly, then, along with the process of applying for the UGC NET exam, you shall also get to know what to prepare after doing the same.

So, let’s not chit-chat more and dive into our first topic.

Table of Content – UGC NET 2021 Exam Pattern, Syllabus & Apply Online

UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021

Exam Pattern Paper 1 Paper 2
Exam Mode Online Online
Exam Duration 3 Hours (Paper 1 + Paper 2 Total Duration)
Type of Paper Common for all candidates Specific subject chosen by the candidate
Type of Questions MCQs MCQs
Total Number of Questions 50 100
Total Marks 100 200
Marking Scheme +2 for correct answer, No negative marking +2 for correct answer, No negative marking

Talking about the UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021, the exam consists of 2 papers i.e. Paper 1 & Paper 2. So, it is essential to know the exam pattern for each paper. Also, the two papers are conducted sequentially without any break in between.

As far as the type of questions goes, both papers are composed of multiple-choice questions with a total exam duration of 3 hours (180 minutes). Further, there is no set duration for either paper and thus you are free to allocate your time whichever way you deem fit.

However, it is vital to devote your time wisely and thus I suggest you use approximately 60 minutes for Paper 1 & the remaining 120 minutes for Paper 2.

It isn’t that I want to scare you but UGC NET JRF has one of the toughest selection process and a low percentage of the total candidates appearing for the exam actually clear it.

Moreover, I’d like to add that, even though both exams are tough and equally important, if I had to compare out of the two evils, Paper 1 is definitely a little easier than Paper 2.

So, let’s dive into the paper-wise exam pattern for 2021 before I scare you off any further, and let’s make sure you’re one of the few who pass the exam with flying colors.

Exam Pattern of UGC NET for Paper 1 & 2

UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021 – Paper 1

Paper 1 (General Paper on Teaching & Research Aptitude) of the NET JRF is an objective examination constituting 50 questions.

Now for every right answer, the candidate scores +2 marks (yay!). However, there is no negative marking for incorrect answers.

So, be sure to attempt all the questions, obviously, starting with the ones you’re sure about.

That said, even though the marks of both, Paper 1 & Paper 2, together make the final result, it is still advisable for the candidate to try to score the maximum marks in Paper 1 because, remember, Paper 1 is the lesser of the two evils. 

The examination cycle is conducted over a period of time to accommodate the various subjects catered by the UGC NET exam.

It is based on the subject selected, the candidate is then allotted the date and shift (mentioned on the admit card) on which his/her exam takes place.

Get all the important information on UGC NET Admit Card & check the complete set of details on the UGC NET Admit Card here.  Furthermore, by clicking on the link, you will get to know the steps to download the admit card, the important dates of the UGC NET Admit Card, and the key guidelines regarding the same.

Now let’s discuss the UGC NET exam pattern 2021 of Paper 1:

Units Questions Marks
Teaching Aptitude 5 10
Research Aptitude 5 10
Reading Comprehension 5 10
Communication 5 10
Arithmetic Reasoning 5 10
Logical Reasoning 5 10
Data Interpretation 5 10
ICT 5 10
People and Environment 5 10
Higher Education 5 10

From the table given above, you can get a grasp of the UGC NET paper 1 syllabus as well. The qualifying marks for Paper 1 General Category are 40 and the qualifying marks for Paper 1 Reserved Category is 35.

UGC NET Exam Pattern 2021 – Paper 2

Talking about Paper 2, we’ve been calling this part of the exam evil for quite some time now, so let’s dig into the details without wasting any more time.

Now, the thing is that Paper 1 and Paper 2 are held on the same day in a span of three hours, and the Overall Selection depends on the marks obtained by a candidate in both the exams. So, it is very important for a student to score equally good marks in both the exams as just cracking the cut off will not help you to achieve a certificate of UGC NET JRF.

Now unlike Paper 1, Paper 2 depends on the subject you want to get your certification in.

A total of 100 questions with the same criteria as Paper 1, +2 for every right answer and NO negative marking for incorrect answers (I guess, it isn’t as bad as we thought).

The UGC NET syllabus of Paper 2 is the complete syllabus of Graduation and Post-Graduation of the particular subject (I think I spoke too soon about Paper 2 not being bad).

