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Design Aptitude Test (DAT): Overview, Question Pattern, Preparation

Author : Palak Khanna

August 10, 2022

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Design Aptitude Test (DAT): Overview, Question Pattern, Preparation

The National Institute of Design (NID) administers the NID Design Aptitude Test (NID DAT) to students seeking admission to B.Des and M.Des programs at NID campuses and other result-sharing institutes. One of the most important sections of a Design entrance exam is the Design Aptitude Test (DAT). The test includes a variety of drawing, sketching, and model-making questions that assess candidates' design and creative abilities.

The DAT section of Design entrance exams may go by different names, such as CAT in NIFT Entrance Exam and NID DAT Mains in NID Entrance Exam. The goal of the questions, however, is the same: to assess candidates' design abilities.

Preparing for the Design Aptitude Test is not something that can be learned overnight. To crack the section, you must practice consistently for at least six months and think outside the box. Let us examine all of the nuances of the Design Aptitude Test, including what eligibility criteria are required, the types of questions asked, the syllabus, exam pattern, preparation tips, design aptitude test questions with answers, and much more.

Download Free Practice Question Papers for NID Exam by CreativeEdge

NID DAT Eligibility Criteria

Candidates must meet the age limit, educational qualifications, and qualifying exam accepted by NID in order to be eligible for the NID DAT. Candidates who meet the eligibility requirements should only apply for the entrance exam. The NID eligibility criteria are explained in the table below.

  • B.Des - Candidates must have completed Class 12 in any subject (Science, Humanities, or Commerce) from a recognized board such as CBSE, IB, ICSE, or their equivalent. Candidates who will take their Class 12 exams in 2022 are also eligible to apply.
  • M.Des - Candidates must have a bachelor's degree from a recognized college or university. Candidates must be no older than 30 years.

NID DAT Important Topics

In the table below, aspirants can review the topics they should study for the NID DAT:

Design Outline for Beginners

Colour Terminology

Inspiration & Design Development

Mood, Theme & Colour Inter-relationship

Design Theory

Elements & Principles Of Design

Natural & Geometrical Form

Innovation in Design

Principles of Composition

Lettering

Optical Illusion

Understanding Light & Shade

Colour Psychology & Optical Illusions

Form & Function

Colour, Pattern & Texture

Theme Development

Creative Thinking & Writing

Picture Analysis

Visual Logic

Good Design vs Bad Design

Drawing Fundamentals

Use of Measurements, Scale & proportions

Optical Illusion

Foreshortening & Perspective

Developing Themes & Colour Associations

Inspiration & Creativity

Ornaments & Motifs

Memory Drawing

Usage of Colour in Compositions

Expression & Emotion

Exercises on Imagination

Lateral Thinking

Story Pictures

Presentation Techniques

Imagination & Doodling

3D Visualisation

Graphics & Pictograms

Innovation & Creation

Design Awareness

Developing Observation

NID mock test

NID DAT Types of Questions

A Design Aptitude Test typically includes two types of questions, as explained below:

  • Drawing/Sketching Test

You must draw or sketch on the provided paper in accordance with the details in the question. Following that, you may be required to explain the drawing/sketching in writing. As an example:

  1. Design and color a T-shirt print based on the theme "Music is the Soul of Life."
  1. Imagine and draw a real-life situation that represents "All that glitters is not gold" in a meaningful way. In 5 lines, draw and explain your interpretation in the space provided. There will be no use of color.
  • Situation Test

Design Aptitude Test includes the Situation Test which is a practical exam that assesses your ability to use given material creatively and innovatively. In most Design Situation Tests, you will be given materials such as ivory sheets, colored papers, thermocol, clay, and cardboard. Following that, you must create a 3D model based on the specifications provided in the question. As an example:

  1. Create a headgear based on a mythological character.
  2. Create a fashion designer's diary.
  3. Create a puzzle-inspired play area for children.

Once completed, you must write about your model, explaining how you were inspired to create it, how you used the provided materials, and so on.

Preparation Tips for NID DAT

There is no easy way to ace the Design Aptitude Test because there are no right or wrong answers. However, you must develop as an artist and be passionate about your work. Aside from that, consistent practice is essential for honing your exam skills.

