Examination structure

Candidates must pass the YPP examination in order to be placed on the P1/P2 roster. The examination consists of a written and an oral section (interview). The total number of points a candidate can score in this examination is 1000.

  1. Written examination

    The written examination consists of two parts:

    • The General Paper, which is the same for all YPP examinations that are scheduled on the same date, assesses drafting skills in English or French. In this part, you will be given a text of approximately 900 words and be asked to summarise it to around 300 words. The maximum score for the General Paper is 150 points.
Sample General Paper
    • The Specialised Paper, which is different for each examination, tests substantive knowledge of the subject relevant to the job network you have applied for. This part of the written examination is available in both English and French and can be answered in any of the six official UN languages. The Specialised Paper consists of two parts in which you may score a maximum of 650 points.

Part I: Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs)

Part I consists of 25 MCQs relevant to the job network you have applied for. No points are deducted for a wrong answer.

- For the INFONET and MAGNET examinations, you are expected to mark your answers to the MCQs in the Answer Booklet by filling in the circle corresponding to the answer you selected from the Questions Booklet.

- For the POLNET examination (conducted online), you will be expected to answer each question on its corresponding screen.

You may score a maximum of 150 points for this part.

Part II: Constructed Response Items

Part II consists of open-ended questions, some of which will be mandatory. You will be expected to write a long response (up to four pages with a suggested word limit) to one question and shorter responses to the rest of the items (up to two pages with a suggested word limit). The number of questions in this part varies across the examinations. You may score a maximum of 500 points in this part.

The written examination lasts about four and a half hours. You will be provided with a suggested time allocation for each part of the written examination and be expected to manage your own time during the examination.


    - For the INFONET and MAGNET examinations, candidates are expected to answer each question on its corresponding page in the Answer Booklet. For example: “Question 1” needs to be answered under “Question 1” in the Answer Booklet, and “Question 4” needs to be answered under “Question 4” in the Answer Booklet.

    Answers provided on the wrong page in the Answer Booklet will be marked with zero points. Only the pages provided for the answers will be marked. Answers exceeding the page allocation will not be considered.

    Each candidate will get only one Answer Booklet. Scrap paper will be provided for notes.

    It is important that you write legibly so that the markers will be able to read your handwriting. You may consider practicing your handwriting skills well in advance of the examination date.

    - Candidates invited to take the POLNET examination (conducted online) will receive instructions to take a mock session of the online examination in the beginning of October.

    Sample Answer Paper


    Answers to the General Paper are marked anonymously by a panel of external markers. The Specialised Paper is marked by a Specialised Examination Board of experts from the United Nations. All answers are marked blindly by two different markers.

    The Specialised Examination Board usually sets different cut-off points for each part of the examination, and only the candidates who are above that threshold will be evaluated further in the process. The first cut-off is usually determined after the multiple choice questions have been marked.

    Each of the further items, which require constructed responses, may serve as an additional cut-off point. Only examinees successful in the section of the examination that will be eliminatory, will have the other sections marked.

    The General Paper will be marked last, only for candidates who have passed the Specialised Paper.

  1. Oral examination

    If you are successful in the written examination, you will be invited to take part in the oral examination which consists of a competency-based video-conference interview. Each candidate will be interviewed by a panel consisting of members of the Specialised Examination Board. The total number of points obtainable in the oral examination is 200. You can find more information on competency based interviews here.

  2. Results notification

    Successful candidates will be individually informed that they have passed the YPP examination. All candidates will be informed through the Important Updates page that the examination process has been concluded. Please note that the time of notification may vary for each examination subject, depending on the number of examinees.

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