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The question paper consists of 4 sections

Maths or Biology,





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There is no fixed syllabus for VSAT exam. However the exam mainly covers following  areas



a. Complex Numbers 

Complex numbers in the form a+ib and their representation in a plane. Argand diagram. Algebra of complex numbers, Modulus and argument (or amplitude) of a complex number, square root of a complex number. Cube roots of unity, triangle inequality

b. Linear Inequalities

Linear inequalities. Algebraic solutions of linear inequalities in one variable and their representation on the number line.

c. Permutations and Combinations 

Fundamental principle of counting; Permutation as an arrangement and combination as selection, Meaning of P(n,r)and C(n,r).Simple applications.

d. Binomial Theorem

Binomial theorem for positive integral indices. Pascal’s triangle.

General and middle terms in binomial expansions, simple applications.

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e. Sequences and Series

Arithmetic, Geometric and Harmonic progressions. Insertion of Arithmetic, Geometric and Harmonic means between two given numbers. Relation between A.M., G.M. and H.M. Special series Σn, Σn2, Σn3. Arithmetico-Geometric Series, Exponential and Logarithmic Series. 

f. Matrices and Determinants

Determinants and matrices of order two and three, Properties of determinants. Evaluation of determinants. Addition and multiplication of matrices, adjoint and inverse of matrix. Solution of simultaneous linear equations using determinants .

g. Quadratic Equations

Quadratic equations in real and complex number system and their solutions. Relation between roots and co-efficients, Nature of roots, formation of quadratic equations with given roots;

h. Relations and Functions

Definition of a relation. Domain, codomain and range of a relation. Function as special kind of relation and their domain, codomain and range. Real valued function of a real variable. Constant, identity, polynomial, rational. Modulus, signum and greatest integer functions. Sum. Difference, product and quotient of functions. Types of relations: refelexive, symmetric, transitive and equivalence relations. One to one and onto functions.

Composite functions, inverse of a function.

i. Trigonometry

Trigonometrical identities and equations. Inverse trigonometric functions and their properties. Properties of triangles, including centroid, incentre, circumcentre and orthocentre, solution of triangles. Heights and distances.

j. Measures of Central Tendency and Dispersion

Calculation of Mean, Median and Mode of grouped and ungrouped data. Calculation of standard deviation, variance and mean deviation for grouped and ungrouped data.

k. Probability

Probability of an event, addition and multiplication theorems of probability and their applications; Conditional probability; Bayes’ theorem, Probability distribution of a random variate; Binomial and Poisson distributions and their properties.

l. Differential Calculus

Polynomials, rational, trigonometric, logarithmic and exponential functions. Graphs of simple functions. Limits, Continuity; differentiation of the sum, difference, product and quotient of two functions. Differentiation of trigonometric, inverse trigonometric, logarithmic, exponential, composite and implicit functions; derivatives of order upto two. Applications of derivatives: Maxima and Minima of functions one variable, tangents and normals, Rolle’s and Langrage’s Mean Value Theorems.

m. Integral Calculus

Integral as an anti derivative. Fundamental integrals involving algebraic, trigonometric, exponential and logarithmic functions. Integration by substitution, by parts and by partial fractions. Integration using trigonometric identities. Integral as a limit of sum. Properties of definite integrals. Evaluation of definite integral; Determining areas of the regions bounded by simple curves.

n. Differential Equations

Ordinary differential equations, their order and degree. Formation of differential equation. Solutions of differential equations by the method of separation of variables. Solution of Homogeneous and linear differential equations, and those of type d2y/dx2= f(x).

o. Two Dimensional Geometry

Review of Cartesian system of rectangular co-ordinates in a plane, distance formula, area of triangle,condition for the collinearity of three points, slope of a line, parallel and perpendicular lines, intercepts of a line on the coordinate axes.

p. The straight line and pair of straight lines

Various forms of equations of a line, intersection of lines, angles between two lines, conditions for concurrence of three lines, distance of a point from a line .Equations of internal and external bisectors of angles between two lines, equation of family lines passing through the point of intersection of two lines, homogeneous equation of second degree in x and y, angle between pair of lines through the origin, combined equation of the bisectors of the angles between a pair of lines, condition for the general second degree equation to represent a pair of lines, point of intersections and angles between two lines.

q. Circles and Family of Circles

Standard form of equation of a circle, general form of the equation of a circle, its radius and centre, equation of a circle in the parametric form, equation of a circle when the end points of a diameter are given, points

of intersection of a line and circle with the centre at the origin and condition for a line to be tangent, equation of a family of circles through the intersection of two circles, condition for two intersecting circles to be orthogonal. 

r. Conic Sections

Sections of cones, equations of conic sections ( parabola, ellipse and hyperbola) in standard forms, conditions for y = mx+c to be a tangent and point(s) of tangency. 

s. Vector Algebra

Vector and scalars, addition of two vectors, components of a vector in two dimensions and three dimensional space, scalar and vector products, scalar and vector triple product. Application of vectors to plane geometry.

t. Three Dimensional Geometry

Distance between two points. Direction cosines of a line joining two points. Cartesian and vector equation of a line. Coplanar and skew lines. Shortest distance between two lines.Cartesian and vector equation of a plane.

