Officers Training Academy: Expert Shares Tips For Aspiring Candidates

Officers Training Academy: Expert Shares Tips For Aspiring Candidates

For admission into OTA, candidates need to clear the UPSC CDS exam after which they will be called for a SSB interview.

Sunidhi VijayUpdated: Wednesday, March 13, 2024, 09:48 AM IST
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Officers Training Academy (OTA) provides short service commission for candidates who wish to serve the Indian Army. The 49-week program at the OTA prepares graduates for all branches of the Army, with the exception of the Army Medical Corps. 

For admission into OTA, candidates need to clear the UPSC CDS exam after which they will be called for a SSB interview. CDS stands for Combined Defence Service. It's the name of an examination conducted by UPSC twice a year. 

The date of the CDS 1 exam is set for April 21, 2024. In the first or second week of April 2023, the admit card for the same is anticipated.

Zaheer Hussain, senior subject matter expert at SSBCrackExams said, “The difference between CDS and OTA is that if a candidate wishes to get in IMA, AFA & INA, they will need to give three papers in CDS EXAM, that is, English, GK And Elementary Mathematics. However, if one wants to get in OTA, the maths paper is eliminated.” 

There are three other ways that a candidate can get into OTA, namely, through SSC Tech, Judge Advocate Entry and NCC Special Entry Scheme. 

On May 15, 2024, the CDS 2 notification and application form 2024 will be released. Candidates can apply from May 15, 2024, until June 4, 2024, for CDS 2 2024 in case they do not pass the CDS 1 exam. September 1, 2024 is the date of the CDS 2 2024 exam.

Below are some of the tips:

Hussain also shared some tips for the candidates and said that since they have limited time in their hands, the focus should primarily lie on revising what they already know. He said, “Spending time on reading additional material is useless. Use PYQs For Understanding the exam needs.”

He shared two things that are utmost important for the students, “Revision and practice is very important. In the GK paper, the highest weightage comes from geography and history followed by Polity And Economy. Current Affairs have taken the centre stage since the last couple of attempts where 22 to 26 MCQs out of 120 are coming from it. In general sciences Physics, Biology and chemistry have equal weightage.”

Hussain further added that candidates should take care of the negative marking scheme. “A lot of worthy candidates lose the chance of getting shortlisted for SSB because of this scheme. One should leave the question unattempted and practice smart work," he added.

An elite army pre-commission training facility in India, Officers Training Academy in Chennai generates about 750 Short Service Commissioned army officers annually. It is the only academy in the nation that allows women to be commissioned into the Indian army's various arms and services for a limited period of time.

The reason why OTA is called short service commission is because officers are only allowed to perform their duties for minimum 10 and maximum 14 years. After which, the officers have to apply for permanent positions if they wish to remain in the service

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