How to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry
Updated on Aug 16, 2019 - 5:48 p.m. IST by Parul Thapa

How to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry – JAM 2020 examination, which is to be conducted by IIT Kanpur, is one of the most sought after exams for candidates who wish to pursue their PG courses from IITs. With the JAM 2020 exam being conducted on February 9, 2020 candidates need to prepare themselves for different subjects.

To prepare for the Chemistry exam, candidates must need to get their strategy ready including a time-table and collection of previous years' JAM chemistry sample papers. Through JAM, IITs offer M.Sc programmes for courses such as Physics, Chemistry, Biological Sciences, Biotechnology, Mathematics, Mathematical Statics and Geology. ‘How to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry’ is a guide for aspirants who wish to appear for the Chemistry exam of JAM 2020.

In this article, candidates can find details related to the syllabus of chemistry, the study plan and the tips to follow while preparing for the JAM 2020.

LATEST: IIT JAM Application Form 2020 to be released on September 5!

How to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry - Syllabus

To prepare thoroughly for the Chemistry exam of JAM 2020 candidates first need to make sure of the syllabus for the examination. The JAM 2020 Syllabus will give candidates a clear idea about how to prepare and how much to prepare. Candidates can check through the syllabus mentioned below.

Physical Chemistry

  • Basic Mathematical Concepts: Functions, maxima and minima; integrals; ordinary differential equations, vectors and matrices, determinants, elementary statistics and probability theory.

  • Theory of Gases: Equation of state for ideal and non-ideal (van der Waals) gases; Kinetic theory of gases; Maxwell-Boltzmann distribution law; equipartition of energy.

  • Atomic and Molecular Structure: Fundamental particles; Bohr’s theory of hydrogen-like atom; wave-particle duality; uncertainty principle; Schrödinger’s wave equation; quantum numbers; shapes of orbitals; Hund’s rule and Pauli’s exclusion principle; electronic configuration of simple homonuclear diatomic molecules.

  • Chemical Thermodynamics: Reversible and irreversible processes; first law and its application to ideal and nonideal gases; thermochemistry; second law; entropy and free energy; criteria for spontaneity.

  • Solid-state: Crystals and crystal systems; X-rays; NaCl and KCl structures; close packing; atomic and ionic radii; radius ratio rules; lattice energy; Born-Haber cycle; isomorphism; heat capacity of solids.

  • Chemical and Phase Equilibria: Law of mass action; Kp, Kc, Kx and Kn; effect of temperature on K; ionic equilibria in solutions; pH and buffer solutions; hydrolysis; solubility product; phase equilibria–phase rule and its application to one-component and two-component systems; colligative properties.

  • Adsorption: Gibbs adsorption equation; adsorption isotherm; types of adsorption; surface area of adsorbents; surface films on liquids.

  • Electrochemistry: Conductance and its applications; Transport number; Galvanic cells; EMF and free energy; concentration cells with and without transport; polarography; concentration cells with and without transport; Debey-Huckel-Onsager theory of strong electrolytes. Chemical Kinetics: Reactions of various order; Arrhenius equation; collision theory; transition state theory; chain reactions – normal and branched; enzyme kinetics; photochemical processes; catalysis.

  • Spectroscopy: Beer-Lambert law; fundamental concepts of rotational, vibrational, electronic and magnetic resonance spectroscopy.

Organic Chemistry

Basic Concepts in Organic Chemistry and Stereochemistry: Electronic effects (resonance, inductive, hyperconjugation) and steric effects and its applications (acid/base property); optical isomerism in compounds with and without any stereocenters (allenes, biphenyls); conformation of acyclic systems (substituted ethane/n-propane/n-butane) and cyclic systems (mono- and di-substituted cyclohexanes).

  • Qualitative Organic Analysis: Identification of functional groups by chemical tests; elementary UV, IR and 1H NMR spectroscopic techniques as tools for structural elucidation.

  • Organic Reaction Mechanism and Synthetic Applications: Chemistry of reactive intermediates (carbocations, carbanions, free radicals, carbenes, nitrenes, benzynes etc…); Hofmann-Curtius-Lossen rearrangement, Wolff rearrangement, Simmons-Smith reaction, Reimer-Tiemann reaction, Michael reaction, Darzens reaction, Wittig reaction and McMurry reaction; Pinacol-pinacolone, Favorskii, benzilic acid rearrangement, dienone-phenol rearrangement, Baeyer-Villeger reaction; oxidation and reduction reactions in organic chemistry; organometallic reagents in organic synthesis (Grignard, organolithium and organocopper); Diels-Alder, electrocyclic and sigmatropic reactions; functional group inter-conversions and structural problems using chemical reactions.

