Banking Exam : Tips for Para Jumbles

‘Para jumbles’ is an important part of the English Language section in Banking exams. Questions from this type are in group format. In a para jumble question set, five randomly disarranged sentences from a meaningful passage are provided. Candidates are expected to arrange these jumbled sentences in a sensible and relevant manner to eventually find the original sequence.

        Para jumble questions test a candidate’s compositional capability. These questions are tricky and can be time consuming. However, with practice and some simple techniques, candidates can easily tackle them and score 5 marks. Here are some tips for para jumbles:

1. Try to understand the core idea of the given passage. It will help you to arrange sentences quickly. All you need to do is identify the logical connection between the sentences.

2. Generally, the given information in the jumbled sentences changes from general to specific. If you observe, you can see that the first few sentences are generic while those that follow are fact-specific and informative.   

3. Sometimes, a good knowledge of option analysis helps to rule out the possible answers from the given options. This trick will save a lot of time.

4. The key is to find the first sentence quickly as it will give us a linear direction with respect to the given content.

5. Similarly, guessing the concluding sentence will give you both the ends of the linear connecting idea.

6. Generally, sentences denoting time, place & name are the most probable opening lines.

7. Sentences with pronouns acting as the ‘subject’ of the sentence are not the opening lines. These sentences usually refer to the opening line.

8. Transition words literally act as your direction signs. For e.g. also, as well as, besides, furthermore, then, soon, after all, aside from, besides, above all, likewise, hence, but, however etc. are linking words between two sentences. (It helps if you have memorised a list of such transition words.)

9. Many times an initial sentence explains an idea and the example is provided in the later sentence. So, this arrangement should be followed whenever such pair is observed.

Examples:

(The following question was asked in the SBI PO 2010 exam.)

Rearrange the following sentences (A), (B), (C), (D), (E) and (F) to make a meaningful paragraph and then answer the questions that follow

(A) While these disadvantages of biofuels are serious, they are the only alternate energy source for the future and the sooner we find solutions to the disadvantages, the faster we will be able to solve the problems we are now facing with gasoline. 

(B) Biofuels can also help to stimulate jobs locally since they are much safer to handle than gasoline and can thus have the potential to turnaround a global economy.

(C) These include using fossil fuels to run the machinery required to produce biofuel that ends up polluting as much as the burning of fossil fuels on roads. However, exorbitant cost of biofuels makes it very difficult for the common man to switch to this option.

(D) This turnaround can potentially help to bring world peace and end the dependence on foreign countries for energy requirements.

(E) Biofuels are made from plant sources. As these sources are available in abundance and can be reproduced on a massive scale, they form an energy source that is potentially unlimited.

(F) However, everything is not as green with the biofuels as it seems as there are numerous disadvantages, which at times overshadow their positive impact. 

Solution: 

Firstly, after reading all the sentences we can conclude that the theme of the passage is-advantages & disadvantages of biofuels, comprising pros and cons and a conclusion.

Here, we can easily deduce that sentence (E) is the opening line as it contains the word ‘biofuels’, which is a proper noun.

Words like ‘this’ & ‘these’ work as pronouns. The lines containing such pronouns follow the opening line.

The opening line ends up with an advantage that will surely be followed by statements pertaining to advantages of biofuels. So we can conclude that the first three sentences are: 

E – B – D

In statement F, the transition word like ‘However’ is changing the direction of the subject matter from advantages to disadvantages. So we can conclude that,

E – B – D – F – C

Lastly, statement ‘A’ begins with transition word ‘While’ that clearly denotes the conclusion. So it will be our ending line. So the final answer is,

E – B – D – F – C – A

Para jumble questions should ideally be tackled at last. The reason being, para jumbles are like a jackpot. They may grant you quick 5 marks or you may also end up wasting marks. As the statements are linked to each other, one mistake loses you 2 marks. However, with enough practice and the above given techniques, one can easily turn this section into his/her advantage.

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