IBPS Clerk Prelims Exam: Preparation Strategy

The Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) is the conducting body for the Clerical cadre exam. The IBPS is the recruiting body for various bank exams in the Public Sector. The IBPS Clerk Prelim Exam is the start of a journey towards the achievement of the revered designation. 

IBPS will hold the Clerk test for the 13th consecutive year in FY 2023–2024, hence the title IBPS Clerk CRP XIII. The preliminary test and the main exam are the two parts of the IBPS Clerk exam. Thus, those who pass both of these exams are chosen for the position. According to the IBPS Calendar 2023, the IBPS Clerk Prelims will be held on August 26, September 2, and October 7 2023 and the IBPS Clerk Mains on October 8, 2023.

Start your IBPS Clerk Prelims Preparation now with the Free Online IBPS Clerk Mock Test Series!!

Also, ace the preliminary exam with the help of links given below:

For details on other bank exams, refer to the linked article.

According to the IBPS Calendar 2023, the IBPS Clerk Prelims will be held on August 26, September 2, and October 7 2023 and the IBPS Clerk Mains on October 8, 2023.

The total vacancies have been announced by the IBPS for 11 Participating Banks in different states and union territories of the country, in the IBPS Clerk 2023. Last year, 6035 vacancies have been released for the clerical cadre post which is comparatively less in comparison to the last year. In 2020, IBPS released 12,315 vacancies for the post of IBPS Clerk. 

Visit IBPS Clerk Vacancy, for further details, in the linked article.

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IBPS Clerk Exam Pattern

Candidates have a great opportunity to crack the IBPS Clerk exam if they do serious Preparation for the IBPS Clerk Exam 2023.

There are only two stages which are a part of the IBPS Clerk selection process. This is the:

  • Prelims Exam
  • Mains Exam

Both the stages are Online Computer Based tests where candidates have to choose the answer from the multiple options given. The detailed exam pattern has been discussed below. Also, interested candidates can visit the IBPS Clerk Prelims page for more information.

The IBPS Clerk Prelims Exam Pattern for the 2023 exam is as follows:

Section No. Of Questions Marks Duration
English Language 30 30 01 Hour
Numerical Ability 35 35
Reasoning Ability 35 35
Total 100 100

The IBPS Clerk Mains Exam Pattern for the 2023 exam is as follows:

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

The IBPS Clerk syllabus has all the relevant information related to the various topics mentioned in this article.

IBPS Clerk Prelims – Salient Points

  • This phase is only qualifying in nature so the IBPS Clerk prelims preparation must be done with an aim to score as many marks as possible
  • There is sectional timing and 20 minutes are devoted to each section in the preliminary exam
  • Sectional cut off is also there in each section so candidates need to ensure that they perform equally well in all subjects
  • Candidates who qualify in this phase are called for the Mains examination and the marks scored in Mains are evaluated to get the final list of shortlisted candidates

For more details on upcoming bank exams, refer to the linked article.

The links given below will help candidates prepare themselves with their IBPS Clerk Prelims preparation:

Topics for Quantitative Aptitude Verbal Ability
Logical Reasoning IBPS Clerk Exam Pattern
Tips To Prepare Data Interpretation for Bank Exams Seating Arrangement 

IBPS Clerk Prelims Preparation Strategy– 8 Important Tips

The IBPS Clerk Exam has a lot of topics to be covered. The important thing related to the exam is the time allotment for each section/Paper.

Candidates to ace time management skills must take IBPS Clerk Mock Tests on a regular basis. Candidates need to do a proper IBPS Clerk Preparation to crack the exam with a great score.

Government Exam 2023

The 8 important IBPS Clerk Preparation tips are as follows:

  1. Candidates should know everything about the IBPS Clerk Exam. The official IBPS Clerk Notification will fetch them all the relevant details related to the exams.
  2. Candidates should check the IBPS Clerk Eligibility to know about certain criteria related to them.
  3. Candidates should be updated with the Exam Pattern and the IBPS Clerk syllabus to get a clear idea on various topics.
  4. Candidates should understand the IBPS Clerk Prelims Exam Analysis to get an idea related to the difficulty level of the topics in the exam.
  5. The IBPS Clerk Mains Exam Analysis will help them with a proper preparation strategy and time management for the upcoming exam.
  6. The important IBPS Clerk books will help them with a planned preparation and a good score ultimately.
  7. A proper study routine with proper notes and IBPS study material will help them reach their desired endeavours.
  8. Candidates should practice the numerical and Logical Reasoning section multiple times religiously to improve their solving speed.
  9. To check their preparation level for the IBPS Clerk exam candidates must take free Online quizzes regularly.

Candidates need to follow these important tips for scoring well in the IBPS Clerk Exam 2023.

For details on the IBPS Clerk Online Application, refer to the linked article.

