SBI PO Preparation Strategy For Prelims & Mains Exam

SBI PO Preparation Strategy For Prelims & Mains Exam

January 11, 2023

SBI PO Preparation Strategy For Prelims & Mains 2023: The State Bank Of India (SBI) conducts the exam every year for the post of Probationary officer. The SBI PO recruitment process comprises three phases, namely:

  1. Preliminary Examination (Online)
  2. Main Examination (Online)
  3. Psychometric Test (Group Discussion/ Personal Interview)

To get detailed information on the SBI PO Exam recruitment and exam pattern, you can check the linked article.

Following an appropriate preparation strategy and a subject-wise preparation plan can help clear the SBI PO exam with ease. To start, one must understand the requirement for each section of the exam. Following the SBI Preparation Strategy Plan along with one's own strategy will definitely help overcome the hurdles. In this blog, we will help you with SBI PO Exam Preparation tips.

Get started with your exam preparation. Join SBI PO Coaching now!

Let’s understand the basic exam preparation strategies before discussing the subject-wise SBI PO preparation strategy and tips.

  1. Go through the SBI PO Exam Pattern

The first and foremost thing you should do is understand the SBI PO exam pattern. Here’s the table below to understand the exam pattern for SBI PO:

SBI PO Prelims Exam Pattern 

Subject Total Number of Questions Maximum Marks Duration
English Language 30


20 Minutes
Quantitative Aptitude 35 20 Minutes
Reasoning Ability 35 20 Minutes
Total 100 100 60 Minutes

SBI PO Mains Exam Pattern 

Subjects Total Questions Total Marks Duration
Reasoning & Computer Aptitude 45 60 60 minutes
Data Analysis & Interpretation 35 60 45 minutes
General/ Economy/ Banking Awareness 40 40 35 minutes
English Language 35 40 40 minutes
Total 155 200 3 hours

Candidates can check the linked article here to know about the SBI PO eligibility criteria.

2. Know the SBI PO Syllabus

We suggest understanding and visualising the SBI PO syllabus before curating a section-wise SBI PO preparation strategy. Candidates can go through the detailed SBI PO Syllabus here.

3. Shortlist the right books and study material

Choosing the best books for SBI PO exam preparation is the most important part of your preparation strategy to avoid wastage of your preparation time. Here is the article where you can check the list of books for SBI PO. 

4. Solve and practice SBI PO Previous Year Papers & Mock Tests

Imagine doing so much hard work, but freezing while actually writing your paper in the examination hall! Well, to avoid this, we suggest you solve the SBI PO from the Previous year's papers, and mock tests to get acquainted with the paper pattern. With this, the candidates can get a hang of solving the paper in an exam-like environment. In fact, solving the SBI PO mock tests helps to identify the weak areas so that the candidates can work on them more.

5 Mantras To Ace SBI PO Preparation Strategy

Our experts suggest following the 5 Mantra rule to ace the SCI PO exam with flying colours. The same has been depicted in the image below: 

Preparation Strategy For SBI PO Prelims & Mains: Section-wise

Any candidate appearing for the SBI PO exam must have a strategy in place. Here we’ve discussed how to make a clear strategy to attempt each section while appearing for the exam. 

1. Strategy To Ace Quantitative Aptitude Section 

Quantitative Aptitude knowledge is required for both SBI PO prelims and mains. But the difficulty level of the questions varies as one can expect higher-order questions for mains. Check out the tips and tricks to ace the SBI PO Quant section. 

  • Usually candidates find the Quantitative Aptitude section tough, but with the right strategy and practice, this can be a scoring section. 
  • Let us help the candidates break the myth by understanding the Important topics under the quantitative section.
  • First, one should know the most common topics under the SBI PO Quantitative Aptitude Section., Some of them are-

    • Percentages
    • Profit And Loss
    • Time And Distance
    • Simple Interest And Compound Interest
    • Mensuration
    • ProbabilitySimplification and Approximation
    • Number Series
    • Data Interpretation
    • Time And Work
    • Quadratic Equation
    • Mixture And Alligation
    • Data Interpretation

To ensure the preparation for the Quant section is right, one must

take command over the basics as clearing basics will set you apart from other aspirants. Post that, learn the shortcuts which will come in handy during the exam.

In the past, it has been seen that learning Vedic Maths has proved to be a game changer for many since Vedic Maths consists of shortcuts for calculation which cut down the time to solve questions. After your calculation speed is increased, study chapters like percentages, number system, and profit & loss, and then cover the other chapters. Give more time to solve questions from a mixture of allegation, time & work, and Data Interpretation. 

In addition, the aspirants should also ensure to 

  • Get the squares and cubes of Numbers on their fingertips.
  • Solve at least 50 questions every and write down the mistake separately in a notebook and glance through them regularly.
  • After completing the syllabus, practice as many mock tests as possible.
  • Don't forget, practice is the key to success. To clear this section with flying colours try and attempt at least 25 questions with 100% accuracy.

