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Thursday, October 21, 2021

UGC NET 2021: Preparation tips and sample questions papers to practice

UGC NET examination will be conducted for both the December 2020 and June 2021 cycles. Therefore, the level of competition is expected to be higher this year.

New Delhi I |
Updated: October 12, 2021 10:06:59 am
UGC NET 2021, UGC NET exam tipsThis year, National Testing Agency (NTA) will conduct the UGC NET exam from October 17 to October 25, 2021.  (Representative image)

– Rohit Manglik 

Every year, over 10 Lakh aspirants register themselves to appear for the NTA UGC NET exam in their preferred subjects. The National Testing Agency (NTA) has deferred the UGC NET exam– scheduled to be held from October 17 to October 25, 2021. The revised dates will be announced soon.

This examination will be conducted for both the December 2020 and June 2021 cycles. Therefore, the level of competition is expected to be higher this year. This article gives a few tips and tricks to help you crack the NTA UGC NET exam in your first attempt.

Make notes of frequently asked questions

Your notes shouldn’t just be a collection of important definitions but also include answers to frequently asked questions for practice during the revision time. This strategy will help you in Paper-I subjects like logical reasoning, data interpretation, research aptitude that do not contain definitions but tricks to solve questions faster.

Memorise the shortcut methods to solve reasoning and aptitude questions

Reasoning and aptitude questions can be solved via two approaches — the long and detailed method or through shortcuts. The shorter method will not only save your time but also provide you the time to revise your answers before submitting them. Make a note of short tricks and correlate them with the long method to understand the technique applied.

Don’t forget Paper-I

Candidates often prepare well for Paper-II, which contains questions from their selected subjects, but fail to do the same justice to Paper-I preparation. Equal time should be spent preparing both papers. Prepare for each subject individually through the standard study material and practice maximum questions before the exam.

Practice reading comprehension

Reading Comprehension can’t be prepared for the same way as reasoning. Thus, study smartly and prepare for each subject acknowledging their demands. You can practice reading comprehension by picking up a paragraph from any book, framing questions based on it and then solve those questions.

Aim for speed and accuracy along with knowledge

The subjects’ knowledge is undoubtedly very integral in UGC NET preparation, but it is also a race against time. So, through practice, you should improve your knowledge bank and your speed and accuracy. Time yourself while practicing questions and aim for solving a question within one minute (assuming 150 questions in 3 hours or 180 minutes). Aim to improve the time taken to solve a problem gradually. As there is no negative marking, try to attempt 100 per cent questions.

Practice online mock tests

As the exam itself is a CBT(Computer-based Test), it is recommended that aspirants practice online mock tests. Online Test Series is often accompanied by a digital timer and an interface that mimics the CBT exam interface. Thus, you will be able to get a real-time experience of the exam. Free mock tests and previous year papers are available on the official NTA website.

Following are some of the important practice questions that you may include in your notes and revise them during the last moments before the exam.

UGC NET Paper I (Sample)

(Courtesy- EduGorilla Test Series)

Tag – Teaching Aptitude

  1. Which of the following is the highest level of cognitive ability?
  1. Knowing
  2. Understanding
  3. Analyzing
  4. Evaluating

Correct Answer: (D)


Evaluation is concerned with the ability to judge the value of material for a given purpose. The judgments are based on specific criteria, which may be either internal criteria (organization) or external criteria (relevance to the purpose). Cognitive Ability is the ability of an individual to perform the different mental activities mostly linked with learning and problem-solving. So, Evaluation is the highest level of cognitive ability.

Hence, the correct option is (D).

Tag – Research Aptitude

  1. In the qualitative research paradigm, which of the following features may be considered critical?
  1. Data collection with standardized research tools.
  2. Sampling design with probability sample techniques.
  3. Data collection with bottom-up empirical evidences.
  4. Data gathering to take place with top-down systematic evidences.

Correct Answer: (C)


There are a variety of methods of data collection with bottom-up empirical evidences in qualitative research, including observations, textual or visual analysis (e.g. from books or videos) and interviews (individual or group). However, the most common methods used, particularly in healthcare research, are interviews and focus groups.

Hence, the correct option is (C).

Tag – Research Aptitude

  1. Read the following passage carefully and answer the question.

Story-telling is not in our genes. Neither it is an evolutionary history. It is the essence of what makes us Human.

Human beings progress by telling stories. One event can result in a great variety of stories being told about it. Sometimes those stories differ greatly. Which stories are picked up and repeated and which ones are dropped and forgotten often determines how we progress. Our history, knowledge and understanding are all the collections of few stories that survive. This includes the stories that we tell each other about the future. And how the future will turn out depends partly, possibly largely, on which stories we collectively choose to believe.

Some stories are designed to spread fear and concern. This is because some storytellers feel that there is a need to raise some tensions. Some stories are frightening; they are like totemic warnings: “Fail to act now, and we are all doomed.” Then there are stories that indicate that all will be fine so long as we have everything up to a few, especially able adults. Currently, this trend is being led by those who call themselves “rational optimists”. They tend to claim that it is human nature to compete and to succeed and also to profit at the expense of others. The rational optimists, however, do not realize how humanity has progressed over time through amiable social networks and how large groups work in less selfishness and in the process accommodate rich and poor, high and low alike. This aspect in story-telling is considered by the ‘Practical Possibles’, who sit between those who say all is fine and cheerful and be individualistic in your approach to a successful future, and those who ordain pessimism and fear that we are doomed.

What the future holds for us is which stories we hold on to and how we act on them.

Which of the following is story-telling? 

