How much time should I give to each section in the upcoming SBI Clerk Preliminary exam?

Aman and Vikram are childhood friends and they both have been preparing for different bank exams for past few months. They both apply for SBI Clerk 2016 exam and coincidentally their Pre exam dates fall on the same day and on the same time.

Soon the day came and they both leave for the examination centre together. In the mid way Vikram asks Aman, “So, what strategy would you follow?” Aman in response says, “I have a certain target in my mind. I’ll do 20 questions in Quantitative aptitude, 22 in reasoning and 18 in English section and I’ll take 20 minutes in each section.”

“What about you?”, he curiously asks Vikram in return.

Vikram replies, “I’ll try and pick the easiest of the questions first and then I’ll take the moderate ones. I believe almost 40 to 42 questions can be answered in first 30 minutes and then I can come back to any of the sections and try and attempt more.”

Soon they reached the exam centre and after wishing each other a good luck they both are all set to take the test.

And the time starts!

1st 10 minutes

Section: Quantitative aptitude

Aman and Vikram start attempting questions. Aman however started from the 1st question while Vikram’s eyes were picking only the easy ones. In the first 10 minutes while Vikram were able to find and solve 14 easy questions, Aman could solve only 10 questions in the section of Maths.

Next 10 minutes

Aman is still busy solving some more questions as he is yet to score 10 more marks which he had decided for himself and on the other hand Vikram moves to English language section and keeps on attempting the easiest questions he was able to find. He confidently picks 5 Questions of Synonyms and Antonyms from the passage, 4 questions from Find the error, 4 questions of Cloze Test and 3 questions of Sentence Correction Test part. So in these 10 minutes while Aman does only 8 more questions of Maths, Vikram was able to do 16 questions of English language section.

Next 10 minutes

Now Aman moves to the next section which is English language and Vikram moves to his next section which was Reasoning aptitude. But Aman again starts solving whatever comes on the computer screen first. It was a passage based on Economy and it was not lucid but Aman still tries reading and comprehending the whole passage. On the other hand, Vikram still continues with the easy-pickings. He did 5 questions of Syllogism, 5 questions of Inequalities, 2 of Blood Relations, 1 of Coding-Decoding and 1 of Alphabet test. By the time Aman answered 10 questions asked from the passage, Vikram did 14 questions of Reasoning section.

Half an hour passed and by now while Aman could solve only 28 questions of the first two sections, Vikram had attempted 44 easiest questions of all.

Next 10 minutes

Now, Vikram once again moves to the Quant section and starts attempting the slightly moderate looking questions while Aman is still busy taking the questions of English language.

In these 10 minutes Vikram was able to solve 7 more questions of Maths and was sure even sure of his level of accuracy. On the other hand, Aman was able to pick 8 more questions from the Cloze Test and 2 more questions from the Find the error part but while filling the Cloze Test blanks he was not confident of almost 4 of his answers yet he attempted and marked his choices out of exasperation.

Next 5 minutes

Vikram moves to English language section and as he finds the passage a bit difficult to comprehend he just reads the first and the last sentence of each of the paragraph and was able to answer 3 questions from the passage. He further attempted 2 more questions from the Cloze test part and 1 more question from the Sentence Correction part and he just took 5 minutes to answer these 6 questions.

On the other hand, Aman comes to the next section and once again starts taking the section from the 1st set of questions. It was a Puzzle test with 8 persons, half of which face inside and the other half face outside.

Aman literally wasted 4 precious minutes of his while drawing a diagram to solve this Puzzle but he couldn’t make one. He moves to next set of questions and again it is a Puzzle. He once again takes his chances and starts solving it. Though it was an easy one but the thought of attempting less number of questions in the previous two sections was still there at the back of his mind and his nervousness got the better of his senses. 5 minutes passed and Aman could attempt no questions whatsoever.

Last 15 minutes

Aman in next 5 minutes somehow got the links and finally got able to make the diagram but now only 10 minutes are left and he’s yet to attempt almost 16-17 questions to reach the level he previously had set for himself. He tried but out of sheer nervousness could attempt only 9 more questions overall.

When Vikram moves to Reasoning aptitude section and he straight forward leaves the first set of questions. He instead invested a few minutes in trying to solve the relatively easier Puzzle and in 15 minutes could solve 8 more questions (5 from Puzzle and 3 from Deciphering Coding-Decoding set.) in the section.

Final Number of attempts by both of them

Aman’s performance

Quantitative Aptitude: 18

English Language: 18

Reasoning Aptitude: 14

Vikram’s performance

Quantitative Aptitude: 21

English Language: 22

Reasoning Aptitude: 22

Now, I ask you a simple question whose level of accuracy and score in the list be higher than the other?

We know you know the answer.

Do remember the fact, “Cracking a competitive is less about hard-work, knowing everything and attempting highest number of questions. It is actually more about Strategy, execution of things you’re well aware of and applying presence of mind.”

We hope you are able to read between the lines. All the best!

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