2. Strategy To Ace Reasoning Section

  • Just like Quant, the reasoning section is also common for both Prelims & Mains. This section is considered to be the most tricky section in the banking exam. 
  • Some of the important topics under the SBI PO Reasoning section are:
    • Syllogism
    • Puzzles
    • Seating arrangement
    • Inequality
    • Input-output
    • Series-based questions (Alphanumeric and Numeric)
    • Coding and Decoding
  • Most of the reasoning topics are a bit easy, but they require a lot of practice.
  • Solving mock tests and SBI PO previous years' questions can help you with your exam preparation to a great extent.
  • A newly framed question of Input and Output Problems is a tricky section.

Just like Quant, here are some tips to clear the reasoning section. 

  • Solve at least 50 questions daily.
  • Solve the maximum number of previous year's questions and mock tests.
  • Don't waste more than 3 minutes on puzzles and arrangements, move ahead if you find any difficulties. 
  • Always begin with easier topics like syllogism and inequalities so that you increase your confidence in the Examination.
  • It’s advisable to set a timer while practising and note your speed every time.

3. Strategy To Ace for General English

General English is again common for both prelims and mains..

  • The first and foremost thing you need to do is develop a reading habit.
  • Take note of difficult/ important words while reading the newspapers and editorials for magazines.
  • Try to include the new words learned in day-to-day life so that you remember the words learned.
  • Practice a lot of Reading Comprehension & Cloze Tests to increase your speed and accuracy.
  • Lat, but not least, glance through grammar rules and also give lots of mocks which will provide you with an exam-like environment.

In addition, some generalized preparation strategy for SBI PO English includes:

  • If you are unsure of any of the synonyms/antonyms, do not attempt it.
  • Don't waste time in the Reading Comprehension section as it will eat up your time and you will not get time to solve other sections.
  • Practice Mocks and Previous Year Questions regularly.

4. Strategy (Mains) for General Financial Awareness/Computer Aptitude

  • GA and Computer Awareness are considered game-changers. 
  • Consistency, i.e. you need to learn things from the beginning.
  • Note down current affairs regularly while creating separate sections for sports, national & international news.
  • Try to practice mock tests for Current Affairs so that you will be able to recapture most of the news.
  • For the computer aptitude section go through the previous year's questions to understand the type of questions being asked in the examination.

How to Prepare for SBI PO Descriptive Paper?

The SBI PO Descriptive Paper is an online test of 30 minutes. The test may be a piece of cake for some but can be a nightmare for a few. It depends upon a candidate’s English skills since the test includes two sections:

  1. Essay Writing
  2. Letter Writing

Here are a few tips for SBI PO preparation to help the candidates develop the required confidence:

  • Since the paper is online, candidates should try to improve their typing speed.
  • For Letter Writing, candidates must be thorough with the format for both formal and informal letter writing. 
  • Think about the topic and be concise while writing. 
  • Use active voice as much as possible. 
  • Inculcate reading habits, which will help you build a strong vocabulary and write better.
  • Practice writing on topics asked in the previous year's banking exams and also on the trending ones.
  • Also, try to improve your grammar and minimise spelling mistakes with extensive writing practice.

To know more about the SBI PO Syllabus, check the linked article.

How to Prepare for SBI PO Interview?

Last but not the least, a merit list of selected candidates is prepared based on Prelims & Mains exam. Later, candidates are called for the interview process and a final merit list is released. 

So it’s equally important to ace the interview to confirm your selection. Let’s take a look at the tips here: 

  • Work on improving your communication skills.
  • Practice answering questions with confidence and clarity.
  • Try to predict questions based on your job profile and frame good answers beforehand.
  • Be thorough with the finance terms, the function of financial institutions and banking terminology.

To ace any interview, you can take a look at the linked article. 

Frequently Asked Question – SBI PO 2023 Preparation Tips

Question 1: How to prepare for the SBI PO exam?

Ans: Candidates must have the right strategy and plan to ace the SBI PO exam. Some of the tips and tricks for the exam are as follows:

  • Revise all the topics at least twice from each section
  • Attempt the maximum questions but don’t make vague guesses to avoid negative marking. 
  • Read the question and take ample time to do justice.

Question 2:  What is the SBI PO exam pattern for prelims and mains exams?

Ans: The prelims exam comprises three sections- English Language, Quantitative Aptitude and Reasoning Ability. These sections have objective-type questions. The main examination of SBI PO comprises both subjective and descriptive tests. The total marks for the exam are 250. Candidates are given 3.5 hours to finish the paper.

Question 3: Is the descriptive paper of SBI PO conducted online or offline?

Ans: Yes, the descriptive paper is conducted online for 50 marks. The point that’s worth noting is that the candidates are not allowed to use the keyboard to answer the questions. In fact, they need to type the answers using the mouse.

Question 4: What is the ideal preparation time for SBI PO preparation?

Ans: It is advisable to start preparing for SBI PO early. But in the past, many candidates have cracked the exam by preparing for only six or four months. 

Question 5: Is it possible to crack the SBI PO exam on the first attempt?

Ans: Yes, many candidates have cracked the exam on the first attempt. To ace the exam on the first attempt, the candidate must be sincere and dedicated.

About the Author

Mr Anubhav Luthra

Career Mentor

He has over 20+ years of experience in teaching, motivating and counselling students to get their dream job, 10,000+ students mentored by him have succeeded in the field analytically chosen by him. He follows the slogan Arise, awake, and stop not till the goal is reached by Swami Vivekananda.

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