  • Natural Products Chemistry: Chemistry of alkaloids, steroids, terpenes, carbohydrates, amino acids, peptides and nucleic acids.

  • Aromatic and Heterocyclic Chemistry: Monocyclic, bicyclic and tricyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, and monocyclic compounds with one hetero atom: synthesis, reactivity and properties.

Inorganic Chemistry

  • Main Group Elements (s and p blocks): General concepts on group relationships and gradation in properties; the structure of electron-deficient compounds involving main group elements.

  • Periodic Table: Periodic classification of elements and periodicity in properties; general methods of isolation and purification of elements. Chemical Bonding and Shapes of Compounds: Types of bonding; VSEPR theory and shapes of molecules; hybridization; dipole moment; ionic solids; the structure of NaCl, CsCl, diamond and graphite; lattice energy.

  • Transition Metals (d block): Characteristics of 3d elements; oxide, hydroxide and salts of first row metals; coordination complexes: structure, isomerism, reaction mechanism and electronic spectra; VB, MO and Crystal Field theoretical approaches for structure, color and magnetic properties of metal complexes; organometallic compounds having ligands with back bonding capabilities such as metal carbonyls, carbenes, nitrosyls and metallocenes; homogenous catalysis.

  • Instrumental Methods of Analysis: Basic principles; instrumentations and simple applications of conductometry, potentiometry and UV-vis spectrophotometry; analysis of water, air and soil samples.

  • Bioinorganic Chemistry: Essentials and trace elements of life; basic reactions in the biological systems and the role of metal ions, especially Fe2+, Fe3+, Cu2+ and Zn2+; structure and function of hemoglobin and myoglobin and carbonic anhydrase

  • Analytical Chemistry: Principles of qualitative and quantitative analysis; acid-base, oxidation-reduction and complexometric titrations using EDTA; precipitation reactions; use of indicators; use of organic reagents in inorganic analysis; radioactivity; nuclear reactions; applications of isotopes.

Best Books to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry


Books and Authors

Physical Chemistry

Atomic and Molecular Structure

Theory of Gases

Physical Chemistry–Peter W. Atkins

Physical Chemistry–Puri, Sharma, Pathania

Basic Mathematical Concepts

Differential Equation & Matrices–Shanti Narayan

Engineering Mathematics–B.S. Grewal

Chemical Thermodynamics

Physical Chemistry–Thomas Engel & Phillip Reid

Basic Physical Chemistry–Peter W. Atkins


Surface Chemistry–A. Goel

Introduction to Surface Chemistry & Catalysis–Gabor A. Somorjai

Chemical and Phase Equilibria

Principals of Chemical Equilibrium & Phase Rule–K.G. Denbigh

Phase Rule–Gurdeep Raj


An Introduction to Electrochemistry–Samuel Glasstone

Electrochemistry–Philip H. Rieger

A text book of Physical Chemistry (Vol-III)-K. L. Kapoor

Chemical Kinetics

Chemical Kinetics–Keith J. Laidler

Physical Chemistry–Thomas Engel & Phillip Reid

A text book of Physical Chemistry (Vol-V)-K. L. Kapoor

Solid state

Solid State–Peter W. Atkins

Solid State Physics–R.K. Puri & V.K.Babbar

Organic Chemistry

Basic Concepts in Organic Chemistry and Stereochemistry

Stereochemistry Conformation and Mechanism-P.S. Kalsi

Stereochemistry of Organic Compound-E. L. Eliel

Organic Chemistry (Vol-I)-I. L. Finar

Heterocyclic Chemistry

Organic Chemistry (Vol-I)-I. L. Finar

Natural Products Chemistry

Organic Chemistry (Vol-II)-I. L. Finar

Organic Reaction Mechanism and Synthetic Applications

Organic Chemistry-Clayden, Greeves, Warner and Wothers

Organic Chemistry-T.W. Graham Solomons

Organic Chemistry-Morrison & Boyd

Qualitative Organic Analysis

Qualitative organic Analysis

Qualitative Organic Analysis-A. I. Vogel

Inorganic Chemistry

Analytical Chemistry

Quantitative Inorganic Analysis-A. I. Vogel

Chemical Bonding and Shapes of Compounds

Inorganic Chemistry-J. E. Huheey

Inorganic Chemistry-Meissler & Tarr

Bioinorganic Chemistry

Inorganic Chemistry–Shriver & Atkins

Inorganic Chemistry–James E. Huheey, E.A. Keiter, R. L. Keiter, O. K. Medhi

Instrumental Methods of Analysis

Instrumental method-Skoog, Holler & Crouch

Periodic Table

Concise Inorganic Chemistry-J. D. Lee

Basic Inorganic Chemistry-F. A. Cotton & Wilkinson

Main Group Elements (s and p blocks)