You must continue to observe what is going on around you and try to remember it by gathering more information and putting it into practice. Some pointers to remember when preparing for the DAT section of the Design entrance exams are as follows:

  • Take inspiration from everything around you, such as leaves, tables, chairs, and cars.
  • Try to think outside the box and create a sketch that depicts the mood, look, and feel of the given item.
  • Take a common object and list a variety of other uses for it every day. It will help you see things differently and be more creative.
  • Concentrate on honing your technical skills in a 3D sense, proportion, detailing, perspective, space design, and so on.
  • Learn about paper folding and origami. This may assist you in producing a wider range of items.
  • As many previous year DAT and situation test questions as you can.
  • When drawing, sketching, or creating a model, try to time yourself and finish it within a certain amount of time.

NID mock test

NID DAT Questions with Answers

The following are some of the most important NID exam creative ability questions. To improve your creative abilities, try to answer these questions regularly.

Q1.(a) Add a visual to the empty square to complete the following story using a pencil Line Drawing.

 (b) Write out the story you portrayed through the image in not more than 150 words

Q2. Observe the objects and re-draw them according to the instruction below.

(a)Redraw the car with a human figure.

Q3. Study the image carefully. Draw a photo frame in the visual to create a story which is expressing the feeling of either happiness or anger

Q4. Identify the below-mentioned logos:

Q5. Which of the below mentioned is not a member of SAARC: 

  • Pakistan
  • Afghanistan
  • Iran
  • Maldives

Q6. Which of the following would lead to a lowering your carbon footprint?

  • Purchase of NIKE T-shirt
  • Frequent use of cars
  • Purchase of locally grown vegetables
  • Purchase of refrigerated vegetable

Q7. Draw any three objects that cause global warming.

Q8. In the space given below, a part of the scene is already drawn for you. Complete the scene by drawing two adult human figures in relevant postures and correct proportions, using only a single line.

Q9. Observe the given object and re-draw them according to the instructions mentioned. Re-draw the bike with a human figure.

Q10. Find out the odd one from the figures given below:

Q11. a) Study the image carefully. Draw an umbrella in the visual to create a story which is expressing the feeling of either anger or humor.

  1. b) Mention the title of the story. Communicate your story in 5 sentences.

NID Online Coaching

NID Online Coaching

NID DAT 2022 Highlights

Full Exam Name

NID Design Aptitude Test

Short Exam Name

NID DAT

Conducting Body

National Institute of Design

Frequency of Conduct

Once a year

Exam Level

National Level Exam

Languages

English

Mode of Application

Offline / Online

Application Fee (General)

3000 Rs [Offline] +1 More

Mode of Exam

Offline

Mode of Counselling

Offline

Participating Colleges

12

Exam Duration

3 Hours

Number of Seats

225 Seats

Frequently Asked Questions

The NID DAT Entrance Syllabus for prelims include topics like Drawing fundamentals, Innovation in design, Theme development, Exercises on imagination, Graphics & pictograms, Principles of composition, Design theory, etc. The syllabus for NID DAT Mains involve topics such as Model making, Material manipulation, Audio-visual exercises, Importance of body language, Doodling, Creative thinking and the likes.
No, the topics from the NID DAT Syllabus vary for B.Des and M.Des. You are advised to check your respective course syllabus and enhance your preparation. 
You must require at least 6 months to one year to prepare for the NID entrance exam.
Design drawing by Francis D.K.Ching is one of the best books for NID entrance exam preparation.
Yes. You can crack the NID exam in 3 months. However, you need a lot of practice and hard work to crack this exam on the first attempt.

The minimum qualification for B.Des is 10+2, and for M.Des is 10+2+4.

Self-study and online coaching are the two best approaches to read for NID exams.

To make the best use of NID Books, you are required to read the same books again and again instead of reading different books on the same subjects with multiple revision sessions before the exam.


You must select a book that covers both topics and sub-topics under the NID syllabus and is easy to read. Students should also review the year of publication of the book when checking the best NID books, as learning from the new edition would help them learn about the revised syllabus and exam pattern.


The following factors are considered to determine the NID Cut Off: The number of students who appeared for the exam, The difficulty level of the paper, the Category, the Previous year's cut-off, and the Number of available seats.

The minimum qualifying criteria for NID admissions 2023 have not been announced yet. However, last year, the minimum qualifying marks that you need to score for NID admissions in the BDes course was 65 for the Open category.  

The National Institute of Design, NID is considered to be one of the most accomplished institutes in the field of design-related education and research.

There is no limit on number of attempts until and unless you fulfill the eligibility criteria. 
  • Home
  • Design Aptitude Test...

