STEM Careers Programme



National Science Talent Contest

Q:         Who is eligible to participate in NSTC-14?
A:         Those who

1)  have scored an aggregate of 70% or more marks in core subjects i.e. Physics, Chemistry,
&Mathematics of Matric/O-level.
2) are 1st year F. Sc. /A-level Student (i.e. will be taking part II exam in May-June 2017).
3) are of age not more than 20 years and will not be enrolled in any university on 30th July 2018.

 Please note that those students who are currently studying in F.Sc. Part II or equivalent are not eligible to apply.

Q: Is online transfer of application processing fee through online Bank Account # 0010002084620041 of Allied Bank Limited, Cabinet Division Branch, Islamabad (Branch Code: 0793) is a must through any online Allied Bank Branch of Pakistan?

A: No you may also send Postal Orders but they must be of Rs. 50 or higher and not less than, except these two methods no other mode of payment is accepted.

Q:        Is the last date for submitting nomination forms for each subject different?
A:        Last date for submission of forms is same for all subjects i.e. 08th January 2017.


Q:        What is the syllabus of NSTC?
A:       The syllabus of first section of 20 marks MCQ is Matric/O level for each subject. For the second section for the selected subject the syllabus is Matric/O level.
You may use normal Matric/O level books


Q:        What is the pattern of NSTC-14 paper?
A:        You can download the sample paper from NSTC website or
by click here. For any further information please contact....


Q:        Will I get any admit card for appearing in NSTC Screening Test ?
A:        Yes! You will get an admit card after your nomination has been confirmed in first week of Febuary, 2017.


Q:        How many students can an Institution nominate?

A:         The institution may nominate any number of students, who scored an aggregate of 70% or more in Matriculation/O-level. If a college does not have sufficient number of such students then it may nominate up to five top1st year FSc/A-Levels students for the Contest in each discipline i.e. Chemistry, Biology, Mathematics and Physics but will have to explain the criteria used for such nomination.


Q:        Can younger students apply in NSTC?
A:         Exceptional bright young students can also apply, provided they are nominated by their institutions using criterion such as performance of students in the class or their score in the last S.S.C/O-level examination.  However, the institute should explicitly mention the selection criterion used by them in your nomination form for this category.
Q:        Where will the Screening Test of NSTC be conducted?
A:         The test will be conducted in about 8 major cities through out the country, including Islamabad Lahore, Karachi, Peshawar, Multan, Faisalabad,Hyderabad subject to suitable number of candidates applying from that city.


Q:       Can I change the Subject I have mentioned in my Nomination form later on?
A:        You cannot change the subject you have chosen in your registration form.


Q:       Can I be an alumni with out attending the Training Camp of NSTC?

A:       The students who haven't attend any Training Camp of NSTC cannot be NSTC alumni even if they had passed the Screening Test of NSTC.

The IMO basically comprises of the following topics:
(1) Algebra (Inequalities, Polynomials, Functional Equations, etc)
(2) Geometry (2D and 3D)
(3) Number Theory
(4) Combinatorics

These topics (and the required level) are not taught at high-school. So if you are really keen and enthusiastic, you could read up some books on these topics for the IMO. For the exact course of the first camp, you will have to contact Dr. Sarfarz Ahmed.

Q:       Can I get the certificate with out attending the first Training Camp?

A:       No, As per policy we only give certificates for Participation in the First Training camp.

Q:      Where the Training Camps of NSTC going to be held?

The Training Camps will be held at the following Home Institutions (HI's) of NSTC.


Q:        What is the Tentative Schedule for next NSTC?
A:         NSTC-15 will start in November / December 2017. The Screening Test of NSTC-15 is going to be held in Febuary 2018.

Q:        Can a student participate in more then one Subject?
A:         No. You can only participate in one subject.

Q:        What is the pattern of NSTC paper?
A:         You can download the sample paper from NSTC website or
click the following sample paper. For any further information please contact....

General Information about NSTC and STEM

How long has Pakistan been participating in this event?

Pakistan has been participating in the International Physics Olympiad (IPhO) for the last sixteen years, including as an observer for the first year and regularly participating since 2001.

What are the criteria for participation in the IPhO?

A new, non-member country that wishes to participate in the IPhO has first be an observer for 1-2 years. Thereafter, each year the IPhO Committee invites each member country to participate in the prestigious event along with its team. The invitation is usually addressed to the Minister of Science and Technology or Minister of Education of the country.

 What have the results been so far?

In the very first IPhO competition hosted by Turkey in 2001, in which Pakistan participated, Mr. Yaser Raza Khan won Honorable Mention and the Best Performance Award for the teams participating for the first time in the Olympiad. In 2002, in the 33rd IPhO Pakistan’s performance was at its best ever position till date. That year two talented students of Pakistan, Abid Hassan and Wasil Intisar won Bronze Medals and remaining three students won Honorable mentions, which was held in Bali, Indonesia. In July 2003, Umair Sadiq won a Bronze Medal and Wajahat Faheem received an Honorable Mention in the 34th IPhO, Taipei Taiwan.  In 2004, three Pakistani students, Sabeen Faridi, Foaad Tahir, Amir Ali Abdullah won Honorable Mentions in the 35th IPhO Pohang South Korea. In July 2005, Nabeel Rehman and Dawood Tariq, won Honorable Mentions in the 36th IPhO in Salamanca, Spain. Lastly, in July 2006, Fahad Mahmood won an Honorable Mention in 37th IPhO Singapore.

