JEST 2021: Exam Dates, Participating Institutions, Application Form, Syllabus & Admit Card

Last Modified on : 12 Jan 2022


Joint Entrance Screening Test (JEST) can be equated with the NET (National Eligibility Test) exam. By qualifying the JEST exam, students can get admission to the premier institutions/colleges of the country to pursue research in Science and Engineering. The SERB (Science and Engineering Research Board) is responsible for organising the JEST exam. The SERB falls within the purview of the Department of Science and Technology, Government of India. It was created in 2008 by an act of the Parliament. JEST is a national-level exam which is conducted every year for admission to Ph.D. and Integrated Ph.D. courses. Read the complete article for JEST 2021 details related to the application process, pattern, syllabus, eligibility, etc.

Students can get enrolled in the following Ph. D programmes by qualifying the JEST 2021 Exam –

  • Theoretical Computer Science
  • Computational Biology
  • NeuroScience
  • Physics

The exam is conducted by the participating institutes on a rotational basis. The exam conducting authority for JEST 2021 is Science and Engineering Research Board (SERB). The Indira Gandhi Centre for Research, Kalkapakkam conducted the JEST 2020 exam.

JEST 2021 - Quick Highlights

Exam Name

Joint Entrance Screening Test (JEST)

Exam Mode


Application Mode


Course Level


Exam Duration

180 minutes

Language of Question Paper


Negative Marking

Not Applicable

Official website

 JEST 2021 Latest Update - The official schedule for the Joint Entrance Screening Test (JEST) 2021 has been released on the official website. According to the schedule, the online application process will begin from 11th January and close on 14th February 2021. Candidates can apply online at JEST 2021 will be held on 11th April 2021.

JEST Exam 2021 Important Dates

The important dates for the JEST 2021 exam are official now. Here is the complete exam schedule.

JEST 2021 Events

Important Dates

Online application starts from

11th January 2021

Last date to apply

14th February 2021

Admit Card availability

Third week of March 2021

JEST 2021 Exam

11th April 2021

Answer Key

April  2021

Last date to raise objections

April 2021

Result declaration

May 2021

Start of Interview

May 2021

JEST Exam Previous Years Solved Papers

JEST Exam 2021 Pattern & Syllabus

JEST 2021 Exam Pattern

The JEST 2021 exam will be conducted through offline mode in a single session. The duration of the exam will be 3 hours. And Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) will be asked as per the following pattern:


Number of Questions

Part A


Part B


Part C




The question paper will be in the English language. There will be negative marking in Part A and Part C of the exam. In Part A, 1 mark will be deducted for every wrong answer and in Part C, 1/3rd marks will be deducted for every wrong answer. There will be no negative marking in Part B.

JEST 2021 Syllabus

The JEST 2021 syllabus for some programmes is as under:

Theoretical Computer Science - Elements of Discrete Mathematics, Introduction to Algorithms, Discrete Mathematical Structures with Applications to Computer Science,  An Introduction to Data Structures with Applications, The Design and Analysis of Computer Algorithms, Compilers: Principle, Techniques, and Tools, Fundamentals of Computer Algorithms, Fundamentals of Data Structures, Programming Languages, Concepts and Constructs. The test will focus on the Analytical Reasoning & Deduction, Combinatorics, Graph Theory, Data Structure & Algorithm, and Principle of Programming

Physics - Mathematical Methods, Electromagnetism & Optics, Classical Mechanics, Quantum Mechanism, Thermodynamics & Statistical Physics, and Electronics.

Candidates can download the complete syllabus from the official website. Candidates must strictly follow the syllabus prescribed for the exam.

JEST Exam 2021 Eligibility

Applicants should check the eligibility criteria before applying for the exam. Here are the eligibility criteria for different Ph. D programmes –

Eligibility for PhD Programme in Physics

Applicants should have done M. Sc. in Physics from a UGC recognised college/ institution.

