CDS Eligibility Criteria 2022 UPSC CDS I (OTA/IMA/INA/AFA) Age/Education

CDS Eligibility Criteria

Some changes has been made in CDS Eligibility Criteria 2022 by Union Public Service Commission. In this article, we have covered the detailed Combined Defence Services Eligibility Criteria required to apply for CDS. So, candidates appearing in UPSC CDS I Exam can check UPSC CDS (OTA/IMA/INA/AFA) Age/Education and other details from here.

UPSC conducts Combined Defence Services (CDS) examination twice a year, in the month of April and September. By qualifying this examination, candidates will be recruited under the Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy, Indian Military Academy, and Indian Air Force Academy.

CDS Eligibility Criteria Overview:

Name of Organization

Union Public Service Commission

Name of Exam

Combined Defence Services (CDS II)

Exam Type

National Level Test

Apply Mode


Exam Mode


UPSC CDS 1 Exam details

Given below

CDS 2 Admit Card Release

3 weeks before the exam

Official Website

CDS Helpline Numbers

011-23098543, 23385271, 23381125

CDS Exam Eligibility Criteria

Candidates those will not fulfill physical and medical Eligibility Conditions for Combined Defence Services Exam should not apply. Candidates can check Combined Defence Services Eligibility Criteria before filling the CDS Application Form. Male or Female candidates, applying for CDS Exam should ensure that they fulfill all the CDS Eligibility 2022 conditions for admission to Examination.

The CDS Eligibility 2022 requirements are as follows:

  • Nationality
  • Education
  • CDS Age Eligibility
  • Physical Standards
  • Visual Standards
  • Medical Standards

Age Limit, Marital Status:

Education Eligibility (Institution-wise)


Age Limit


Marital Status

Indian Military Academy

19 to 24 years

Bachelor’s degree

Unmarried male candidates

Air Force Academy

20 to 24 years

 (Upper age limit for candidates holding valid and
current Commercial Pilot Licence issued by DGCA (India) is relaxable upto 26 yrs. 

Degree (with Physics and
Mathematics at 10+2 level) or Bachelor of Engineering

Unmarried male candidates

(Candidate below 25 years of age must be unmarried. Marriage is not
permitted during training)

Indian Naval Academy

19 to 24 years

Degree in Engineering

Unmarried male candidates

Officers Training Academy

(SSC Course for men)

19 to 25 years

Bachelor’s degree

Unmarried male candidates

Officers Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course)

19 to 25 years

Bachelor’s degree

Unmarried women, issueless widows who have not remarried and issueless
divorcees (in possession of divorce documents) who have not remarried

CDS Exam Nationality:

An applier must be a

  • Citizen of India, OR
  • Subject of Nepal, OR
  • Subject of Bhutan, OR
  • Refugee from Tibet who came to India before 1st July 1962 for permanent settlement in India
  • Person of Indian origin who has migrated from Pakistan, Burma, Sri Lanka and East African Countries of Kenya, Uganda, The United Republic of Tanzania, Zambia, Malawi, Zaire and Ethiopia or Vietnam with intention of permanently settling in India.

CDS Qualification Details:

For Indian Military Academy/Officers’ Training Academy :

CDS Qualification: To get selection in the Indian Military Academy/Officers’ Training Academy it is must for candidates to attain Graduation Degree from a recognized institution.

For Indian Naval Academy:

UPSC CDS Qualification: Indian Navy requires those candidates who have attained Bachelor degree in Engineering in relevant branch along with good academic scores

For Air Force Academy:

CDS Exam Eligibility Criteria: Those, who possess Degree of a recognized University with Physics and Mathematics at 10+2 level or Bachelor of Engineering, are eligible to apply for admission in Air Force Academy as per CDS Eligibility Criteria.


Educational Qualification

Indian Military Academy

Graduation Degree

Indian Naval Academy

B.E/B.Tech (10+2 with Physics & Maths)

Air Force Academy

Graduation, B.E/B.Tech (10+2 with Physics & Maths)

Officers’ Training Academy (Men)

Graduation Degree

Officers’ Training Academy (Women)

CDS Marital Status:

CoursesMarital Status
Indian Military Academy (IMA)Unmarried
Indian Naval Academy (NA)Unmarried
Air Force Academy (AFA)Unmarried
Officers Training Academy (OTA – Men)Unmarried and Married
Officers Training Academy (OTA – Women, Non-Technical)Unmarried / Widow/ not remarried / issueless divorces

UPSC CDS Age Range (Limit):

AcademyCDS Age Limit
Indian Military Academy (IMA)19-24 years
Indian Naval Academy (INA)19-24 years
Air Force Academy (AFA)20-24 years
Officer’s Training Academy(OTA Women-Non Tech)19-25 years
Officer’s Training Academy (OTA Men)19-25 years

UPSC CDS Age Limit Details:

