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CDS I 2016 Paper Analysis

Last Updated - June 08, 2017

The CDS Examination is conducted by UPSC (Union Public Services Commission) twice in a year. The first phase of Combined Defense Services 2016 was held on February 14, 2016. The paper was conducted in three parts (three CDS Question papers) for those opting for IMA (Indian Military Academy), AFA (Air Force Academy) and INA (Indian Naval Academy) and two shifts (two question papers) for those opting for OTA (Officers’ Training Academy).

The UPSC is going to conduct the second phase of examination i.e. CDS II 2016 on October 23, 2016 for recuitment of candidates for vacant posts of Permanent Commissioned Officers for Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, and Air Force Academy and for Short Service Commission Courses which are offered to both male and female candidates at Officers’ Training Academy after the announcement of CDS Result and CDS Selection Process commonly known as SSB that follows.

The CDS Exam Pattern is designed divided into three sections - English, General Knowledge and Elementary Mathematics, the candidates are tested in each and every section and the duration of each of these is two hours. All three papers comprise of multiple choice questions. The papers on English and General Knowledge include 120 questions each while the paper on Elementary Mathematics is comprised of 100 questions.

CDS I Exam Pattern

The pattern for UPSC CDS I is indicated in the table below.

1. For admission to Indian Military Academy, Indian Naval Academy, and Air Force Academy, exam scheme will be as:

SubjectDurationNumber of QuestionsMaximum Marks

English

2 Hours

120

100

General Knowledge

2 Hours

120

100

Elementary Mathematics

2 Hours

100

100

2. For admission to Training Academy, exam scheme will be as:

SubjectDurationNumber of QuestionsMaximum Marks

English

2 Hours

120

100

General Knowledge

2 Hours

120

100

Read About CDS Sample Paper 

CDS I 2016 Examination Paper Analysis

The pattern of questions in CDS I 2016 was more or less of the moderate level of difficulty. Questions were though slightly lengthy, tricky and time-consuming. The detailed section-wise analysis of CDS I 2016 is discussed below:

English

The overall difficulty level of English language section was moderate. Question from vocabulary and grammar dominated the section. The section consisted of 5 short passages. The passages had a few inferences based questions too, which were a little tricky in nature. Among 120 question; 20 questions were from sentence improvement, 23 questions were from reading comprehension and remaining question were from Para-Jumble, Sentence Arrangement, spotting the error, cloze test, Synonyms, Antonyms, One Word Substitution. Among which some of the questions on Para-Jumble and Sentence Arrangement had close options and hence required some amount of deliberation.

The detailed breakdown is as below:

cds 11

Topic

Number of Questions

Level of Difficulty

Sentence Improvement

20

Easy

Reading Comprehension

23 (5 passages)

Easy – Moderate

Synonyms

8

Moderate

Antonyms

7

Easy

One Word Substitution

5

Moderate

Para-Jumble

10

Easy – Moderate

Sentence-Jumble

7

Moderate

Spot the Error

20

Easy

Cloze Test

20

easy

General Knowledge

General Knowledge section was difficult as always. Questions from Static General Knowledge dominated the section. Among 120 questions; There were 19 questions of difficult level from history, 22 questions from geography and 20 questions from polity. Questions from history revolved mainly around art and culture of the 18th century. However, questions on current affairs were easy and scoring.

Surprisingly, this year there were science based questions from Physics and Chemistry as well but they were basic in nature and hence scoring. The overall, this section had a mixture of easy, medium and difficult level of questions.

Topic wise distribution of questions and level of difficulty is mentioned below.

cds 12

Topic

Number of Questions

Level of Difficulty

History

19

Difficult

Science

27

Easy (Concept-based)

Geography

22

Moderate (Analytical)

Ecology

6

Moderate (Fact-Based)

Polity

20

Easy to Moderate

Economy/ Trade

11

Moderate (Fact-based)

Misc. /Armed Forces

15

Moderate (Fact)

Elementary Mathematics

This section was quite easy but lengthy in nature. Among 100 question; Almost 60 % of the questions were from Trigonometry, geometry, and arithmetic ability and remaining 40% question were from mix of different topics. Overall, it was decent paper with the questions from a variety of areas. The aspirants who possess the ability to solve problems quicker will definitely score better.

The detailed analysis is as below:

Topic

Number of Questions

Level of Difficulty

Number System

20

Easy-Moderate

Simple interest/Compound interest

5

Easy

Percentage

2

Easy

Profit/Loss

1

Easy

Mixture

1

Easy

Time and Work

3

Easy

Time speed and Distance

6

Easy

Clock

2

Easy

Trigonometry

14

Moderate-tough

Set Theory

1

Easy

Geometry

20

Easy-Moderate

Mensuration

14

Easy

Algebra

7

Easy-Moderate

Mean-Median-Mode (Frequency Distribution Table)

4

Easy

CDS I 2016 Paper Analysis – Important Topics

Based on the analysis and pattern of examination papers, candidates are advised to focus on the following topics to score well in the upcoming CDS 2016 examination.

English: This section is comprised of questions from the following topics: Para Jumble, Sentence Improvement, Cloze Test, Reading Comprehension, Antonyms, Synonyms, Error Spotting, One Word Substitution, Sentence Jumble, etc.

General Knowledge: This section is comprised of questions from the following topics: History, Ecology, Economy/ Trade, Science, Polity, Geography, and Others/Armed Forces, etc.

Elementary Mathematics: This section is comprised of questions from the following topics: Simple interest/Compound interest, Trigonometry, Mensuration, Time speed and Distance, Algebra, and Number System, etc.

Read About CDS Exam Syllabus

CDS I 2016 Qualifying Marks

The sectional cut off of the CDS I 2016 examination is considered as the CDS I 2016 qualifying marks for each section. Candidates have to qualify in each section by attaining 20% of maximum marks i.e. 20 marks for each course in each section:

Course

Qualifying Marks

IMA

20% of maximum marks. i.e. 20 marks

INA

20% of maximum marks. i.e. 20 marks

AFA

20% of maximum marks. i.e. 20 marks

OTA for men

20% of maximum marks. i.e. 20 marks

OTA for women

20% of maximum marks. i.e. 20 marks

CDS I 2016 Expected Cut off

The minimum qualifying marks in each section of the CDS I 2016 examination is considered as the CDS I 2016 Cut off. Candidates have to qualify in each of the three sections by securing cut-off marks to be decided by CDS. The mentioned below table gives the CDS Cutoff for each section:

Academy

Cut off marks

IMA

97-102

INA

97-102

AFA

127-132

OTA (Men)

76-81

OTA(Women)

76-81

Note: A minimum score of 20 marks, in each paper, is required to clear the cut-off.

CDS Overall Analysis

Based on CDS I Paper analysis, it can be said that the paper was of moderate difficulty level which involved time management skills, calculative questions, and concept based questions. This inevitably affected the scores of aspirants which meant low cut off.

The English section was moderate and easy to attempt, general knowledge section was also tricky and the section of elementary mathematics was moderate, but calculative and is the most time-consuming section among all.

Hope this overall analysis helped you. And, if you are yet to appear for the CDS examination, make use of this paper analysis in order to get a better understanding and devise your preparation strategy accordingly.

Keep calm and study on

Good Luck!!!

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