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Biotechnology Competitive Exams in India
This article contains information on Major Biotechnology Entrance Exams for both Undergraduate and Graduate Courses in India. First part contains information for Masters Students and Second Part contains information for Undergrad students.

Information for Biotechnology Entrance Exams for Masters and PhD:

Most of the undergraduate students in Biotechnology, in India, remain confused/anxious about their prospective careers in immediate future. Citing the lack/limit of the job availability in the Biotechnology industry for the fresh graduates (BSc/B.Tech), almost every fresher tries to procure a higher degree in the field to have an added advantage and increased opportunity for obtaining a job. Whereas, there's no comparison to the higher degree obtained from the foreign institutes/universities of repute, not everyone is able/affords to pursue the same. So, the truth is that, most of them end up obtaining the Masters/Phd from some Institute/University in India itself; and the plight becomes sad, when they obtain it from a low key private institute, further amplifying the woes of their career!

It was the impact of such facts that I got motivated to write an article for you all, which could amass most (if not all) of the information on revered Competitive Exams in India, that could help you obtain a standard Masters/PhD degree from an institute of repute in India, thus adding to the hopes of having a safe/secured future. Following is the compilation of the important Biotechnology Competitive Exams in India:

The Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE), in the subjects of Biotechnology (BT) and(Or) Life Sciences (XL) is the most famous competitive Exams in India for a bright Masters/PhD degree from the most revered institutes of the country i.e IITs, IISc, NITs, BITS.

Application Starts: September-October Every Year

Deadlines for form Submission: September-October Every Year (Only one month is given after the start date)

Eligibility: Final year graduation students and post graduate students

Exam Date: Second sunday of February (Commonly). Though it was held in January, for the first time in 2013.

Results: March 15 every year

From 2013, GATE is free for Females, while the application fee is around Rs 1000-1200 for males.

Details Here

B. CSIR UGC NET Life Sciences
One of the oldest examination system by Department of Science & Technology, Govt of India, CSIR UGC NET is the ticket to being a certified Lecturer/Research Scholar in any institute of repute/CSIR Lab in India. Even IITs/NITs/BITS/IISc accept their score for PhD admissions. Most CSIR Labs in the country prefer CSIR JRFs for the Research Associate posts/PhD admissions.

Application Starts: Twice every year (In February  for June Exam) (In August for Dec Exam)

Deadlines for form Submission: (March and September)

Eligibility:B.Tech (final year) and Masters students (Not for BSc students, but BS-MS/MSc integrated students can apply after 10+2+3 year education completion for RA category.)

Exam Date: June and December every year

Results: August and February

Application Fee: Rs 400/- for General Candidates

Details Here

Junior Research Fellowship Exam, for admission in PhD in "any" government insititute/university in India, organized by Department of Biotechnolgy, Govt of India by the name of Biotechnology Entrance Test (BET) is one of the high class Biotech Competitive Exams in India (but sadly most students are unaware of it's value!). It shortlists 275 students, first 100 among whom are allowed to pursue PhD in any Insititute/University in India, while rest 175 are allowed the option of PhD from a list of DBT funded insitutes (which covers top 7 IITs!).  

Start of Application: Last week of February

Deadline: Last week of March

Exam Date: 3rd week of April

Eligibility:Those who have passed after  January 1 of  'Before Exam Year' or will appear
(till August of Exam Year) for Masters in Biotechnology Related Branches and B.Tech Final Year Students

Result: Mostly 10th of May

Details Here

Combined Entrance Examination for Biotechnology (CEEB), is another Nationwide Biotech. Exam organized by JNU every year for admission to M.Sc and M.Tech Biotechnology programme in various participating Universities:
Participating Universities for MSc:
University of Allahabad, Allahabad; Annamalai University, Tamil Nadu (M.Sc in Marine Biotechnology); Baba Ghulam Shah Badshah University, Rajouri (J&K) (M.Sc in Bioresources Biotechnology); Banaras Hindu University, Varanasi; University of Burdwan, Burdwan; University of Calicut, Kerala; Devi Ahilya Vishwavidyalaya, Indore; Goa University, Goa (M.Sc in Marine Biotechnology); Gulbarga University, Gulbarga; Guru Jambheshwar University of Science and Technology, Hisar; Guru Nanak Dev University, Amritsar; Himachal Pradesh University, Shimla; HNB Garhwal University, Garhwal; University of Hyderabad, Hyderabad; University of Jammu, Jammu; Jawaharlal Nehru University, New Delhi; Kumaun University, Nainital; University of Lucknow, Lucknow; Madurai Kamaraj University, Madurai; Maharshi Dayanand University, Rohtak (M.Sc in Medical Biotechnology); MS University of Baroda, Vadodara; University of Mysore, Mysore; University of North Bengal, Siliguri; North Eastern Hill University, Shillong; Pondicherry University, Pondicherry; University of Pune, Pune; RTM Nagpur University, Nagpur; Sardar Patel University, Gujarat (M.Sc in Industrial Biotechnology); Shivaji University, Kolhapur (M.Sc in Environmental Biotechnology); Tezpur University, Tezpur (Assam) (M.Sc in Molecular Biology and Biotechnology); TM Bhagalpur University, Bhagalpur; Utkal University, Bhubaneswar; Veer Bahadur Singh Purvanchal University, Jaunpur; Visva-Bharati University, Santiniketan.

