NSEC Class 11 syllabus

The National Standard Examination in Chemistry is jointly administered by the Homi Bhabha Centre for Science Education and the Indian Association of Physics Teachers. The exam is held every year in November, and it is administered at different locations. The National Science Education Centre promotes and encourages students’ interest in chemistry. The NSEC recognises students’ accomplishments based on their exam results. This exam is for students who desire to pursue chemistry and want to obtain knowledge of the subject while studying for the exam by completing a self-assessment. Students who pass this exam will be eligible to compete in the INCO (Indian National Chemistry Olympiad).

Key Points of Exam

The National Standard Examination in Chemistry (NSEC) is a chemistry examination for students in higher secondary schools in India. The exam is conducted in late November. This test is for Indian students who have studied and excelled in the subject of chemistry. Students in higher secondary schools take this exam, and the organisers have assigned around 850 centres in various towns, cities, and villages to make the process easier.

The exam pattern is described below.

  • Exam Timings – 11.00 am to 1.00 pm
  • Duration of Exam – Two hours
  • Test Paper Level/Syllabus – CBSE Class 12 syllabus for the chemistry
  • Test Medium/Language – English and Hindi (as chosen during the registration process)
  • Type of Questions – Multiple-choices Questions
  • Total Number of Questions – 80
  • Total Marks – 240 marks
  • Scheme of the Marks – 3 marks are awarded for each question, and in case of an incorrect answer, one mark is deducted.

Syllabus for Class 11

The Class 11 syllabus is created by following the academic curriculum that the student is studying. Students from any academic board can refer to the prescribed textbook for the syllabus. The topics for the NSEC olympiad syllabus for Class 11 are listed below.

Serial Number

Name of Chapter

Topics Covered


Some basic concepts of Chemistry

  • General Introduction
  • Importance and scope of Chemistry.
  • Atomic and molecular masses, mole concept and molar mass, percentage composition, empirical and molecular formula
  • Chemical reactions
  • Stoichiometry and calculations based on stoichiometry.


Structure of Atoms

  • Bohr’s model and its limitations, the concept of shells and subshells, dual nature of matter and light, de Broglie’s relationship,
  • Heisenberg uncertainty principle, the concept of orbitals
  • Quantum numbers
  • Shapes of s, p and d orbitals, rules for filling electrons in orbitals – Aufbau principle
  • Pauli’s exclusion principle
  • Hund’s rule, electronic configuration of atoms
  • Stability of half-filled and completely filled orbitals.


Classification of Elements and Periodicity in Properties

  • Modern periodic law and the present form of the periodic table
  • Periodic trends in properties of elements -atomic radii, ionic radii, inert gas radii
  • Ionization enthalpy, electron gain enthalpy, electronegativity, valency.
  • Nomenclature of elements with atomic number greater than 100.


Chemical Bonding and Molecular Structure

  • Valence electrons, ionic bond, covalent bond, bond parameters
  • Lewis structure, the polar character of covalent bond, the covalent character of ionic bond
  • Valence bond theory, resonance
  • The geometry of covalent molecules, VSEPR theory
  • The concept of hybridization, involving s, p and d orbitals and shapes of some simple molecules, molecular orbital
  • theory of homonuclear diatomic molecules (qualitative idea only)
  • Hydrogen bond


States of Matter: Solid, Liquid and Gas

  • Three states of matter
  • Intermolecular interactions
  • Types of bonding, melting and boiling points
  • Role of gas laws in elucidating
  • The concept of the molecule
  • Boyle’s law
  • Charles law
  • Gay Lussac’s law
  • Avogadro’s law
  • Ideal behaviour
  • Empirical derivation of gas equation
  • Avogadro’s number
  • Ideal gas equation and deviation from ideal behaviour


Chemical Thermodynamics

  • Concepts of system and types of systems
  • Surroundings, work, heat, energy, extensive and intensive properties, state functions
  • The first law of thermodynamics – internal energy and enthalpy, measurement of U and H
  • Hess’s law of constant heat summation, enthalpy of bond dissociation, combustion, formation, atomization, sublimation, phase transition, ionization, solution and dilution.
  • Second law of thermodynamics (brief introduction)
  • Introduction of entropy as a state function, Gibb’s energy changes for spontaneous and nonspontaneous processes.
  • Third law of thermodynamics (brief introduction)