  1. An art
  2. A science
  3. In our genes
  4. The essence of what makes us human

Correct Answer: (D)


From the 1st line of the 1st Paragraph, it is clear that story-telling is not in our genes. Neither it is an evolutionary history. It is the essence of what makes us Human. 

(Reference Line: Story-telling is not in our genes. Neither it is an evolutionary history. It is the essence of what makes us Human).

Hence, the correct option is (D).

Tag – Communication 

  1. Effectiveness of communication can be traced from which of the following? 
  1. Attitude surveys 
  2. Performance records 
  3. Students attendance 
  4. Selection of communication channel 

Select the correct answer from the codes given below:

  1. 1, 2, 3 and 4
  2. 1, 2 and 3
  3. 2, 3 and 4
  4. 1, 2 and 4

Correct Answer: (B)


Communication is an exchange of feelings, ideas, knowledge and information, either by speaking, writing, signals, or behaviours, and for the success of the organization, effective communication is an essential component at all levels. This effective communication can be traced or managed through Attitude surveys, performance records, and student’s attendance.

Hence, the correct option is (B).

Tag – Mathematical Reasoning and Aptitude

  1. Two trains for Mumbai leave Delhi at 6 am and 6:45 am and travel at 100 kmph and 136 kmph, respectively. How many kilometres from Delhi will the two trains be together?
  1. 262.4 km
  2. 260 km
  3. 283.29 km
  4. 275km

Correct Answer: (C)


Given the difference in time of departure between two trains =45 min 4560 hours =34hour.

Let the distance be x km from Delhi, where the two trains will be together.

Time taken to cover x km with speed 136 kmph be t hour and time taken to cover x km with speed 100 kmph (As the train take 45 mins more) be

t+34=4t+34 hours

By using the formula,

Distance = speed × Time

Now, 100×4t+34=136t





Then, distance × km =136 × 2.083 = 283.288 ≈ 283.29 km.

So, those two trains are together at 283.29 km from Delhi.

Hence, the correct option is (C).

Tag – Logical Reasoning

  1. Direction: The question consists of two statements, an assertion (A) and a reason (R). Read both the statements and decide which of the following answer choices correctly depicts the relationship between these two statements.

Assertion (A): The Himalayas is the oldest mountain on the earth.

Reason (R): The Himalayas is a Fold Mountain.

  1. Both (A) and (R) are true, and (R) is the correct explanation of (A).
  2. Both (A) and (R) are true, but (R) is not the correct explanation of (A).
  3. (A) is true, but (R) is false.
  4. (A) is false, but (R) is true.

Correct Answer: (D)

  • Explanation:

Geologically, The Himalayas are one of the youngest mountains, created several million years ago, whereas some older mountains are more than 300 million years old.  

So, the Assertion is false.

The Himalayas is a typical example of the Fold Mountains, formed from the tectonic activity of plates. Fold Mountains are formed just like how we can form an elevation by pushing two sides of a paper towards each other so that the middle part elevates.

So, the Reason is true.

Thus, Assertion is false, but Reason is true.

Hence, the correct option is (D).

Tag – Data Interpretation (Tabulation)

  1. These are based on the tabulated data given below: 

A company has 20 employees with their age (in years) and salary (in thousand rupees per month) mentioned against each of them:

S.NO. Age (in a year) Salary (in thousand rupees per month) S.NO. Age (in a year) Salary (in thousand rupees per month)
1. 44 35 11. 33 30
2. 32 20 12. 31 35
3. 54 45 13. 30 35
4. 42 35 14. 37 40
5. 31 20 15. 44 45
6. 53 60 16. 36 35
7. 42 50 17. 34 35
8. 51 55 18. 49 50
9. 34 25 19. 43 45
10. 41 30 20. 45 50

Classify the data of the age of each employee in a class interval of 5 years. Which class interval of 5 years has the maximum average salary?

35−40 years

40−45 years

45−50 years

50−55 years

Correct Answer: (D)


In 35-40 years:

Average salary (40+35)2=37 

So, the average salary 37×1000=37000 per month

Salary is mentioned in thousand.

In 40-45 years:

Average salary 35+35+50+30+45+456


So, the average salary 40×1000=40000 per month

In 45-50 years:

Average salary 50+502


So, the average salary 50×1000=50000 per month

In 50-55 years:

Average salary 45+60+553=53.3

So, the average salary is 53.3×1000=53300 per month

Therefore, people in the 50-55 class interval have the maximum average salary.

Hence, the correct option (D).

Tag – Information and Communication Technology (ICT) 

  1. Which network topology requires a central controller or hub?
  1. Star
  2. Mesh
  3. Ring
  4. Bus

Correct Answer: (A)


In star topology, no computer is connected to another computer directly, but all the computers are connected to a central hub. Every message sent from a source computer goes through the hub, and the hub then forwards the message only to the intended destination computer.

Hence, the correct option is (A).

Tag – People Development and Environment

  1. The study of living organisms with the environment is known as ____________.
  1. Ecosystem
  2. Environment
  3. Community
  4. Ecology

Correct Answer: (D)

Tag – Higher Education System

  1. The first Open University established in India is:
  1. Yashwantrao Chavan Maharashtra Open University, Nasik
  2. Nalanda Open University, Patna
  3. Bhim Rao Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad
  4. Tamil Nadu Open University, Chennai

Correct Answer: (C)


The first Open University established in India was Bhim Rao Ambedkar Open University, Hyderabad, in 1982, followed by the establishment of Indira Gandhi National Open University at the national level by the Parliament of India in 1985.

Hence, the correct option is (C).

– The author is CEO of EduGorilla 

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