The National educational Testing Bureau of University Grant commission (UGC) conducted National Eligibility Test (NET)   to determine eligibility for lectureship and for award of Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) for Indian nationals in order to ensure minimum standards for the entrance in the teaching profession and research . This test is conducted in Humanities (including language), Social science, Forensic science, Environment Science, Computer Science and application science and Electronic science.

The council of scientific and industrial Research (CSIR) conduct the UGC-CSIR NRT for other science subjects, namely Life Science, Physical Science, Chemical Science, Mathematical Science, and Earth Atmospheric Ocean & Planetary Sciences jointly with UGC . The tests are conducted twice in a year generally in the months of June and December. For candidates, who desire to pursue Research , the Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) is available for 5 years subject to fulfilment of certain condition. UGC has allocated a number of fellowships to the University for the candidates who qualify the test for JRG. The JRF’s are awarded to the meritorious candidates from among the candidates qualifying for lectureship in NET. JRFs are available only to the candidates who opt it in their application form.

The test for Junior Research Fellowship is being conducted since 1984. The Government of India , through its notification dated 22ndJuly, 1988 entrusted the task of conducting the eligibility test for lectureship to UGC. Connsequently , UGC conducted the first National Eligibility Test, common to both eligibility for Lectureship and Junior Research Fellowship in two parts, that is, in December 1989 and in March 1990.

Jobs for NET qualified candidates

University Grants Commission (UGC) announced in 2013 that the candidates who clear the NET successfully would be eligible for lucrative also for private college lectureship jobs in public sector undertakings (PSUs). PSUs can use UGC-NET scores for the recruitment process of the posts of executives in their organizations in disciplines like science (R&D), management, corporate communications, human resources, and finance. This step taken by the UGC would also increase the number of students taking the UGC-NET examination which has witnessed a gradual decline in recent years.

UGC Net Qualifying Criteria And Cut Off Percentages

UGC NET Procedure and Criteria for the declaration of result steps:

  • Obtain minimum qualifying marks with aggregate 55% marks to General and 50% to others in master’s degree.
  • The paper will be divided into two papers: Papers 1 and 2. The candidates would have to attempt a total of (both papers 1 and 2) 150 questions in three hours.
  • UGC NET qualifying cut off marks for General category is 40% in Paper I and II while the qualifying marks for SC/ST/OBC-NCL/PwD/Transgender categories is 35% in Papers I and II.
  • Amongst those candidates who have obtained Minimum marks a merit list will be prepared subject wise and category-wise using the aggregate marks of two papers secured by such candidates.
  • For lectureship, the aggregate cut off marks for General category is between 54 and 60, for OBC NCL it is 49–56, for SC/ST it is 45–54 and for EWS it is 48–58 (for all subjects).
  • On the other hand, Top 6% of candidates will be selected for eligibility of NET Lectureship. Simultaneously, a separate list for JRF would be prepared.
  • A separate merit list for the award of JRF will be prepared from amongst the NET qualified candidates figuring in the above merit list prepared.
  • Until 2018 UGC released the certificates but from December 2018 onward, NTA releases the UGC NET e-certificate and JRF award letter on its official website for the qualified candidates. Successful candidates would be able to download their e-certificates and award letters online at ugcnet.nta.nic.in.

Reservations quota in UGC-NET and Junior Research Fellowships

Candidates clearing JRF exams are also eligible for the National Eligibility Test. UGC follows the Government of India’s reservation policy, as per which a minimum of 27%, 10%, 15%, 7.5% and 5% (Now it is 5 percentage for PWD as per RPWD Act 2016 irrespective of the caste which they belong, Reservation for PWD is for benchmark disability) of fellowships are reserved for the OBC (non-creamy layer), EWS, SC, ST and persons with disabilities (PWD) respectively.

The reservation is applicable for UGC-NET Examination being University Grants Commission comes under Central Education Institution Act under Sec. 2(d)(ii) and National Testing Agency (NTS) comes under Central Education Institution Act under Sec. 2(d)(v).

Now as per Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016 National Testing Agency (NTA) & University Grants Commission (UGC) is obliged to provide 5% reservation to PWD as per Sec. 32(1) of RPWD Act, 2016 to those who are having above 40% disability being NTA is an Educational Agency registered under Societies Registration Act, 1860 and as per Central Educational Institution (Reservation in Admission) Act, 2006 Sec. 2.(d)(v) an educational institution set up by the Central Government under the Societies Registration Act, 1860.