Total Exam Duration: 180 minutes

Note: Paper 1 and Paper 2 will be set in both language English and Hindi. A candidate who is giving the exam has to secure minimum marks independently in each paper and total also.

We have launched the UGC NET JRF Complete courses & Test Series for Paper 1 & Paper 2 Exam.

To help you in your preparation, you can go through thePast Year Papers of UGC NET JRF.

UGC NET Exam Pattern – Key Points

  1. You have to qualify in each of the tests as per the marks prescribed by the NTA
  2. Go crazy with all the answers you’re not sure about since there’s no negative marking (that doesn’t mean you’ll give the entire exam on a hit and trial basis).
  3. In all, it’s not just important to secure the cut off marks but also score enough marks to make it to the merit list.

Don’t forget to check the previous years’ cut offs to estimate how much you need to score to pass in the UGC NET JRF Exam.

UGC NET Syllabus 2021

Let’s discuss the thing that we as students dread and can’t survive without either, the UGC NET syllabus. 

Remember those days, when we used to be in school, and for any unforeseen reasons, sometimes our syllabus used to be cut short. Well, those days are long gone. 

Well, even though the UGC NET Syllabus gets updated periodically, it would never be cut short at the end time. This isn’t school, you guys.

Let’s dive into the syllabus for both Paper 1 and Paper 2 of the UGC NET.

UGC NET Paper 1 Syllabus 2021

Paper 1 of UGC NET is a general exam for all of the applicants. Paper 1 is also known as General Paper on Teaching & Research Aptitude and its subject code is 00.

You can download the syllabus for 2021 from the link provided below.

UGC NET Paper 1 Syllabus (Download PDF)

So, I’m not going to waste your time by copy-pasting the Paper 1 syllabus here again, instead I will discuss in the video below some of the important topics & how to cover them in each of the categories from the Paper 1 Syllabus. If you prefer to read, I have also provided the list of important topics below: 

If you prefer to read, I have also provided the list of important topics below:

Unit 1: UGC NET JRF Teaching Aptitude Syllabus

  • Nature, Objectives, Characteristics
  • Learners Characteristics
  • Factors Affecting Teaching
  • Methods of Teaching
  • Teaching Aids
  • Different Approaches in Education

Unit 2: UGC NET JRF Research Aptitude Syllabus

  • Meaning, Characteristics & Types
  • Steps of Research
  • Methods of Research & Research Design
  • Research Ethics
  • Article, Paper, Workshop, Seminar, Conference
  • Sampling Techniques and Types
  • Thesis and report writing

Unit 3: UGC NET JRF Reading Comprehension Syllabus

A passage of text is given. Questions are asked from the passage to be answered. Passages usually pertain to the following topics –

  • General Awareness
  • Socialism
  • Social Media
  • Indian History
  • Environmental Issues

Unit 4: UGC NET JRF Communication Syllabus

  •  Nature & Characteristics of Communication
  • Types of Communication
  • Barriers to Effective Communication
  • Process of Communication

    Unit 5 & 6: UGC NET JRF Mathematical & Logical Reasoning Syllabus

    • Number Series, Letter Series, Codes
    • Relationships and Classification
    • Understanding the Structure of Arguments, Deductive, Inductive
    • Verbal Analogies-Word Analogy, verbal Classification
    • Venn Diagram Analytical Reasoning
    • Indian Logic

    Unit 7: UGC NET JRF Data Interpretation Syllabus

    • Profit & Loss
    • Percentages & Fractions
    • Ratio & Proportion

    Unit 8: UGC NET JRF Information and Communication Technology Syllabus

    • Meaning, Advantages, and Disadvantages
    • General Abbreviations and Terminologies
    • Basics of Internet and E-mailing

    Unit 9: UGC NET JRF People and Environment Syllabus

    • People & Environment Interaction
    • Sources of Pollution
    • Pollutants and their Impact on Humans, Diseases, etc. 

    Unit 10: UGC NET JRF Higher Education & Governance Syllabus

    • Structure of Higher education In India, Important Apex Bodies
    • Recent National and International Rankings, Schemes of the Government
    • Basics of Constitution and Polity, President, Governor, etc.

    Now that we’ve covered all the important topics from UGC NET Paper 1 syllabus, you must be curious to know the important books to cover these topics.

    Let’s head over to the Paper 2 Syllabus.

