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IISER – Another Doorway For Engineering Aspirants

Aakash Adlakha

Unable to fetch a seat in the IITs or NITs? There is another doorway which ensures your success in engineering - IISER. This is an institute which is primarily focused on research and was established by MHRD and Govt of India on the recommendation of Scientific Advisory Council to the prime minister. The expectation level of research is sought to be top-class and the alumni status is quite remarkable.


The Indian Institute of Science Education and Research or IISER is a group of premier science and research institutes in India. The institute has been declared as the "Institute of National Importance" and is the leading institute in the field of pure science.

Image credits: IISER Mohali

The undergraduate programme offered at IISER includes BS-MS Dual Degree Course. Students can apply for the course after class 12th. Each IISER has the academic autonomy to design their courses and curriculum to cater to the dynamic industry needs.

The core idea behind the IISERs was to provide a platform to the students who are interested in becoming scientists rather than engineers. They are quite popular amongst engineering aspirants, especially IIT aspirants. The annual placement at IISER attracts recruiters from reputed companies such as Ranbaxy, Unilever, GE Healthcare, Dr. Reddy's, Shell, L'Oreal, Glenmark, etc.

IISERs - Number Of Seats On Offer

There are total 7 IISER institutes in India which offer a total of 1325 seats:

S.No. City / Town State No. of Seats in BS-MS
Berhampur Odisha 100
2 Bhopal Madhya Pradesh 250
Kalyani West Bengal 200
Mohali Punjab 200
Pune Maharashtra 225
Thiruvananthapuram Kerala 200
Tirupati Andhra Pradesh 150

About BS-MS Dual Degree Programme at IISER

The total course duration is of 5 years in which the first 2 years consist of key courses in basic science; the next 2 years are dedicated to specialisation in the chosen science subject; and, the last year is focused on a research project.

Who Can Join IISER?

1. KVPY - Candidates having a KVPY fellowship are eligible to apply for an admission.
2. JEE - In 2018, as per the official website of IISER, candidates securing a rank within 10000 in JEE Advanced are eligible to apply for an admission.
3. State and Central Board - Science students who have cleared 12th with a score equal to or above the cut-off percentage in their respective boards are eligible to apply. These students also need to appear for the IISER Aptitude Test.

IISER Aptitude Test Details

The IISER aptitude test is an OMR-based exam. The question paper includes 15 questions each from physics, chemistry, mathematics and biology, taking the total to 60 questions. The exam duration is 180 minutes.

For the last academic session, this test was conducted on 24th June 2018 and the result was declared on 03rd July 2018.

What after IISER?

1. Teaching (Academic): People who are interested in teaching can appear for BEd, NET, etc. and join any school/university in a teaching role.
2. Research: Post BS-MS, one can take up PhD and can join a research lab or university as a staff scientist or principal invigilator.
3. Research & Development: Nowadays, every major organisation has their own R&D department and they look for scientists who can join their research division. This creates another opportunity for the students after completing their PhD post BS-MS.
Scientific Writing: IISER graduates can also build their career as an editor in various scientific journals.
4. Government Services: One can apply for government jobs in different ministries as various bodies recognise the degree given by IISERs.

Job opportunities for IISER graduates are numerous, both in the public and private sectors. The best career choice would be R&D. The only thing it involves is a great amount of dedication and passion for research.

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