For Indian Military Academy (IMA)CDS Age Limit: Aspirants, who are interested, should not born earlier than 02nd July 1994 and not later than 01st July 1999.
For Indian Naval Academy (INA)As per CDS Eligibility Criteria: Male candidates born not earlier than 02nd July 1994 and not later than 01st July 1999 are eligible to apply for admission in Indian Naval Academy.
For Air Force Academy (AFA)
  • Age of appliers should not be below 20 years and exceed from 24 years as on 01st July 2021 i.e. born not earlier than 02nd July 1998 and not later than 01st July 1998
  • For candidates holding valid and current Commercial Pilot Licence issued by DGCA (India) may get relaxation in upper age limit upto 26 yrs. i.e. born not earlier than 02nd July 1992 and not later than 01st July 1998).
  • Those, who are below 25 years, must be unmarried.
For Officers Training Academy (SSC Course for Men)As per CDS Eligibility Criteria: Male candidates should not born earlier than 02nd July 1993 and later than 01st July 1999.
For Officer Training Academy (SSC Women Non-Technical Course)Only those are eligible, who have not born earlier than 02nd July 1993 and later than 01st July 1999

Check Here: UPSC CDS Officer Salary

CDS Physical Standard:

CDS Height and Weight (For Navy)

Height in Centimeters
(Without shoes)
Weight in Kgs.
18 years20 years22 years

CDS Physical Standard for Female

Height in cms
(Without shoes)
Weight in Kgs.
20 years25 years30 years
  • The acceptable weight for Air Force candidates will be ą 10% of the average weight given below:
  • Male Ideal Weights In Kg For Different Age Groups And Heights For Fat % (<20) Of Normal Individuals

Check Here: CDS Question Paper

CDS Physical Standard for Air Force:

Height in MMAge Range
  • Candidates are required to have good physical structure, mental health and must not have any disease/ disability as per UPSC CDS Eligibility Criteria.
  • Appliers should not have weak constitution, bodily defects or over weight.
  • Height of male candidates should not be below 157.5 cm. for Army, 157 cm for Navy and 162.5 cms for Air Force as per As per CDS Eligibility Criteria.
  • Women candidates should not be below 152 cm.
  • Relaxation in height of 5 cm is available for Gorkhas and candidates belonging to hills of North-Eastern region of India, Garhwali and Kumaon and for Lakshadweep candidates, relaxation is 2cms.
  • Candidate should have natural teeth with 14 dental points. Candidate who is suffering from severe pyorrhea shall get rejected.
  • Hearing of the applicants should be normal
  • Forced whisper at a distance of 610 cms in a quiet room will be clear to the candidates.
  • Applicants have not disease in ear, nose and throat in past or present.
  • As per CDS Eligibility Criteria: Candidate should be physically and mentally fit.

Visual Standards for Air Force:

Vision (corrected) better eye 6/6
and worse eye 6/12
Vision (corrected) better eye 6/6,
worse eye 6/12
Myopia of not more than minus 3.5 DMyopia of not more than minus 5.5 D
Manifest hypermetropia of not more than plus 3.5 D including AstigmatismManifest hypermetropia of not more than plus 3.5 D including Astigmatism.

Visual Standards for Navy:

  • Uncorrected without glass – 6/12
  • Corrected with glass – 6/6
  • Limits of Myopia – 1.5
  • Limits of Hypermetropia +1.5

Other Academies


Uncorrected VA 6/60 & 6/60 BCVA 6/6 & 6/6

Myopia -3.50 D Sph including astigmatism, Hypermetropia +3.50 D Sph including Astigmatism

Colour perception


CDS Medical Standards:

As per As per CDS Eligibility Criteria: Applicants must be physically fit according to physical standards for admission to Combined Defence Services Examination (II), 2022. Applicants must be in good physical and mental health and free from any disease/disability.

CDS Eligibility Criteria 2022: FAQs

Question 1: Can the 12th pass apply for the CDS 2022 exam?

Answer: You are not eligible to join CDS after the 12th as the minimum academic qualification for CDS is Graduation.

Question 2: Can women apply for the CDS exam?

Answer: Yes, women can apply for CDS Exam, but they are eligible to join OTA only. They are then allotted SSC(Short Service Commission) in the non-technical cadre.

Question 3: What is the age limit of the CDS exam?

Answer: The minimum age required is 19 years. The maximum age allowed is 24 for IMA and INA, 23 for AFA, and 25 for OTA.

Question 4: How many attempts are there for the CDS exam?

Answer: Though the age limit and marital conditions have been specified by the conducting body, there is no limit for the number of attempts. A candidate can apply for this exam till the age limit exceeds.

Question 5: I am a 22-year-old male and I am married. Can I apply for the Indian Naval Academy?

Answer: No, you cannot apply for the Indian Naval Academy. Though age-wise you are eligible but to appear for INA you have to be unmarried.

Question 6: I have done graduation in Computer Science. Am I eligible to appear for the Indian Naval Academy?

