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Joint Admission Test for M.Sc. (JAM) is being conducted from 2004 to provide admissions to M.Sc. (Four Semesters), Joint M.Sc.-Ph.D., M.Sc.-Ph.D. Dual Degree, etc. Programmes at the IITs and Integrated Ph. D. Degree Programmes at IISc for consolidating Science as a career option for bright students. These postgraduate programmes at IITs and IISc offer high quality education in their respective disciplines, comparable to the best in the world. The curricula for these programmes are designed to provide opportunities to the students to develop academic talent leading to challenging and rewarding professional life.

IITs and IISc are institutions of national importance and are well known, the world over, for quality education in engineering, science & technology and research in frontier areas. The aim of IITs and IISc is to build a sound foundation of knowledge, pursue excellence and enhance creativity in an intellectually stimulating environment. The vibrant academic ambience and well-equipped research infrastructure of IITs and IISc motivate the students to pursue Research and Development careers in frontier areas of basic sciences as well as interdisciplinary areas of science and technology.

Pattern of Test Papers

The JAM 2020 Examination for all the six test papers will be carried out as ONLINE Computer Based Test (CBT) where the candidates will be shown the questions in a random sequence on a computer screen. The duration of the examination will be 3 hours. The medium will be English only. There will be a total of 60 questions carrying 100 marks. The entire paper will be divided into three sections, A, B and C. All sections are compulsory. Questions in each section will be of different types as given below:

Section–A contains a total of 30 Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) involving 10 questions of one mark each and 20 questions of two marks each. Each MCQ has four choices out of which only one choice is the correct answer. Candidates can mark the answer by clicking the choice.

Section–B contains a total of 10 Multiple Select Questions (MSQs) carrying two marks each. Each MSQ is similar to MCQ but with the difference that MSQ may have one or more than one correct choice(s) out of the four given choices. The candidate gets full credit only if he/she selects all the correct answer(s) only and no wrong answers. Candidates can mark the answer(s) by clicking the choice(s).

Section–C contains a total of 20 Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions involving 10 questions of one mark each and 10 questions of two marks each. For these NAT type questions, the answer is a signed real number, which needs to be entered using the virtual numeric keypad on the monitor. No choices will be shown for NAT questions.

In all sections, questions not attempted will result in zero mark. In Section-A (MCQ), wrong answer will result in negative marks. For each wrong answer to 1 mark questions, 1/3 mark will be deducted and similarly for each wrong answer to 2 marks questions, 2/3 mark will be deducted. In Section-B (MSQ), there are no negative and no partial marking provisions. There is no negative marking in Section-C (NAT) as well.

There is provision of using online virtual calculator. The candidates, therefore, should not bring any calculator with them.

Mobile phones or any other electronic devices are strictly prohibited inside examination hall. Charts, graph sheets, and tables are also NOT allowed inside the examination hall.

A scribble pad will be provided for rough work and this has to be returned back at the end of the examination.

The candidates are required to select the answer for MCQ and MSQ type questions using the mouse. The answer for NAT questions can be entered using a virtual numeric keypad (the keyboard of the computer will be disabled).

At the end of the 3 hours, the computer will automatically end the examination.


Eligibility Criteria

The candidates who qualify in JAM shall have to fulfill the following Eligibility Requirements (ER) for admissions to IITs.

All candidates admitted through JAM should have a Bachelor’s degree.

In the qualifying degree, the aggregate marks or CGPA/CPI without rounding-off (taking into account all subjects, including languages and subsidiaries, all years combined) should be at least 55% or 5.5 out of 10 for General/OBC (NCL)/EWS category candidates and 50% or 5.0 out of 10 for SC/ST and PwD category candidates.

If CGPA/CPI is on a different scale, it would be linearly mapped to a scale on 10.




Basic Mathematical Concepts: Functions; maxima and minima; integrals; ordinary differential equations; vectors and matrices; determinants; elementary statistics and probability theory.

Atomic and Molecular Structure: Fundamental particles; Bohr’s theory of hydrogen-like atom; wave-particle duality; uncertainty principle; Schrödinger’s wave equation; quantum numbers; shapes of orbitals; Hund’s rule and Pauli’s exclusion principle; electronic configuration of simple homonuclear diatomic molecules.

Theory of Gases: Equation of state for ideal and non-ideal (van der Waals) gases; Kinetic theory of gases; Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution law; equipartition of energy.