    UGC NET Paper 2 Syllabus 2021

    Unlike Paper 1, Paper 2 is subject-specific, i.e., for each of you, it will depend on the subject of your specialty (post-graduation). Thus, the syllabus would vary accordingly.

    There is a total of 81 subjects for which the UGC NET Paper 2 is conducted. I have provided the syllabus for each of them in this section.

    For Paper 2, I provide preparation support for Commerce & Management Subjects. Thus, I have created a video to help you understand the detailed syllabus for these subjects. Through this video, you’ll be able to comprehend the UGC NET Commerce and Management syllabi effortlessly.

    In the table below I have listed all the 81 subjects of Paper 2 and provided downloadable PDFs of their syllabi.

    Subject Code Subject Syllabus [in English] Syllabus [in Hindi]
    08 Commerce Download Download
    17 Management (including Business Admn. Mgt./Marketing/ Marketing Mgt./Industrial Relations and Personnel Mgt./ Personnel Mgt./Financial Mgt./Co-operative Management) Download Download
    01 Economics / Rural Economics /Co-operation / Demography / Development Planning/ Development Studies / Econometrics/ Applied Economics/Development Eco./Business Economics Download Download
    02 Political Science Download Download
    03 Philosophy Download Download
    04 Psychology Download Download
    05 Sociology Download Download
    06 History Download Download
    07 Anthropology Download Download
    09 Education Download Download
    10 Social Work Download Download
    11 Defence and Strategic Studies Download Download
    12 Home Science Download Download
    14 Public Administration Download Download
    15 Population Studies Download Download
    16 Music Download Download
    18 Maithili Download Download
    19 Bengali Download Download
    20 Hindi   Download

    UGC NET Apply Online 2021

    The last date to apply online for the merged UGC NET December 2020 & June 2021 exam was 5th September 2021. So, to know the process to apply online, check the steps to do so provided below. 

    Once the last date to apply online is over, UGC offers a small window to make corrections in the application. You should note that the UGC NET exam form correction window for June 2021 Cycle was open till 12th September 2021

    That said since the December 2020 Cycle & June 2021 Cycle had been merged; it is bound to create confusion for the applicants. 

    Don’t worry, I have you covered. 

    Those candidates who had registered for the UGC NET December 2020 Cycle (which was earlier scheduled to be conducted in May 2021) but were unable to complete the application process, could have done so and submitted the online application form. They were not needed to register again i.e., they just had to complete their old application. 

    That said, given below are the events and important dates of the UGC NET June 2021 exams.

    S.No. Exam Events Important Dates
    1. Opening Date of Online Application 10th August 2021
    2. Closing Date of UGC NET JRF Online Application 05th September 2021
    3. Application Form Correction Window 07th - 12th September, 2021
    4. Downloading of Admit Cards 13, 16 & 25 November 2021, 21 & 29 December 2021 and 4 January 2022
    5. Dates of Examination 20,21,22,24,25,26,29,30 November 2021, & 01,03,04,05, 24, 26, 27, 29, 30 December 2021 [(Postponed in a few cities of Odisha & Andhra Pradesh) 4 & 5 Jan 2022]

    UGC NET Application Form – Required Documents

    Let’s make this easy for you, I’m going to make a list of all the things that you need before sitting down and filling the UGC NET application form 2021 (Ready Reckoner). So, enjoy ticking things off the list:

    • Board/University declaration
    • Ration card/Passport number/Aadhaar card number/Voter ID card number/other Government ID
    • Qualifying degree declaration
    • Class declaration (if pertinent)
    • Financially Weaker Section (EWS) declaration (if pertinent)
    • Individual with Disability (PwD) declaration (if relevant)
    • Scanned pictures of photograph and signature in JPG position (record size of photograph: 10 kb to 200 kb, document size of signature: 4 kb to 30 kb)
    • A legitimate email ID and portable number
    • Changeless and correspondence address with pin code
    • Four exam areas arranged by choice
    • Code of NET subject for which the applicant intends to take the test (accessible in data handout)
    • Code of post-graduation course (accessible in data handout) 

    Even though filling the application form online has become easier with the advent of technology and the internet, it still can be hectic.

    Don’t worry I have got you covered; I have a step-by-step process on how to fill the form without making any mistakes.

