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How to start SBI PO exam preparation? Complete Details.

by Aryan
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SBI PO exam is for candidates who are interested in making their career in the banking industry. This is conducted by the State Bank of India to recruit for the post of probationary officers. This is the largest exam in the public sector banking in India which is conducted every year. The exam is tough as there are plenty who would appear for the exam. The preparation should be very accurate and systematic. You should not neglect any topics or any sections.

Most importantly the preparation should not be at the last moment, it should be started early with a proper plan.

There are three stages of the exam: the preliminary, Mains, Group Discussion and Personal Interview. The candidate should clear all three stages to be eligible for the selection which is based on merit.

The SBI PO exam is a prestigious exam and clearing in the first attempt is tough but not an impossible task and can be achieved with proper strategy and planning.

Advantages of SBI PO 

SBI PO exam is considered tough because of the competition. Nevertheless, hard work always pays. The focus, dedication and the positive approach is the key factor for the success of the exam. The SBI PO exam has lots of advantages like the salary structure is great and also you will have job security along with ample benefits and perks.

Eligibility- The eligible candidate should be between the age group of 25 to 30and should be graduate from a recognized university.

Syllabus of the exam 

The syllabus is Quantitative Aptitude, Reasoning Ability and the English Language are for both Preliminary and the Mains. The mains also have the additional subject which is computers and General Awareness.

Marking schemes of the subject


Subject MarksTime Duration  (minutes)
Quantitative Aptitude3520
Reasoning Ability3520
English language3520


SubjectMarksTime Duration (minutes)
Data Analysis and Interpretation6045
Reasoning Ability6060
The English Language4040
General and Banking Awareness4030
Descriptive with two sections5030
Group Discussion & Interview 20 – 30

Subject wise preparation for the exam

English language-  The questions are mainly from the comprehension, para jumbled, error identification and the phrase replacement. Focus on grammar more. This can be easily done by cultivating the habit of reading newspapers, magazines, journals etc. This will improve grammar and also the vocabulary.

Reasoning Ability- This is mainly to test the candidates thinking ability and the topics which are mostly Linear and Circular arrangements, Distribution and comparison. Try to concentrate on these topics and practise as much as possible to gain more confidence.

Quantitative Ability- Candidates should focus more on topics like Simpications, Approximations, Data Interpretation, Quadratic Comparisons. Practice is important. Mathematics can only be aced with practice on a daily basis.

Computer Aptitude- The candidate has to know the basic computer hardware and the software. The topic includes LAN, WAN, and the basic MS Office.

General Awareness- Candidates should be well versed in current affairs. They have to read daily news so that they are updated. The main topics that need focus are the Indian Economy, Marketing, Indian Constitution, Banking etc.

Preparation tips for the Descriptive paper.

This is in the mains and comprises the Essay writing and the letter writing. The time duration is 30 minutes and is an online exam. The following important tips can be followed to make it easier.

  1. Focus and prepare well in Grammar.
  2. Improve vocabulary skills by noting new words.
  3. Read the newspaper and the magazine to improve your writing skills.
  4. Practise writing an essay on recent events.
  5. Practice letter writing on several topics which will help you to gain confidence.
  6. Practise writing essays and letters relevantly.

 General tips for the preparation of the SBI PO exam.

Time Table –  The first step is to make a proper and effective timetable. Without a proper plan and study structure, it becomes very difficult to complete the syllabus and also, without any plan of action on a daily basis, it is not going to be easy.  If you have an accurate plan you can complete the syllabus without any stress.

Know the syllabus and the pattern of the exam- Knowing the syllabus thoroughly is very important to make the proper study plan. You should also analyze your strengths and weaknesses in the topics. The amount of time can be dedicated accordingly. Don’t just plan a timetable for the sake of preparing, it is effective and useful. Make a note of the difficult and the easy topics as well.

Follow the Time table-  It is not just sufficient to make the timetable. It is very important to follow and also to be consistent. Don’t postpone the day’s schedule as it will accumulate and it is not easy to cope with two days’ plan in a day. It is better to follow every day keeping the other things aside. Prioritize the concepts with difficult and easy topics.

Preparation of notes

 Reading alone won’t be enough, but preparing the notes for all the topics is very important. You don’t have to write essays to prepare notes and waste your time. Notes can be precisely prepared pointwise as it saves time and is easy to remember. 

Mock Tests

You have completed the syllabus you can take a complete mock test series which will make you strong in the topics. You can rectify the mistakes and also it will be a practice of the online exam. This will be the same method as in the real exam. For further details on free mock tests, you can click here for more info

Practise- Practise sample papers and the previous year’s paper to get acquainted with the question paper and you will know how to manage time in a productive way. This will help you to the difficult levels in the exam.

Revision- Revision practice should be your daily routine. This is the best way to remember all the topics in an easy way. If you forget what you have studied and again when you are studying it will be as good as starting a new topic and a waste of time. It is better to revise every day what has been studied previously.

Stay healthy and fit-  Studying does not mean compromising your health. If you don’t have good health then the energy level will be low in every action including studies. You will even get frustrated. To avoid all this stay healthy with physical exercise, yoga, meditation as it will also help you focus more and also eat healthily and avoid junk foods.

The key point for success is to stay focused, stay calm and always be positive and trust yourself.

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