CSIR Dec 2023 Exam
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CSIR Dec 2023 Exam Difficulty Level Analysis

CSIR NET is a pivotal examination for aspirants seeking a career in scientific research and academia. The latest CSIR NET Life Science Exam was conducted on December 26, 2023. This exam is a gateway for many to qualify for research positions and lectureships in India. Recognizing the critical importance of this examination, a comprehensive analysis of the exam pattern, difficulty levels, and question distribution across various units becomes indispensable for future aspirants.

This year, the exam was held in two shifts: the morning shift from 9:00 am to 12:00 pm, and the evening shift from 3:00 pm to 6:00 pm. A survey conducted among the participants post-examination has provided valuable insights into the overall difficulty level, comparison with previous years, and the distribution of questions across the different units of the Life Science syllabus.

In this article, we delve into this rich mine of information, breaking down the complexities of each shift and shedding light on the nuances of the exam’s structure. Our goal is to offer a detailed perspective on the CSIR NET Life Sciences Dec 2023 exam, aiding future candidates in strategizing their preparation effectively. Let’s Get Started!

Table of Contents

CSIR NET Dec 2023 Exam Analysis Morning Shift (9:00 am – 12:00 pm) Subject – Life Science

  1. Overall Difficulty Level of the CSIR NET Dec 2023 Exam Question Paper:

  • Moderate Difficulty: Nearly half of the students (46.5%) found the exam to be of  “moderate” difficulty level, indicating a balanced level of challenge.
  • Tough and Very Tough: Around a third (23.9%) rated it as “tough”, and a smaller portion (5.6%) found it “very tough”, suggesting certain sections or questions were particularly challenging.
  • Challenging: 20% of students felt the paper had a good level of challenge, striking a balance between being tough and manageable.

2. Difficulty of CSIR NET Dec 2023 Morning Shift Compared to Previous Years:

  • Icreased Difficulty: Many students felt this exam was harder compared to previous years, hinting the presence of either more complex questions or topics that were less familiar or more in-depth.

3. Difficulty Level by CSIR NET Life Science Units:

  • The most challenging units: Unit 1 (Molecules and their Interaction Relevant to Biology) and Unit 5 (Developmental Biology)
  • Moderately Challenging Unit:  Unit 3 (Fundamental Processes)
  • Less Challenging Unit: Unit 2 (Cellular Organization), Unit 4 (Cell Communication and Cell Signaling),Unit 6 (System Physiology – Plant), Unit 7 (System Physiology – Animal), Unit 8 (Inheritance Biology),Unit 9 (Diversity of Life Forms), Unit 10 (Ecological Principles), and Unit 11 (Evolution and Behavior).
  • Most Difficult Unit: Unit 13 (Methods in Biology).

4. Most No of Questions From each unit in CSIR NET Dec 2023 Exam – Morning Shift:

  • Primary Focus: Unit 3 (Fundamental Processes) had the highest number of questions, suggesting a major emphasis on the exam structure.
  • Secondary Focus: Unit 6 (System Physiology – Plant), a considerable number of questions were asked. 
  • Moderate EmphasisUnit 4 (Cell Communication & Cell Signaling), Units 5 (Developmental Biology),  Unit 8 (Inheritance Biology) and Unit 10 (Ecological Principles) also had a considerable number of questions, indicating these units are significant for the exam.
  • Less Emphasis: Units 1, 2, 7, 11, 12, and 13 had fewer questions, pointing to lesser emphasis on these units.

CSIR Dec 2023 Exam


CSIR Exam Difficulty Level Analysis Evening Shift (3:00 PM – 6:00 pm) Subject – Life Science

  1. Overall Difficulty Level of the CSIR NET Dec 2023 Evening Shift Question Paper:

  • Moderate: Over half the students (51.9%) found the exam moderately difficult, implying a fair level of challenge.
  • Tough: A substantial group (37.0%) considered the exam tough, indicating specific sections or topics were particularly challenging.
  • Good Difficulty Level: 11.1% felt the difficulty was just right, suggesting the exam was challenging but fair.

