SBI PO Exam: Quantitative Aptitude|Data Interpretation - Syllabus and Preparation Tips

State Bank of India (SBI) conducts PO examination every year and selects many candidates. Go through Syllabus and Preparation Tips for Quantitative Aptitude/ Data Analysis & Interpretation section.

Created On: Jun 8, 2016 17:35 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. The banking sector is likely to create up to 20 lakh new jobs in the next 10 years. SBI conducted the online examination for PO in July 2016 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: The examination would be of objective type and would be of three hours duration. 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 3 hours duration consists of 4 sections for total 200 marks. The Objective Test will have separate timing for every section. The candidates are required to qualify in each of the tests by securing passing marks, to be decided by the Bank


Name of Test

No. of Questions




Reasoning and Computer Aptitude



60 minutes


Data Analysis and Interpretation



45 minutes


General/ Economy/ Banking Awareness



35 minutes


English Language



40 minutes





3 hours

(ii) Descriptive Test: The Descriptive Test of 30 minutes duration with 50 marks will be a Test of English Language (Letter Writing & Essay). The candidates are required to qualify in the Descriptive Test by securing passing marks, to be decided by the Bank.

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 Quantitative Aptitude: Although SBI does not provide any particular syllabus, the banking team of Jagranjosh has come up with topics to be prepared for SBI PO Exam 2015.

The topics list: This part covers following topics:-

  • Number system
  • HCF and LCM of Numbers
  • Number series
  • Quadratic Equations
  • Percentage
  • Ratio and proportion
  • Average
  • Problems based on age
  • Time and work
  • Speed, Distance and time
  • Mixture and allegation
  • Stocks and shares
  • Partnership
  • Clocks
  • Volume and surface Area
  • Height and Distances
  • Permutation and combinations
  • Simple and compound interest
  • Quadratic Equations
  • Probability
  • Profit, Loss and Discount
  • Mensuration

Data Interpretation

  • Pie charts
  • Tables
  • Bar Graphs
  • Line charts
  • Radar Graphs
  • Mixed Graphs

Tips & Strategies:

To score good marks in quantitative aptitude section, one has to be quick in solving mathematical calculations.  The questions asked in preliminary examination would be from basic level mathematics but mains examination is more focused on Data analysis and interpretation. Data Analysis and Interpretation is the test to check mathematical and analytical skills of individuals. Common questions for the Data Analysis and Interpretation are based on Number Systems, Fractions, Averages, Ratio and Proportion and Percentage. Prepare for this section by practicing calculations and increasing your speed, also revise important Maths formulae. Spend about 3 to 4 hours every day for practicing calculation. Go ahead with basic calculations like addition, subtraction, multiplication and fractions.  Additionally, learn the multiplication tables, squares, cubes and core fractions like 1/2 to 1/12. Do practice previous year papers and mock tests.

Here are we providing some important tips and tricks:

  • Approach preparation in positive manner: Many a people fear the very aspect of mathematics and solving sums. This leads quite a number of aspiring candidates to lose the battle even when it has not begun. It is needed to buckle up your confidence and have a look at the questions that are recurring in these examinations. The best way to start preparing is to approach in a positive manner and get through it without worrying much. give
  • Make strategy: Candidates should make strategy about how many questions to be solved in this section with giving proper attention to all other sections because it is not possible to solve all questions in the given time. There are short and lengthy questions but candidates are advised to start with short questions rather than long one.
  • Look up at your old books: For better understanding of the basic concepts of mathematics, it is best to look up to the basic 10th and 12th standard mathematics books. It is where the candidates can re-visit what they have learnt and it can greatly help them solving problems in the examination while saving enormous amount of time.
  • Focus on quality than quantity:  Candidates should not try to attempt all the questions as it is not possible to solve all questions in this section. Candidates are advised to focus on accuracy and speed only.
  • Cross-check the options also:  Sometimes one can easily get the answer by just checking the given options. So cross check the given options before marking your answer.
  • Save time from other section: Candidates are advised to save time from General Awareness, Marketing, Computer and English as this section takes more time to solve the questions.
  • Go through mock tests and drills: Cracking this examination becomes easier when you go through previous year questions and mock drills that help you get an idea about the pattern of questions and amount of time required to solve the questions. Candidates need to pass individual papers and thus they cannot avoid any of the paper and move with the other. Hence it is important to make equal preparation for each of the paper to succeed through.
  • Try and look up for formulas and short tricks: Nothing saves more time than a short trick to solve a question. Candidates need to derive their own methods and tricks or branch out ideas from various sources like practice sets, preparation books, online journals and other academic sources available.
  • Examine the Units sincerely:  Check the units properly i.e. kilograms and grams, meters and Centimeters, meter/sec and kilometer/hr etc. Avoiding units can mislead candidates towards wrong answers.
  • Manage your time while preparing: Time management is the key for your success in the examination. You need to always prepare having a stopwatch by your side. This would clock the exact time you need to tick in order to complete your papers and move through to the next round in the recruitment process.

Time Limit for Every Section in SBI PO 2016 Mains Exam: Now Change your Preparation Strategy

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