    UGC NET: Steps to Apply Online

    Don’t take filling the UGC NET application forms lightly and make sure you read all the steps carefully to avoid any mistakes. 

    Fill Registration Form

    Step 1: Visit the official website –

    Now tap on the “Application Form UGC-NET (of the particular year)” button at the base of the page. 

    Step 1 to Apply Online for UGC NET JRF

    Step 2: On tapping the button, you’ll be redirected to another page. You need to tap on the New Registration button.

    Step 2 to Apply Online for UGC NET JRF

    Step 3: On tapping the button, you’ll be redirected to another page. Download the information bulletin.

    Move down to the bottom of the page and check the box which says “I have downloaded Information Bulletin, read and understood all the Instructions”.

    When done, tap on the ‘Click Here to Proceed’ button.

    Step 3 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 4: On tapping the ‘Click Here to Proceed’ button, the UGC NET registration page will open on the screen.

    Details to be filled in the Registration Form are:
    • Candidate’s Personal Details – Your Name, Father’s Name, Mother’s Name, Date of Birth, Gender, Identification Number & Identity type (Note: from December 2018 onwards, Aadhar Card is not a mandatory document for UGC NET registrations. Candidates are free to provide any other valid Government ID number such as passport number, bank account number, etc.)
    • Contact Details – Complete Postal Address, Email Address & Mobile Number
    • Password Security Details – Password (to be chosen), Security Question (to be chosen) & Security Answer

    When all details are filled in, you can tap on the Submit button to continue further with the application procedure. When all details are submitted, an application number will be produced on the screen.

    Step 4 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    You need to take note of that application number produced application number for future reference.

    Step 5: A pop-up appears on the screen which asks you to verify the details you have filled in the Registration Form. Check all the details very carefully.

    If you find any errors, click on “Edit Registration and make the necessary changes.

    Once you’re doing editing, check the declaration box and click on “Final Submit”.

    Step 5 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 6: Once you click on the final submit button, a new window opens up. Click on “Complete Application Form”.

    Step 6 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Fill Application Form

    Step 7: Now the UGC NET application form opens up, you need to fill in the details. 

    Details to be filled in the form include:

    • Exam-related details: Here, you need to choose your preferences for the exam centers. Likewise, you need to choose the subject and also the post (Assistant Professor/JRF and Assistant Professor) you want.
    • Personal data: This area incorporates your details, for example, name, gender, whether a single child or not (option only visible if the candidate has selected ‘female’ in gender column), guardians’ name, phone number, email address, date of birth, and so on.
    • Mailing Address
    • Permanent Location
    • Educational qualification: This incorporates filling off details, for example, the subject of postgraduate test, the status of post-graduation (passed/showing up), college name, year of passing post-graduation, the status of M.Phil.and Ph.D. (passed/showing up/not showing up), and so on.
    • Security pin: This includes filling off the security number previously given to the page.

    Step 7 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 8: A pop-up appears on the screen which asks you to verify the details you have filled in the application form. Check all the details very carefully.

    If you find any errors, click on “Edit Application Form Data” and make the necessary changes.

    Once you’re doing editing, check the declaration box and click on “Final Submit”.

    Step 8 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 9: A pop-up appears which says to confirm that you want to finally submit the application form.

    Click on “yes” if you’re fully assured that you have not made any mistakes while filling up the application form.

    Step 9 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Upload Image and Signature

    Step 10: Once you submit the application form, a new window opens up which says to upload the images. Click on “Upload Images”.

    Step 10 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 11: Next, you need to upload sharp images of your signature and a recent passport size photograph – with 80% face (without mask) visible including ears against the white background. The examined pictures and signature ought to be in JPG/JPEG format.

    In the image below you can check the other criteria pertaining to these scanned images.

    Criteria for Passport Photograph & Signature Upload
    Step 11 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Pay Application Fee & Download Confirmation Page

    Step 12: You can pay the UGC NET application fees through SBI/HDFC/Syndicate/ICICI/Paytm payment gateway (debit card/credit card/net banking/UPI). Keep proof of fee paid.

    Category Application Fee (in Rs.)
    General 1,000
    General - EWS/OBC-NCL 500
    SC/ST/PwD/Transgender 250
    Step 12 to Apply Online for UGC NET

    Step 13: Once you have successfully paid the UGC NET Application fees, an affirmation page will be created. Take a printout of the affirmation page and save it for future reference.