Answer: No, you are not eligible to appear for INA. The candidate must hold a degree in engineering to be eligible for the INA exam.

Question 7: I am 20 years female candidate. I have remarried after my divorce. Can I apply for OTA?

Answer: You are not eligible for OTA. To be eligible for OTA, the divorcee should not be remarried after the divorce.

Question 8: What if a candidate wears spectacles regularly; will they be considered for CDS 2022?

Answer: Candidates who wear spectacles are eligible for other CDS categories except for Air Force. For Air Force, you must not be wearing spectacles habitually.

Question 9: What physical activities can be done, to clear the CDS physical round?

Answer: To be physically fit for CDS 2022, follow the below-mentioned routine:

  • Run 2 to 4 km in 15 minutes
  • Do Pushups & Sit-ups, minimum of 20 each
  • Do Chin-ups, minimum 8
  • Climb rope (3 to 4 meters)

Question 10: What conditions will be disqualified in the X-Ray exam of the Army and Navy?

Answer: List of conditions that will be disqualified is Granulomatous,  Arthritis, Scoliosis, More than mild Kyphosis/Lordosis, Spondylolisthesis,  Herniated nucleus purposes, Compression fracture of Vertebra, Sacralisation Disease, Cervical ribs with demonstrable neurological or Circulatory deficit, Presence of Schmorl’s node at more than one level, atlantooccipital and atlantoaxial anomalies, Incomplete Sacralisation Unilateral or Bilateral, Spinabifida other than SV 1 and LV 5, Any other abnormality, if so considered by the specialist.

Question 11: Are there 60% criteria for CDS?

Answer: There are no marks criteria for applying for the CDS exam. The only educational qualification required is a graduation degree from any discipline. You can check the educational CDS eligibility criteria in detail above.

Question 12: What are the physical requirements for CDS?

Answer: There are very specific BMI, height, weight, waist-hip proportion, eyesight, hearing standards, and a list of undesirable medical conditions for both female and male candidates in CDS. Based on age, the relevant height and weight requirements are determined.

A few criteria include less than 20% body fat percentage, BMI below 25, waist circumference should be below 90cm for male candidates and 80 cm for females, and so on. You can check the entire physical requirement for CDS here.

Question 13: What is the age required for CDS OTA for females?

Answer: The female candidates should be between 19-25 years for OTA. For more details related to age limit and relaxation for CDS, you can check details above

Question 14: Can a final-year student apply for CDS?

Answer: Yes, a final-year student can also apply for CDS provided you are graduating before the exam application procedure begins. Also, proof of qualifying for the degree has to be submitted to be considered for the position.

Question 15: Can I take the CDS exam after class 12?

Answer: CDS is a graduation level exam and hence cannot be applied for after class 12.

Question 16: What is the medical fitness required for CDS?

Answer: Common medical issues that a candidate must get tested for before appearing for the SSB interview include ear wax, deviated nasal septum, gynecomastia, phimosis, overweight/underweight, etc. there are many other medical fitness related issues too which you should get the test for and you can find the details above.

Question 17: What is the age limit of girls for the CDS exam?

Answer: For women, the age limit is between 19-25 years for the CDS Exam.

Question 18: Is it necessary to qualify for CDS 1 before CDS 2?

Answer: No, CDS 1 and CDS 2 are the same exam which is conducted every year. CDS exam is conducted twice every year and the candidate has to qualify it once to be considered for recruitment.

Question 19: Can a graduate soldier apply for CDS?

Answer: Yes, if you meet all the CDS eligibility criteria, you can apply for the exam and will be treated like any other candidate.

Final Words:

You may check this page that is created by the team of to get latest information time to time. If there would be any update at Official Website about CDS Eligibility Criteria 2022, we will provide it on this page.

CDS Eligibility Criteria for Male and CDS Eligibility Criteria for Female are given here. If you have any query regarding CDS 2 Eligibility Criteria, please ask in the comment box that is given below. We will provide answer to your query shortly regarding about CDS 1 Eligibility Criteria or CDS 2 Eligibility Criteria .

Something That You Should Put An Eye On

UPSC NotificationCDS Study Material
CDS Answer KeyUPSC CDS Admit Card
UPSC CDS ResultCDS Exam Syllabus

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3 Responses to "CDS Eligibility Criteria 2022 UPSC CDS I (OTA/IMA/INA/AFA) Age/Education"

  1. Suman

    Sir I wear spectacle of power -3.5 spherical. Shall I clear medical fitness

  2. aanchal guta

    please tell us that if more than 2.5 power of eye a,person will be rejected for cds exam ..(air force or naval academy )

    • admin

      Hii aanchal guta,
      the visual standards are as:
      (a) Uncorrected without glass 6/12
      (b) Corrected with glass 6/6
      Eye Correction is not permitted, even if you undergo a LASER operation. You might be rejected at medical fitness test.

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