NSEC 2020 Eligibility Criteria

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NSEC Exam Eligibility

Due to Covid 19 - The usual three-stage procedure for the selection of the teams to represent India at the International Olympiad that has been followed in prior years is now being shortened to a two-stage procedure as a one-time exception only for the academic year 2020 - 21. Read more about IOQ 2020-21

The NSEC exam, also known as National Standard Examination in Chemistry, is organized by the Indian Association of Physics Teachers in collaboration with the Association of Chemistry Teachers (ACT). The NSEC exam is a qualifying stage for talented and eligible candidates to participate in the Indian National  Chemistry Olympiad (a gateway for International Chemistry Olympiad). It is conducted yearly, and students of higher secondary level can participate in the examination.

Generally, approximately 30000-50000 students studying at a higher secondary level across the country appear for the NSEC exam. The examination is conducted in more than 850 countries in different cities/towns/villages most convenient to students.

The students interested in applying for the NSEC exam have to ensure that he/she has completed the NSEC exam 2020 Eligibility Criteria. At any stage, if the student is not found to be eligible for appearing the exam, he/she will be immediately disqualified from the NSEC exam 2020. The eligibility criteria for the NSEC exam 2020 is further discussed below in the article.

NSEC Exam 2020 Eligibility Criteria

  • The candidate interested in participating in the NSEC exam must hold a valid Indian passport.

  • The date of the candidate’s birth should fall between July 1, 2020, and June 30, 2020. Both dates should be inclusive.

  • The candidate must be residing in India since November 30, 2017, or earlier or studying in an Indian School System since November 30, 2017, or earlier.

  • The students applying for the NSEC exam must not have passed ( or scheduled to complete) class XII board exams or comparable earlier than November 30, 2019.

  • The candidate must not be preparing for any NSJES 2019 exam.

  • The candidate must not have started ( or planning to start) his/her studies in a University or comparable institution by June 1, 2002.

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Important NSEC Exam Eligibility 2020

The candidate looking for participation in the NSEC exam 2020 is mainly from the 12th standard. Though 11th class students can also participate in this exam, approx 30000 students who appear for the NSEC exam each year are mostly from 12th standard.

The top 1% of the students who qualified for the NSEC examination are eligible for Indian National Chemistry Olympiad. The top 30 candidates among all qualify for the Orientation -Cum-Selection-Camp, Chemistry.

The NSEC examination is usually conducted on the 2nd or 3rd Sunday of November. Due to the Covid-19, the whole process of the  NSEC exam 2020 is delayed until 20th August. The examination will be conducted in November, or it may get delayed further. Some important tentative dates of the NSEC exam is discussed below:

NSEC Exam Date (Tentative)


Starting Date

Ending Date

Registration of Centers

August 2020

August 2020

Enrollment of Candidates

August 2020

September 2020

Last Date For the Payment of Fees through Center-In Charge by Center Login

September 2020

NSEC Examination Date

November 2020

Display of Marks

December 2020

Announcement of List of Candidates of Merit Index and above MAS

December 2020

Final List of Selected Candidates for INO

December 2020

FAQ (Frequently Asked Questions)

Q1. How to Prepare for the NSEC Exam?


  1. Be Aware of the Syllabus - The NSEC is comprehensive, including topics such as inorganic chemistry, physics chemistry, organic chemistry, analytical chemistry, and spectroscopy. Most of these topics are selected from the school curriculum of classes 11 and 12. But the olympiad exam required deer understanding and more excellent knowledge of these subjects and their applications in the real world.

  2. Complete the Syllabus on Time - As we know, the Olympiad syllabus is comprehensive and to achieve the best, it is necessary to complete the entire thoroughly and on time.

  3. Take The Olympiad Exam as a Challenge - Take the Olympiad exam as a challenge rather than a battle. A problem is exciting, and considering it as a challenge will eventually enhance your concentration level while preparing the exam rather than an outcome.

  4. Take Regular Online Mock Tests - There are various online mock tests available. Keep attempting the test regularly and assure that you score a minimum of 95% in the exam.

  5. Be Sure to Complete Organic Chemistry - Most of the questions are selected from the topic Organic Chemistry in both the National and International Chemistry Olympiad exams.

  6. Work Hard -  Finally, there is no supplement for working hard. You will get your result for what you are aiming for only if you work hard consistently.

Q2. What is the International Chemistry Olympiad (INCHO)?

Ans: The International Chemistry Olympiad exam is an exam that is organized yearly through HBCSE. It is the last stage of the Chemistry Olympiad exam, where the selected students across the globe compete. A team of 5 students, along with two leaders from each county, participate in the International Chemistry Olympiad exam.

Students first attempt the National Standard Examination in Chemistry (NSEC). Later the qualified students try the Indian National Olympiad (INO). Further, the students are invited for Orientation Cum Selection Camp, where the final 5 candidates are selected who represent their country at International Level in International Chemistry Olympiad.

Q3. What is the Marking Scheme of the NSEC Exam?

Ans: The NSEC exam 2020 will be of 240 marks. The Question paper of the NSEC exam included 80 objective type questions i.e., multiple-choice questions. One mark is deducted for each incorrect answer as per the negative marking criteria. Make sure that you don't attempt the question which you are not sure.

4. How can the Students Check the NSEC Exam Results?

Ans: Students can check NSEC exam results by visiting the IAPT official website. Username and password as the date of birth will be required to check the result. The date of birth should be mentioned in the DDMMYY format. The total scores of the students will be mentioned in the NSEC exam result.

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