NATA vs JEE Main B.Arch: Which is better?

Author : Aparna

Updated On : December 2, 2023


Summary: Once you know that you want to pursue a career in architecture, you must shortlist the exams to write. This article gives a comparison of NATA vs JEE Main B.Arch: Which is better?

NATA and JEE Main B.Arch are competitive exams for admission to Architectural courses.

Both exams require a good understanding of the subject and good preparation.

NATA focuses more on drawing skills, whereas JEE Main B.Arch focuses more on drawing and other aptitude subjects. The choice between these two exams should be based on the strengths and weaknesses of the candidate.

Therefore, assessing the candidate's aptitude and competency is important before deciding.

NATA vs JEE Main B Arch 2024 Overview

Let's take a look at the facts of these Architectural exams

NATA vs JEE Main Paper 2 which is better?

NATA exam

  • The Council of Architecture (COA) conducts the National Aptitude Test in Architecture (NATA) for admission to B.Arch and B.Planning courses in various colleges.
  • They offer a 5-year undergraduate degree program in architecture. The NATA entrance exam is conducted thrice this year.

JEE exam

  • The National Test Agency (NTA) annually conducts the Joint Entrance Examination (JEE) Main B.Arch examination. JEE Main examination offers admission in various BE, B.Tech, B.Arch, and B planning courses.
  • These courses are offered to get admission to India’s leading institutes which are – the National Institute of Technologies (NITs), the Indian Institute of Technologies (IITs), and Centrally Funded Technical Institutes (CFTIs).
  • The JEE Main paper 2 B.Arch is also conducted twice a year, like NATA.

Differences between JEE MAIN B.ARCH and NATA 2024

The table below provides an understanding of the  Differences between NATA and JEE Main Paper 2:

Parameters JEE MAIN B.Arch NATA
Conducting Body The National Test Agency (NTA) The Council of Architecture (COA)
Exam Level National Level exam National Level Exam
Programs Offered BE (Bachelor of Engineering), B.Tech (Bachelor of Technology), B.Arch (Bachelor of Architecture), and B.Planning. Bachelor of Architecture (B.Arch)
Participating Institutes The National Institute of Technology (NITs) and the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) School of Planning and Architecture (SPA)
Frequency of Exam Twice a year Twice a year
Eligibility 12th-pass students from PCM backgrounds with a minimum aggregate of 50% are eligible for JEE Main (Paper-II). Students Appearing in the class XIIth exam and those who have passed their qualifying exam in the last two years are also eligible. No minimum or maximum age limit to appear in JEE Main (Paper-II) 12th pass students from PCM background with a minimum aggregate of 50% are eligible for NATA Minimum age limit is 17 years for NATA (on the 01st of July of the year of admission)
Appearing Candidates (2020) 1,38,409 22,853
Subjects in Exam General Aptitude, Drawing, and Mathematics Drawing, Mathematics, and General Aptitude
Number of Questions Total of 83 (General Aptitude has 50 questions, mathematics has 30 questions, and Drawing has only 3 questions) Total of 62 (Part A contains 60 questions, and Part B contains 2 questions)
The Language of Paper English, Hindi, and Gujarati for candidates belonging to Gujarat, Daman, Diu, and Nagar Haveli English
Duration of Examination 3 hours 3 hours (Part A - 90 minutes and Part B – 90 minutes)
Mode of Examination Online mathematics and General Aptitude test and drawing exams will be in offline mode/pen and paper-based Part A – online Part B – online
Question Pattern Multiple choice questions with one correct answer for Aptitude and Mathematics, whereas for drawing, a candidate has to represent his/her sketching skills Part A- Multiple Choice Questions (Online-mode) Part B- Drawing sheets (Offline-mode)
Marks Allocation 4 marks will be given for each correct answer, 1 mark will be cut for every wrong answer, and 0 marks will be given for unanswered questions. 2 marks will be given for each correct answer; there is no negative marking
Total Marks Allocated 390 Marks 200 marks (Part A will be allotted 110 marks, and Part B will be allocated 90 marks)

