National Olympiad Programme

National Standard Examinations - National Olympiad Programme

National Standard Examinations (NSEs)

Introduction

The need for a national olympiad programme in basic sciences had been recognized by the scientific community in India for a long time. India started participating in the International Mathematics Olympiad from 1989. It was felt that with a large base of quality human resources in science, the country must also participate in the International Olympiads in basic sciences: Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Astronomy.

In 1997-98, Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (HBCSE) [a National Centre of the Tata Institute of Fundamental Research (TIFR), Mumbai] and the Indian Association of Physics Teachers (IAPT) jointly took initiative in starting the physics olympiad programme. A year later, HBCSE took the initiative to extend the programme to chemistry and biology also. IAPT came forward to offer its wide network for help in the conduct of chemistry and biology examinations also. These initiatives received strong support and encouragement from the Department of Atomic Energy (DAE), Department of Science and Technology (DST) and the Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) of the Government of India. India sent its first team to the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO) in 1998, International Chemistry Olympiad (IChO) in 1999 and International Biology Olympiad (IBO) in 2000. Around the same time TIFR in association with the National Council of Science Museums and Astronomical Society of India initiated efforts to participate in the International Astronomy Olympiad (IAO). Our first foray into IAO was in 1999. Indian teams started participating in International Junior Science Olympiad (IJSO) and International Olympiad in Astronomy and Astrophysics (IOAA) from 2004 and 2007 respectively. The good performances of the Indian teams right from the first few years of participation helped in the consolidation of the programme.

In July 2001, India hosted the 33rd International Chemistry Olympiad in Mumbai. Further, India hosted the 11 th International Astronomy Olympiad in Mumbai in November, 2006 and the 19 th International Biology Olympiad in Mumbai, in July 2008. India is expected to host IJSO in December 2013. These events organized by Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education (TIFR) give a boost to the entire programme of academic Olympiads in India.

The National Olympiad progamme in physics, chemistry, biology and astronomy is overseen by a National Steering Committee constituted by the DAE. From the year 2008 ? 2009 junior science olympiad is added to the list of subjects. The Olympiad programme is financially supported by Board of Research in Nuclear Science (BRNS, DAE), Department of Science and Technology (DST), Ministry of Human Resource Development (MHRD) and Department of Space, Indian Space Research Organization (DoS, ISRO).The programme follows a five stage process. Stage I of the programme is the organizational responsibility of the Indian Association of Physics Teachers (IAPT). All the subsequent stages are conducted by HBCSE. The programme for the year 2012-2013 is lined below.

Stage I National Standard Examinations (NSEs)

National Standard Examinations constitute the first stage of selection of students in the National Olympiad Programme. Every student aspiring to go through successive stages of the programme must enroll for the NSEs.

National Standard Examinations - National Olympiad Programme