What is IBPS PO exam?
Bank Probationary office (Bank PO) is a lucrative career.To enter this career you need to clear IBPS PO written test.After clearing IBPS PO written test you become eligible to apply for PO position in one of 19 public sector banks.Each bank then publishes its advertisement.Each bank has its own cut off marks for interview call.
So if your marks in IBPS PO written test is more than Bank cut off you can fill Bank interview form.After that short listed candidates are called for interview.I have covered IBPS PO interview in separate post.You can read the post and download interview questions answers and tips from this link.I have also covered SBI Bank PO interview and written test in different post.You can read download documents from this link.
IBPS PO Preparation Tips Video
IBPS PO exam format
The first step in preparation for any examination is to know about format of exam.You can plan your preparation if you know format of exam.IBPS PO format have changed over the years.So you should always look at current year format.I have shown current year IBPS PO exam format in below table.
|Total TIme||120 min|
In last year IBPS PO exam there were 250 questions.The total time limit was 150 min.Each section contained 50 questions.But this year they have changed the format.Less stress is given to English,General Awareness and Computer Knowledge.
Also previous year apart from this objective test there was 25 marks descriptive test.In that you have to write an Essay or Letter in English language.The duration was one hour.But descriptive paper is not included in current year exams.So you can leave the descriptive paper preparation and concentrate on objectives only.
IBPS PO exam syllabus
From above table you can see that Quantitative Aptitude,Reasoning,English,General Awareness and Computer Knowledge are main topics or subjects you need to prepare.But nowhere the syllabus is mentioned.Actually there is no syllabus as such for IBPS PO exam.We can define a syllabus only based on previous year question paper pattern.I am outlining paper pattern and syllabus you need to cover.I have also prepared question papers along with answers with these points in mind.So you can download above papers using download link and get an idea of IBPS PO exam question paper pattern.
Quantitative Aptitude syllabus and question types
- Time and Distance,Time and Work – 4 questions
- Ratio and Mixtures – 5 questions
- Percentage,Profit Loss – 6 questions
- Partnership,Clock,Pipes and Cisterns – 5 questions
- Permutation and Combination – 5 questions
- 10 question based on data given example problem is given in above papers
- 10 questions on series,fractions and arithmetic operations
Reasoning syllabus and question types
- 10 questions on Diagrams and pictures
- 15 questions on puzzle type problems download above documents from details
- 5 questions on Arguments
- 5 questions on arguments and conclusions
- 10 questions on Alphabets,patterns,arrangement
English syllabus and question types
- 20 questions from Comprehension.It includes Antonym and Synonym
- 5 spot error in sentence problems
- 5 sentence rearrangement
- 10 preposition and fill in the blanks
General Awareness and Computer Knowledge
Computer knowledge covers basic questions about computers.The topics like Internet,Microsoft Office packages and other day to day computer knowledge (bit of hardware knowledge). The questions are basic ones only.General Awareness focuses on Banking industry and also covers key news as well.You should read current affairs (more focus on banking).If IBPS PO exam is in May then read important news of before April.The paper is set approx two months before the exam.Questions focus mainly on Banking reforms and recent Banking related announcements.Government Yojanas impacting Banks are also hot topic.
IBPS PO exam tips
Time Management and Time Distribution
As you might have noticed above the number of questions are more than time allowed in min.You get less than 1 min to answer a question.So proper distribution of time is important for each section.Each question has equal weight-age in terms of marks.But some sections like Computer Knowledge and General Awareness can be solved in less time (assuming that you know the answer) compared to other section.
So time management and proper time distribution is very important for IBPS PO written exam.The second important thing is order of attempting the sections.Some sections like Reasoning and Quantitative do exhaust your brain.Other sections like Computer knowledge and General Awareness are not that exhausting.It is better to attempt non exhaustive sections first.This keeps you brain fresh while attempting these sections.
Sectional Cut off
Third important point is sectional cut off.For example if I get 45 in one section and 10 in other I am not qualified.I may have more marks than other qualified candidates.Often candidates do forget this during IBPS PO written exam.I have seen few candidates who scored nearly 80% in one section but failed in other section.So clearing sectional cut off in all sections should be first and foremost thing you should do in IBPS PO written exam.
Normally 48% is considered as sectional cut off marks in any section.So your first aim should be to clear the sectional cut off.IBPS has also introduced concept of TWSS (Total Weight age standard score).They create a minimal TWSS score based on performance of candidates that year.You should score above TWSS to get an interview call.So your first aim is to clear sectional cut off and second is to score as much marks as possible.
Fourth important point is each question has same marks.It is not important to give preference to one question than other one.You should avoid time consuming questions in first attempt.If you have solved similar questions before than attempt them.Easy questions should be attempted first and then complex ones.Sometimes one question eats uo too much time and you have to leave few easy ones.This is really important.
Answer marking in Answer sheet
Fifth important point is marking the answers.There are couple of strategy.Some like to mark the answers as they solve it.Some marks the answer in one go at last.Marking answers one by one do consume seconds switching from question sheet to answer sheet.In second method you might make mistakes marking the answers due to time constraint.It is also tough to keep track of all answers.
There is chance of making mistake in marking answers if you have left couple of questions in between two answered questions.In my opinion the best way is to combine both process.Ideally you should mark all the answers after completing a section.This gives you idea about number of questions answered in a particular section.You can come back to sections with less number of answered questions later on.This is important for sectional cutoff.Also the number of answers to be marked in the sheet will also be less.So there will be lesser chance to make mistake.
Negative marking mistakes
IBPS PO written exam has negative marking.Negative marking means one fourth of marks in deducted for every wrong answer.For example out of 10 questions if you have 5 correct answers but two wrong answers then your total marks is (5 – 2* .25) = 4.5.This is really important.In above example if you have left two wrong questions then you would have crossed cut off marks (48%).
