NISM Certification Exams: Frequently Asked Questions

1. Who can take NISM Certification Examinations?
NISM conducts certification examination for various Securities Market Participants and Intermediaries as mandated by Securities and Exchange Board of India (SEBI). However, anyone who is keen on learning about the Indian Securites Markets may also take the exam. There is no eligibility requirement with regards to age as well as educational qualification to take the NISM exam.

2. How to register for the NISM Certification Examinations?
To register for any of the NISM exams, one needs to fill in the prescribed Online Registration Form available on the NISM Online Certification System.

3. How to enroll for the NISM Certification Examinations?
After completing the registration process, one needs to choose the exam which one wishes to take, the Testing Centre, Exam date and time slot of their choice on the NISM Online Certification System and fill in the enrolment form. Once the enrolment form is filled and submitted, the candidate is enrolled for that specific exam.

4. What is the validity period of the Candidate’s enrolment?
Validity period of Candidate's enrolment for an examination shall be 180 days from the time of enrolment.

5. Can a candidate choose to reschedule the chosen exam date and time?
Yes, if you wish to modify the exam slot, NISM Online Certification System would allow for one modification request, if made at least 15 days prior to the exam date.

6. Where and when to take the test?
When a candidate enrolls for an Examination, the candidate has to choose the exam, the exam date, the exam time and the test centres. If registered and enrolled through NISM, one can take the exam at NISM, BSE and MCX-SX test centres.

7. How to prepare for the test?
Once a candidate enrols for a particular exam and pays the fee, the candidate would be able to download the soft copy of study material developed to assist the candidates in preparing for the NISM certification examination by logging into NISM Certification Portal. . While NISM certification examination is largely based on the study material provided, NISM does not guarantee that all questions in the examination will be from the study material. Candidates are advised to check the latest circulars and changes in the regulations,if any, that have been covered in any examinations.

8. How to take the Examination?
When the candidate arrives at the designated testing centre to take the exam, the Invigilator will verify his/ her identity by checking the Identity card, which can be either the candidates PAN card, Driving License, Passport, College ID card, Employee ID card, UID etc. On being satisfied after verifying the documents, the Invigilator lets the candidate take the exam.
The exams are online, where for each question, alternative answers are provided. The candidate needs to click on the alternative which he presumes to be correct. For Example,

Q. NISM is the acronym for
  1. National Institute of Stock Market
  2. National Institute of Securities Market
  3. Nations Institute of Securities Market

If the candidate thinks that alternative 'b' is the correct answer to this question, then click the mouse in the radio button provided against the alternative ‘b’ in order to highlight it. You can edit your answer by clicking on any other alternative.
Practice exams are also available on the NISM website to help candidates get accustomed to the pattern of the question paper.

9. How are results declared for the tests?
Only the candidates who have produced their Income Tax Permanent Account Number (PAN Card) during registration would receive the Passing Email Certificate for NISM Certification exam within two weeks of appearing for the examination at their registered email address. Candidates who produced other identification proofs will not receive the certificate. They would receive only the Scorecard at the end of the examination.

10. I have not provided my PAN information at the time of taking the certification examination. How do I obtain the certificate now?
Candidates who have not provided their PAN information during registration may furnish their PAN details to NISM, if enrolled through NISM Online Certification System.
After receiving and verifying PAN details, the candidate will receive the certificate from NISM, if enrolled through NISM Online Certification System. No additional payments are required for obtaining the certificate.

11. What is the fee structure for the NISM exams?
The all inclusive fees for all mandatory NISM Certification Examination is Rupees One Thousand Five Hundred Only (Rs. 1500/-) except NISM-Series-V-B: Mutual Fund Foundation Certification Examination i.e. Rs. One Thousand Two Hundred Only (Rs. 1200/- ). However, for all non mandatory NISM Certification Examinations the all inclusive fees is Rupees One Thousand Seven Hundred and Twenty Five Only (Rs.1725/-).

12. What is the assessment structure of the NISM exams?
The examination has to be completed in 2 hours. There shall be negative marking of 25% for each wrong answer of the marks assigned to a question. However for NISM-Series-V-A: Mutual Fund Distributors Certification Examination, NISM-Series-V-B: Mutual Fund Foundation Certification Examination and NISM Series XII: Securities Markets Foundation Certification Examination there is no negative marking. The passing score for the examination varies from the different examinations NISM conducts.Fee Structure & Validity

13. What is the Validity period of the Certificate?
The validity of the certificate which the candidate on successful completion of the NISM exam is 3 years.

14. How can I receive the study material for NISM Certification Examinations?
You will receive a soft copy of the workbook/study material free of cost after enrolment for the examination. Candidate can buy NISM workbooks online through Taxmann Publications Private Ltd. Visit: www.taxmann.com to place your orders for NISM workbooks. If you prefer to order by phone , please call your nearest store directly to place your order.

15. Do I have to pay for the study material?
You will receive a soft copy of the workbook/study material free of cost after enrolment for the examination. In case if you want to purchase a hardcopy of the workbook, you may contact Taxmann at Web Address: www.taxmann.com

16. What is the procedure to revalidate the certificate after 3 years when the certificate expires?
The certificate shall be revalidated for a period of three years when the candidate completes a programme of Continuing Professional Education (CPE) as specified by NISM.

