The National Astronomy Olympiad Program is intended to encourage students with good foundations in Physics and Mathematics and an interest in Astronomy to pursue further studies in this field. It comprises of a five-stage process leading to the participation of the Indian team in International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA).
The Five Stages –
The Astronomy Olympiad Program progresses in the following 5 stages:
Stage I: National Standard Examination in Astronomy (NSEA).
Stage II: Indian National Astronomy Olympiad (INAO),
Stage III: Orientation cum Selection Camp (OCSC) in astronomy,
Stage IV: Pre-departure Training Camp (PDT) for IOAA,
Stage V: International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA).
Gearing-up for Stage I
NSEA is the first step of selection of candidates in the Astronomy Olympiad Programme which is organized by the Indian Association of Physics Teachers (IAPT). Every student aspiring to go through successive stages of the program must enroll for NSEA. NSEA is held at an extensive number of centers in the country.
NSEA Syllabus 2020
- The syllabus that is covered under NSEA is broadly similar to the senior secondary level (class 12th) of CBSE.
- In this exam, there is a greater emphasis on physics and maths, as well as elementary astronomy.
- There is no detailed syllabus as such given for NSEA, and therefore, this can be used as a rough guideline.
NSEA Exam Pattern
The question paper for NSEA would consist of 80 questions, each having multiple choices, out of which only one of the four options would be correct.
Tips and Tricks to Prepare for NSEA
- NSEA emphasizes the conceptual clarity of the subject. Thus, rote learning is a no-no.
- Make sure to be thorough with Maths and Physics as they are very important for this exam. Shallow knowledge will not help. An in-depth clarity of the topics is required.
- Take the help of online learning. There are certain websites out there that cater to the needs of people signing up for olympiads like NSEA.
- Be sure to clear all your doubts. Complete conceptual clarity can only arise when your mind is doubt free about the subjects. You can take the help of doubt-clearing websites like BasicFirst. This will help you clear your doubts efficiently and help you build your confidence.
- Try to solve as many previous years question papers as you can. This process will give you a fair idea of the type of questions that are asked so that you can plan and study accordingly. Also, this step will give you some experience in solving the NSEA paper.
- Do not forget to brush up your Astronomy knowledge. Famous constellations and their main stars is an important topic and should not be missed. Also, have some practice in sky observation. Download a star chart and learn from it.
The aim of the first stage of the examination is to have a wide reach, to progressively expand this reach, and to attain nationwide representation for stage II without overly compromising on merit.
Further on, astronomy is a captivating subject, and when you enjoy learning about it, the sky’s the limit.