Success Strategy for IBPS CWE PO Prelims 2015

Dear Readers,

The IBPS CWE PO Prelims exam for 2015 is around the corner. Conducted by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) for the position of probationary officers (PO) across nationalised banks in India, the exam has around 15 lakh aspirants vying to fill over 15000 vacancies. The exam is being conducted on four different dates (03.10.2015, 04.10.2015, 10.10.2015 and 11.10.2015) owing to the large number of aspirants.

While banking jobs are undoubtedly lucrative, the competition is also fierce. If you are all set to write the prelims, then the useful tips given in this article would help you beat others and ensure your success in the exam.

First of all, let us understand the IBPS PO Prelims 2015 exam pattern.

Exam Pattern:

The IBPS CWE PO Prelims will be a 60-minute exam comprising 100 questions on English Language, Quantitative Aptitude and Reasoning Ability. The section-wise breakup is as follows:

English Language – 30 questions

Quantitative Aptitude – 35 questions

Reasoning Ability – 35 questions

Note: All questions carry one mark each, with a negative mark of 0.25 for every incorrect answer.

Since this is the first time the IBPS PO Prelims in being conducted, it is difficult to predict the exact break-up of topics and questions in the three sections. However, let us take a look at the break-up for the SBI PO Prelims, which was conducted in June, as it had the same exam pattern. The IBPS CWE PO prelims’ pattern is likely to be similar to the pattern of this exam.

Expected pattern (as per SBI PO prelims pattern):

This is the expected breakup of the IBPS CWE PO Prelims test.


Key Strategies:

1) Important topics to revise two weeks before the exam: As only a few days remain for the exam, focus on topics that are important from the examination point of view and revise these topics well. Let us understand this one section at a time.

 (a) English Language

  • Grammar is of utmost importance in this section. So, ensure that you are well-versed with prepositions, tenses, subject verb agreement, etc.
  • Para jumbles, synonyms and antonyms are also important as these are high-scoring topics. Read newspaper articles to understand word usage and note down meanings of new words you come across.
  • Work on tackling Reading Comprehension and practise at least one passage every day to ensure that you do not spend more than 4-5 minutes per passage. If the SBI PO Prelims is any indicator, the difficulty level will be moderate.

 (b) Reasoning Ability

  • Check your ability to process and analyse new data in a logical manner. Some of the most important topics in this section are deductive reasoning, coding and decoding, input and output, number series and arrangements. Ensure that you are well-prepared for these topics.

 (c) Quantitative Aptitude

  • Arithmetic and data interpretation (DI) are the most important topics in this section.
  • Arithmetic consists of averages, profit and loss, percentage, ratio and proportion, time and work, time, speed and distance, simple and compound interest, etc. You can start with ‘averages’ as it is one of the simpler topics and also forms the base for many other topics.
  • For DI, practise is key; the more questions you practise, the less are the chances that you will come across an unfamiliar question.

The importance of Mock Tests: Besides working on individual topics, you should also regularly attempt mock tests as they are a fairly accurate indicator of your actual performance in the exam. Aim to write at least 2 mock tests in the last two weeks before the exam. This will help you identify your weak areas and ascertain your strengths.

2) How to utilise the one-hour duration effectively: The ideal division of the 60 minutes is as follows:

English Language = 15 minutes

Reasoning = 20 minutes

Quantitative Aptitude = 25 minutes

The simple logic behind this bifurcation is that the English Language section has questions that do not contain too much of data (barring Reading Comprehension). Reasoning section will be slightly more complex and some questions may require more time. Quantitative Aptitude section contains DI questions that are known to be quite time-consuming.

3) Overall strategy:

  • Out of the 100 questions, attempting 60+ questions should be a fairly good performance (if the level of difficulty is comparable to the SBI PO Prelims).
  • Devote enough time so that you can attempt at least 20 questions per section.
  • Do not try to answer questions that you are not confident of just to maximise your number of attempts. You need to ensure speed as well as accuracy. You could lose 0.25 marks for every incorrect answer.
  • Always start with the section that you are most confident about. This will boost your confidence and help you build up your speed right from the start of the exam.
  • Get enough rest before the exam and stay calm during the exam.

These simple strategies will help you score well in this exam and qualify for the IBPS PO Mains.

All the best!