However, some institutes accept other qualifications (M. Tech./ M.E/ B. E/ B. Tech./ M. Sc.) also besides M.Sc. (Physics) –

IIA – Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore

  • It accepts M. Sc in Physics/ Applied Physics/ Optics/ Photonics/ Instrumentation/ Electronics.
  • M. Sc. in Mathematics/ Applied Mathematics.

IUCAA - Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pune

  • It accepts M. Sc. in Physics/ Astronomy/ Electronics.
  • M. Sc. in Mathematics.

IPR - Institute of Plasma Research, Gandhinagar

  • It accepts M. Sc. in Physics/ Applied Physics/ Engineering Physics.

SNBNCBS - Satyendra Nath Bose National Centre for Basic Science, Kolkata

  • It accepts M. Sc. in Physics/ Bio-Physics/ Chemistry/ Bio-Chemistry/ Applied Mathematics.

TIFR - Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

  • It accepts M. Sc. in Physics/ B. Tech. in Engineering Physics.

NISER - National Institute of Science Education and Research

  • It accepts M. Sc. in Physics.
  • M.E./ M.Tech in Applied Physics.

JNCASR, IISc, IMSc, ICTS-TIFR, NCRA-TIFR, RRI, IUCAA TIFR-TCIS, IISER Thiruvananthapuram, Mohali, and Pune

  • These institutes also accept B. E/ B. Tech.

Ph. D. in Neuro –Science at NBRC (National Brain Research Centre, Manesar)

  • A candidate should have done M. Tech/ B.E/ B. Tech / MCA/ M. Sc. in Physics/ Mathematics.

Ph. D. in Computational Biology in IMSc (Institute of Mathematical Sciences)

  • A candidate should have done M. Tech/ M. E/ MCA/ M. Sc. in any Science discipline. The candidate should have a curiosity about biological problems that affect human lives and should have excellent mathematical skill.

Eligibility for Physics - Integrated Programmes (M. Sc. / M. Tech + Ph. D)


  • M.Sc. (Physics / Applied Physics) / Radio Physics and Electronics/ Post-B.Sc. (Hons.) In Optics and Optoelectronics.


  • A candidate should have done B. Sc. in Physics.  

SNBNCBS – B. Sc. in Physics/ Mathematics

NISER - National Institute of Science Education and Research

  • A candidate should have done B. Sc. (Physics) or B.E/B. Tech in Engineering Physics with at least 60% marks or first-class grade.

 IMSc - Institute of Mathematical Science

  • A candidate should have a degree in B. Sc. in Physics.

Bose Institute

  • A candidate should have earned a degree in B. Sc. (Physics/ Mathematics) / B. E/ B. Tech


  • A candidate should have completed B. Sc. in Physics/ Mathematics/ B. E/ B. Tech in Electricals/ Computer Science and Engineering / Electronics and Communication/ Engineering Physics/ Instrumentation/ Optics/ Photonics.

IISER Thiruvananthapuram

  • A candidate should have completed B. Sc. (Physics) or B.E. / B. Tech in any discipline.

Eligibility for Integrated PhD Programme in Theoretical Computer Science


  • A candidate should be B.Sc. /B.E. / M.C.A/. B. Tech in Computer Science or related disciplines. He/ she should be interested in the mathematical aspects of computer science.

M. Sc. Programme at HRI (Harish Chandra Research Institute)

  • The Integrated PhD programme in Physics at HRI is discontinued from 2017.
  • B. Sc. (Physics) or B.E./B. Tech. degree in any discipline

JEST Exam 2021 Application Process

Students can apply for the JEST 2021 exam online through the official website. The application process will start by 11th January 2021. It is advised to submit your filled-in application form before the last date of the application submission.