Angle between (i) two lines (ii) two planes (iii) a line and a plane Distance of a point from a plane.




Units for measurement, system of units, SI, fundamental and derived units, dimensions and their applications.


Motion in straight line, uniform and non-uniform motion, uniformly accelerated motion and its applications Scalars and Vectors, and their properties; resolution of vectors, scalar and vector products; uniform circular motion and its applications, projectile motion Newton’s Laws of motion; conservation of linear momentum and its applications,laws of friction, Concept of work, energy and power; energy-kinetic and potential; conservation of energy; different forms of energy. Elastic collisions in one and two dimensions.

Center of mass of a many particle system; center of mass of a rigid body, rotational motion and torque. Angularmomentum and its conservation. Moments of inertia, parallel and perpendicular axes theorem, moment of inertia for a thin rod, ring, disc and sphere.

Gravitation: Acceleration due to gravity and its properties. One and two dimensional motion under gravity. Universal law of gravitation, planetary motion, Kepler’s laws, artificial satellite-geostationary satellite, gravitational potential energy near the surface of earth, gravitational potential and escape velocity.


Solids: Elastic properties, Hooke’s law, Young’s modulus, bulk modulus, modulus of rigidity.Liquids: Cohesion and adhesion; surface energy and surface tension; flow of fluids, Bernoulli’s theorem and its applications; viscosity, Stoke’s Law, terminal velocity.


Periodic motion, simple harmonic motion and its equation, oscillations of a spring and simple pendulum.Wave motion, properties of waves, longitudinal and transverse waves, superposition of waves, Progressive and standing waves. Free and forced oscillations, resonance, vibration of strings and air columns, beats, Doppler effect.

 e. HEAT AND THERMODYNAMICS Thermal expansion of solids, liquids and gases and their specific heats, relationship between Cp and Cv for gases, first and second laws of thermodynamics , Carnot cycle, efficiency of heat engines. Transference of heat; thermal conductivity; black body radiations, Kirchoff’s law, Wein’s Law, Stefan’s law of radiation and Newton’s law of cooling.


Coloumb’s law, dielectric constant, electric field, lines of force, field due to dipole , electric flux, Gauss’s theorem and its applications; electric potential, potential due to a point charge; conductors and insulators, distribution of charge on conductors; capacitance, parallel plate capacitor, combination of capacitors, energy stored in a capacitor. Electric current : Cells-primary and secondary, grouping of cells; resistance and specific resistivity and its temperature dependence. Ohm’s law, Kirchoff’s Law. Series and parallel circuits; Wheatstone’s Bridge and potentiometer with their applications. Heating effects of current, electric power, concept of thermoelectricity-Seebeck effect and thermocouple; chemical effect of current- Faraday’s laws of electrolysis.

Magnetic effects: Oersted’s experiment, Biot Savert’s law, magnetic field due to straight wire, circular loop and solenoid, force on a moving charge in a uniform magnetic field(Lorentz force),forces and torques on a current carrying conductor in a magnetic field, force between current carrying wires, moving coil galvanometer and conversion to ammeter and voltmeter.

Magnetostatics: Bar magnet, magnetic field, lines of force, torque on a bar magnet in a magnetic field, earth’s magnetic field; para, dia and ferro magnetism, magnetic induction, magnetic susceptibility.


Induced e.m.f., Faraday’s law, Lenz’s law, self and mutual inductance; alternating currents, impedance and reactance, power in ac; circuits with L C and R series combination, resonant circuits, transformer and AC generator. Electromagnetic waves and their characteristics; electromagnetic spectrum from gamma to radio waves.


Reflection and refraction of light at plane and curved surfaces, total internal reflection; optical fiber; deviation and dispersion of light by a prism; lens formula, magnification and resolving power; microscope and telescope, Wave nature of light, interference, Young’s double experiment; thin films, Newton’s rings. Diffraction: diffraction due to a single slit; diffraction grating, polarization and applications.


Dual nature of Radiation - De Broglie relation, photoelectric effect, Alpha particle scattering experiment, atomic masses, size of the nucleus; radioactivity, alpha, beta and gamma particles/rays. Radioactive decay law, half life and mean life of radio active nuclei; Nuclear binding energy, mass energy relationship, nuclear fission and nuclear fusion.

Energy bands in solids, conductors, insulators and semiconductors, pn junction, diode, diode as a rectifier, transistor action, transistor as an amplifier.  




Atomic and molecular masses, mole concept and molar mass, percentage composition, empirical and molecular formula, chemical reactions, stoichiometry and calculations based on stoichiometry.