2. CSIR NET Dec 2023 Evening Shift Paper Difficulty Compared to Previous Years:

  • Moderate to Tough: The majority found the exam moderate in difficulty compared to previous years, but a significant number also found it tough or difficult.

3. Difficulty Level by Unit:

  • Most Challenging Unit: Unit 7 (System Physiology – Animal).
  • Also Moderately Challenging Unit: Unit 1 (Molecules and their Interaction Relevant to Biology) and Unit 8 (Inheritance Biology). 
  • Less Challenging Unit: Units 2 (Cellular Organization), Unit 3 (Fundamental Processes)Unit 4 (Cell Communication & Cell Signaling)  Unit 6 (System Physiology – Plant), and Unit 9 (Diversity of Life Forms) and Unit 13 (Methods in Biology).
  • Least Challenging Unit/Easy: Unit 5 (Developmental Biology), Unit 10 (Ecological Principles) and Unit 12 (Applied Biology)

4. Most No of Questions in CSIR NET Dec 2023 Exam from CSIR NET Life Science Syllabus Units:

CSIR Dec 2023 Exam

  • Primary Focus: Unit 4(Cell Communication and Cell Signaling) had the most questions, indicating a strong emphasis on cell communication and signaling.
  • Secondary Focus: Unit 3 (Fundamental Processes) also had a considerable number of questions, indicating its significance in the exam.
  • Significant Emphasis: Unit 8 (Inheritance Biology) and 10 (Ecological Principles) also had a notable number of questions.
  • Moderate to Low Emphasis: Other units showed a varied focus, with some like Units 1, 2, 5, 6, 9, 11, and 13 having fewer questions.

Overall Comparison Between Morning and Evening Shifts

  • Difficulty Level: Both shifts found the exam moderately challenging, but the morning shift had a higher perception of toughness.
  • Unit Challenges: Unit 13 was notably difficult in the morning, while Unit 7 was a challenge in the evening.
  • Question Distribution: The morning shift saw more questions from Unit 3, while the evening shift focused on Unit 4.
  • Technical Difficulty: The majority of the candidates in both shifts didn’t report any technical difficulty in the exam, except for a few in the morning shift.

Insights for Future CSIR NET Life Science Exam Aspirants:

  • Preparation Strategy: Given the variation in difficulty across units, students should tailor their study plans. Focus more on units that consistently showed higher difficulty or a larger number of questions, such as Unit 3 (Fundamental Processes), Unit 4 (Cell Communication and Cell Signaling), Unit 6 (System Physiology – Plant), Unit 7 (System Physiology – Animal), and Unit 13 (Methods in Biology).
  • Expectation Management: Be prepared for a moderate to tough difficulty level overall, as reflected in both shifts.
  • Exam Trends: Pay attention to the trend in question distribution and difficulty levels from past exams, as certain units tend to be emphasized more than others.
  • Balanced Study Approach: While it’s essential to focus on challenging units, don’t neglect units with fewer questions since they can still contribute significantly to the overall score.
  • Practice Questions and Give Mock Tests: Regularly practicing questions from all units, especially those perceived as challenging, can help build confidence and improve time management skills.
  • Seek Guidance: From experienced individuals, mentors or professionals seek guidance to stay focused, motivated, and aligned with the most effective study approaches for optimal results.

By using this data, future aspirants can make informed decisions about where to concentrate their efforts, ensuring a comprehensive and strategic approach to their preparation for the CSIR NET Life Science exam.

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Shekhar Suman is the Co-founder of BioTecNika Info Labs Pvt. Ltd. He is an Entrepreneur, Writer, Public Speaker, and a Motivational Coach. In his career, he has mentored more than 100,000+ students toward success in the Biopharma Industry. He heads the BioTecNika Group, which comprises BioTecNika.com, BioTecNika.org, and Rasayanika.com. An avid reader and listener who is passionate about BioSciences. Today Biotecnika is India's largest Biotech Career portal, with over 5 Million subscribers from academia & Industry. It's ranked among the top 50 websites worldwide in the Biology category.