1,000,000+ students use Toppr to rank higher in NSO

All the facts, dates and information you need, about the prestigious National Science Olympiad.

  1. NSO

What is NSO?

National Science Olympiad (NSO) is a yearly competitive exam conducted for school students. Organized by Science Olympiad Foundation (SOF), this exam aims at cultivating scientific reasoning and logical ability among the students through a rigorous test. The Science Olympiad Foundation primarily envisions the scientific curiosity and vigour in young students through competitive exams. Read on to find out more about NSO exam.

Can I appear for NSO?

  1. Students of Classes 1st to 12th are eligible to appear for the 1st level Olympiads
  2. Students who qualify for the 2nd level exam include:
    1. Top 5% of all students,in each class, who appear for the 1st level exam
    2. State-wise top 25 rank holders per class
    3. Class toppers from each participating school where at least 10 students from a class appear in the exam and score 50% qualifying marks
    4. Students from classes 1st and 2nd are not required to appear for the 2nd level exam and are ranked on the basis of their performance in the 1st level exam
  3. There is no other restriction as long as the student is enrolled in a school programme
  4. In a particular academic year, a student is allowed only one attempt

How do I register for NSO 2017?

Here is how you can register for NSO exam:

  1. The prospectus, containing the Registration, is sent to all schools registered with the Science Olympiad Foundation
  2. Unregistered schools may also request for the prospectus by sending an e-mail to info@sofworld.org or making a phone call or fax inquiry at 0124 4951200
  3. The school's coordinating teacher will generate the students' roll numbers as per the guidelines given
  4. A nominal participation fee is charged from each student

What are the NSO Exam Dates?

The Science Olympiad Foundation only releases dates for the current academic year.

  1. NSO 2016 exam dates are 15th & 24th Nov, 2016
  2. Tentatively,the second round is scheduled to be held between the months of January and February 2017

What is the syllabus for NSO?

  1. Questions in the 1st level Olympiad exams will be 60% from the current class syllabus and 40% from the previous class syllabus, e.g. class7 NSO exam will have 60% questions from the class 7 syllabus and 40% questions from class 6 syllabus
  2. Questions of 2nd level Olympiad exams will be from the current class syllabus only
  3. Questions in ACHIEVERS SECTION will be from the current class syllabus only

What is the NSO Exam Pattern?

The National Science Olympiad is conducted at two levels. Here are some pointers for you to remember:

  • There are separate question papers for each class
  • The language medium of the test is English
  • CBSE, ICSE/ISC and State Board syllabiare followed for setting test papers
Level 1
Class Section No. of Questions Time
1 to 4 Logical Reasoning 35 60 mins
Achiever's Section
5 to 10 Logical Reasoning 50 60 mins
Achiever's Section
11 and 12 Physics and Chemistry 50 60 mins
Achiever's Section
Maths or Biology
Level 2: For Class 3 to Class 12
Class Section No. of Q's Total Marks
1 to 4 Logical Reasoning 5 5
Science 25 25
Achiever's Section 5 10
Grand Total 35 40
5 to 10 Logical Reasoning 10 10
Science 35 35
Achiever's Section 5 15
Grand Total 50 60
11 and 12 Physics and Chemistry 25 25
Achiever's Section 5 15
Maths or Biology 20 20
Grand Total 50 60

How should I prepare for NSO?

  • Understand the standard of questions: If you are appearing for NSO, then expect questions from varying difficulty levels. The questions test logical and observational skills of the students. There will be no direct questions but rather an application of a previously studied concept is more likely to form the base of a question.
  • Practice sample papers: Solving sample papers will give you a fair idea of the pattern of questions asked. They are also good for improving your pace at attempting a paper in a limited amount of time. The sample papers can be obtained from the official website.
  • Know the relevant books: You must thoroughly study the various course books suggested by your school board (ICSE/CBSE/State Board). In addition to this, you can refer books made for Olympiad preparations to get a good rank in NSO.

    The books prescribed for NSO are as follows:

    • MTG NSO class wise Workbooks (For Class 1 to 10)
    • SOF Olympiad Trainer - Mobile Apps
    • OSDS (Olympiad Skill Development System)
    • Previous Years' Papers
    • Olympiad's Book of Reasoning (for preparation for the reasoning section of NSO)
    • E-Quiz

    Additionally, class XI and XII students can refer various publications like Chemistry Today, Biology Today, Mathematics Today and Physics for You as well as MTG books which contain useful information, including model test papers of various National and International Olympiads.

When do I qualify?

Qualification for the NSO exam for students at level 1 are done on the basis of ranks obtained in the exam.

In case two or more students score the same amount of total marks, ranks will be awarded to the student scoring higher marks in sections accorded higher priority, as under:

For class 1 to 10
1Achiever's section
3Logical Reasoning
For class 11 and 12
1Achiever's section
3Logical Reasoning

In case two or more students score equally in all sections, they will be accorded the same rank.

The criterion for ranking in the 2nd Level of the Olympiad Exams is as follows:

  1. Marks scored in sections in the 2nd level exam that are accorded higher priority
  2. Total marks scored in the 2nd level exam
  3. Marks scored in sections, in 1st level exam that are accorded higher priority

In case two or more students score same marks under all the categories above, they will be awarded the same rank.

Whom should I discuss my doubts on NSO with?

Asking doubts and clearing them is important while preparing for NSO. Toppr brings you a community who has survived the test of time and wants to help out a real NSO aspirant.

You can always visit our Discuss page and ask your doubts or check the doubts asked by other student.

Why Toppr?


Practice more questions

Get access to 3 Lakh+ questions with hints and solutions curated by rankers and academic experts.


Stay ahead of the competition.

Toppr keeps you sharp and focussed on all subjects with its extensive study material.


Get your doubts resolved from the best, instantly!

With Toppr, you can solve all your doubts just like on WhatsApp!


Know where you stand amongst your peers.

Toppr helps you find rankers across the country and learn how they are approaching preparation.

More Features

Start preparing now!

The previous 5 years' question papers improved my aptitude in Maths and Science.

Saurabh Chaughule

9th, SSC Board

When studying, I have a lot of doubts. Even at 3:30 am, there's a tutor around to resolve my doubts.

Shivani Mayekar

12th, JEE

Use Toppr to crack the hardest, toughest exams in India. It's got everything a student needs.

Lomai Narendra Thule

11th, NEET

Toppr lets me practice, track my progress and revise. It's like having a private tutor.

Ebrahim Bharmal

12th, JEE, CET

You get the same experience as an elite coaching class at one-tenth the cost. What's not to love?

Ghanshyam Tank

12th, JEE

Download the App

Get Toppr app on

Get SMS link to download app


Sign up for Free

Practice from 300,000 questions, ask doubts and get instant feedback on your progress.