SBI PO Syllabus for Prelims and Mains Exam

In this article, we shall discuss the complete SBI PO syllabus. Aspirants can also download the SBI PO Syllabus PDF for Prelims and Mains given here. The SBI PO exam is one of the most sought after exams in the country and lakhs of candidates appear for the exam each year.

The SBI PO Exam is considered to be a coveted job opportunity by banking aspirants across India. The State Bank of India conducts the SBI Probationary Officer (PO) exam annually to recruit new entrants for managerial cadre positions.

The SBI PO syllabus is quite similar to any other bank exam syllabus.

To know about other bank exams, check at the linked article.

The syllabus of SBI PO exam is segregated into three tiers:

  1. Prelims (online written test)
  2. Mains (online written test)
  3. Group Discussion & Interview

SBI PO Prelims Syllabus:- Download PDF Here

Candidates who qualify in the SBI PO Prelims exam will be eligible to move to the next level i.e, Mains exam.

SBI PO Mains Syllabus:- Download PDF Here

To explore other Govt Exams, check at the linked article.

SBI PO Syllabus & Exam Pattern

Before aspirants go through the SBI PO syllabus, they should understand the 3 tier SBI PO exam pattern. The SBI PO syllabus for prelims and mains exam is almost the same. Only an extra section of General and Banking awareness is added to the SBI PO mains syllabus.

Given below is the latest SBI PO exam pattern in brief:

SBI PO Exam Pattern
Preliminary Exam Subjects Number of Questions Marks Duration
Quantitative Aptitude 35 35 20 minutes
Reasoning Ability 35 35 20 minutes
English Language 30 30 20 minutes
Mains Examination Data Analysis & Interpretation 35 60 45 minutes
Reasoning Ability 45 60 60 minutes
English Language 35 40 40 minutes
General & Banking Awareness 40 40 35 minutes
English (Descriptive Test) 2 50 30 minutes
Group Discussion 20
Interview 30

The SBI PO exam 2019 has already been conducted and candidates willing to prepare for the SBI PO exam 2020 must start the preparation immediately. Aspirants can find the detailed SBI PO Prelims and SBI PO mains syllabus further in this article.

Candidates looking for the latest notifications regarding the upcoming Government exams can refer to the linked article.

SBI PO Prelims Syllabus

We have stated earlier that the SBI PO exam syllabus is similar to the curriculum of any other PSU banks. The SBI PO Prelims syllabus primarily consists of three major sections that a candidate needs to ace before moving to the next level i.e. Mains.

The SBI PO Preliminary Exam syllabus comprises three sections:

  1. Quantitative Aptitude
  2. Reasoning Ability
  3. English Language

Each of these sections has an enormous array of topics on which the questions are based.

To explore other SBI exams, check at the linked article.

It is advisable for candidates to refer to the prior years’ question papers to get a feel of the real test and understand the weightage of each topic.

Here is the detailed SBI PO syllabus of the Preliminary examination:

SBI PO Prelims Syllabus – Detailed
SBI PO Quantitative Aptitude Syllabus SBI PO Reasoning Syllabus SBI PO English Syllabus
Simplification, Profit & Loss Alphanumeric Series Reading Comprehension
Mixtures & Alligations Logical Reasoning Fill in the blanks
Permutation, Combination & Probability Data Sufficiency Cloze Test
Work & Time, Sequence & Series Ranking/Directions/Alphabet Test Para jumbles
Simple Interest & Compound Interest & Surds & Indices Seating Arrangement Vocabulary
Mensuration – Cylinder, Cone, Sphere Coded Inequalities Paragraph Completion
Time & Distance, Number Systems Puzzle



Multiple Meaning /Error Spotting
Data Interpretation Syllogism Sentence Completion
Ratio & Proportion, Percentage Blood Relations, Input-Output Tenses Rules

Candidates can get the maths shortcut tricks at the linked article.

SBI PO Prelims Syllabus:- Download PDF Here

SBI PO Mains Syllabus

The syllabus of SBI PO for the Mains Examination constitutes of four major sections (Objective-type questions):

  1. Data Analysis & Interpretation
  2. Reasoning & Computer Aptitude
  3. General/Economy/Banking Awareness
  4. English Language

Aspirants can also check the General English for Competitive exams, to check the syllabus for the English language section.

The SBI PO Mains syllabus comprises a descriptive test as well. The descriptive test consists of two questions, one letter writing and one essay. Candidates need to score passing marks in the descriptive test as well to qualify the SBI PO mains exam.

Here is the SBI PO syllabus topic-wise as per the Mains exam pattern:

SBI PO Mains Syllabus (topic-wise)
Data Analysis & Interpretation Reasoning Computer Aptitude General/Economy/Banking Awareness English Language
Tabular Graph Syllogism Internet Current Affairs Reading Comprehension
Line Graph Verbal Reasoning Memory Financial Awareness Grammar
Bar Graph Circular Seating Arrangement Computer Abbreviation General Knowledge Verbal Ability
Charts & Tables Linear Seating Arrangement Keyboard Shortcuts Static Awareness Vocabulary
Missing Case DI Double Lineup Computer Hardware Banking Terminologies Knowledge Sentence Improvement
Radar Graph Caselet Scheduling Microsoft Office Banking Awareness Word Association
Probability Blood Relations, Critical Reasoning Computer Software Principles of Insurance Para Jumbles
Data Sufficiency Input-Output, Analytical and Decision Making Computer Fundamentals /Terminologies Error Spotting
Let it Case DI Directions and Distances Networking Cloze Test
Permutation and Combination Ordering and Ranking, Code Inequalities Number System Fill in the blanks
Pie Charts Data Sufficiency Operating System
Coding-Decoding, Course of Action Basic of Logic Gates

SBI PO Mains Syllabus:- Download PDF Here

SBI PO Syllabus – Group Discussion & Interview

Apart from the SBI PO Prelims and Mains exam, there is another phase of the PO exam – Group Exercise & Interview process, which is the final stage of selection for successful candidates who qualify the first two phases of SBI PO exam.

