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NISM Online Exams – Should you opt for it?

NISM Online Exams

NISM began conducting NISM Certification Examinations in Online mode sometime in 2020 due to the outbreak of Covid-19 pandemic. Towards the end of the first government imposed lock-down, NISM Online Exams were launched and candidates were able to take exams right from their home or office by choosing the NISM Exam from Anywhere option.

NISM Online Exams Launch

Various popular NISM Exams such as Mutual Fund Distributors, Equity Derivatives, Research Analyst, Depository Operations, Investment Advisors, etc. were launched in online mode, where candidates could take exams from their home, office or any other location. Slowly and steadily, more and more exams were launched in online mode.

Free NISM Mutual Fund Exam Training & ARN

– Free Training for NISM Series VA Mutual Fund Distributor Exam
– No NISM Exam Fee (₹1500 waived off)
– Free ARN (₹1700 waived off)

Certificate not guaranteed?

It is been an year since NISM launched the NISM Online Exams and there is still a huge confusion among candidates whether they should opt for these online exam or visit a nearby Test Centre to take a test.

Manan Vohra, a derivatives dealer from Mumbai, said, “I passed the NISM Online Exam as I was required to clear it every three years. However, I was shocked to see that after a few days, my NISM Certificate was rejected. This never happened earlier where most of our office colleagues received NISM Certificate within 3 days of passing exam at Test Centre. I don’t know what to do now.”

Another distributor from Gurgaon said, “I was told that I was cheating during the online exam, hence, my certificate is put on hold by NISM. I never received any warnings nor was I alerted anytime during the exam. And now, all of a sudden, my certificate is not received. This doesn’t sound fair.”

Many NISM candidates have also complained that their exams were terminated by the online proctors. While some candidates whom PrepCafe Academy interviewed, were not following the NISM Exam Rules and Regulations properly, few said that they was not aware of any such rules.

NISM Online Exam - Mettl Secure Browser

Are you following the NISM Exam Rules?

Hemali Verma, a candidate whose NISM Series VA Mutual Fund Distributors online exam was terminated by the proctor said, “it is not possible to sit upright facing the laptop throughout the entire 2 hours of exam. I was at my home, sitting on the floor for the exam. The proctor asked me for a 360 degree view of my exam room and I showed it to him. My kid, who was playing in another room, visited me once but I asked him to leave since I was in the middle of the exam. But the proctor terminated my exam.”

Similar behaviour was noticed by Aman while attempting the NISM Equity Derivatives Exam in Exam from Anywhere mode from his office. “I was sitting in my boss’ cabin for the exam. Some of our office employees entered the room and my exam got terminated. My money was wasted.”

Is taking NISM Online Exam so difficult? Not so!

Although the NISM online exam experience has not been very pleasant for many candidates, few candidates gave a thumbs up to the NISM’s online exam. “I passed the exam without any issues. I used my personal laptop. They asked me for webcam and microphone permission and I had to download the Secure browser. Once the setup was completed, it took 5 minutes to verify my details and my exam started. I can’t believe that I could finish this exam in such a short time. I want to really thank NISM for taking this initiative”, said Rupa, who is a young market aspirant.

Few candidates took to twitter to express their frustration. Vijaya tweeted, “No help is being given to my brother to complete his certification exams. Tried calling multiple times and sent multiple mails to NISM support. Link of exam wasn’t sent to my brother besides the examination fees submission. Please help.”

Another person named Ganesh Sangvi tweeted, @NSEIndia I enrolled for NISM certification but due to technical issue I did not recieve any link and my exam is cancelled and not able to reschedule the same Please help me :(“

What does NISM have to say?

Meanwhile, NISM has provided an off-the-record response mentioning that it follows all necessary examination guidelines and all NISM Exam Rules and Regulations are published on its website. Candidates, inadvertently, miss out on reading instructions or take the exam rules and regulations very casually. This leads to exam termination and rejection of certificates.

It also mentioned that the rules are same for all its candidates and NISM does not differentiate between any candidate. Further, NISM has also devised an appeal and hearing mechanism by which candidates get an opportunity to make an appeal against NISM’s decision.

PrepCafe Academy and its students have undergone similar experiences in various NISM Certification Examinations taken through online mode.


Overall, we feel that NISM has made a genuine attempt in bringing the exams to candidates’ home/office. NISM, being a SEBI’s educational initiative, is known for its credibility, integrity and high proctoring standards. While providing NISM online exams, it seems that they have drawn a fair balance between convenience and exam sanctity.

So if you are thinking of scheduling your next NISM Exam Online (Exam from Anywhere), think twice. It is always better to spend an additional hour to travel to your nearby Test Centre and finish off your exam in the first instance itself.

Wish you good luck and Happy Learning!

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