Along with the IPhO, we also sent a team in the International Mathematics Olympiad (IMO) for 2005 to Mexico. In year in 2006 we have sent teams in the International Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Mathematics Olympiads (all four disciplines of the NSTC) to Singapore, South Korea, Argentina and Slovenia, respectively. A Pakistani student belonging to Dera Ghazi Khan Won a Bronze Medal in the International Biology Olympiad (IBO) while another one received an Honorable Mention in IMO. Since 1995 students participating from Pakistan have won 4 Silver Medals, 48 Bronze Medals and 40 Honorable Mentions  

Which programme did Pakistan present this year and why?

 In this event, students only appear in a written and a practical examination .No programme presentation is involved. Students are solely awarded for their performances in these examinations.

How are individuals selected for participation?

Students are initially selected through a nationwide Screening Test from among applicants with 70% or more score in their SSC or O-level exams. Subsequent selection is done through a series of three Training Camps through a process of teaching and testing. The nation-wide screening test is held on the first Sunday of January in eight major cities of the country. Fifty students selected in each NSTC discipline on the basis of their performance in this screening test are invited to a series of training camps in different home institutions for each subject. These include, the National Institute for Biotechnology and Genetic Engineering (NIBGE), Faisalabad for Biology, the HEJ Research Institute of Chemistry, Karachi for Chemistry, the Comsats Institute of Information Technology (CIIT), Lahore for Mathematics and the Pakistan Institute of Engineering and Applied Sciences (PIEAS), Islamabad for Physics.

And any other relevant information that you feel is important.

Introduction of STEM Careers Programme

STEM Careers Programme is a joint venture of the Higher Education Commission and Pakistan Institute of Engineering & Applied Sciences (PIEAS) for grooming talented students for careers in Science, Technology, Engineering & Mathematics, or STEM careers. STEM Careers Programme has a two fold mission. It is an extension of the National Physics Talent Contest that was launched by PAEC in 1995. It strives to achieve the following goals: 

  1. To inspire the youth of the nation to opt for careers in science, mathematics & engineering and preparing them for participation in the annual International Olympiad in Physics, Chemistry, Biology and Mathematics.
  2. To encourage engineering students to come up with innovative solutions to problems of national interest.

National Science Talent Contest (NSTC) strives to address the first part of the mission while National Engineering Competition (NEC) addresses the second part of the mission.

Every year STEM organizes an NSTC whereby teams of highly talented students are selected and groomed in collaboration with Home Institutions like PIEAS, HEJ, NIBGE, and CIITfor participation in International Science Olympiads in Biology, Chemistry, Mathematics and Physics.

It is our pleasure to mention that students selected and groomed under the former NPTC and current NSTC have also been able to secure admissions with scholarships for their higher studies in top world universities such as Stanford, MIT, Harvard, Yale, Cornell, Caltech, Mc Gill, University of Toronto and Oxford etc.

Currently two competitions have been launched under NEC, one is National Engineering Robotics Contest (NERC) in collaboration with EME, NUST and the other is Design Build and Fly Contest (DBFC) in collaboration with GIK-I. These competitions are basically aimed to groom engineering students and give them a platform to show their potentials in these fields. These contests also help us identify talented students in these fields which can later serve Pakistan with all their potentials for her brighter future.

Two voluntary bodies are also working under STEM Careers Programme; these are NSTC Alumni Association. NSTC Alumni association is constituted of the students being selected in former NPTC’s and current NSTC’s. Some members of the association are now working in National and International Organizations like Microsoft, Do Co Mo, Nokia, Sony Erickson, Simons, Mobilink, Paktel, Ufone etc and some Governmental Organizations like HEC, NDC, PINSTECH, KRL etc. Others are studying in renowned local and foreign institutions like GIK-I, NUST, The Agha Khan, King Edward Medical College, AMC, RMC, QAU, LUMS here in Pakistan and the above mentioned universities abroad. These alumni voluntarily help in various activities of NSTC. Due to contribution of the alumni in presentations and seminars, the number of student in this activity has increased incredibly, especially in the NWFP and Multan regions. We are also striving to spread our message in farther areas of Baluchistan, Punjab, Sindh and AJK.

STEM Careers Programme involves a lot of Volunteers in Home Institutions of NSTC, NUST & GIK-I for NEC, and Quaid-i-Azam University besides the home institutes for NSTC, NSTC Alumni Association and STF. These volunteers are working with an aim to develop a nation of constructive people. By spreading education, we feel that we can achieve the goal of a prosperous country with enlightened people.

 For participation in NSTC-14 or for more information about STEM Programme, please visit the programme website at, or write or call the STEM office, HEC, H-8/1, Islamabad at (051)-90402615.