SBI PO Exam: English Language- Syllabus and Preparation Tips

State Bank of India (SBI) conducts PO examination every year and selects many candidates.

Updated: May 17, 2016 14:12 IST

State Bank of India (SBI), India’s largest commercial bank conducts PO examination every year and selects many candidates. The examination is conducted by The State Bank of India Central Recruitment of Promotion Department, Corporate centre. SBI has initiated recruitment process for Probationary Officers (PO) Posts for the year 2016. The bank invited applications for recruitment to 2200 posts of Probationary Officers (PO). The applications are invited from eligible and interested candidates till 24 May 2016.

SBI conducted the online examination for PO in in three phases. The candidates have buckled up for the upcoming SBI PO exam and have started preparation for the examination.

The preliminary examination phase I is comprised of 100 objective type questions in English language, quantitative aptitude and reasoning ability areas. A total marks in this test is 100. This test was of 1 hour duration consisting of 3 Sections as follows:

Name of tests

NO. of question

      Maximum Marks


English Language



Composite time of 1 hour

Quantitative Aptitude



Reasoning Ability







Candidates will be required to clear a cut-off in each area to qualify for the phase II examination (Mains).

Phase II (Main Examination): Main Examination will consist of Objective Tests for 200 marks and Descriptive Test for 50 marks. Both the Objective and Descriptive Tests will be online. Candidates will have to answer Descriptive test by typing on the computer.

(i) Objective Test: The Objective Test of 2 hour duration consists of 4 Sections with 50 marks each (Total 200 marks) as follows:

  • Test of English Language (Grammar, Vocabulary, Comprehension etc.)
  • Test of General Awareness, Marketing &Computers
  • Test of Data Analysis & Interpretation
  • Test of Reasoning (High Level)

Note: The candidates are required to qualify in each of the Tests by securing passing marks, to be decided by the Bank.

(ii) Descriptive Test: The Descriptive Test of 1 hour duration with 50 marks will be a Test of English Language. (Letter Writing & Essay). However, the descriptive test would a qualifying test wherein the candidate will only be required to secure the passing marks.

Phase – III: Group Discussion (20 marks) & Interview (30 marks):

The aggregate marks of candidates qualifying in both the Objective Tests and Descriptive Test will be arranged in descending order in each category. Adequate number of candidates in each category, as decided by the Bank will be called for Group Discussion and Interview.

Syllabus for English Language: Although SBI does not provide any particular syllabus, the banking team of Jagranjosh has come up with topics to be prepared for upcoming SBI PO Exam.

The topics list: This part covers following topics:-


  • Antonyms
  • Synonyms
  • Idioms and Phrases
  • One word Substitution
  • Homonyms
  • Commonly misspelled words
  • Cloze Test


  • Spotting Errors
  • Direct and Indirect speech
  • Active/ Passive voice

Reading Comprehension:

  • Sentence rearrangement
  • Answering question based on Unseen Passages
  • Theme Detection
  • Deriving Conclusion

Tips and Strategies:

Cultivating the good reading habit helps one perform better in comprehensions and overall English section. Candidates should make a habit of reading newspapers regularly. Knowledge of English vocabulary can also be enhanced by reading newspapers on a daily basis. Reading habit also helps in spotting errors. It is noticed in recent years that passage asked in banking examinations are basically taken from the editorial section of the newspaper like The Hindu, The Indian Express, and The Times of India etc and mostly based on banking, business and economics. Therefore, reading newspaper will also help candidate to enhance their speed to solve question in examination hall. Do practice previous year papers and mock tests as well.

Here are we providing some important tips and tricks:

  • Know your syllabus first: It is the first and foremost part for the candidates to know the syllabus well before start the preparation. After going through the syllabus the candidates would come to know what exactly they need to study and they can immediately analyze their strong and weaker sections, so that they can work on those areas to make their preparation perfect.
  • Strengthen your reading comprehension skills: Reading habit is very important for this examination. Though the questions are all objective and doesn’t require descriptive details to solve, it is required to have a good go with the language in order to solve the reading comprehension and passage part of the paper.
  • Make yourself grammatically sound: If you have had any issues with you grammar skills in your secondary level studies, do get back to the basics and prepare yourself thoroughly. The entire paper depends on good sense of grammar and its various contours. Candidates would need to answer questions dealing with basic grammar skills and questions pertaining to parts of speech, direct and indirect sentences, active and passive voices etc.
  • Hunt for new words: Strengthening your vocabulary is a very important task while preparing for the paper. There are literally thousands of words with specific meanings which doesn’t seem practical to remember by heart. Hence the candidates need to make the list of words that they see recur quite a many times during their preparation, make a list of it and remember them. This helps in solving questions pertaining to synonyms, antonyms, and one word substitutions, questions related to idioms and phrases and many more.

Jagran Play
रोमांचक गेम्स खेलें और जीतें एक लाख रुपए तक कैश
ludo_expresssnakes_ladderLudo miniCricket smash
ludo_expresssnakes_ladderLudo miniCricket smash
Comment (0)

Post Comment

8 + 7 =
Disclaimer: Comments will be moderated by Jagranjosh editorial team. Comments that are abusive, personal, incendiary or irrelevant will not be published. Please use a genuine email ID and provide your name, to avoid rejection.