The banking sector attracts hordes of people to its recruitment drives because of the security, well-paid and great career prospects that it offers. Openings are available in banks at various levels, right from Clerical posts to that of Probationary Officers.

There are various types of banks in India such as the State Bank of India and Associates Nationalized Banks, Domestic Private Sector Banks, New Domestic Private Sector Banks, Foreign Banks. The Reserve Bank of India acts a centralized monitoring body in the Indian financial sector.

Students who have gained more than 60% in their graduate studies can appear for the All India Examination conducted by the Public Sector Banks. This exam is the first step towards a lifelong career in the Banking profession.

Indian Banks For Probationary Officer Examination

A List of Banks India that conduct the PO Examination Tests are:

  • ICICI Bank
  • Indian Overseas Bank
  • Canara Bank
  • SBI Bank
  • Corporation Bank
  • UCO Bank
  • Federal Bank
  • Syndicate Bank
  • OBC Bank
  • Saraswati Cooperation Bank PO
  • Allahabad Bank PO
  • Dena Bank PO
  • Central Bank of India Bank PO
  • Bank of Baroda PO
  • Andhra Bank PO
  • IDBI Bank
  • Vijaya Bank PO

State Bank PO Examination: Pattern & Syllabus

State Bank of India: PO Exam Syllabus & Pattern

SBI PO: Syllabus & Pattern

Let us look at a model of the State Bank PO exam as it is the largest bank and has several associate banks under its fold such as the State Bank of Bikaner & Jaipur, State Bank of Hyderabad, State Bank of Indore, State Bank of Mysore, State Bank of Patiala, State Bank of Suarastra, State Bank of Travancore. But more or less this applies to all the other bank exams too.

Educational qualifications required are a First division graduation in any discipline with more than 65%. This is relaxed for Scheduled Castes, Scheduled Tribes and the Physically Challenged.

In addition, proficiency in computers and a certificate of training from a reputed institute is also essential.

Age limit: Not below 21 years and not above 30 years as on1st July of the year of Exam

When held: generally in the month of September-October.

There are two stages of the test which is in Hindi and English that is:

1. Written Test :

o Objective/Syllabus:

1. Test of Reasoning ( 75 Questions and time suggested is 50 minutes)
2. Quantitative Aptitude (50 Questions and time suggested is 30 minutes),
3. General Awareness (50 Questions and time suggested is 25 minutes),
4. Test of computer literacy and English language (50 Questions and time suggested is 30 minutes).

The total Number of questions asked is 225 and 135 minutes allotted for the Objective Test. Beware as there will be negative marks for the wrong answers.

o Descriptive:

It is a test of English language.

Time: 45 minutes.

Objective: To test the person’s  higher order cognitive abilities such as comprehension and analysis of situations, generation of unique ideas or situations as well as language ability.

Approach: Three out of four questions have to be answered on a given situation with answers to be restricted to the space provided in the question-cum-answer sheet.

Note: no negative marks

2. Interview:

Consists of a group discussion and interview only for those candidates who have cleared the written examination

Strategy and Tips For Probationary Officer Recruitment Exam:

  • The written sections of Reasoning, Verbal and Aptitude can be prepared for by solving the previous papers. Try and attempt those questions that you are hundred percent sure of.
  • Do not leave anything for the last minute. Work on a little bit of everything every day. Last minute studying will not help you.
  • For the General Awareness section try and read the newspapers and general knowledge books regularly. Try and make a scrap book on the latest banking news, mergers, acquisitions and agreements.
  • On the day of the exam first select questions that you feel hundred percent sure of. This will enable you to keep an eye on the time and not fall in the trap of negative marks.
  • The number of applicants far outweighs the vacancy hence without enough preparation and practice you are a sitting duck for failure. Try and time yourself every time you practice the tests and try and do it at a less amount of time.
  • Go through acquaint yourself booklet that you usually get when you apply for the exam. It has several helpful tips.
  • You have to attempt 225 questions in 135 minutes. Try and keep your goal at around 185 questions correct with no negative marking and you are safe at 90%.
  • At the exam start answering from the General Awareness section as that does not require a lot of thinking. Keep the time to 25 minutes for this section.
  • Be careful to tick the right answer as you might know it but not tick it.
  • Next, attempt the English section. The first 10 questions are based on comprehending a passage and the remaining ones are basic grammar and sentence structure. This should not take you more than 20 to 265 minutes.
  • Then you can choose from the remaining two sections whichever you are comfortable with.
  • You must be accustomed with the exam paper so that you do not waste any precious time understanding the format or the instructions.
  • Try to practice concentration and meditation regularly. This will help you to remain focused during preparation and also on the day of the exam.
  • Go ahead and prepare a study planner and calendar for yourself and ensure that you stick to it.
  • In order to do well in the Comprehension section practice reading for gist and details. Read whatever you can and whenever you can.
  • Pay attention to new vocabulary that you come across.
  • Brush up on your fundamental concepts of Mathematics and English.
  • Try and read up on Banks and pertaining information. This will help you in the General awareness section and the interview.

Books For Indian Banks PO Exam Preparation:

  1. Several students buy the R. S. Agarwal series on arithmetic, reasoning and basic English and follow it stringently.
  2. Go through the BSC series of reasoning and English.
  3. Bank PO Exam Preparation by Aditya Publications.
  4. Quantitative Aptitude for competitive exams from Abhijit Guha.

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