How to Apply for JEST Exam 2021 -

  • Candidates should visit the official website of the JEST -
  • It is a 4 stage process, namely – Registration; Filling the Application Form; Paying the Application Fee and Submitting the application form.
  • Students should get registered first. Under the ‘User Login’ section, click on the ‘Create a new account’ link. Enter your email ID and answer the captcha question to register.
  • Provide necessary details like Name, Age, Address, Phone No. and a valid Email ID.
  • The login credentials are sent to the candidate's registered email id.
  • Candidates should fill the login details to get access to the Application Form.
  • They should fill all specified columns of the application with valid details.
  • After that, they should upload the scanned copies of their Photo and Signature.
  • Before submitting the application form, candidates should check it properly. Upon successful submission of the application form, students will receive a confirmation on their registered Email ID.
  • Candidates should pay the required application fee.

JEST Exam Application Fee

  • General candidates should pay the application fee of ₹ 400.
  • The reserved category candidates and female candidates should pay the application fee of ₹ 200 only.
  • The female candidates belonging to SC/ ST category are exempted from paying the application fee.
  • Candidates can pay the application fee through online mode.

Other Details

List of Participating Institutes

Here is the list of participating institutes and respective programmes offered:


Institute Name

Programmes Offered


ARIES - Aryabhatta Research Institute of Observational Sciences, Nainital

Astronomy and Astrophysics, and Atmospheric Physics


BOSE Institute – Bose Institute Kolkata

Atmospheric sciences, Biophysics, Complex systems and networks, Condensed matter physics and materials science, High energy physics and astroparticle physics, Quantum physics and quantum information, Nuclear and radiation physics


HBNI – Homi Bhaba National Institute, Mumbai

Chemical Sciences, Engineering Sciences, Life Sciences, Mathematical Sciences, Medical & Health Sciences, Physical Sciences and Applied Systems Analysis


HRI – Harish Chandra Research Institute, Allahabad

Theoretical Physics, Astrophysics


ICTS – International Centre for Theoretical Sciences, Bangalore

Astrophysical Relativity, Data Assimilation and Dynamical Systems, Statistical Physics and Turbulence, and String theory and Quantum Gravity


IGCAR – Indira Gandhi Centre for Atomic Research, Kalpakkam

Solid-State Phase transformations, Superconductivity, Structure and dynamics of soft condensed matter, Band structure studies, Accelerators based Irradiation induced phenomena, Low-dimensional systems, Physics of interfaces, Nano-materials, Thin films technology and Theoretical physics


IIA – Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bangalore

Astronomy and Astrophysics, Astronomical Instrumentation, Optics, and Atomic Physics.


IISc. – Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore

Condensed Matter Physics (Experiments and Theory), Astronomy and Astrophysics (Theoretical), Atomic and Optical Physics (Experimental), Biocrystallography and Bio-informatics, and High Energy Physics (Theoretical)


IISER Bhopal – Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Bhopal

Condensed Matter Physics (Theory and Experiment),

Soft Matter Physics (Theory), Biophysics, Laser-Plasma Interactions, Ultrafast Physics (Experiment),

Astrophysics and Cosmology, High Energy Physics (Theory, Phenomenology and Experiment), Non-linear Optics


IISER Kolkata - Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Kolkata

Condensed Matter Physics, Field Theory, Classical & Quantum Gravity, Cosmology, Solar Science, High Energy Physics, Non-linear dynamics, Statistical Physics, Soft Matter, Optics & Spectroscopy, Atomic physics, Biophotonics, Spintronics, Nanoscience, NMR, Quantum Information


IISER Pune - Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Pune

Field Theory, Theoretical Particle Physics, Condensed Matter Physics, Non-linear Dynamics, Complex Systems and Networks, Nuclear Magnetic Resonance Spectroscopy, Quantum Information Processing, Radio Astrophysics, Atomic Physics and Quantum Optics, Energy Studies, Solar and Plasma Physics, Nanosciences, Scanning Probe Techniques, and Semiconductor Physics and Devices