So it is very important not to guess answers.Sometimes candidates mark answers of 10 to 20 questions as A or B or C or D.This does backfire.If you have answered decent number of questions to clear sectional cut off then there is no need of all these.Instead of guessing and marking answers try one or two questions which you can solve and are in section you answered less.
IBPS PO exam planning
Above we saw points to consider in IBPS PO written exam.Proper planning and practice is important to incorporate these tips during exam.You should divide time between the sections and stick to those timings.I have made a general time distribution for all sections below.You can modify the same to fit your requirement.Total time given for all sections is 150 min.We will divide this time between sections not equally but based on certain rules.I will mention those rules in detail after below table.
You can see in above table 8 minutes are still left.You should attempt sections in which you have answered less than sectional cut off in these 8 min.In case you have attempted all sections well then attempt those sections or questions which you can answer in these 8 min.I have dedicated more time to Reasoning then to Quantitative.The reason is these sections are time consuming.The other sections like Computer knowledge and General Awareness do not involve solving a problem.They will not take much time if you know the answers.
You can modify time according to your strength.You can practice sample papers (downloadable from download links) and find out time taken in each section.Based on your experience after solving few question paper you can add or subtract time dedicated to individual sections in above table.After fixing time it is very important to test it out.You should solve few test series or papers.You can easily see whether time dedicated to each section is fine or needs some modification.
Speed is king in IBPS PO written test.It is important to practice as many questions as possible.This increases chances of getting similar questions in real exam.So you can solve them in less time.This will improve your speed and chances to answer more questions.
IBPS PO exam preparation
Computer Knowledge section
IBPS PO written exams are becoming tough with time.Introduction of Computer Knowledge section makes it difficult for non computer background candidates.So candidates from non computer background need to study this section.This section is pretty scoring as well as less time consuming.So one should really focus hard on this section.The good part is questions are not very technical in nature nor is difficult.
General Awareness section
Also General Awareness section focuses on Banking industry knowledge.This indeed is important as you are going to be part of Banking industry.But it also demands dedication of your time to read Business section of a newspaper instead of Sports or Movie section.There are magazines dedicated to Banking industry.You can pick any one of them and start reading the headlines.This is also one very scoring section and less time consuming.If you are well prepared for above two sections then you can save lot of time for other sections.Getting good scores this sections will help you score good results overall.So you should focus more on these two sections.
English is tough section for candidates not from that background.With introduction of descriptive section as well things are getting more complicated for candidates.In English section good amount of questions are grammar based.You should prepare grammar thoroughly.The basics like Noun,Pronoun,Preposition,Conjunction and tense should be primary focus.Some questions like spot the error can be very scoring and less time consuming.The comprehension section is also easy compared to other part of English.It also carries good weight-age as well.
You can pick any good English grammar book for preparation.Even class ten or twelve English grammar books will do the trick.Every candidate should stress or dedicate more time to these three sections.Normally candidates give more time to reasoning and quantitative often overlooking these sections.But scoring good marks in these sections and saving time is key to success.
Quantitative and Reasoning section
You should target clearing the cut off marks first in reasoning and quantitative section.Anything above that is always a bonus.Having said that Candidates should always focus on their strength.Someone outstanding in Quantitative should try to score more on this section.You should practice Quantitative and Reasoning on regular basis.
It is good to solve different types of problems.Solving same type of problems does not serve the purpose.You will not find same type of questions in IBPS exam.Also practising different types of problems give you an idea about their solution procedure.This helps in IBPS exam.Looking at the question you can identify type of it.The data may be different but solution approach will be same.This will help you solve the problems faster and correctly.
I have included different types of questions in above documents.You can download the same and start practising.It will give you an idea of type of problems asked and their complexity.Also it is important to note the time taken to solve the problems individually.
IBPS PO exam question paper with answer free download
I have created model IBPS question papers for Reasoning and Quantitative section,English Section and Computer Knowledge section.The questions are taken from previous year IBPS PO exams and sample questions similar in format to last year IBPS PO exams.The questions are along with answers.You can download the documents for free using the download links given below.
After reading different sections you can try these questions before real IBPS PO writen test.This will give you an idea about your preparation level.In case you get a questions wrong then you can revisit the concept and try the question again.This is best way to use these download documents.
- IBPS PO exam quantitative aptitude and reasoning paper – click here to download
- IBPS PO exam English paper – click here to download
- IBPS PO computer knowledge paper – click here to download
- Banks with maximum number of branches in state (all state covered) — download link
- Banks with maximum profit,revenue and growth (all banks covered) — download link
Feel free to let me know if you face any problem in downloading these files.You can make the most out of this article by downloading these files.So download the files and then come back and read the article.
I have attached document listing revenue,headquarters and branch coverage of all major banks.These documents will help you decide Bank preference.It will also give you deep insight about top banks.You can get answers to common interview questions like Where is headquarters of this bank or that bank? So consult the information provided in the document to come up with your preference list and also answer to question Why this bank is your first preference?
IBPS PO book
All the tips and tricks mentioned above are just enough for IBPS PO exam preparation and become successful in that.You can use any standard book for preparation of Reasoning and Quantitative aptitude section and English section.The computer awareness questions in download document are quite detailed and should give you good idea about topics you should cover.You can read the questions and also prepare further questions from same topics.
But many candidates prefer having a book.They want to solve a book completely.After completing a book it should given them an idea that preparation is complete.I have received request from many candidates about IBPS PO book to follow for best preparation.I have researched for book which covers every aspect of the exam.Below books seems to cover most aspect of exam.
You can buy the book online.You will get decent discount buying the book online.
Feel free to post your queries.In case you have any issues downloading the files let me know.Consider sharing the post if you found this useful.