IBPS Clerk Subject-wise Preparation Tips

The three primary subjects that make up the IBPS Clerk Prelims test will be covered, totalling 100 marks. The final answer to how to ace the IBPS Clerk Prelims in the first attempt depends on how well the candidates are prepared for each of the three areas, English Language, Numerical Ability, and Reasoning Ability. Given below is the preparation strategy for each of the subjects to score well in the IBPS Clerk Prelims examination:

  • Reasoning Ability:
    • This is the most logical section of the paper and easier to score. However, the candidates need to be very analytical in this section.
    • The first thing an aspirant needs to do is go through the syllabus and shortlist the important books to cover all the topics. 
    • Since this section is purely analytical it is important to practice the questions from this section every day. 
    • Take one topic, go through the important concepts and solve mock tests and sample papers.
    • Solve the mock tests and analyse the mistakes. Revision after completion of every topic is a must to ace this section.
    • Some of the important topics of the Reasoning section are: 
      • Coding-Decoding, 
      • Syllogism, Puzzles, 
      • Seating Arrangement, 
      • Ranking and Order 

Find the list of the IBPS Clerk Exam Centres in the linked article.

  • Quantitative Aptitude:
    • The section is considered the most challenging section of the IBPS Clerk exam as it involves applying innumerable formulas. 
    • Calculations are the basis of this subject, so in order to succeed, the student must be strong with numbers and accurate calculations.
    • The section is the most scoring of the IBPS Clerk Exam if candidates are well-prepared.
    • The best way to prepare this section is by memorising the formulas of each topic by heart.
    • Learn tricks and shortcuts to solve problems.
    • Revise the formulas regularly and solve questions from topics that you find difficult.
    • Practice regularly to master the application of the formulas to solve problems.
    • Solve mock tests for each of topic and work on the speed. Improving the speed and accuracy of solving the questions is the only way to excel this section.
    • Some of the important topics of the subject are:
      • Ratio and Proportion, 
      • Speed and Distance, 
      • Average, 
      • Time and Work, 
      • Data Interpretation, 
      • Number Series, 
      • Simplification, and 
      • Quadratic Equation.

Learn 10 Simple Maths Tricks & Shortcuts to speed up your calculation in the exam hall.

  • English Language:
    • This section tests the basic proficiency of candidates in the English language – vocabulary and basic knowledge of English grammar.
    • The students must develop a daily reading and writing routine to prepare for this section. This helps with vocabulary as well as grammar and syntax. It also helps to increase the reading speed. Regularly read magazines and newspapers and jot down new words.
    • Review all of the fundamental grammatical principles, then put them to use in written and verbal communication.
    • Solve practice questions regularly.
    • This section emphasises on vocabulary, antonyms, synonyms, grammar, error-detection, para jumbles, idioms, phrases, reading comprehension, fill in the gaps and sentence reconstruction.

For more details on other aspects of the IBPS Clerk Admit Card, refer to the linked article.

Although IBPS Clerk Prelims exam preparation involves the preparation of three subjects majorly, candidates must be prepared for the Mains exam as well in advance, as it is not sufficient to prepare for the Mains exam after the prelims. There is a window of almost a month between the prelims result and the Mains exam. Thus given below is the way to approach the other areas which are asked in the IBPS Clerk Mains exam, in addition to the above three sections. 

Candidates must prepare themselves with these sections well in advance along with the preparation of the IBPS Clerk Prelims.

  • Computer Aptitude:
    • Comparatively speaking, this section is simpler and involves the understanding of computer hardware and software. 
    • The section tests the candidates’ basic knowledge of computers and the questions asked are also simpler.
    • It is a good idea to become familiar with all of the computer acronyms and shortcuts for this area.
    • Among the most important topics are MS Office Fundamentals, Operating System Functions, Basic Internet Knowledge and Protocols, and Computer Fundamentals.
    • Spending just one hour daily would be enough to finish this section.

Also, find the IBPS PO Preparation tips in the linked article.

  • Financial and General Awareness:
    • This is one of the easiest sections to score well in the IBPS Clerk Exam, it doesn’t call for any special strategies.
    • This segment does not require more than daily newspaper reading and keeping up with news via television or social media.
    • Candidates who are applying must be informed of all societal, financial, and economic developments taking place both domestic and international.
    • It is important to emphasise the banking and insurance-related information and abbreviations while preparing this topic.
    • Apart from the important banking terms, the section can be prepared by reading the current affairs of the last six months.

It is crucial that the candidates make the most of their time by practising more and preparing more effectively rather than going over everything repeatedly. To evaluate themselves before the exams, they must register for the different online mock exams and sample papers that are offered online.

To learn How to Crack Bank Clerk Exam on First Attempt, check the linked article.

IBPS Clerk Preliminary Exam Preparation: Topic Wise Analysis and Weightage

Given below is the analysis of the IBPS Clerk Prelims 2023 exam, based on the questions which were asked. The analysis will help the candidates to score well in the exam and attempt the paper better.

