Your Guide to Cracking the IBPS Exam

Your Guide to Cracking the IBPS Exam

The terms “IBPS exam” stands for Institute of Banking Personnel Selection Examination, and is among the most significant examinations in India in the banking sector. Although IBPS conducts exams for various posts including clerks, PO, RRB and specialist officers, a lot of candidates aim at cracking the bank PO exams.

Clearing any exam set by IBPS PO takes good preparation strategy and planning. If you too are an IBPS aspirant, here is a guide to help you successfully prepare for the PO exams.

Exam pattern and process

There are two levels to IBPS examinations, namely the Common Written Exam (CWE) and Interview. In case of bank PO exams, the CWE consists of two parts – Preliminary exam and Mains. The preliminary exam is an hour-long exam which covers reasoning, English and quantitative aptitude. The preliminary exams have a total of 100 marks.

On the other hand, Mains is 2-2.5 hour long exam with a full score of 200. The subjects covered in this exam include reasoning, English/Hindi language, general awareness, quantitative aptitude/numerical ability and computer knowledge.

There is negative marking too, as for each wrong answer given, 0.25 marks are deducted from the total.


Upon successfully qualifying the CWE, candidates get to appear for the interview. Interviews for bank PO are conducted by the IBPS department at centres that are spread all over the country.

What to cover?

Reasoning – If prepared well, this section of the question paper can help students gather good scores. A few areas that students can concentrate in to do well in this section include – analogy, problem-solving, coding etc.

General Knowledge – For this section, you need to keep up to date with events and happenings all over the country, especially with those related to the banking and finance sector. Apart from current affairs, focus on one-year development in sports, marketing, banking and finance, Indian Constitution and so on.

Language – To do well in this section, students need to have good command on the English language. Focus on comprehension, preposition, idiom and phrases, spotting errors etc.

Quantitative aptitude – Data interpretation is a major part of this section, in addition to sequences, ratio proportion, number system, percentage and average, tabulation, pie chart, bar graph and so on.

Computer knowledge – To prepare well for this section, be thorough with the basics of computer, operating system functions, network basics, Microsoft office skills and so on and forth.

IBPS PO preparation tips

  • Plan well for successful preparation of IBPS PO
  • Keep yourself updated with the exam syllabus and proceedings
  • Break your study routine into topic-wise preparation
  • Don’t underestimate general knowledge and current affairs
  • Manage your time well
  • Practice with mock test papers
  • Make time for revision
  • Take care of your diet and rest well

Although there is no mantra for successfully cracking the PO exams, following the above tips will definitely improve your prospects for success manifold.