Thereby as per Sec. 32(1) of the RPWD Act, 2016 Differentially abled persons (those who are above 40% disability) are eligible for 5% reservation in higher education. As per Central Education Institution (Reservation in Admission) Act, 2006 UGC & NTA is providing the reservation to SC/ST, OBC, General-Economically Weaker Section etc.

Rights of Persons with Disabilities Act, 2016

32. (1) All Government institutions of higher education and other higher education institutions receiving aid from the Government shall reserve not less than five per cent. seats for persons with benchmark disabilities.

UGC NET Age Limit and Relaxation

JRF: Candidate should not be more than 31 years as on 01.10.2021. There are a few relaxations as well.

  • Candidates (including women applicants) belonging to OBC-NCL/SC/ST/PwD/Transgender categories are provided a relaxation of up to 5 years.
  • Candidates who have research experience get a relaxation limited to the period they have spent on the research, but this relaxation is subject to a maximum of 5 years, only if you provide a certificate from the appropriate authority.
  • Candidates with L.L.M. degree are provided with 3 years of relaxation in age.
  • Candidates who have served in the armed forces are provided with a relaxation of up to 5 years which is subject to the length of service in the armed forces up to the first day of the month in which the UGC NET examination is to be held.
  • Under any circumstances, the total relaxation of the above ground(s) shall not exceed five years.

Assistant Professor: There is no upper age limit for candidates to apply for UGC NET (Assistant Professor).


UGC conducts NET twice a year, i.e. , in the months of June and December. The notifications announcing the June and December examinations are published in the months of March and September respectively in the weekly journal of nation-wide circulation, viz, ‘Employment News’ .


The result of June , UGC NET is declared generally in the month of October . Similarly December , UGC NET result is usually declared in the month of April . The UGC NET result publish in the ‘Employment News ’ are also available on UGC official website.

Essential Educational Qualifications:

M.Sc. or equivalent degree/ Integrated BS-MS/ BS-4 years/ BE/ B. Tech/ B. Pharma/ MBBS with at least 55% (without rounding off) marks for General (UR)/General-EWS and OBC candidates and 50% (without rounding off) for SC/ST, Third gender and Persons with Disability (PwD) candidates.
Candidates enrolled for M.Sc or having completed 10+2+3 years of the above qualifying examination as on the closing date of online submission of Application Form, are also eligible to apply in the above subject under the Result Awaited (RA) category on the condition that they complete the qualifying degree with requisite percentage of marks within the validity period of two years to avail the fellowship.

Such candidates will have to submit the attestation form duly certified by the Head of the Department/Institute from where the candidate is appearing or has appeared.
B.Sc (Hons) or equivalent degree holders or students enrolled in Integrated MS-PhD program with at least 55% marks for General (UR)/General-EWS and OBC candidates; 50% marks for SC/ST, Third gender, Persons with Disability (PwD) candidates are also eligible to apply. Candidates with Bachelor’s degree will be eligible for CSIR fellowship only after getting registered/enrolled for Ph.D/Integrated Ph.D program within the validity period of two years. Candidates possessing only Bachelor’s degree are eligible to apply only for Junior Research Fellowship (JRF) and not for Lectureship
(LS)/Assistant Professor.
B.E/ B.S/ B.Tech/ B.Pharma/ MBBS final year/result awaited candidates are eligible to apply for fellowship only. These candidates will not be eligible for Lectureship/Assistant professor.
B.Sc. (Hons.) final year/Result awaited candidates are not eligible to apply. Specification of degrees (whether Bachelor’s or Master’s) as notified by UGC in its Gazette Notification No. F. 5-1/2013 (CPP-II) dated 5th July, 2014 and as amended from
time to time, shall apply.
The eligibility for lectureship/ Assistant Professor of NET qualified candidates will be subject to fulfilling the criteria laid down by UGC. Ph.D degree holders who have passed Master’s degree prior to 19th September, 1991 with at least 50% marks are eligible to apply for Lectureship/ Assistant Professor only.

Candidates belonging to the Third gender category are eligible to draw the same relaxation in fee, age and Eligibility Criteria for NET (i.e. JRF and Assistant Professor) as are available to SC/ST categories. The subject-wise qualifying cut-offs for this
category would be the lowest among those for SC/ ST/ PwD/ OBC–NCL / General-EWS categories in the corresponding subject.