17. What are NISM Remote Proctored Exam?
NISM remote proctored exam can be attempted by candidates from their own location such as home or office (instead of visiting a physical test center). To undertake Remote proctored exams candidates need to have a Windows OS based laptop/ Desktop with stable internet connectivity, Webcam and a Microphone. For more details visit the system requirement section. It may be noted that the facility of remote proctored exams is been offered in the response to the Covid-19 Pandemic and safety of candidate. NISM may stop offering this facility when deemed fit without any prior notice.

18. How is NISM remote proctored exam different from other modes of tests and what are the benefits for me as a candidate?
A remote proctored exam is a secure online test that can be taken from any convenient location, like home or office at a preferred slot from the given options. There is no need for you to travel to a specific test center to give the test. However, to ensure fair delivery of the test, every candidate is monitored live through the computer system webcam and microphone; and the same is recorded in the form of snapshots and videos which form part of the candidate’s record, to be reviewed after the test.

19. Is it mandatory for me to have an internet connection?
Yes, it is mandatory for you to have stable internet connection with your computer system. The minimum bandwidth required is 512 kbps.

20. Is it mandatory to have a computer system? Can I take the test through a mobile phone or tablet, etc.?
Yes, it is mandatory to have a computer system, either a laptop or desktop, with working webcam and microphone to take the NISM remote proctored exam. It would not be possible for you to take this test through gadgets such as mobile phone, tablet, etc.

21. What are the specifications for the device I need to have to take NISM remote proctored exam?
You must have a computer system (laptop or desktop) with stable internet connection, working webcam and microphone to take this test. Since secure browser will be used, the OS must be Windows (Version 7 or above).

22. How should I prepare the setup for NISM remote proctored exam?
You should do some advance checks to be better prepared for the test:
  • Ensure that your desk is clean and free from any books/gadgets/writing material/any other stuff.
  • Ensure that the light source is above you and not behind you so that your face is clearly visible through the webcam.
  • Ensure that your background is plain without any objects / designs.
  • View the video tutorial to understand the process better.
  • Download and Install MSB (a secure browser).
  • Ensure to have specified internet connectivity and enough power supply / backup to have an uninterrupted experie.
  • Keep your specified identity proof ready with you to start the exam.

23. How should I set up my test seat/ workplace?
You must ensure to sit in a quiet place in a well-lit room, with proper lighting on your face. The light source should be above you and under no circumstances should the light source be behind you.

24. Will there be a dress code for the test?
Even though it’s an online test that you are giving from home or a place of your choice, you must be dressed up properly for an official setting and must maintain the decorum of the test at all times. It is enough to wear simple formal/semi-formal clothes. There is no need to dress up in suit-tie, etc.

25. Is it mandatory for me to keep an original valid photo ID proof to give the NISM remote proctored exam?
Yes, it is mandatory for you to keep one of the original photo ID proof document, namely, PAN Card, Aadhar Card, Driving License, Passport ready with you beforehand when you take your seat for the test. You will need to submit a live image of the document to get authorized to start the test.

26. At my location, there might be people talking to me or around me, what would I be expected to do in such case?
The NISM remote proctored exam must be treated with utmost seriousness and decorum as any high-stake test. You must consider your location the same as a test hall and maintain the decorum of a test throughout the duration. There should be no one talking to the candidate and the surrounding should not be noisy. The web camera must be adjusted in such a way that your face is visible to the proctor throughout the test. Any suspicious behaviour will lead to termination of test.

27. Will I be allowed to use my mobile phone during the test?
No. The NISM remote proctored exam is to be taken as seriously as any other high-stake test, where you are expected to only concentrate on the test and not use any mobile device/ headphone/earphone/ ear pod/smart watch/ Bluetooth device, etc.

28. Will I be allowed to use a calculator during the test?
No, you will not be allowed to use any separate calculator or similar devices during the test. You will be provided with onscreen scientific calculator during the exam. In case of any violation, your exam may be terminated with or without any prior warning.

29. Will I be allowed to use rough sheets for calculations?
No, you will not be allowed to use any rough sheets. In case of any violation, your exam may be terminated with or without any prior warning.

30. Will I be allowed a bio-break (toilet break) during the test?
No bio-breaks would be allowed once an examination has started. In case of any breaks, your exam may be terminated with or without any prior warning by the proctor.

31. How do I start the test,if I am getting the following error - “Video Streaming Error”?
It seems that some restrictions are enabled on the network or on system level which is being used. Kindly follow the steps given below to resolve the issue:
  • Disable the firewall/antivirus (if any) on your computer.
  • Make sure that you are using a network where website restrictions may not be enabled.
If the issue persists, kindly connect your system to a different internet connection.

32. I have been waiting for getting authorized for the test, but not getting through and getting message “We are currently processing your authorization submission” or “You are in the queue. Please wait while your details are being authorized”. How long will it take?
The said messages are displayed when your details are being viewed and validated by the authorizer, hence kindly wait in the queue.

