SCRA Exam Pattern, Insights and Details

SCRA is Indian Railways’ initiative to capture young talents fresh out of schools that are trained to be Mechanical Engineers by Indian Railways Institute of Mechanical & Electrical Engineering, Jamalpur. According to IRIMEE, the idea is to select those aspiring candidates who had studied science in the Intermediate (10+2) level and then provide them with four-year apprenticeship training. After completing the training period with practical tests and written exams, candidates are awarded a Bachelor of Engineering Degree in Mechanical Engineering. IRIMEE has dubbed Special Class Railway Apprentice program as a “unique sandwich training scheme” that is focused on training young aspirants with the fundamental professional training. Selection: UPSC (Union Public Service Commission) conducts examinations each year to select Special Class Railway Apprentices. UPSC releases the notification about this written exam through major media channels like Newspapers, Magazines, Journals and on its official web portal. Candidates that are shortlisted on the basis of this exam are then made to appear for Personal Interview in May, which is usually followed by a medical test. Special Class Railway Apprentice is a training program fabricated by the Indian Railways for the young and bright to be trained as per the standards of IRIMEE. It should be noted that admissions to SCRA program have been suspended for the time being, candidates are advised to wait for the official notification to be released by UPSC regarding the commencement of recruitment of SCRAs. Academics: Special Class Railway Apprentice is modeled after the four-year (8-semester) Mechanical Engineering Degree Course of Birla Institute of Technology Mesra, Ranchi. Guest Lecturers from BIT, Mesra take classes in the IRIMEE campus, give assignments and tutorials for semester examinations which are conducted at BIT. Upon the successful completion of the course/program, apprentices are awarded the regular BE (Mech) Degree from BIT Mesra. To Prepare well, candidates are advised to attempt SCRA Exam previous year question papers.

Exam Pattern  |  Syllabus  |  Eligibility Criteria  |  Tips and Tricks  |  Take Free Mock Test


Key Highlight
of Scra
Gen/OBC: Rs. 100 Female/SC/ST/PH are exempted from the fee.
Min: 17 yrs Max: 21 yrs (As on Jan 1, 2020)
Passed 10+2 from a recognized board
Important Dates:
To be announced soon
sections in exam:
General Ability Test Physical Sciences Mathematics
Exam Duration:
A written exam consisting of three sections: Paper 1,2 and 3. The total time given is six hours, two hours of each paper.
Personality Test for 200 marks (to be only attended by a candidate who passes Part A written exam)

Eligibility Criteria SCRA:

  • Nationality: A candidate must be a citizen of India.

  • Age Limit: The minimum age is 17 and the maximum age is 21. Age relaxation for SC and ST is 5 years, for OBC is 3 years, for residents of Jammu and Kashmir is 5 years, for defense is 3 years, and for Ex-Serviceman /ECOs/SSCOs/ Military Services is 5 years.

  • Educational Qualification: A candidate must have 1 or 2 division in 10+2 level (or equivalent examination recognized by the government) with Mathematics and at least one science subject, Physics or Chemistry, or both.

  • Candidates who are graduates with Mathematics or anyone subject, Physics, and Chemistry as degree subjects can also apply.

  • Physical Standard: A candidate must be physically fit as per the standards are given by SCRA.

Application Process: 

All candidates are required to apply through the official portal of UPSC in the online mode only. Take note, there is no other way to apply for SCRA. Please read the instructions to fill the application form carefully. Candidates should keep their documents in digital forms ready before filling the application.


SCRA Exam Pattern:

  • The questions in the written examination are will objective type with negative marking. Candidates are advised to use an only black ballpoint pen to mark answers in the OMR sheet. 

  • Part A: Written exam for 600 marks consisting of three sections:

  • Paper 1,2 and 3. The total time given is six hours, two hours of each paper.

  • Paper 1 is General Ability Test (English, GK, and Physiological Test) with two hours for 200 marks. This exam will contain 120 questions.

  • Paper 2 is the Physical Sciences Test (physics and Chemistry) of two hours for 200 marks. This exam will contain 120 questions.  

  • Paper 3 is a Mathematics Test of two hours for 200 marks. This exam will contain 100 questions only.

  • Part B: Personality Test for 200 marks, to be only attended by the candidates who pass Part A written exam.

The questions in the written exam will be in English and of the intermediate level. The examination will be conducted in offline mode. The use of calculators is prohibited.

SCRA Syllabus:

The national level exam of UPSC Special Class Railway Apprentice is for undergraduate students. The exam is divided into three sections:

General Ability Test:

  • General knowledge
  • English language
  • Vocabulary
  • History etc

Physical Science Paper:

  • Biochemistry
  • Electromagnetic induction
  • Polymer
  • Current
  • Electricity etc

Mathematics Paper:

  • Algebra
  • Trigonometry
  • Calculus
  • Matrices
  • Determinants
  • Probability etc

Preparation tips for UPSC SCRA:

  • For better practice and revision, make practice from previous year question papers and sample papers part of your preparations.

  • Make a proper schedule, in order to give proper time and attention to each and every topic.

  • Prepare and use your handmade notes for revision on a daily basis.

  • To improve your speed and accuracy, practice with time defined online mock tests as provided by Youth4work.

  • To prepare both efficiently and effectively for the exam, keep your body and your mind healthy.

Youth4work Prep Tests

Online practice tests for competitive exams – are very unique and popular among aspirants. Aspirants can take self-designed mock-tests as well as practice for sections and topics separately. Youth4work’s unique and proprietary technology is helping lakhs of aspirants to reveal personal details on what are the strength areas of aspirants for any exam and also suggest how they can improve the performance. Every aspirant is rated on a Rating Scale. The ratings of the aspirants change with every question attempt.

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