Did you know that you can pursue your education with a monthly income, even when in financial duress? The dropout rates from various Indian schools, especially in the rural areas and for those who come from economically compromised backgrounds, is quite high, mainly due to the fact that the families of these children decide that it is better if they work and get wages rather than complete their education. The government of India is in a continuous process of trying to curb the dropout rates as much as possible, because of which the NMMS scholarship has been introduced.

What is the NMMS scholarship?

The NMMS or the National Means cum Merit Scholarship Scheme is an effort by the Central Government of India in order to make sure that promising and talented students who hail from an economically weak background can access the education that they need up to secondary and higher secondary level. Though the Centre is one that issues the scholarship, the state controls and overlooks the entire process of selecting the candidates who would be eligible for this scholarship money. This scheme was launched in the year 2008 in the month of May and it has been providing financial assistance since then to students who are interested in pursuing their education.

Who can avail the NMMS scholarship?                              

Not everyone can avail the NMMS scholarship. It is meant for students who are studying in class IX till class XII, i.e., students at the secondary and higher secondary educational levels. Interested candidates will have to sit for an examination which is conducted by the respective state governments. It is important that students meet the criteria that their family income, which their family gets from all sorts of sources, is not more than 1.5 lakhs per year. The students who are deemed to be eligible for this scholarship under this scheme will be awarded a sum of Rs.6000/- on a yearly basis with a monthly payment of Rs. 500/- to the student’s bank account. It is very important for a student to have a bank account in their name where this money will be transferred to from the State Bank of India of each state. However, students who are studying in other government residential schools like say at the Sainik school, where the education and cost of living are taken care of by the government itself will not be able to apply for the NMMS scholarship. Each state is allotted a sum every year under the NMMS scheme and hence the number of students that will be taken for this scholarship depends on the respective state’s selection process and means. Only students who are studying in government aided, local or government schools can apply for this scholarship if the annual income criterion of the family is met. The candidate has to be a regular student of class IX.

How to apply for the NMMS scholarship?

The application process of the NMMS scholarship is a fairly simple one. Notifications for application and the availability of application forms are released every year online and in leading newspaper dailies. The students are often informed about the availability of application forms by the authorities of the school as well. The application dates and the form varies from one state to another. For example, the last date of submitting the application form for the scholarship in Maharashtra might differ from that of the one in West Bengal. Once the application forms are released you will have to fill it out and provide the necessary documents once you submit it along with passport size pictures of the candidate. Admit cards will be sent to the candidates at their school or the provided address and they will get to know where and when on which date will the exam for the NMMS scholarship be conducted.

Subjects on which the NMMS examination will be conducted

There are mainly two types of tests that will be conducted for the proper evaluation of the candidates- the Scholastic Aptitude Test or SAT and the Mental Ability Test or MAT. One has to clear both the sections in order to be eligible for the scholarship. Rules in place dictate that a general candidate has to score at least 40% in each section, while students from the reserved category have to score a minimum of 32% in each section.

Let us take a look at the subjects that candidates need to prepare for when appearing for the NMMS examination.

Section Syllabus
SAT or Scholastic Aptitude Test ·         Mathematics

·         Social Sciences

·         General Science

Subtopics under these subjects included will be the ones that candidate has already studied in class VII and VIII.

MAT or Mental Ability Test ·         Hidden figures

·         Perception of patterns

·         Classification

·         Analogy

·         Identifying and solving problems of numerical series

The total time allotted to each section will be not more than 90 minutes, though students who are physically disabled might be provided with extra time if need be. Each section will have a total of 90 questions, i.e. 180 questions are to be answered with a period of 180 minutes.

How to prepare for the NMMS scholarship?

Since each state can only take in as many candidates as the sum assigned to them by the Central government, the competition for this scholarship is quite high. Thus one needs to prepare themselves properly in order to qualify for this examination. Here are some tips that will help candidates to ace the NMMS scholarship examination:

  1. Since each section is time-bound and candidates will get only 1 minute to answer one question when practising they should practise based on time.
  2. An all-around preparation is necessary to fare well in the MAT section. Try to solve puzzles as much as possible.
  3. For the SAT section, candidates ought to go back to what they have studied in class VII and VIII and ask help from teachers if necessary.

The NMMS scholarship is really useful to those who are struggling to fund their education and hence one needs to prepare hard and ace the examination to continue with their higher education. To know more about NTSE examination, please visit here.

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