  • Equilibrium in physical and chemical processes, dynamic nature of equilibrium
  • The law of mass action
  • Equilibrium constant, factors affecting equilibrium
  • Le Chatelier’s principle
  • Ionic equilibrium- ionization of acids and bases, strong and weak electrolytes
  • Degree of ionization, ionization of polybasic acids, acid strength, the concept of pH, buffer solution, solubility product, common ion effect


Redox Reaction

  • Concept of oxidation and reduction
  • Redox reactions, oxidation number
  • Balancing redox reactions, in terms of loss and gain of electrons
  • Change in oxidation number



  • Position of hydrogen in periodic table
  • Occurrence, isotopes, hydrides-ionic covalent and interstitial
  • Physical and chemical properties of water, heavy water, hydrogen as a fuel


S-block Elements

  • Group 1 and Group 2 elements
  • General introduction, electronic configuration, occurrence
  • Anomalous properties of the first element of each group, diagonal relationship
  • Trends in the variation of properties (such as ionization enthalpy, atomic and ionic radii)
  • Trends in chemical reactivity with oxygen, water, hydrogen and halogens, and its uses


P-block Elements

  • General introduction to p -block elements
  • Group 13 elements: General introduction, electronic configuration, occurrence, variation of properties, oxidation states, trends in chemical reactivity
  • Anomalous properties of the first element of the group, Boron – physical and chemical properties.
  • Group 14 elements: General introduction, electronic configuration, occurrence, variation of properties, oxidation states, trends in chemical reactivity, anomalous behaviour of first elements. Carbon-catenation, allotropic forms, physical and chemical properties.


Organic Chemistry: Some Basic Principles and Techniques

  • General introduction
  • Classification and IUPAC nomenclature of organic compounds
  • Electronic displacements in a covalent bond: inductive effect, electromeric effect, resonance and hyperconjugation
  • Homolytic and heterolytic fission of a covalent bond: free radicals, carbocations, carbanions, electrophiles and nucleophiles, types of organic reactions



  • Classification of hydrocarbons aliphatic hydrocarbons: Alkanes
  • Nomenclature, isomerism, conformation (ethane only), physical properties, chemical reactions.
  • Alkenes – Nomenclature, the structure of double bond (ethene), geometrical isomerism, physical properties, methods of preparation
  • Chemical reactions: addition of hydrogen, halogen, water, hydrogen halides (Markovnikov’s addition and peroxide effect), ozonolysis, oxidation, mechanism of electrophilic addition.
  • Alkynes – Nomenclature, the structure of triple bond (ethyne), physical properties, methods of preparation, chemical reactions: acidic character of alkynes, addition reaction of – hydrogen, halogens, hydrogen halides and water.


Environmental Chemistry

  • Environmental pollution – A matter of great concern
  • Causes of water pollution
  • Global warming due to the greenhouse effect
  • Green chemistry – The alternative tool

Frequently Asked Questions on NSEC Class 11 Syllabus

What is the motto of the NSEC examination?

The main motto of the National Standard Examination in Chemistry is to promote chemistry as a subject and to foster students’ interest in it. The NSEC encourages students’ achievements, depending on their examination results.

What is the eligibility criteria for the NSEC exam?

Students must meet the following qualifying requirements:

  • Students must have an Indian passport.
  • Students must be between the age of 15 and 20.
  • They must have lived and studied in India.
  • The Class XII board examinations must not have been passed by the candidate.
  • They are not permitted to take any NSEJS tests in the applying year.
  • They must not have started (or plan to start) studies at a university or equivalent institution after the given academic year.

Which is the best way to prepare for the NSEC exam?

Solving the NSEC past years’ question papers is the best way to prepare for the exam.

Which subject and syllabus is mainly focused in the NSEC exam?

The main subject focused in the NSEC exam is chemistry. The syllabus for the exam is basically from Classes 11 and 12 chemistry.

What are the total marks of the examination?

The total marks of the exam is 240.

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