Tip of the month

As there is less than a week remaining for IBPS Clerk Prelims Exam, here are some IBPS Clerk Preparation Plans for exam to help you score better in all sections. The IBPS Clerk exam is conducted in two phases – Preliminary and Main Examination. Negative marking in IBPS clerk is applicable in all the sections. Let us now see how to prepare for these two phases.

Since Prelims exam is conducted only to shortlist candidates for Main exam, all you need to do is to clear the cut off. However, it is better that the IBPS Clerk exam preparation is done thoroughly from the very beginning as the three sections of Prelims and Main exam are common.

The three sections of the Prelims exam and the no. of questions/maximum marks for each section are as follows:

Sections No. of Questions Marks Duration
English Language 30 30  



01 hour

Numerical Ability 35 35
Reasoning Ability 35 35
Total 100 100

The four Sections of the Main Examination and the no. of questions & marks for each section are as follows:

Sections No. of Questions Marks Duration
General / Financial Awareness 50 50 35 Min.
General English 40 40 35 Min.
Reasoning Ability & Computer Aptitude 50 60 45 Min.
Quantitative Aptitude 50 50 45 Min.
Total 190 200 160 Min.


The most important thing to remember is that the score of clerk prelims will not be added to the overall marks considered for final selection. Thus, there is no need to be the topper or score maximum marks in clerk prelims. Clearing the prelims is enough.

The three Important Factors to consider while preparing for Preliminary Exam are as follows:

Time Management – Manage your time in such a way that you are able to go through all the questions at least once in the exam, as there are many questions which are deliberately designed to grab the lion’s share of time. A good time management strategy helps in identifying questions which are easier and can be solved in lesser time.

Speed – After attempting online/offline mock tests, evaluate your performance and identify a set of questions taking maximum time and avoid attempting them during exam.

Accuracy – Make sure to minimize the incorrect attempts and negative marking, so that marks per question get maximized.

For English, make a guesswork only if you are at least 40-50% sure of the answer and can eliminate 2-3 options. Read newspapers and magazines regularly and note down new words. It will also help increase reading speed. Solve practice questions regularly. Focus on topics like Reading Comprehension, Cloze Test, Para jumbles. Start with comprehension, then Attempt cloze test and Para jumbles to increase your overall score.

Quantitative Aptitude is the most difficult section of the IBPS Clerk Preliminary exam as there is no scope for guess work. 100% accuracy should be the aim. Practice regularly. Learn tricks and shortcuts to solve problems. Attempting fewer questions with higher accuracy is more rewarding than attempting more questions with less accuracy. Work on speed mathematics & Memorize Tables till 20, squares till 30 and cubes till 15.

Reasoning section is highly scoring if you have understood the logic behind every topic and practiced a lot. This section also requires 100% accuracy.

General Awareness section tests for your knowledge of current affairs. In order to score high in this section, one must read newspapers and magazines from the last six months and make a note of important events.

Computer Aptitude is the most scoring section. The candidates need to focus on fundamentals of computers for scoring well. The main topics of Computer Aptitude include Basics of computer, Network basics, MS Word, MS Excel, Generation of computers, etc.

Lastly, the candidates are advised to practice through mock tests, sample papers and previous years’ banking examination question papers to score well in each section.