Design Aptitude Test (DAT): Overview, Question Pattern, Preparation

Author : Palak Khanna

Updated On : August 10, 2022

SHARE

Design Aptitude Test (DAT): Overview, Question Pattern, Preparation

The National Institute of Design (NID) administers the NID Design Aptitude Test (NID DAT) to students seeking admission to B.Des and M.Des programs at NID campuses and other result-sharing institutes. One of the most important sections of a Design entrance exam is the Design Aptitude Test (DAT). The test includes a variety of drawing, sketching, and model-making questions that assess candidates' design and creative abilities.

The DAT section of Design entrance exams may go by different names, such as CAT in NIFT Entrance Exam and NID DAT Mains in NID Entrance Exam. The goal of the questions, however, is the same: to assess candidates' design abilities.

Preparing for the Design Aptitude Test is not something that can be learned overnight. To crack the section, you must practice consistently for at least six months and think outside the box. Let us examine all of the nuances of the Design Aptitude Test, including what eligibility criteria are required, the types of questions asked, the syllabus, exam pattern, preparation tips, design aptitude test questions with answers, and much more.

Download Free Practice Question Papers for NID Exam by CreativeEdge

NID DAT Eligibility Criteria

Candidates must meet the age limit, educational qualifications, and qualifying exam accepted by NID in order to be eligible for the NID DAT. Candidates who meet the eligibility requirements should only apply for the entrance exam. The NID eligibility criteria are explained in the table below.

  • B.Des - Candidates must have completed Class 12 in any subject (Science, Humanities, or Commerce) from a recognized board such as CBSE, IB, ICSE, or their equivalent. Candidates who will take their Class 12 exams in 2022 are also eligible to apply.
  • M.Des - Candidates must have a bachelor's degree from a recognized college or university. Candidates must be no older than 30 years.

NID DAT Important Topics

In the table below, aspirants can review the topics they should study for the NID DAT:

Design Outline for Beginners

Colour Terminology

Inspiration & Design Development

Mood, Theme & Colour Inter-relationship

Design Theory

Elements & Principles Of Design

Natural & Geometrical Form

Innovation in Design

Principles of Composition

Lettering

Optical Illusion

Understanding Light & Shade

Colour Psychology & Optical Illusions

Form & Function

Colour, Pattern & Texture

Theme Development

Creative Thinking & Writing

Picture Analysis

Visual Logic

Good Design vs Bad Design

Drawing Fundamentals

Use of Measurements, Scale & proportions

Optical Illusion

Foreshortening & Perspective

Developing Themes & Colour Associations

Inspiration & Creativity

Ornaments & Motifs

Memory Drawing

Usage of Colour in Compositions

Expression & Emotion

Exercises on Imagination

Lateral Thinking

Story Pictures

Presentation Techniques

Imagination & Doodling

3D Visualisation

Graphics & Pictograms

Innovation & Creation

Design Awareness

Developing Observation

NID mock test

NID DAT Types of Questions

A Design Aptitude Test typically includes two types of questions, as explained below:

  • Drawing/Sketching Test

You must draw or sketch on the provided paper in accordance with the details in the question. Following that, you may be required to explain the drawing/sketching in writing. As an example:

  1. Design and color a T-shirt print based on the theme "Music is the Soul of Life."
  1. Imagine and draw a real-life situation that represents "All that glitters is not gold" in a meaningful way. In 5 lines, draw and explain your interpretation in the space provided. There will be no use of color.
  • Situation Test

Design Aptitude Test includes the Situation Test which is a practical exam that assesses your ability to use given material creatively and innovatively. In most Design Situation Tests, you will be given materials such as ivory sheets, colored papers, thermocol, clay, and cardboard. Following that, you must create a 3D model based on the specifications provided in the question. As an example:

  1. Create a headgear based on a mythological character.
  2. Create a fashion designer's diary.
  3. Create a puzzle-inspired play area for children.

Once completed, you must write about your model, explaining how you were inspired to create it, how you used the provided materials, and so on.

Preparation Tips for NID DAT

There is no easy way to ace the Design Aptitude Test because there are no right or wrong answers. However, you must develop as an artist and be passionate about your work. Aside from that, consistent practice is essential for honing your exam skills.

