NDA Full Form - What is the Full Form of NDA?

By Ritesh|Updated : January 17th, 2023

NDA Full Form is National Defence Academy. It is the joint military training institute for the Indian Armed Forces, namely, the Indian Army, Navy, and Air Force. Candidates who get recruited in the mentioned divisions of the Indian Armed Forces all go into training in the NDA for a specific duration before moving ahead to their respective service academies.

National Defence Academy is the first tri-service academy in the world and hosts hundreds of yearly candidates for training. The academy is located in Khadakwasla, Pune, Maharashtra. Know more about the NDA full form, eligibility, syllabus, etc., here.

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NDA Full Form

NDA full form is National Defence Academy. It is the Indian Armed Forces' joint defence service training institute where cadets of the three services get training for the Indian Navy, Indian Army, and Indian Air Force. Every candidate wishing to join the special forces must qualify for the exam conducted by UPSC twice yearly, in April and September. Candidates must know the NDA full form as well as its eligibility, exam pattern, etc. Get the complete overview of the National Defence Academy here.

NDA Full Form: Overview

Here, we have given a brief overview of the NDA full form. To join the defence services, all aspiring candidates must qualify for the NDA Exam with all the requirements, including:

  • The eligibility criteria
  • Educational Qualification

Two written tests are required to be clear by every aspirant so they can appear for further rounds: the SSB interview and the physical examination. We have covered these aspects in the information below.


NDA Full Form: History of National Defence Academy

Apart from knowing NDA full form, it is essential to learn the history of the National Defense Academy. In 1954, the National Defense Academy was established. It is the world's first tri-service academy. Since its founding, the National Defence Academy has been educating officers of the Indian Armed Forces. Some of the best officers in the Indian Armed Forces have come out of the National Defence Academy.

The National Defense Academy's original location was Khadakwasla, close to Pune. The National Defense Academy moved to its current site in Pune in 1974. The Indian government has designated the National Defence Academy as an institution of national significance and an "Institution of National Eminence."

NDA Full Form: Post and Responsibility

The NDA full form makes it clear that this recruitment exam aims to find eligible applicants for the three Indian Defense Services. The Indian Army, Navy, or Air Force will induct all candidates who take the exam and pass all stages as officers depending on their placement on the merit list. The duty of defending the nation against foreign threats is entrusted to NDA-qualified individuals.

NDA Full Form: National Defence Academy Functions

Knowing the National Defence Academy's functions is equally essential to understanding the NDA full form. These are the duties performed by the National Defense Academy:

  • Army, Navy, and Air Force officers are trained at the National Defense Academy.
  • Cadets at National Defense Academy receive a top-notch education.
  • The National Defence Academy shapes the officers' personalities and prepares them to be responsible Indian citizens.
  • Cadets at the National Defense Academy gain leadership skills.
  • The National Defence Academy aids the officers in their understanding of Indian foreign and defence policy.
  • The only academy in India that teaches officers for all three forces is the National Defence Academy.

NDA Full Form: Eligibility

Just knowing the NDA full form is not enough. The candidates must also know the NDA Eligibility Criteria to check whether they can apply for the exam or not. Various parameters are based on which a candidate is judged and accordingly shortlisted or rejected. Candidates must check the eligibility conditions and see if they are a right fit for the exam or not. We have mentioned the eligibility criteria in detail below:


Nationality is the first and foremost factor determining whether you are eligible to apply for NDA. The nationality criteria for National Defence Academy (NDA full form) are given below, according to which one must either be:

  • Citizen of India
  • Citizen of Bhutan
  • Citizen of Nepal
  • Refugee of Tibet who is settled in India permanently

Note: Every candidate who falls in the category (b),(c), and (d) is required to get the certificate of eligibility allocated by the Indian Government. However, the candidates of Gorkha, Nepal, are relieved from having such an eligibility certificate. To know more about NDA full form, read below.

