IBPS Clerk Mains 2016: How to Allot Time for Each Section?

ibps clerk mains time managementThe IBPS Clerk Mains Exam is the only hurdle now for you to get one step close to become a clerk in govt banks.But that final step is the most important part of all your preparations & nervousness during the exam can spoil everything.How to manage or allot time in clerk mains is one of the biggest doubt that each candidate has in mind.


So this article will tell more about time allotment for all the sections in the ibps clerical mains along with some important strategies to follow on the exam day.


Which Section Should I Start?

The time limit for main examination might be 2 hours but what you are doing in the first 15 minutes will set the mood for the remaining duration.This was one of the biggest mistake commited during IBPS PO main exam.


It is the reason why experts advise candidates to start the test from an easy section.This makes sure you dont lose confidence at the beginning itself.


So which paper should be attended first? Before getting to know about it, look at the clerical exam pattern once again.




From the 5, there are two easy scoring sections – Computer Knowledge & General Awareness.


There wont be any complex calculations to solve in both subjects.Hence it would not take a long time to complete.


Therefore our suggestion shall be,

General awareness > Computer knowledge > English > Reasoning > Quantitative Aptitude.

Those who are strong in aptitude, may change the above order but do so only if you are very thorough.If not, stick to the above plan.


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How Should I Allot Time?

Now comes the most crucial part of the plan.In clerk exam, every section has been given equal weightage as all questions carry 1 mark.Therefore you cannot afford to stay on one particular section for too long.


how to allot time in ibps clerk main exams


The last 5 minutes can be used to check or answer questions that were marked for review.


General Awareness & Computer Knowledge: These two sections are generally less time consuming & you can easily answer 40 - 50 questions in both within 20-25 minutes which will be sufficient to clear the sectional cut off for the main exam.


So first attempt GK followed by Computers or vice versa & try to mark correct answers without guessing.


English Language: Having completed the above 2 sections, you can easily answer questions in this area quickly if you avoid taking up comprehension part initially.

  • First focus on Cloze test, Para jumbled sentences, Error correction
  • Then move to Synonyms/Antonyms from comprehension part.

To fetch minimum cutoffs, you must be able to successfully attempt 20 - 25 questions accurately in 25 minutes.


Inorder to answer comprehension questions correctly, you will need to spend some time in reading it carefully.So if you are able to spare 5-7 mins at the end, try it.


Reasoning: This section would have few sets of tricky questions but if you had practiced well, it wont be difficult to score within short time.


Follow these short tricks on how to approach each topic:

  • Syllogism is generally easy.Know the right method to solve will help you to complete them in 4-5 minutes.
  • Input- Output: The best way to solve these - analyze the pattern and write down all steps of the given input at once.It will be accuracte & also easy to answer questions thereafter.
  • Inequalities: It is also one of the easiest part provided you know the techniques.They can be answered within 3 - 4 mins.
  • Never skip Blood relations, Age related problems & Direction sense as all are quite easy ones.

Similar to both the other sections, 25-30 attempts with 100% accuracy can be termed as safe. Candidates should try to complete reasoning in 30 minutes.


Quantitative Aptitude: QA is the most feared paper in bank exams as it is time consuming.So it is best to come to this section at the end.


Atleast 20 would be easy questions & if done properly, this can boost your scores too.


Here are some tips to score more in QA within less time:

  • Approximation – Take nearest round number to solve them quickly.
  • Percentage – Learn fraction to decimal and decimal to fraction conversion for quick answers.
  • Probability: 2-3 simple questions can be expected.So be prepared by practicing it.
  • Data Interpretation – Around 10 questions could be asked from this topic. Therefore practice such types & shortcuts in advance.
  • Try to solve simple questions based on ratio-proportion, age relation problems etc.

Make sure to complete aptitude part in 35 minutes.Safe number of attempts: 25 – 30


Know This:

You have now read about how to allot time for each section in ibps clerk mains.But putting these strategies into action is more important.See Topics to cover for IBPS clerk mains to make sure you havent missed any.


Always have a plan on what you are going to do in the exam & stick to it.Think of a Plan B too just incase things didnt work out.


And finally, concentrate on answering questions with maximum accuracy rather than attending all questions with poor accuracy.


All the best for your exams!!

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