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CDS stands for Combined Defence Services, candidates who wants to be a part of Indian Military Academy, Officers Training Academy, Indian Naval Academy and Indian Air Force Academy have to apply for Combined Defence Services Examination. CDS exam is conducted twice in a year by UPSC (Union Public Services Conducted), candidates who have cleared CDS written exam will be called for interview by Service Selection Board (SSB) and the successful candidates will be appointed with respective training academies.

The Notification for the CDS exam is usually released in the months of October and June, and CDS exam is conducted twice in year in the months February and November.

After clearing the written test in CDS, the candidates have to go through a series of personality tests, which is called the Service Selection Board. Irrespective of the force you have applied for, all have to face this interview, it means that all candidates who have cleared the written exam have to face this interview. It is just the second stage of any normal job exam selection process, where the second stage is the interview stage. However this interview, the CDS interview is entirely different from normal job interview. The process is same for all the wings, like IMA, OTA, NA, and AFA. The only difference is that the candidates are called for SSB as per their marks, the cutoff marks for these vary, the cutoff for OTA is lower than AFA, AFA has mostly the highest cutoff.
So coming to the Interview procedure of CDS. The interview is a five-six day process, five days for OTA, IMA and NA and six days for AFA. This interview commonly known as SSB has different types of tests to judge a person’s personality. In the end the selection is made by the board on the basis of deductions drawn by different people who took the interview.

The total maximum marks for the interview will be 200 for OTA and 300 for IMA, Naval and Air Force.

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