Bohr’s model, de Broglie’s and Heisenberg’s principles, Quantum mechanical model, Orbital concept and filling up of electrons; Bond formation and bond parameters; Valence bond and molecular orbital theory; VSEPR theory; Hybridization involving s, p and d orbital; Hydrogen bond. 


Law of chemical equilibrium and Equilibrium Constant; Homogeneous and Heterogeneous equilibria; LeChatelier’s principle, Ionic equilibrium; Acids, Bases, Salts and Buffers; Solubility product; Thermodynamic state; Enthalpy, Entropy and Gibb’s free energy; Heats of reactions; Spontaneous and nonspontaneous processes.


Specific, molar and equivalent conductance of weak and strong electrolytes; Kohlrausch law; Electrochemical cells and Nernst equation; batteries, fuel cells and corrosion Rate of a reaction and factors affecting the rate: Rate constant, order and molecularity, collision theory. Physisorption and chemisorptions; colloids and emulsions; homogeneous and heterogeneous catalysis.


Molecular, ionic, covalent and metallic solids; amorphous and crystalline solids; crystal lattices and Unit cells; packing efficiency and imperfections; electrical and magnetic properties. Normality, molarity and molality of solutions, vapour pressure of liquid solutions; ideal and non-ideal solutions, colligative proper-ties; abnormality.


Position of hydrogen in the periodic table; dihydrogen and hydrides- preparation and properties; water, hydrogen peroxide and heavy water; hydrogen as a fuel.


Group 1 and 2 Alkali and Alkaline earth elements; general characteristics of compounds of the elements; anomalous behavior of the first element; preparation and properties of compounds like sodium and calcium carbonates, sodium chloride, sodium hydroxide; biological importance of sodium, potassium and calcium.


Groups 13 to 17 elements: General aspects like electronic configuration, occurrence, oxidation states, trends in physical and chemical properties of all the families of elements; compounds of boron like borax, boron hydrides and allotropes of carbon; compounds of nitrogen and phosphorus, oxygen and sulphur; oxides and oxyacids of halogens.


Electronic configuration and general characteristics of transition metals; ionization enthalpy, ionic radii, oxidations states and magnetic properties; interstitial compounds and alloy formation; lanthanides and actinoids and their applications.


Werner’s theory and IUPAC nomenclature of coordination compounds; coordination number and isomerism; Bonding in coordination compounds and metal carbonyls and stability; application in analytical methods, extraction of metals and biological systems.


Tetravalence of carbon and shapes or organic compounds; electronic displacement in a covalent bond inductive and electromeric effects, resonance and hyperconjugation; hemolytic and heterolytic cleavage of covalent bond free radicals, carbocations, carbanions electrophiles and nucleophiles; methods of purification of organic compounds; qualitative and quantitative analysis.


Alkanes, alkenes,alkynes and aromatic hydrocarbons; IUPAC nomenclature, isomerism; conformation of ethane, geometric isomerism, general methods of preparation and properties, free radical mechanism of halogenations, Markownikoff’s addition and peroxide effect; benzene, resonance and aromaticity, substitution reactions; Nature of C-X bond in haloalkanes and haloarenes; mechanism of substitution reactions.


IUPAC nomenclature, general methods of preparation, physical and chemical properties, identification of primary, secondary and tertiary alcohols, mechanism of dehydration; electrophillic substitution reactions.


Nomenclature, general methods of preparation, physical and chemical properties of the group members; nucleophilic addition and its mechanism; reactivity of alpha hydrogen in aldehydes; mono and dicarboxylic acids-preparation and reactions; identification of primary, secondary and tertiary amines; preparation and reactions of diazonium salts and their importance in synthesis.


Natural and synthetic polymers, methods of polymerization, copolymerization, molecular weight of polymers, Polymers of commercial importance,Carbohydrates: mono, oligo and polysaccharides; Proteins Alpha amino acid, peptide linkage and polypeptides: Enzymes, Vitamins and Nucleic acids (DNA and RNA)


Air, water and soil pollution, chemical reactions in atmosphere, acid rain; ozone and its depletion; green house effect and global warming; pollution control.


Drugs and their interaction; chemicals as analgesics, tranquilizers, antiseptics, antibiotics, antacids and antihistamines; Chemicals in food- preservatives, artificial sweetening agents; cleansing agents – soaps and detergents. 




Biosystematics: Introduction - Need, history and types of classification (Artificial, Natural and Phylogenetic) , Species concept, Binomial nomenclature with examples, Rules and advantages of binomial nomenclature. Linnaean hierarchy - Kingdom to species with examples (Cocos nucifera and Homo sapiens). The five - kingdom system of classification in detail - General characters of kingdoms Monera, Protista, Mycota, Metaphyta and Metazoa.