Participating Universities for M.Tech:
Anna University Chennai, Cochin University of Science & Technology, Kochi, Kerala, West Bengal University of Technology, Kolkata.

Application Starts: February

Application Deadline: March

Eligibility: For MSc.: Bachelor’s degree under 10+2+3 pattern atleast under Biological/Physical/Veterinary Sciences. BDS/MBBS/Engineering Students also eligible.
For M.Tech: Final year B.Tech Students

Exam Date: 3rd Week of May

Result: 2nd/3rd Week of June

Application Fee: Rs 600/- for General Category
CEEB JNU MSc Details

CEEB JNU M.Tech Details

Indian Council For Medical Research (ICMR) holds ICMR JRF exam every year to select 150 candidates, out of which 120 students are offered PhD admission in the field of biomedical sciences with emphasis on Life Sciences (like microbiology, physiology, molecular biology, genetics, human biology, bioinformatics, biotechnology, biochemistry, biophysics, immunology, Pharmacology, zoology, Environment Science, botany, veterinary sciences, bio-informatics etc.) and 30 are offered PhD in field related to Social sciences like psychology, sociology, home science, statistics, anthropology, social work and Health Economics,  from a medical college / hospital / university / national laboratory / institution of higher learning and research that comes under ICMR support, amongst which AIIMS is the most popular name!

Application Starts: March End

Application Deadline: April End

Eligibility: M.Sc/M.A or equivalent degree (B.Tech included)

Exam Date: July 2nd Week

Results: September

ICMR JRF Details

IIT JAM is specifically for those who have completed BSc in Biotech or related field.
It is conducted jointly by 'The Indian Institute of Science Bangalore (IISc) and Indian Institutes of Technology (IITs)' as Joint Admission Test for M.Sc. (JAM) for admission to Integrated Ph.D. Degree Programmes at IISc Bangalore and M.Sc. (Two Years), Joint M.Sc.-Ph.D., M.Sc.-Ph.D. Dual Degree, M.Sc.-M.Tech., M.Sc.-M.S.(Research)/Ph.D. Dual Degree and other Post-Bachelor’s Degree Programmes at IITs.

The main objective of JAM is to consolidate Science as a career option for bright students across the country. It is expected that the research infrastructure, the inter-disciplinary interaction and the vibrant academic environment of IISc Bangalore and IITs will motivate these students to pursue R&D careers in frontier areas of basic sciences as well as inter-disciplinary areas of science and technology.

Start of Application: Sep end to October start.

Last date: October end

Exam: February next year

Results: March

Details here

G. Other Important Exams:

1. RGPV PhD Exam



4. University of Pune

5. University of Mumbai

6. Delhi University

7. SHIATS Allahabad

8. HBTI and GBTU

9. Delhi Technical University

10. Punjab Agricultural University

Names of Undergrad and Post Grad Biotechnology Entrance Exams:
  • Institute of Bioinformatics and Applied Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Banaras Hindu University M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance exam
  • University of Delhi Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Combined Biotechnology Entrance Examination (CBEEE)
  • Faculty of Life Sciences and Environment, Goa University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Jawaharlal Nehru University Combined Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Jamia Hamdard University M.Tech Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Kakatiya University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • DY Patil University, Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Guru Gobind Singh Indraprastha University Common Entrance Test
  • All India Biotechnology Entrance Examination
  • Karnataka University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Christian Medical College Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • University of Madras M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Central University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Osmania University M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Chennai JAM Biotechnology entrance exam
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Technological University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Himachal Pradesh University M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Kasturba Medical College PG Medical Entrance Exam
  • AIIMS Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Madurai Kamaraj University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Amity Institute of Biotechnology Entrance Examination
  • All India Institute of Medical Sciences Biotechnology Entrance Examination
  • University of Mysore M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Jawaharlal Nehru Centre for Advanced Scientific Research Combined Biotech Entrance Examination
  • Alagappa University M.Sc Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • MS University of Baroda Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Kurukshetra University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Anna University Biotechnology Entrance Examination
  • Bharathiyar University Biotechnology Entrance Exam
  • Indian Institute of Technology (IIT), Delhi JAM Biotechnology entrance exam

So, this was a compilation of major Biotech Entrance Tests in India. I hope this information helps you in procuring a standard degree in Biotechnology.

Best Wishes!
Sunil Nagpal
MS(Research) Scholar, IIT Delhi (Alumnus)
Advisor for the Biotech Students portal (
Computational Researcher in BioSciences at a leading MNC

Suggested Reads:
Top Biotech Companies | Top places to work
Indian Biotech Companies and Job Openings
Aiming a PhD in Top Grad School? | These are the Important Points to Consider
Careers in Biotechnology | A list of various Options
Biotechnology Competitive Exams in India
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Biotechnology Competitive Exams in India - by SunilNagpal - 05-29-2013, 03:02 PM
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