You must continue to observe what is going on around you and try to remember it by gathering more information and putting it into practice. Some pointers to remember when preparing for the DAT section of the Design entrance exams are as follows:

  • Take inspiration from everything around you, such as leaves, tables, chairs, and cars.
  • Try to think outside the box and create a sketch that depicts the mood, look, and feel of the given item.
  • Take a common object and list a variety of other uses for it every day. It will help you see things differently and be more creative.
  • Concentrate on honing your technical skills in a 3D sense, proportion, detailing, perspective, space design, and so on.
  • Learn about paper folding and origami. This may assist you in producing a wider range of items.
  • As many previous year DAT and situation test questions as you can.
  • When drawing, sketching, or creating a model, try to time yourself and finish it within a certain amount of time.

NID mock test

NID DAT Questions with Answers

The following are some of the most important NID exam creative ability questions. To improve your creative abilities, try to answer these questions regularly.

Q1.(a) Add a visual to the empty square to complete the following story using a pencil Line Drawing.

 (b) Write out the story you portrayed through the image in not more than 150 words

Q2. Observe the objects and re-draw them according to the instruction below.

(a)Redraw the car with a human figure.

Q3. Study the image carefully. Draw a photo frame in the visual to create a story which is expressing the feeling of either happiness or anger

Q4. Identify the below-mentioned logos:

Q5. Which of the below mentioned is not a member of SAARC: 

  • Pakistan
  • Afghanistan
  • Iran
  • Maldives

Q6. Which of the following would lead to a lowering your carbon footprint?

  • Purchase of NIKE T-shirt
  • Frequent use of cars
  • Purchase of locally grown vegetables
  • Purchase of refrigerated vegetable

Q7. Draw any three objects that cause global warming.

Q8. In the space given below, a part of the scene is already drawn for you. Complete the scene by drawing two adult human figures in relevant postures and correct proportions, using only a single line.

Q9. Observe the given object and re-draw them according to the instructions mentioned. Re-draw the bike with a human figure.

Q10. Find out the odd one from the figures given below:

Q11. a) Study the image carefully. Draw an umbrella in the visual to create a story which is expressing the feeling of either anger or humor.

  1. b) Mention the title of the story. Communicate your story in 5 sentences.

NID Online Coaching

NID Online Coaching

NID DAT 2022 Highlights

Full Exam Name

NID Design Aptitude Test

Short Exam Name

NID DAT

Conducting Body

National Institute of Design

Frequency of Conduct

Once a year

Exam Level

National Level Exam

Languages

English

Mode of Application

Offline / Online

Application Fee (General)

3000 Rs [Offline] +1 More

Mode of Exam

Offline

Mode of Counselling

Offline

Participating Colleges

12

Exam Duration

3 Hours

Number of Seats

225 Seats

Frequently Asked Questions

The NID DAT Entrance Syllabus for prelims include topics like Drawing fundamentals, Innovation in design, Theme development, Exercises on imagination, Graphics & pictograms, Principles of composition, Design theory, etc. The syllabus for NID DAT Mains involve topics such as Model making, Material manipulation, Audio-visual exercises, Importance of body language, Doodling, Creative thinking and the likes.
No, the topics from the NID DAT Syllabus vary for B.Des and M.Des. You are advised to check your respective course syllabus and enhance your preparation. 
You must require at least 6 months to one year to prepare for the NID entrance exam.
Design drawing by Francis D.K.Ching is one of the best books for NID entrance exam preparation.
Yes. You can crack the NID exam in 3 months. However, you need a lot of practice and hard work to crack this exam on the first attempt.

The minimum qualification for B.Des is 10+2, and for M.Des is 10+2+4.

Self-study and online coaching are the two best approaches to read for NID exams.

To make the best use of NID Books, you are required to read the same books again and again instead of reading different books on the same subjects with multiple revision sessions before the exam.


You must select a book that covers both topics and sub-topics under the NID syllabus and is easy to read. Students should also review the year of publication of the book when checking the best NID books, as learning from the new edition would help them learn about the revised syllabus and exam pattern.


The following factors are considered to determine the NID Cut Off: The number of students who appeared for the exam, The difficulty level of the paper, the Category, the Previous year's cut-off, and the Number of available seats.

The minimum qualifying criteria for NID admissions 2023 have not been announced yet. However, last year, the minimum qualifying marks that you need to score for NID admissions in the BDes course was 65 for the Open category.  

The National Institute of Design, NID is considered to be one of the most accomplished institutes in the field of design-related education and research.

There is no limit on number of attempts until and unless you fulfill the eligibility criteria. 

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