Cell Biology: Cell structure: Structure and functions of cell components - cell wall, plasma membrane (fluid mosaic model), endoplasmic reticulum, plastids (brief), mitochondria (brief), Golgi complex, Ribosomes, Lysosomes, Centrosome, vacuole and nucleus - nuclear envelope (nuclear pores and nuclear lamina) nucleoplasm, nucleolus and chromatin. A brief account of ergastic substances (mention about reserve food, secretory and excretory substances with examples). Differences between plant cell and animal cell.

Chromosomes: Discovery, shape, size and number of chromosomes, Autosomes and allosomes; Karyotype and idiogram. Chemical composition and function. General structure - Concept of centromere (primary constriction), secondary constriction, satellite, kinetochore, telomere. Types of chromosomes based on the position of centromere. Ultrastructural organization of the eukaryotic chromosome - nucleosome model. Numerical aspects of chromosomes: A brief note on aneuploidy (monosomy and trisomy) and euploidy (haploidy, diploidy and polyploidy).

Cell Reproduction: Cell division and types. Concept of cell cycle. Mitotic division and significance.
Meiotic division and its significance. Cancer - meaning of cancer, benign and malignant tumours, characters of cancer cells, types of cancer (Carcinoma, Sarcoma, Lymphoma and Leukemia), causes of cancer (physical, chemical and biological carcinogens with examples). Concept of cell senescence and apoptosis (programmed cell death).

Introduction to Biology: Definition of Biology and its main branches - Botany and Zoology. Scope of Biology. Branches of Biology (definition only). Classical branches - morphology, cytology, histology, anatomy, physiology, developmental biology, biosystamatics, genetics, ecology, organic evolution and palaeontology. Interdisciplinary branches - biophysics, biochemistry and biostatistics. Applied branches and career prospects - agriculture, entomology,silviculture, pathology, apiculture, microbiology and bioinformatics. Role of biology in dispelling myths and disbeliefs.

Biomolecules: Carbohydrates: Definition. Classification - monosaccharides (ribose, deoxyribose, glucose, fructose and galactose), oligosaccharides (maltose, sucrose and lactose) and polysaccharides (starch, glycogen, cellulose, pectin, chitin and agar agar). Biological significance.

Proteins: Definition. Classification - simple proteins (albumins, globulins, histones, actin, myosin and keratin), conjugate proteins - Chromoproteins (haemoglobin), glycoproteins (mucin of saliva), phospoproteins (casein of milk) and lipoproteins (lipovitelline of egg yolk). Biological significance of amino acid and proteins.

Lipids: Definition. Classification - Simple lipids - oils (vegetable oil and oil of animal origin), fats (butter) and waxes (beeswax), Compound lipids - phospholipids (lecithin and cephalin) and sphingolipids (cerebrosides),Related compounds - steroids (estrogen, progesterone and testosterone), sterols (cholesterol) and prostaglandins. Biological significance.

Enzymes: Definition, properties, classification based on functions. Mode of action - induced fit theory of Koshland.

Nucleic acid: Occurrence, basic chemical composition (nucleoside and nucleotide), mention of type (DNA and RNA) and functions (structural details are not required). [*Note: Details of chemical structure of biomolecules are not required].

Origin of life and organic evolution: Origin of life: Introduction. Concept of abiogenesis and biogenesis (experimental evidences not required).A.I.Oparin’s Theory of chemical evolution of life (Views of Haldane and Sidney Fox to be mentioned). Stanley Miller’s experiment in support of chemical evolution.

Organic evolution: Introduction. Darwin’s Theory (DDT resistance in mosquitoes and industrial melanism in Peppered moth, to illustrate natural selection to be quoted as examples). Brief account of Mutation Theory. Neo Darwininism - Introduction, Darwinian concept vs Neo Darwinian concept (gene pool and gene frequency), Hardy - Weinberg Law and sources of variations as evolutionary force - sexual reproduction, genetic drift, gene flow, mutation and isolation (reproductive and geographic).

Genetics: Mendelian genetics: Mendel and his work. Definitions of the following terms: Allele, Phenotype, Genotype, Homozygous and Heterozygous. Principles of inheritance: Unit characters, dominance, law of segregation (purity of gametes) and law of independent assortment. Monohybrid cross, Dilhybrid cross and Test cross.

Deviations from Mendelian laws: Incomplete dominance: Example - Flower colour in Mirabilis jalapa.
Multiple allelism: Example - ABO blood groups and their inheritance in man: Blood typing; Rh factor with a note on erythroblastosis foetalis. Sex linked inheritance in man: Example - Inheritance of colour-blindness and hypertrichosis in man.

Genetic disorders in man: Chromosomal disorders - Down’s syndrome, Klinefelter’s syndrome, Turner’s syndrome and Cri-du-Chat syndrome. Gene disorders - Sickle cell anaemia, haemophilia.

Biodiversity: Definition and Types: Ecosystem or habitat diversity, Species diversity and Genetic diversity.

Biodiversity profiles of India and Karnataka: Species diversity, Endemic species, Threatened species and Endangered species.