Solid State: Crystals and crystal systems; X-rays; NaCl and KCl structures; close packing; atomic and ionic radii; radius ratio rules; lattice energy; Born-Haber cycle; isomorphism; heat capacity of solids.

Chemical Thermodynamics: Reversible and irreversible processes; first law and its application to ideal and nonideal gases; thermochemistry; second law; entropy and free energy; criteria for spontaneity.

Chemical and Phase Equilibria: Law of mass action; Kp, Kc, Kx and Kn; effect of temperature on K; ionic equilibria in solutions; pH and buffer solutions; hydrolysis; solubility product; phase equilibria–phase rule and its application to one-component and two-component systems; colligative properties.

Electrochemistry: Conductance and its applications; transport number; galvanic cells; EMF and free energy; concentration cells with and without transport; polarography; concentration cells with and without transport; Debey-Huckel-Onsagar theory of strong electrolytes.

Chemical Kinetics: Reactions of various order; Arrhenius equation; collision theory; transition state theory; chain reactions – normal and branched; enzyme kinetics; photochemical processes; catalysis.

Adsorption: Gibbs adsorption equation; adsorption isotherm; types of adsorption; surface area of adsorbents; surface films on liquids.

Spectroscopy: Beer-Lambert law; fundamental concepts of rotational, vibrational, electronic and magnetic resonance spectroscopy.



Basic Concepts in Organic Chemistry and Stereochemistry: Electronic effects (resonance, inductive, hyperconjugation) and steric effects and its applications (acid/base property); optical isomerism in compounds with and without any stereocenters (allenes, biphenyls); conformation of acyclic systems (substituted ethane/n-propane/n-butane) and cyclic systems (mono- and di-substituted cyclohexanes).

Organic Reaction Mechanism and Synthetic Applications: Chemistry of reactive intermediates (carbocations, carbanions, free radicals, carbenes, nitrenes, benzynes etc.); Hofmann-Curtius-Lossen rearrangement, Wolff rearrangement, Simmons-Smith reaction, Reimer-Tiemann reaction, Michael reaction, Darzens reaction, Wittig reaction and McMurry reaction; Pinacol-pinacolone, Favorskii, benzilic acid rearrangement, dienone-phenol rearrangement, Baeyer-Villeger reaction; oxidation and reduction reactions in organic chemistry; organometallic reagents in organic synthesis (Grignard, organolithium and organocopper); Diels-Alder, electrocyclic and sigmatropic reactions; functional group inter-conversions and structural problems using chemical reactions.

Qualitative Organic Analysis: Identification of functional groups by chemical tests; elementary UV, IR and 1H NMR spectroscopic techniques as tools for structural elucidation.

Natural Products Chemistry: Chemistry of alkaloids, steroids, terpenes, carbohydrates, amino acids, peptides and nucleic acids.

Aromatic and Heterocyclic Chemistry: Monocyclic, bicyclic and tricyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and monocyclic compounds with one hetero atom: synthesis, reactivity and properties.



Periodic Table: Periodic classification of elements and periodicity in properties; general methods of isolation and purification of elements.

Chemical Bonding and Shapes of Compounds: Types of bonding; VSEPR theory and shapes of molecules; hybridization; dipole moment; ionic solids; structure of NaCl, CsCl, diamond and graphite; lattice energy.

Main Group Elements (s and p blocks): General concepts on group relationships and gradation in properties; structure of electron deficient compounds involving main group elements.

Transition Metals (d block): Characteristics of 3d elements; oxide, hydroxide and salts of first row metals; coordination complexes: structure, isomerism, reaction mechanism and electronic spectra; VB, MO and Crystal Field theoretical approaches for structure, color and magnetic properties of metal complexes; organometallic compounds having ligands with back bonding capabilities such as metal carbonyls, carbenes, nitrosyls and metallocenes; homogenous catalysis.

Bioinorganic Chemistry: Essentials and trace elements of life; basic reactions in the biological systems and the role of metal ions, especially Fe2+, Fe3+, Cu2+ and Zn2+; structure and function of hemoglobin and myoglobin and carbonic anhydrase.

Instrumental Methods of Analysis: Basic principles; instrumentations and simple applications of conductometry, potentiometry and UV-vis spectrophotometry; analysis of water, air and soil samples.

Analytical Chemistry: Principles of qualitative and quantitative analysis; acid-base, oxidation-reduction and complexometric titrations using EDTA; precipitation reactions; use of indicators; use of organic reagents in inorganic analysis; radioactivity; nuclear reactions; applications of isotopes.