    UGC NET Application Form 2021 Correction

    NTA offers a one-time opportunity to make corrections in your UGC NET Application Form (they know we’re humans and are capable of making mistakes).  

    They provide a small correction period window, when the process to apply online is finished, wherein candidates can make their desired corrections in some of the fields, such as choice of exam center, city of the exam, photograph, and signature, etc.  

    For the June 2021 Cycle (October 2021) this window was opened on 7th September 2021 and closed on 12th September 2021.

    The steps are given below outline the process to make corrections in the UGC NET Application Form:

    Sign-in to the Correction Window

    Step 1: Visit the official website – and scroll down to the bottom where you will find a blue button – Correction window for UGC-NET December 2020 and June 2021 cycles. Click on that button.

    Step 1 to do Correction in UGC NET Application Form

    Step 2: A new page will open up. Fill in your application number, password, and security pin and click on Sign in.

    Step 2 to do Correction in UGC NET Application Form

    Go through the Instructions for Online Correction

    Step 3: On the page that opens, you’ll find a section “Correction in Application Form Particulars” at the bottom. Click on the blue button “Correction in Application Form” given in that section.

    Step 3 to do Correction in UGC NET Application Form

    Step 4: A new page will open up with Instructions and Procedure for Online Correction of Application Form. Check the “I Agree” box and click on Proceed to Correction button.

    Step 4 to do Correction in UGC NET Application Form

    Make the necessary Corrections and Print/Download the Revised Application

    Step 5: Your UGC NET 2021 application form will open up for correction. Make the necessary changes in the application form.

    Step 6: One important thing that you need to know here is that you can make changes only in your Signature, Photograph, Personal Details, and Exam Centre Preferences. Anything else apart from these cannot be changed.

    Step 7: Click on Submit button once the corrections are made. After correction, you are advised to take a printout of the revised application form for future reference.

    UGC NET Apply Online – Key Takeaways

    • You can fill the application structure in online mode on the official site of the test as it were. Applications submitted in some other mode won’t be acknowledged
    • You can submit just a single application form
    • You must enter your email ID and phone number accurately as all the significant correspondence with respect to the test will be finished by NTA through email or SMS
    • All the four stages of the application procedure (enrollment, application form filling, uploading of photograph and signature, and application fee payment) can be done together or at discrete occasions
    • You don’t have to provide any document other than scanned photograph and signature while applying online for UGC NET
    • In the event that the affirmation page isn’t created after the payment of the application fee, this implies the transaction has been dropped. In such cases, the sum will be refunded to your account. Be that as it may, you need to make another payment for the online application form
    • You must hold the printed duplicates of the affirmation page for future reference
    • Since the whole UGC NET application process is on the web, you don’t have to send any archive through post/fax/by hand/email to NTA (technology really is a boon most of the time).


    Applying for any exam can be a little stressful as there’s so much information that needs to be filled in. Before filling the form, remember to take a deep breath and know that even if you make a mistake, you can correct it within the allotted period.

    I hope you have found the information, provided above, on Exam Pattern & Syllabus of UGC NET to be quite useful. You should treat these to be the starting point on your journey to ace the exam.

    Throughout my blogs on UGC, you will find various relevant information about the exam. I have provided links to some of those blogs on this page. In addition to those, you might find the following resources to be quite beneficial.

    Paper 1 Free Material

    Paper 2 Free Material

    I hope I have given you all the information that you might need.

    All the best!!
    Keep Learning!!

    Founder & CEO of

    About Anuj Jindal


    Anuj Jindal, the founder, is an ex-manager from SBI, with an M.Com from Delhi School of Economics. He also has a JRF in Commerce & Management and NET in HRM, along with more than 5 years of experience in the field of Education.

    1. Outstanding

      • Hey,

        Really happy to see that this blog helped you. Let me know in case you need any further help.

    2. Hi, I'm appearing for UGC NET this year, and I've done my post graduation in Indsutrial Management, for the May exam, I've opted for Management in paper II, but I was wondering, if I take the December exam, then can I opt for English as my subject (Simply because I'm interested in switching to English), I've got no degree in English, but I want to break out from the management stream.

      • Hello Palak,
        No, you can not apply for English. You need to have master's in particular subject to apply for the same

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