Benefits of biodiversity: Economic - Traditional crop varieties and lesser known plants and animals of food value, medicinal plants harvested from wild habitat. Ecological/Social - For controlling soil - water regimes and hydrology, for efficient organic residue management and soil fertility management. Ethical - Cultural, Spiritual and Religious belief systems centred around the concept of sacred species, sacred groves and sacred landscapes.

Biodiversity depletion: Anthropocentric causes - urbanization, expansion of agriculture, deforestation, pollution, acidification of soil and water, mining activities, desertification and loss of soil fertility.

Intellectual property rights: Patenting life forms.

Concept of ecosystem sustainability: Conservation of natural resources based on traditional ecological knowledge (TEK): Conservation of Water - rainwater harvesting and watershed management. Conservation of soil - Prevention of soil erosion and maintenance of soil fertility: methods of soil conservation. Conservation of forests - Afforestation and maintenance of biosphere reserves. Conservation of wild life - (i) Setting up of national parks, sanctuaries, bioreserves and zoos (ii) Habitat improvement.

Global issues: Concept, causes, effects and control measures of the following: Global warming and greenhouse effect, Ozone layer depletion, Acid rain, Nuclear winter.

Man in health and diseases: Concept of Homeostasis - The central Dogma in physiology: Definition. Meaning of internal environment. Factors to be kept constant to achieve homeostasis. An example to illustrate homeostasis - regulation of blood glucose level by liver and pancreas through negative feedback. A note on diabetes mellitus.

Body defence and immunity: Introduction. Nonspecific body defences : a) Surface barriers b) Cellular and bio-chemical defences: phagocytosis, natural killer cells, interferons and inflammatory response. Specific body defences (immunity): Antigen and antibody, role of B and T lymphocytes. Types of immunity: Active (infection and vaccination) and Passive (from mother and immune serum Y-globulins).

Digestion: Gross anatomy of human digestive system (structure of tooth not required). Components of food (concept of balanced diet). Physiology of digestion of carbohydrates, proteins and fats. Disorders: Causes, symptoms and prevention of hyperacidity and ulcer, jaundice and its types and hepatitis.

Circulation: Introduction. Gross anatomy of the human heart. Mechanism of working of heart - cardiac cycle, stroke volume, cardiac out-put, complete double circulation. Origin and conduction of heart beat. Mechanism of blood clotting (Best and Taylor theory). Blood pressure - hypotension and hypertension. Disorders - causes and symptoms of myocardial infarction and cyanosis.

Respiration: Gross anatomy of human respiratory system. Mechanism of respiration:
(i) Breathing (inspiration and expiration)
(ii) External respiration (exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between alveoli and blood)
(iii) Internal respiration (exchange of oxygen and carbon dioxide between blood and body cells)
(iv) Cellular respiration. Disorders: Rhinitis, Asthma and bronchogenic carcinoma. Artificial breathing.

Excretion: Introduction. Gross structure of nephron, Physiology of urine formation. Chemical composition of urine. Disorders: a. Renal failure - acute and chronic b. Renal calculi. Kidney replacement therapy: a brief note on dialysis (haemodialysis and continuous ambulatory peritoneal dialysis) and kidney transplantation.

Nervous system: Components - CNS, PNS & ANS. Human brain - structure (sagittal section only) and functions (functional areas of cerebrum not required). Human spinal cord - structure and functions. Meaning of reflex arc and reflex action. A brief study of the endocrine functions of the pituitary. Disorders: Meaning, causes and symptoms of epilepsy, Parkinson’s disease, Alzheimer’s disease and Huntington’s chorea. Alcoholism and its effects. Narcotic drugs - meaning, listing of types (stimulants, depressants, analgesics and hallucinogens) and their effects. Drug abuse and addiction, Efforts to counter alcoholism and drug menace

Continuity of life: Developmental biology (basics of sexual reproduction) - Gametogenesis: Spermatogenesis - formation of spermatids and spermiogenesis (details of spermiogenesis are not required). Ultrastructure of human sperm. Oogenesis. Generalized structure of ovum.

Fertilization - Definition. Types - external and internal. Mechanism. Significance.

Early development of frog - Structure of egg. Cleavage. Blastulation. Gastrulation. Derivatives of primary germ layers.

Human Reproduction: A brief account of Fertilization, Implantation, Placenta. Role of gonadotropins and sex hormones in males and females (meaning of menstrual cycle to be highlighted).

Fertility control - Need for fertility control. Survey of family planning methods: Spacing methods (Barriers, IUDs, Hormonal and Physiological) and Terminal methods (Tubectomy and Vasectomy).

Infertility control - Meaning and causes of infertility in males and females. Remedical methods (Assisted conception methods) - IVF,ET,GIFT and ZIET. (details of GIFT AND ZIFT not required).

Sexually transmitted diseases - Meaning, causative organisms, mode of infection, symptoms and preventive measures of gonorrhoea, syphilis and AIDS.