Candidates can get the tips to prepare for SBI PO Descriptive paper at the linked article.

Also, to know the correct Letter Writing Format, candidates can visit the linked article.

Candidates who clear all the phases of the exam receive the Letter of Appointment from SBI stating the joining formalities, joining date, place of joining, etc.

Candidates can know about the upcoming bank exams from the linked article.

Related Links:

SBI PO Exam – Preparation & Booklist

Candidates preparing for the SBI PO exam must note that the SBI PO syllabus is vast and the competition is very tough. SBI has removed the sectional cut-off for the SBI PO exam 2019 and is expected to remove it for the coming years as well. This gives aspirants preparing for the SBI PO exam to strategise a study plan and prepare themselves accordingly. 

free online quiz for IBPS, SSC and other government exams

Candidates can consider the below-mentioned preparation tips for better preparation for the upcoming bank exams, based on the SBI PO syllabus for prelims and mains exam:

  1. Aspirants must regularly solve SBI PO mock tests. This will help candidates apprehend their performance and revise the entire SBI PO syllabus at once with respect to the latest exam pattern. Candidates can visit the SBI PO Mock test series by BYJU’S at the linked article.
  2. Solving SBI PO previous year papers can also be of great help to candidates. Previous year papers will let candidates understand the exact exam pattern based on the SBI PO syllabus for both prelims and mains exam. 
  3. As per the new exam pattern, The State Bank of India has removed sectional cut off for both prelims and mains exam. So candidates must go through the SBI PO syllabus carefully and accordingly prepare themselves and score the maximum marks in the section that is their strongest part in the paper.
  4. Each section in the SBI PO Prelims and mains exam has a stipulated time devoted to it. Candidates must prepare themselves based on the same time division. 
  5. One must go through the SBI PO syllabus carefully and analyse their strengths and weaknesses in the exam. Equal time must be devoted for preparation of each section as only then a candidate will be able to score good marks overall.
  6. Candidates should also read the newspapers, magazines and journals to enhance their communication and grammatical skills. This will also help in the general awareness section in the SBI PO mains exam.

Given below are a few preparation links which may help you prepare for the upcoming SBI Probationary Officer exam:

To learn more about SBI PO Preparation, check at the linked article.

Given below is a list of books that candidates can refer to while preparing for the SBI PO exam:

SBI PO Exam Booklist
English for Bank Exams (Prelims and Mains) by S. Chand Publishers A Modern Approach to Verbal and Non-Verbal Reasoning by R.S. Agarwal
Comprehensive Guide to SBI PO Exam (Prelims and Mains) by Disha Experts How to prepare for Data Interpretation and Logical Reasoning by Arun Sharma
Pratiyogita Darpan (Monthly Edition) Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive Exams by Arun Sharma
Lucent’s General Knowledge Banking Awareness by B.K. Publications

Candidates who wish to crack the SBI PO exam need to put in a lot of hard work, be patient and stay determined during their bank exam preparation. You can refer to BYJU’S study materials which are well-structured and help you to understand the core concepts in a lucid manner.

Frequently asked questions on SBI PO Syllabus and Exam Pattern

Q 1. Is there negative marking in the SBI PO exam?

Ans. Yes, there is a penalty for wrong answers in both SBI PO prelims and mains exam. There is a penalty of ¼th marks for every wrongly answered question in both objective papers.

Q 2. There is sectional cut off for each section in SBI PO exam?

Ans. No, The State Bank of India has removed sectional cut off from both SBI PO Prelims and Mains examination. Only an overall cut off will be considered for the selection of candidates.

Q 3. Are the marks scored in the SBI PO Prelims exam taken in consideration for the final selection of Probationary Officers?

Ans. No, the SBI PO preliminary exam is only qualifying in nature and the marks scored in prelims will not be calculated for the final selection of Officers. The final merit list is declared based on the aggregate marks secured in the mains examination and the group discussion & interview.

Q 4. What is the salary for a Probationary Officer in SBI?

Ans. The initial basic SBI PO salary is Rs. 27,620 in the scale of 23700 – 980/7- 30560 – 1145/2 – 32850 – 1310/7 – 42020. The total compensation is approximately Rs. 8.20 lakhs to Rs. 13.08 lakhs. Candidates can check the detailed SBI PO salary at the linked article.


  1. When will be sbi po 2020 notification expected to be released

    1. Hi Sunith,
      The tentative date for the release of the SBI PO 2020 notification is April 2020. Check the SBI PO Notification page for regular updates.
      You can also check the following links for your preparation:
      SBI PO Mock tests
      SBI PO Question papers

  2. Is there any descriptive i,e (letter writting and essay ) in Sbi PO exam after prelims And mains before interview And gd ?

    1. Hi Simran,
      As per the SBI PO exam pattern, there is a descriptive paper in SBI PO Mains Examination and after that, candidates are called for GD and interview.

      To understand the SBI PO exam pattern, check:
      SBI PO Previous Year Question Papers
      SBI PO Free Mock Tests

  3. Is there any language option in The interview and group discussion??

    1. Hi Akanksha,
      There is no language option in SBI PO Interview and GD round. Check SBI PO page for details.

  4. I want to knw when the exams is going to be held

    1. Hi Imran,
      The dates for SBI PO exam is not confirmed due to coronavirus pandemic. Keep checking SBI PO Notification page for regular updates.

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