Note: Your test timing is not impacted because of this as the timer starts only when you see the first question of the test.

33. What should I do if I get disconnected while attempting the test due to power failure or internet disconnect?
The test runs on auto save mode. You can resume the test following the same steps as did initially and from the same question number where you got disconnected. However, please note such disconnects would be monitored and any suspicious activity shall be reported for further action.

34. I am unable to start the test, getting the message 'This Test has been deactivated'. What should I do?
This message is displayed when the time window for participation in the test has been closed. That is, you are late for the test. Hence, to avoid this you must ensure to login on time to take the test as per booked slot.

35. I am unable to start the test, getting the message “Connection with Chat Server Failed”. What should I do?
This message is displayed when there is restriction enabled on the Network / System being used.
If you are not using an office system.
  • Kindly disable the antivirus & firewall (If any).
  • You can also try to switch to different internet connection.
  • Try changing the system if the issue persists.
  • View the video tutorial to understand the process better.
  • Download and Install MSB (a secure browser).
  • Ensure to have specified internet connectivity and enough power supply / backup to have an uninterrupted experie.
  • Keep your specified identity proof ready with you to start the exam.

If you are using an Office system / Office Network.

  • Kindly connect with the IT team at your organization.

MSB is a security feature to prevent unfair practices during the test and it will be mandatory for all candidates to download and install it on the system that shall be used for the test. Please note to have Windows OS only (Version 7 or above).

36. How to download MSB – the secure browser?
When you click the “Start Test” button on the test invitation email, a new window will open with two options “DOWNLOAD MSB” and “PROCEED to TEST”. On clicking the first option it will ask you to save the MSB file and on clicking the save button, the MSB will start downloading.

37. I have installed the MSB, how to proceed from there?
Once the MSB is downloaded and installed it will open a new window with two options “DOWNLOAD MSB” and “PROCEED to TEST”. Click on “Proceed to Test” and on proceeding further, the MSB will ask to terminate the prohibited process.

Kindly read the complete message as it will mention the application names as well.

Without clicking on OK or Cancel, press to open Task Manager. Once the Task Manager is open, terminate all the mentioned applications.

Once done close the Task Manager and click on OK, MSB will open. Then follow the Onscreen instructions.

38. I am unable to start the test as I am getting the message “We have detected multiple screen”. How to proceed from here?
The said message is displayed when multiple screens are connected with the system or when the screen is duplicated or extended to the external screen in which you are attempting the test. Resolution Steps
  • If any external screen or any video cables like VGA/DVI/HDMI etc. are connected to the system, then remove the same.
  • Press and Hold Windows Key and Press “P” and select the ‘PC Screen Only’ option.
  • Any application like Skype, TeamViewer etc. which uses screen sharing feature must be terminated.

39. I have Webcam and Microphone and allowed it, but it is not allowing me to proceed. What should I do?
Kindly follow the below mentioned steps to resolve the issue.

Note: There is no way to give permission for Web Camera and Microphone within MSB.
The Issue might come because of
  1. Web Camera or Microphone is not in working condition.
  2. Appropriate resolution from the Web Camera is not available.
  3. Hardware issue.
  4. Any Third-party app is using Web Camera or Microphone.
In order to check the Web Camera and Microphone functionality for MSB the below mentioned steps are to be followed only.
  1. Close all applications which might be using Web Camera and Microphone.
  2. Open the OS C: drive of the Windows.
  3. Open Program Files(X86) folder, if not available then open Program Files.
  4. Open the Mettl Folder.
  5. Open MSB Folder in the Mettl Folder.
  6. In MSB Folder, Open the SebWindowsBrowser folder.
  7. Open the xulrunner folder in the SebWindowsBrowser folder.
  8. Open Firefox from the xulrunner folder.
  9. Once the Firefox is Open, in the address bar type test.webrtc.org.
  10. It will ask to give permission for Web Camera and Microphone.
  11. If the Web Camera and Microphone are in working condition, then there will be a green tick mark against Microphone and Webcam as shown in the Image below.

  12. WebRTCImageTroubleShooter

  13. If not working, then a red cross mark will display as shown in the Image below

  14. WebRTCImageTroubleShooter


40. What are the basic criteria for installing the MSB?
In order to get MSB installed, there are certain criteria to be ensured.
  1. Only Windows Platform is supported and that too Windows 7 and above.
  2. No restrictions should be implied over the used network and the system which is to be used to participate in the test.
  3. Anti-Virus/firewall (if any) is to be disabled before installing the MSB and should be kept disabled during the test.
  4. You should have administrative rights on the system.
  5. You should not be logged in as a Guest User.
  6. Windows should be up to date with no pending updates to be installed.
  7. Will support minimum 4.5.1. .Net framework (which comes inbuilt in the MSB.exe file).
  8. 65 MB permanent free space on the default hard drive.


41. Once I am finished with answering the test questions, how do I ‘Submit’ the test?
You need to click on “Finish Test” button located at the top right corner of the test window. On the next window, you need to click on “Yes, Finish test” to complete the test. This button can only be clicked once during the entire course of the test. Once, the test is completed you will not be able to attempt any more questions or proceed further.