Diversity of life on earth: Kingdom Monera and other simple living forms - Prions and Viroids: Concept of prions and viroids - definition, discovery, chemical nature with one example of disease each - Creutzfeldt - Jacob disease (CJD) and Potato spindle tuber disease (PSTV).

Viruses: Introduction - living and non-living properties of viruses. Types of viruses - Plant viruses, Animal viruses, Bacterial viruses, DNA viruses and RNA viruses (Only definitions with examples to include the following - Viral disease in plants - Tobacco Mosaic, Cauliflower Mosaic, Potato Mottle, Leaf Mosaic of tomato and Banana Bunchy Top; viral diseases in animals-Rabies, Dog distemper, Viral diseases in man-Japanese Encephalitis, Poliomyelitis, Hepatitis-B, Herpes, AIDS and Conjunctivitis). Structure of T4 Bacteriophage, multiplication of T4 phage (Lytic cycle only).

Bacteria: Introduction. Classification of bacteria based on mode of nutrition (Heterotrophic bacteria - parasitic, saprophytic and sumbiotic - and Autotrophic bacteria - photosynthetic and chemosynthetic; definition and one example for each group). Ultrastructure of the bacterial cell. Reproduction in bacteria - asexual reproduction by binary fission, endospore formation and sexual mechanism (genetic recombination in bacteria - transduction, transformation and conjugation with details of HFR conjugation only). Importance of bacteria (i) Beneficial aspects - Scavenging, Fermentation, Retting, Antibiotics, Ecological importance, Importance in Genetic engineering and Importance in mineral extraction. (ii) Harmful aspects (iii) Food spoilage and food poisoning. Bacterial diseases - Brief and introductory information on the following diseases: Citrus canker, Anthrax, Cholera, Gastric ulcer, Tuberculosis and Syphilis (details of treatment are not required). (iv) A brief introduction on Archaea and their importance.

Cyanobacteria: Introduction. Structure and reproduction of Nostoc. Differences between bacteria and Cyanobacteria. Importance of Cyanobacteria.

Kingdom Protista: General characters. Mentioning the following divisions with suitable examples -
Chrysophyta (Diatoms), Euglenophyta (Euglena) and Protozoa. Taxonomic position of Algae with reference to the five-kingdom classification choosing the following examples: Desmids (typical members of Protista) and Spirogyra (A member of metaphyta) are both included in division Chlorophyta (Green Algae).Importance of Algae (in brief).

Kingdom Mycota: The Fungi: General characters of Fungi. Mentioning divisions with suitable examples. Zygomycota - Rhizopus: Ascomycota - Saccharomyces; Basidiomycota - Agaricus; Duteromycota - Cercospora. Importance of Fungi; A brief account of mushroom culturing (paddy straw mushroom culturing).

Kingdom Metaphyta: Bryophyta: General characters of Bryophytes. Mentioning classes with suitable examples - Hepaticopsida - Riccia; Anthocerotopsida - Anthoceros; Bryopsida - Funaria.

Pteridophyta: General characters of Pteridophytes. Mentioning classes with suitable examples - Psilotopsida - Psilotum; Lycopsida - Selaginella; Sphenopsida - Equisetum; Pteropsida - Nephrolepis.

Gymnosperms: General characters of Gymnosperms. Mentioning classes with suitable examples - Cycadopsida - Cycas; Coniferopsida - Pinus; Gnetopsida - Gnetum.

Angiosperms: General characters of angiosperms - Typical dicotyledonous and monocotyledonous plants (Brassica and brass) and difference between dicotyledons and monocotyledons. Study of the Angiosperm flower. Technical terms used in description of flower - Actinomorphic, Zygomorphic, Unisexual, Bisexual, Pedicellate, Sessile, Bracteate, Ebracteate, Homochlamydeous, Heterochlamydeous. Complete flower, Incomplete flower, Epigynous, Hypogynous and Perigynous flowers. The parts of the flower:
a) Accessory whorls:
(i) Concept of perianth
(ii) Calyx - polysepalous and  gamosepalous  condition with one example each.
(iii) Corolla - Polypetalous and Gamopetalous condition.
(iv) Aestivation - definition and types - Valvate, Imbricate and Twisted types with one example each.
b) Essential whorls:
(i) Androecium - parts of a stamen, adelphy, syngeny, synandry and epipetaly. Anther lobes - monothecous and dithecous conditions with one example each.
(ii) Gynoecium - part of gynoecium, concept of carpel, Types of gynoecium - apocarpous and syncarpous gynoecium. Types of gynoecium based on number of carpels - monocarpellary, bicarpellary, tricarpellary and multicarpellary conditions.Nature of ovary of gynoecium with reference to locule - unilocular, bilocular, trilocular and multilocular conditions. Placentation - definition, types - marginal, axile, basal and parietal.

International structure of essential parts: a) T.S of mature anther and structure of the pollen grain (Microsporogenesis not needed) b) Structure of a mature anatropous ovule (Megasporogenesis not needed).

