This post enlists the preparation strategy adhered by one of the toppers of IBPS-PO 2015 toppers- Sonali Bhatia, who shares information on the following points:

  • Tips on preparations
  • Do’s and Don’ts while preparations
  • An Important tip on attempt strategy which proved to be useful in the examination.

Hello. Please tell our readers something about yourself.

Hello. I am Sonali Bhatia. I have done BCA from Delhi University. My schooling is from Ghaziabad and that is where my family is. Soon after college I started preparing for Bank exams along with my job. I applied for both SBI-PO in 2014 and IBPS-PO in 2015.


What has been your Preparation Strategy for IBPS PO Examination?

While preparing for IBPS-PO I was also working part time with a local IT Company. I worked there for 5 hours/day and it was not a demanding or challenging job. My focus was getting into a reputed nationalized bank from the very beginning. And therefore, I could focus on my studies the rest of the time. I easily got 4-5 hours to study for SBI and IBPS-PO. 

The first thing I did was to go through previous years question papers. This exercise proved to be of immense help as I understood the exam pattern. Though the exam pattern completely changed in 2015, the previous year papers were still very helpful.

Another thing I did was planning and setting up deadlines. To prepare well I planned well. And setting up of deadlines served as a check for my planning and kept me motivated throughout. I was not taking any coaching, nor do I feel it’s required, but I did prepare a very strict schedule.

Additionally, I also think that my positive attitude helped me in not just clearing but also getting a decent score. There is no specific preparation strategy that may suit everyone and in my case starting early was the key.

Besides adhering to the above pointers towards success in IBPS PO, I also followed some Do’s and Don’ts in context to preparations.

Also Read: 2 months study schedule for IBPS-PO Prelims

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What are these Do’s and Don’ts?

You might find them silly or very basic but they worked for me. They were basically just a few pointers I kept in mind while preparing:


1. Give mock tests and most importantly analyze them:

It is important to give mocks (not 10-15 mocks but around 5-7). What is more important is to spend time analyzing mocks.

I cannot stress enough on how much you learn and gain when you analyze the mock tests. This analysis will help you identify:

  • your comfortable and uncomfortable zones while solving the question paper-prepare accordingly
  • if you actually know the chapters that you prepared
  • questions that are consuming time but you are still unable to solve- avoid them
  • which section is fetching you maximum marks- attempt that 1st in the exam
  • how many answered questions you are getting correct- work on accuracy and avoid guessing
  • if you are able to manage time and attempt enough questions from all sections


2. Know your weak and strong areas

Convert your weak areas to strong ones and further make your strong areas stronger.


3. Prepare a schedule

Always try to complete your conceptual study at least one month before the IBPS PO exam. Then focus on giving full length mock tests, analysis of which will help you to ascertain your strong and weak points. Till my syllabus was not covered, I used to take sectional tests.


4. Time Bound Practice

The trickiest part of clearing IBPS PO is to get the right answer in least amount of time. And this is only possible if you practice with a check on time. The harder you practice the better you will get. This holds true for IBPS PO exam as well.

Also Read: 20-20-20-strategy followed by Utkarsh in IBPS-PO

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1. Refer to multiple books:

Refer to a maximum of 2 books per subject.  Referring too many books can create confusion and you won’t be able to cover the entire syllabus.


2. Cling on to any one topic/question:

It is easy to get stuck on a difficult question in the exam. Please understand and remember that spending a lot of time solving a difficult question will give you same marks as an easy question solved in less time. After taking a few mocks, I got into the habit of searching for the easiest questions first.


3. Skip Mock tests:

Don’t skip attempting previous year’s papers or a good test series. Attempt and practice mock tests to empower yourself with the ability to decide – what to attempt and how to attempt in the IBPS PO examination.


So you had a well-defined attempt strategy for IBPS-PO V examination?

Kind of…. You can say that…. I don’t know if you can call it a strategy but this is how I attempted the exam:

I first attempted the section I was most comfortable with- Quantitative Ability. In PrepLadder mocks, I always scored highest in the Quants section (mostly every time). Followed by English, Reasoning, GK and Computers.

I personally go by the method of reading all the questions from starting to the end. Earlier, I used to attempt questions in the order they would appear and would miss out on some of the easy questions that were usually given towards the end of paper. I had somewhere read about the technique of scanning all the questions and applied the same in the one of the mock tests. This gave me an idea of the overall difficulty level of the exam.

In the first round I would attempt all the questions which seemed easy to me. In the second round I attempted the relatively difficult questions. By attempting the exam this way, I did not miss out on attempting the questions that were easy and I knew.

You can adopt the same method/technique if only it suits you well. Do not waste time in attempting what you are unsure of. It will hamper your accuracy and donot forget there is a negative marking for every incorrect response.

We can practice the technique in the mock tests and see if we want to go by the same technique or not. After all everyone has a different strategy of attempting the paper.

Thank you and good luck!


We hope the suggestions in this post prove helpful to you. PrepLadder offers a free mock test for IBPS PO 2016, which you can start with.Take the same and check your level of preparedness. This test is just a preview of our complete IBPS-PO test series. The series helped Sonali and we hope it’s of great help to you too.

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