IISER Mohali - Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Mohali

Quantum Theory, Quantum Information Processing, NMR-Methodology, Optics, Statistical Mechanics, Quantum Thermodynamics, Non-linear Dynamics, String Theory, Ultrafast Physics, and Low-Temperature Mesoscopic Physics


IISER Thiruvananthapuram - Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Thiruvananthapuram

Experimental: Magnetism, Superconductivity, Nanoscience, Photonics, Semiconductor physics, Surface sciences, Nanoscale plasmonics, Ultrafast spectroscopy, Nonlinear Optics. Theory: Cosmology, Quantum information, Statistical physics, Condensed matter, String theory & Nonlinear dynamics


IISER Tirupathi - Indian Institute of Science Education and Research, Tirupathi

Theoretical Astrophysics, Observational Astronomy, Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics, Soft Matter Physics, Nonlinear Physics, Experimental High Energy Physics, Atomic and Molecular Physics


IIST – Indian Institute of Space Science and Technology, Thiruvananthapuram

Astronomy and Astrophysics, Atmospheric Sciences, Applied and Adaptive Optics, Atomic and Molecular Physics, Condensed Matter Physics, Nanotechnology, Nonlinear Dynamics, Photonics, Quantum Information and Statistical Physics


IMSc – Institute of Mathematical Sciences, Chennai

Theoretical Physics, Theoretical Computer Science, and Computational Biology


IOP – Institute of Physics, Bhubaneshwar

Physics (Condensed Matter, Nuclear and High Energy Physics) and Accelerator-based Research


IPR – Institute of Plasma Research, Gandhinagar

Institute for Plasma Research, Gandhinagar: Physics (Experimental and Theoretical)


IUCAA – Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pune

Physics, Astronomy and Astrophysics


JNCASR – Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research, Bangalore

Experimental and Theoretical Condensed Matter Physics, Statistical Mechanics, and Materials Science


NBRC – National Brain Research Centre, Manesar

Molecular, Computational and Systems Neuroscience. Sensory & motor systems, learning & memory, language & speech processing, functional neuroimaging: EEG, MEG, fMRI, MRS, stem cells, developmental neurobiology, neurogenetics, neurodegenerative and neurodevelopmental disorders, cancer signalling & glial tumour biology


NCRA – TIFR – National Institute for Radio Astrophysics, Pune

Astronomy and Astrophysics


NISER – National Institute of Science Education and Research, Bhubaneswar

Theoretical High Energy Physics and Lattice QCD, Experimental High Energy Physics, Condensed Matter Physics (Theory and Experiment), Optics and Metamaterials


PRL – Physics Research Laboratory, Ahmedabad

Theoretical Physics, Astronomy and Astrophysics, Solar Physics, Space and Atmospheric Sciences, Planetary Science and Geo-Sciences


RRCAT – Raja Ramanna Centre for Advanced Technology, Indore

Lasers and their Applications, Laser Plasma Interaction, Cold Atom Physics, Condensed Matter Physics (Superconductivity and Magnetism, Crystals and Thin Films), Nanomaterials and Applications, Non-linear and Ultrafast Optical Studies, Beam Physics, and Free Electron Laser.


RRI – Raman Research Institute, Bangalore

Astronomy and Astrophysics, Light and Matter Physics, Soft Condensed Matter Physics (Liquid Crystals, Physics in Biology), and Theoretical Physics


SINP – Saha Institute of Nuclear Physics, Kolkata

Condensed Matter Physics (Theory and Experiments), Nuclear Physics (Theory and Experiments), High Energy Physics (Theory and Experiments), Astroparticle Physics, Quantum Gravity, String Theory, Mathematical Physics, and Materials Science (Surface Science and Plasma Physics)