Pollination in Angiosperms: Definition, self and cross pollination, types (Autogamy, Allogamy, Geitonogamy, Xenogamy, Cleistogamy, Homogamy). Agents (Anemophily, Zoophily - Entomophily - Ornithophily and Hydrophily) with examples. (Pollination mechanisms not needed).

Fertilization in Angiosperms: Definition, a brief account of double fertilization and its significance (Embryogeny not required).

The Angiosperm fruit: Definition, types of fruits - Simple fruits - fleshy fruits (drupe and berry),
Dry fruits (capsule, cypsela and cremocarp) and Pome (apple). Aggregate fruits - etaerio of follicles. Multi fruits - Scrosis.

The Angiosperm seed: Concept of seed. A typical dicotyledonous seed (Example: Bean seed). A typical monocotyledonous seed (Example: Maize grain).

Taxonomy and Economic Botany: Taxonomy: An outline of classification system of Engler and Prantl. Distinguishing characters and plants of economic interest of the following families of angiosperms:
Malvaceae - (Hibiscus, Cotton, Lady’s finger).
Apocynaceae - (Catheranthus roseus, Rauwolfia serpentiana, Plumeria alba and Nerium indicum)
Musaceae - (Musa paradisiaca and Ravenala madagascariensis).

Economic Botany: Introduction. Oil yielding plants - Groundnut and Sunflower. Cereals and millets - Rice and Jowar. Pulses - Pigeon pea and Bengal gram. Medicinal plants - Adathoda vasica, Ephedra gerardiana, Dryopteris, Santalum album, Gymnema sylvestre, Ocimum sanctum, Phyllanthus emblica. Spices - Pepper, cloves and cardamom. Beverages - Coffee, cocoa and tea. (Mentioning scientific names, family, parts used and uses only).

Elements of plant pathology: Symptoms, etiology, type and nature of pathogens, and methods of control with reference to the following diseases:

(i) Banana bunchy top

(ii) Tikka disease of groundnut

(iii) Crown gall (of any common dicot plant).

Plant history & anatomy: Introduction: Definition and general classification of plant tissues.

Meristems: Definition, structure and classification based on position, origin and function (theories an apical organization not required).

Permanent Tissues - Distribution, structure and functions of: Simple tissues: Parenchyma (Chorenchyma and Aerenhyma),  Collenchyma (angular, lacunar & lamellar) and Sclerenchyma - Fibres (Intraxylary and Extraxylary), Sclereids (Macrosclereids, Brachysclereids, Astrosclereids and Osteosclereids).

Complex tissues: Xylem and Phloem. Definition of the terms: Primary and secondary vascular tissues, exarch xylem, endarch xylem, collateral conjoint open and collateral conjoint closed vascular bundles, radial arrangement of vascular tissues. Secondary growth in dicot stem: intrastelar and extrastelar secondary growth. Plant physiology.

Water relations of plants: Fundamental concepts: Importance of water to plants. Significance and definitions of the following: Imbibition, Diffusion, Osmosis, Endosmosis, Exosmosis, Plasmolysis, Deplasmolysis, Turgor pressure, Well pressure, Osmotic pressure. Water potential and its components.
Absorption of water: Structure of root hair. Sources of water for plants (available water and nonavailable water). Region of absorption of water in plants. Entry of water from soil into xylem of root. Active and passive absorption of water (active absorption to show osmotic and non-osmotic processes).

Ascent of sap: Definition and evidences to show the involvement of xylem (the Balsam plant experiment). Composition of xylem sap. Transpiration pull theory - merits and demerits.

Loss of water in plants: Transpiration - Definition and types. Structure of a typical stomatal apparatus (dicot example only). Mechanism of stomatal movement - Steward’s Starch hydrolysis theory and K+ pump theory. Factors influencing the rate of transpiration (external). Significance of transpiration. A brief note on antitranspirants.

Guttation: A brief account of guttation - occurrence, causes and structure of hydathode.

Translocation of solutes: Definition and evidences in support of involvement of phloem in the process (Girdling experiment and Tracer method). Composition of phloem sap. Munch’s mass flow hypothesis with merits and demerits. Vein loading.

Bioenergetics: Introduction: Light as the source of energy and ATP as energy currency.

Photosynthesis: Definition. Ultrastructure of the chloroplast. Photosynthetic pigments and their role; composition of photsystems I & II. (Molecular structures and formulae not required). Mechanism - light reaction - cyclic and noncyclic photophosprylations; Dark reaction (C3 pathway - Calvin cycle) - (details of regeneration steps not required); C4 pathway and CAM (definition and examples only). Influence of external factors on photosynthesis; Blackman’s law of limiting factors. Significance of photosynthesis.