Check: Logical Reasoning Questions for NATA

  • In JEE Main B.Arch examination, students have to solve 77 questions in 3 hours, while in the NATA examination 2024, students have to solve 53 multiple choice questions in 3 hours.
  • The marking scheme of JEE Main 2 B.Arch states a negative marking of 1 mark for each wrong answer, whereas, in NATA, there is no negative marking.
  • To get admission to various NITs and IITs institutes, you must appear for the JEE Main Paper 2 Examination.
  • To get admission to the School of Planning and Architecture (SPA), you must give the National Aptitude Test in Architecture (NATA).
  • The National Institute of Technologies (NITs) and the Indian Institute of Technologies (IITs) accept JEE Main scores, while around 500 colleges across India accept the NATA score.
  • The JEE Main application fee for general category students is Rs. 650/- and Rs 325/- is for SC/ST/PwD category students, whereas the NATA application fee for general category students is Rs. 2000/- for one test and other category students have to pay Rs.1500/- for one test. If you want to give two tests, you have to pay Rs.4000/- and Rs. 3000/- respectively.

JEE Main B.Arch vs NATA Nature of Exams 2024

Both exams are highly prestigious and hold equal significance. However, there are major differences that the two exams hold, and exam pattern is one of them.

The table below shows the JEE Main and NATA exam patterns: 

CreativeEdge TGLF

CreativeEdge TGLF

JEE Mains Exam Pattern 2024

Check the table below for a detailed JEE Mains Paper 2 Exam Pattern.

Specifications JEE Main 2024 Exam Pattern for Paper 2 (B.Arch.)
Exam Mode Mathematics and Aptitude - CBT Mode; Drawing - Pen and paper mode
Subjects Aptitude Tests, Mathematics, Drawing
Type of Questions Maths - 20 (MCQs) + 5 (Questions for which answer is a Numerical Value) + Aptitude- 50 MCQ + Drawing - 2 Questions
Medium of Exam English and Hindi (All Centre Cities) English, Hindi, and Gujarati (Centre Cities in Gujarat, Daman & Diu, and Dadra & Nagar Haveli)
Duration of Exam 3 hours
Total Marks 400 Marks
Marking Scheme

For MCQs: +4 for each correct response; -1 for each incorrect response; Unattempted questions will not be marked.

For Non-MCQs: +4 for each correct response, no negative marking for incorrect answers or unattempted questions.

For the Drawing Test: 2 questions of 100 marks

Check: NATA Preparation Strategy.

Creativedge Results

Creativedge Results

NATA Exam Pattern 2024

The following table explains the detailed NATA Exam Pattern, such as exam mode, number of questions, type of questions, and more.

Particulars Details
Mode of Examination Online
Medium of Examination English
Duration of the Exam 3 hours
Number of Sections The exam will have only one part- The aptitude Test
Number of Questions 125 Questions
Type of questions Multiple-Choice type (MCQ), Multiple Select types (MSQ), Preferential Choice type (PCQ), and Numerical Answer type (NAQ)
Total Marks 200 Marks
Marking Scheme The questions will carry either 1 mark, 2 marks, or 3 marks

JEE Main Paper 2 Mock Test

JEE Main Paper 2 Mock Test

Difficulty Level of JEE Main B.ARCH 2024 vs NATA 2024 Exm 

The level of difficulty of JEE Main examination is moderate to high, but the NATA examination level is easy to moderate.

Here below are some of the points mentioned on the difficulty level of both examinations: -

JEE Mains – Difficulty Level 

  • The JEE Main examination is considered to be easier than JEE Advanced examination as it only examines the candidates based on classes 11th and 12th.
  • The number of students appearing for the exam is very high.

Check: JEE Main Paper 2 Drawing Questions with Answers

NATA - Difficulty Level

Check: JEE Main Preparation Strategy


Both NATA and JEE Main B.Arch exams are equally important for aspiring architecture students. However, the choice of either of the two exams depends on the student's score and preferences.

NATA assesses the aptitude of the student in the field of architecture, while JEE Main B.Arch exam assesses the student's knowledge in the subject of Mathematics, Physics, and Chemistry.

Both exams are tough and require rigorous preparation to crack them. It is also important to note that some colleges accept scores of both exams for admission.

Therefore, it is essential to keep track of the updates of both exams before appearing for them.

Check: NATA Maths Syllabus and Sample Questions 2024

Frequently Asked Questions

Is JEE Main better than NATA?

Which is the best college for the B.Arch course?

Can I join Architecture without NATA and JEE main B.Arch?

Is NATA exam easier than JEE Main B.Arch?

Is architecture a good career?


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