Reasoning Ability:

Topics Difficulty Level No of Questions Asked
Assumption Moderate 2
Coding-Decoding Easy 5
Data sufficiency Easy-Moderate 5
Inequality Easy 5
Letter formation Moderate 2+2
Para jumbles Moderate 12
Puzzle Moderate 15
Syllogism Easy 4

Quantitative Aptitude:

Topics Difficulty Level No of the questions asked
Boat and stream Easy-Moderate 2
Data Interpretation Easy-Moderate 18
Miscellaneous (Average, Time & Work, Profit & Loss) Easy-Moderate 15
Quadratic equations Moderate Nil
Simplification Easy 5
Speed, Time, and Distance Easy 1

English Language: 

Topics Difficulty Level No of Questions Asked
Cloze test Moderate 6
Fillers Easy 2
Letter Formation Moderate 2+2
Reading Comprehension Easy-Moderate 15
Vocabulary Moderate 2

Candidates who wish to check the detailed Clerk and other IBPS exam schedules can visit the IBPS Exam Dates page.

IBPS Clerk Prelims Preparation: Best Books

To prepare for any competitive exam, it is extremely important that candidates study from the right sources. It is wise to buy the best-recommended books for the IBPS Clerk exam as they help prepare better in less time. For general preparation, look at the expert-recommended reading list for each of the three Prelims sections in the table below.

IBPS Clerk Prelims Preparation: Best Books
Subject Book Author/Publisher
Reasoning Ability A New Approach to Reasoning, Verbal and Non-Verbal B.S. Sijwali, Indu Sijwali
Analytical Reasoning M. K. Pandey
Modern Approach to Verbal and Non-verbal Reasoning R.S. Agarwal
Quantitative Aptitude Objective Mathematics Tarun Goyal
Data Interpretation Arun Sharma
Quantitative Aptitude R.S. Agarwal
English Language Word Power Made Easy Norman Lewis
Objective General English Arihant Publications
High School English Grammar and Composition Wren and Martin

Find the detailed list of IBPS Clerk books, in the link attached.

With IBPS Clerk is one of the largest exams conducted in the banking sector, the number of applicants each year are also extremely high. Thus, candidates who aspire to crack the upcoming clerical cadre exam must start their IBPS Clerk Prelims preparation now.

The preparation tips given in this article shall help candidates prepare themselves for the clerical cadre recruitment 2023 and for any further information regarding the exam or study material, candidates can turn to BYJU’S for assistance.

Related Links
IBPS Clerk Result IBPS Clerk Score Card
IBPS Clerk Cut Off English Language Preparation for IBPS Clerk Exam
Reasoning Ability Preparation for IBPS Clerk Exam Bank Clerk – Exam Information & Job Profile
bank salary range IBPS Clerk Salary

Frequently Asked Questions on IBPS Clerk Prelims Preparation


Q 1. Is the IBPS Clerk Prelims exam easy to crack?

Ans. If a candidate is well prepared and maintains a balance between time management and efficiency, then with proper IBPS Clerk preparation, the exam can be cracked.

Q 2. Can I crack the IBPS Clerk exam with 30 days of preparation?

Ans. It is not impossible to qualify for the IBPS Clerk exam with 30 days of preparation but more hard work, dedication and preparation will be required. Also, the candidate must have some idea about the syllabus for the examination.

Q 3. What are the best tips to prepare for the IBPS Clerk prelims exam?

Ans. Given below are the best tips for IBPS Clerk prelims preparation:

  • Solve mock tests and sample papers
  • Analyse the syllabus and exam pattern
  • Focus on common topics based on the previous year’s question paper review
  • Give priority to Time Management
  • Equal dedication for each section as there is a sectional cut off
  • Refer to previous year cut off marks to estimate the qualifying marks for the upcoming exam

Q 4. Is General Awareness included in the IBPS Clerk Prelims exam?

Ans. No, General Awareness is not a part of the IBPS Clerk Prelims syllabus. Only three sections are included: Reasoning Ability, Quantitative Aptitude and English Language.

Q 5. How do I ace the English Language section of the IBPS Clerk Exam?

Ans. In IBPS Clerk Prelims, the English section is the most scoring due to its high number of attempts. However, candidates must make sure to work on basic grammar skills and vocabulary improvement. In addition to this focusing on key topics like Error Spotting, Reading Comprehension, Cloze Test, Fill in the Blanks, Para Jumbles and Fillers are important to score high marks in the exam.

Q 6. Which topics should candidates concentrate on for the IBPS Clerk Quantitative Aptitude section?

Ans. To score well in the IBPS Clerk Quantitative Ability section focus on important topics like simplification, data interpretation, quadratic equations, and numeric series from where the majority of questions are expected to be asked.

Q 7. How can I enhance my accuracy and speed to perform well in the IBPS Clerk exam?

It is important for candidates to advance in the selection process and be successful in achieving the desired results. To improve your speed and accuracy of the exam, you can practice numerous previous year question papers, and mock tests. The candidates need to prepare an optimal IBPS Clerk study plan to be able to get through the defined selection process and reach the epitome of success.


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