SNBNCBS – Satyendra Nath Bose National Centre for Basic Science, Kolkata

Astrophysics and Cosmology, Chemical and Biological Physics, Condensed Matter Physics and Material Science, High Energy Physics and Quantum Field Theory, Mathematical Physics, Nanosciences, Quantum Optics and Quantum Information, Statistical Physics, and Complex Systems


TIFR –TCIS – TIFR Centre for Interdisciplinary Science, Hyderabad

Condensed Matter Physics & Materials Science of Nonequilibrium, Soft & Living matter, Fluid Dynamics, Intense Laser-matter interactions, Computational Physics, Statistical physics, NMR of Biophysical & other systems


TIFR – Tata Institute of Fundamental Research, Mumbai

Astronomy and Astrophysics, Condensed Matter Physics and Material Science, High Energy Physics, Nuclear and Atomic Physics, Theoretical Physics


UGC-DAE- CSR - UGC-DAE Consortium of Scientific Research, Indore

Surfaces, Interfaces, Thin Films and Nanomaterials, Physics at Low Temperatures and High Magnetic Fields, X-ray, Optical and Electron Spectroscopic Studies Using Synchrotron and Laboratory Sources; Electrical, Magnetic and Thermal Properties of Condensed Matter; Condensed Matter studies using Magnetic Neutron Diffraction, Nuclear Technique Based Condensed Matter Physics-Positron Annihilation Spectroscopy, Mossbauer Spectroscopy, Experimental Nuclear Physics, Gamma-Ray Spectroscopy of Nuclear High Spin States, and Nuclear Reactions


VECC – Variable Energy Cyclotron Centre, Kolkata

Accelerator Physics, Condensed Matter Physics and Materials Science, Nuclear Physics (Experiments and Theory), Relativistic Heavy Ion Collisions (Experiments, Theory, QCD and QGP), and Physics of Neutrinos (Experiments)

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JEST 2021 Exam Centres

JEST 2021 exam will be held at the following exam centres:


Exam Centre


Exam Centre













































































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JEST 2021 Admit Card

Candidates can get their admit card online from the official website of the JEST in the third week of March 2021. They can download admit cards by entering their Registration Number and Password. Examination centre name, exam timing, and shift will be mentioned on the admit card along with some important instructions for the examination day. Carry the admit card with a valid ID proof to the examination centre. Candidates are advised to keep the admit card safe till the admission process gets over.

Steps to Download JEST Admit Card 2021 -

Step 1: Visit official website of Joint Entrance Screening Test 2021.

Step 2: Enter Login details like Email ID or Username and Password.

Step 3: View JEST Admit Card.

Step 4: Download and take clear print of hall ticket for JEST exam.

Aspirants need to download their JEST admit card from the official website of the test. Candidates are informed that no separate admit card for JEST exam would be sent to them via email/post.

JEST Result 2021 -

The JEST 2021 result will be declared in the month of May 2021. The result can be checked on the official website. Students can get their Scorecards soon after the publication of the result. It will remain valid for a year. Students can use their Scorecard for admission in the participating institutions.

Steps to Check JEST 2021 Result

  • Visit official website of Joint Entrance Screening Test 2021.
  • Navigate to 'User Login' section.
  • Enter Email/ User Name and Password.
  • Click on 'Login' button.
  • Download and take print of result for JEST exam.

As part of the result aspirants will also be issued JEST scorecard. Candidates are advised to keep the print of their JEST result and scorecard securely with themselves. JEST score is valid for a duration of a year from the date of declaration of the result.

Steps to Download JEST Scorecard

  • Visit official website of Joint Entrance Screening Test 2021.
  • Click on Navigate to 'User Login' section.
  • Enter Email/ User Name and Password.
  • View JEST scorecard.
  • Download and take print of scorecard for JEST exam.

JEST 2021 Counselling/ Interview

Qualified candidates are called for the counselling/ interview process. Candidates are required to report at the participating institutions for admission. Candidates must carry the original documents for verification.

JEST Exam Frequently Asked Questions can be found here - Click here.