Concise Inorganic Chemistry-J. D. Lee

Transition Metals (d block)

Concise Inorganic Chemistry-J. D. Lee

Inorganic Chemistry-Meissler & Tarr

Tips and Tricks to prepare for JAM 2020 Chemistry

Making a Time-Table

Preparation for an examination begins with right time-table. Setting a time-table makes the whole process of preparation easier. Candidates preparing for JAM 2020 Chemistry examination must make sure to prepare a time-table which divides the whole syllabus in such a way that there is a perfect balance between the time allotted for each sub topic during the initial days of preparation. The time-table and time allotment will differ as the examination is close by.

Solving Sample Papers

Solving JAM sample papers from previous years is a must for candidates who are about to appear for JAM 2020 Chemistry examination. Sample papers from the previous years carry a pattern of question types and is lucky a few important questions which tend to get repeated over the years. While solving previous years question papers candidates not only familiarize themselves with the pattern and the type of questions but they can also gain the confidence to solve the questions on the day of the examination. After a series of continuous studying solving a few sample papers will help candidates understand where they stand and how much more has to be done to reach the mark.

All the best for IIT JAM 2020!

More like JAM

Questions related to JAM

Showing 1320 out of 1320 Questions

Jam msc chemistry book is provided plz

ayush mishra 15th Jan, 2020

Hey aspirant!

IITJAM Chemistry paper consists question from three basic sections of chemistry that is, Physical Chemistry, Organic Chemistry and Inorganic Chemistry. Although few other subjects like analytical chemistry also contain some weightage but it can be grouped into the above three subjects also. Now, the books for IITJAM Chemistry which you should refer are given below although I would advise to study some of them only if you have your basics clear as they are quite descriptive and you have to be clever enough to understand the important topics and the not-so important ones. The books which you should refer are:-

Inorganic Chemistry:- JD Lee, Meissler-Tarr, James E.Huheey. These are the authors of the books and the names of the books are different but are commonly known by these names only. Also you must refer to Vogel's Qualitative Inorganic Analysis book as in my opinion it is the best for inorganic analysis.

Organic Chemistry:- You can refer the books by these authors IL Finar , PS Kalsi and also Mehta and Mehta is good in clearing the basics and reaction mechanisms.

Physical Chemistry:- You can refer these books (these are the commonly known authors of the books) Peter Atkins, Samuel Glasstone, Thomas Engel-Phillip Reid, Keith Laidler etc. These are the books for different topics such as Chemical Thermodynamics, Chemical Kinetics etc.

These were some of the books which you can refer to but these are not necessary as you can have your own reference books based on difficulty level of some of these books.

Hope this helps.


what are my options after clearing JAM?

Raj Aryan Sharma 10th Jan, 2020

Hello Anindita. After clearing IIT JAM, you will have many career options like-

a)Pursuing Research and Teaching or opting for good Ph.D programs from Europe and the USA ,

b)Civil Services,

c)Public Sector Government Jobs,

d)Defense Jobs,

e)Jobs in the private sector in companies like WIPRO, TCS, Infosys etc.

All the best!


Can Msc geology students from IIT Kharagpur through JAM can apply for non core jobs or msc geology students selected only through IIT jee are allowed to apply for campus placement in non core jobs in programming ,data analysis etc?

Naufal Mohamed 9th Jan, 2020
Oh no you have definitely got the wrong idea here. Whether you got into IIT through JEE or JAM doesn't matter. Every student of the institution is allowed to apply for campus placements regardless of his methos of admission. You should have the minimum required GPA set by your college and you are good to go.

how much are the chances of getting into IIT Indore through IIT jam 2020 if we get 60 marks for general category?

Saloni Singh 8th Jan, 2020

Hello Shaifali,

Hope you are doing well.

Look, IIT-JAM cutoffs vary year by year. There was a sudden change in the cutoffs of different IITs last year which changed the whole pattern.

That was due to the level of Difficulty was low compared to previous years and hence the cutoff went very hight and even at 60 Score in IIT-JAM, one could not get IIT- Indore.

But, the cut-offs are suppose to go down and this time it's IIT Kanpur conducting JAM, and the level of difficulty is also going to increase. So, don't just think of a number as benchmark and attempt. You will get the idea of the paper in the exam hall itself and attempt accordingly.

This year, you have decent chances of getting  IIT Indore if you score better which is appropriate at 60.

So, All the best!

Hope it is helpful to you !

Thank-you !

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