Gender Eligibility

After the NDA full form and nationality criteria, aspiring candidates must be familiar with gender eligibility. There are no restrictions for any gender; hence both male and female candidates can apply for the NDA exam. Earlier, girls were not allowed to sit for this exam, but now they are allowed to take admission as per the decision taken by the Supreme Court.

Age Limit

Next, after knowing the NDA full form, and other eligibility details, candidates must know the age limit allowed to apply for the exam. Any underage candidate over the required age will not be allowed to participate in the NDA recruitment. The age limit details for all candidates have been given below:

  • Unmarried candidates are selected, and the age criteria for both genders are mentioned below.
  • The age bar for male and female candidates is from 16.5 to 19.5 years.
  • There is no exceptional flexibility for the candidates belonging to the reserved categories.

NDA Full Form: Educational Qualification

Knowing the NDA full form is not enough; candidates must also be aware of the education requirements for NDA. Candidates applying for the exam must fulfil the educational requirements, or they will not be allowed to appear for the exam. The details about the educational criteria for NDA are given below:

  • Candidates of class 12th or equivalent examination are eligible.
  • Those who have passed their 12th or equivalent test are also eligible.
  • Candidates in the 11th standard cannot apply for the above-stated exam.

In addition to these requirements, there are also some special requirements for different divisions of the Indian Armed Forces. The details for the same are provided as follows:

NDA Full Form: Educational Qualification

For the Army Wing of NDA

12th Class, pass the 10+2 pattern of School Education or equivalent examination conducted by a State Education Board or a University.

For Air Force and Naval Wings of NDA & for the 10+2 Cadet Entry Scheme at the Indian Naval Academy

12th Class pass of the 10+2 pattern of School Education or equivalent with Physics, Chemistry, and Mathematics conducted by a State Education Board or a University.

NDA Full Form: Syllabus & Exam Pattern

One more thing that all aspiring candidates must know besides NDA full form is the NDA Syllabus and exam pattern. Knowing this will help the candidates get a better understanding of the exam and will help them create an effective strategy for learning. Candidates need to be familiar with the exam pattern as it will help them understand what questions, etc., will be asked, what the exam mode will be, and so on.

According to the NDA Exam Pattern, the exam is conducted offline, with pen-paper, and mainly consists of objective questions. There are two papers to be qualified by the aspiring candidate so that they can sit for the next round, which is the SSB interview. The three levels go like this:

  • Written Test
  • Personality Test/Interview
  • Fitness test

With complete knowledge about the full form of NDA, let us now discuss the syllabus for NDA. Candidates must know the paper-wise and subject-wise syllabus for the exam as it will help them prepare for it accordingly. As mentioned, there will be two papers; therefore, the syllabus for each paper is given below:

NDA Full Form: Syllabus




Paper 1 - Mathematics

2.5-hour test for 300 marks


Vector Algebra


Differential Calculus

Matrices and Determinants

Analytical Geometry of Two and Three Dimensions

Integral Calculus and Differential Equations and

Statistics and Probability

Paper 2 - General Ability Test

2.5-hour test for 600 marks

English - Grammar and usage, Para Jumbling, Spotting of errors, Para Jumbling, Comprehension, and cohesion, Fill in the blanks, Synonyms, and antonyms, Idioms, Cloze test, Sentence correction, and improvements, Vocabulary

General Knowledge - Physics, General Science, Chemistry, Current affairs, Geography, and History.

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FAQs for NDA Full Form

  • NDA full form is National Defence Academy. It is the world’s first tri-service academy that trains the recruits of the Indian Armed Forces (Indian Army, Indian Navy, and Indian Air Force) for service. Only selected candidates who pass the various rounds of recruitment get to enter the NDA.

  • NDA implies both National Democratic Alliance and National Defence Academy. The NDA full form in Defence is National Defence Academy which recruits eligible personnel in the Indian Army, Airforce, Navy, and Naval Academy.

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