Respiration: Definition and types (aerobic and anaerobic). Ultra structure of mitochondrion. Mechanism of aerobic respiration - Glycolysis, Krebs cycle and Terminal oxidation. Anaerobic respiration - Mechanism of fermentation in the presence of yeast and lactic acid bacteria. Role of external factors, respiratory quotient (RQ) and its significance and Pasteur effect.

Growth and growth regulators in plants: Growth: Definition, regions of growth, phases of growth and growth curve.

Growth regulators: Definition. Role of the following plant hormones (Details of experiments on discovery of hormones not required):
i. Auxins.
ii. Gibberellins.
iii. Cytokinins.
iv. Abscissic acid.
v. Ethylene.
Synthetic growth regulators and their applications (with reference to IAA, IBA, NAA, 2, 4-D, BAP and Ethephon).



Diversity of animal life: Introduction. Outline classification of kingdom Animalia (only the major phyla to be considered). Major animal phyla: Outline classification as treated in ‘A Manual of Zoology’ Vol. I and Vol. II (1971) by Ekambarantha Ayyar. Non-chordata (animals without backbone) - General characters and classification up to classes (salient features of classes of Invertebrate phyla not to be given) with suitable examples of the following phyla: Protozoa, Porifera, Coelenterata, Platyhelminthes, Nematoda, Annelida, Arthropoda, Mollusca and Echinodermata. Chordata (Animals with backbone) - Fundamental characters and classification of chordata up to subphyla - Hemichordata, Urochordata, Cephalochordata and Vertebrata with suitable examples. Subphylum Vertebrata - Salient features with examples of (i) Subphylum Pisces: Class Chondreichthyes and Class Osteichthyes); (ii) Superclass Tetrapoda: Amphibia, Reptilia, Aves and Mammalia. Differences between non-chordates and chordates.

Study of Morphology: Cockroach - Periplaneta sp. Morphology (Structure of head capsule and compound eye not required).Digestive and nervous systems.

Animal resources: Sericulture; Definition. Main aspects - moriculture, rearing of silkworms and reeling.
Brief account of moriculture: definition, methods (row and pit systems) and its importance. Types of silk - mulberry and non-mulberry (Tasar, Eri and Muga). Diseases of mulberry silkworm - Pebrine, Muscardine or Calcino, Flacherie and Grasserie (Listing of diseases and causative organisms only).

Aquaculture: Definition. Areas - fin fisheries and shell fisheries. Pisciculture: definition, capture fisheries and culture fisheries. Inland fisheries - procedure. Monoculture, monosex culture and polyculture (composite fish farming) - meaning with examples.

Dairy: Definition. Types of indigenous cattle with examples based on utility - draught, milching and dual purpose (Cow breeds - Sindhi, Sahiwal, Amrithmahal, Hallikar, Ongole and Haryana; Buffalo breeds - Murrah, Surti, Mehsana and Nagpuri). Examples of high yielding exotic breeds (Holstein, Red Dane, Jersey and Brown Swiss). Nutritive value of milk. Utility of cattle - biogas, leather, gelatin and organic manure.

Poultry: Definition. Types of indigenous fowls with examples based on utility - layers, broilers and dual purpose (Aseel, Chittagong, Ghagus, Basra and Kadaknath). Examples of exotic breeds (White Leghorn, Cornish, Rhode Island Red Plymouth Rock and Newhampshire). Giriraj - origin and salient features.
Nutritive value of egg. Diseases ( Respiratory mycoplasmosis, Fowl pox candidiasis, Raniketh and Fowl cholera) - Mentioning of diseases and causative organisms only.

Vermiculture: Definition and procedure. Vermicompost - degradation of organic wastes and role of Earthworm in soil fertility.

Molecular Biology: Nucleic acids: DNA - Occurrence, DNA as the genetic material (with the experiment of Avery as evidence), chemical composition, structure (Watson - Crick model), Semiconservative method of replication. RNA - Occurrence, chemical composition, brief account of structure and functions of genetic RNA, rRNA, mRNA and tRNA (clover - leaf model).

Gene: The gene, the genetic code and genetic control of protein synthesis - Concept of gene (prokaryotic and eukaryotic), genetic code and its characteristics, genetic control of protein synthesis (transcription and translation) and Lac operon concept.

Biotechnology: Introduction: Scope of biotechnology.

Genetic Engineering: Introduction; Tools used in genetic engineering - Vectors (plasmid - pUC18), Enzymes (REN and Ligase), Host cell (E.coli) and Bioreactors.
Recombinant DNA technology and its applications: Insulin synthesis to be used as an example.
A brief account of: DNA fingerprinting, Gene therapy, Human genome project, Monoclonal antibodies.
Improvement of crop plants: Breeding techniques; Tissue culture technique - organ culture example: stem; transgenic plants example: Golden rice.
Improvement of animals: Breeding techniques and stem cell culture, transgenic animals example: Cattle.
Hazards and safeguards of genetic engineering.


Broadly, this paper includes questions on general English like spotting of errors, sentence improvement, vocabulary, Comprehension etc.









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