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SSC CGL 2018 Tier-I Exam: Preparation Tips and Strategy

Oct 17, 2018 16:02 IST
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The Combined Graduate Level (CGL) Exam conducted annually by Staff Selection Commission (SSC) consists of four phases, where each phase needs to be cleared depending upon the requirement of different posts. SSC CGL 2018 Exam will be conducted in four tiers, i.e., Tier – I, Tier – II, Tier – III and Tier – IV as shown below in the table:

Tier

Type of Exam

Mode of Exam

Tier – I

Objective Multiple Choice

Computer Based (Online)

Tier – II

Objective Multiple Choice

Computer Based (Online)

Tier – III

Descriptive Paper in English or Hindi

Pen and Paper mode (Offline)

Tier – IV

Skill Test: Data Entry Speed Test (DEST)/ Computer Proficiency Test (CPT)

Wherever Applicable (Not necessary for all the post)

Document Verification

Applicable for all

Below are some important points to take note of:

  • Tier –I objective exam will be of 60 minutes duration in online mode.
  • Tier –II objective exam will consist of 4 papers, each paper will be of 60 minutes duration in online mode.
  • Tier – III descriptive exam will be of 60 minutes duration in pen and paper mode.
  • There will be no sectional cut-off.
  • The SSC CGL Tier - IV Exam comprises of a couple of skill tests which are required for certain government posts and then last is the document verification procedure.

After thoroughly going through the exam pattern of all the four phases of SSC CGL 2018 Exam, next step is to understand the exam pattern and detailed syllabus of SSC CGL Tier-I Exam. In this article, we are going discuss the detailed syllabus of SSC CGL Tier-I exam and various strategies for scoring high in this exam. So, let’s take a look at the exam pattern of the SSC CGL Tier-I Exam.

Know the Complete SSC CGL Syllabus 2018: Tier I, II, III and IV with Exam Pattern


SSC CGL 2018 Tier - I Exam Pattern

SSC CGL 2018 Tier-I exam is an objective exam which will be conducted online. The exam comprises of four sections having 100 questions (25 questions in each section) which will account for a total of 200 marks (maximum 50 marks in each section) and negative marking of 0.5 marks. The time duration of Tier-1 exam will be 60 minutes.

The section wise details of the exam are shown in the table given below:

Section

Questions

Marks

Time

Quantitative Aptitude

25

50

60 minutes (Total)

English Language and Comprehension

25

50

General Intelligence & Reasoning

25

50

General Awareness

25

50

TOTAL

100

200

 Points to remember:

  • There is negative marking in SSC CGL 2018 Tier 1 Exam. 0.5 marks will be deducted from every question that is attempted wrong by a candidate in all the sections.
  • The exam duration is 80 minutes for candidates who are visually handicapped and suffering from Cerebral Palsy.

After going through the above mentioned exam pattern of SSC CGL 2018 Exam, the next step is to create a study plan and start working on it. For creating a study plan, you need to analyse the topics covered in all the four sections of SSC CGL Tier-I Exam.


Quantitative Aptitude Section

Quantitative Aptitude section is one of the deciding areas for a candidate in the merit list of SSC CGL Exam. Therefore, if you are clear with the basic concepts and formulas of Mathematics, then this section can become your strength area in the exam.

Topics covered in the Quantitative Aptitude Section

SSC CGL Quant

The above pie-chart clearly shows that topic from Arithmetic category covers the maximum portion of the exam, i.e., 48%. Therefore, for scoring good marks in this category, candidates must work on the basic concepts of mathematics first.

Data Interpretation is the next scoring category of this section covering 20% portion of the exam. In this category also, the concept of Ratios and Percentages are used. Geometry, Mensuration (8%) and Trigonometry (16%) demands in-depth knowledge of all the relevant formulas and methods. Algebra includes the topics like Graphs of Linear Equations and Elementary Surds and covers only 8% portion of the exam.

Know the SSC CGL 2018 Quantitative Aptitude Preparation Strategy

Tips to crack Quantitative Aptitude Section

So, let’s look at some ways through which you will be able to ace the Quantitative Aptitude Section of SSC CGL 2018 Exam.

  • Work on your Basics: When you are beginning your preparation, don’t look for shortcuts first. Try to learn basics of all the topics and gain in-depth knowledge. Once you have developed a command over these topics, then you can switch to shortcuts or tricks for quick calculations.
  • Time Management: You are required to allot proper time to important topics covered in exam. First try to focus on you weak areas and spend more time solving them. Do practice those topics in which are your strength areas but allocate little less time for that. Try not to give more than one minute to any question while solving them.
  • Learn Short-cut Methods: For increasing calculation speed, students must focus on the short-cut methods and tricks which will help in saving time for solving tough questions in the exam. For gaining accuracy and speed try to practice tricks and remember tables, cubes, squares, and square roots, etc.
  • Don’t use risky shortcuts: If you are not well-versed with any shortcut or trick, then avoiding using them as it may lead to confusion and wrong answer.


English Language and Comprehension Section

Questions in this section will be designed to test the candidate‘s understanding and knowledge of English Language. Answering questions from English Language and Comprehension Section takes less time as compared to the other sections. So, if you have good command over English Grammar Rules and Vocabulary Usage alongwith good Comprehension Skills, then this section can become your strength area in SSC CGL 2018 Exam.

Topics covered in the English Language and Comprehension Section

Now, let’s have a look at the percentage distribution of different topics from this section in SSC CGL Tier-I: 

SSC CGL English comprehension

If we look at the pie chart, it can be derived that Vocabulary Usage (48%) and Grammar Usage (32%) categories form a major portion and Reading Comprehension (20%) forms a minor portion of the English Language and Comprehension Section in SSC CGL Tier-I Exam.

Normally, questions asked in this section are direct and quite easy. Therefore, candidates can score really well in this section.

Know the SSC CGL 2018 English Language and Comprehension Preparation Strategy

Tips to crack English Language and Comprehension Section

So, let’s look at some ways through which you will be able to ace the English Language and Comprehension Section of SSC CGL 2018 Exam.

  • Improve your Vocabulary: Let’s look at some ways through which you can improve your vocabulary:
    • Thesaurus: This is an easy way to study and memorize words. There are a lot of online thesauruses available in which a word and its opposite words can be found in one place.
    • Word List: Keep a pocket note book in which you can jot down a few words every day, say 10-20. The most important thing is you must go through the list frequently.
    • Online Flashcards: If you use a mobile or a tablet you can download free flash cards that may help you in learning or remembering new words.
  • Improve your English Grammar: A proper understanding of Grammar Usage is required for attempting questions from the section – ‘English Language and Comprehension’.  These types of questions are quite common in all competitive exams and mostly come in the form of questions like ‘spotting the errors’. Finding an error in a sentence is a step-by-step process. Students must follow grammar rules while solving such type of questions.
  • Improve your Reading Comprehension Skills: Reading comprehension skills cannot be build overnight but it could be developed inherently through a course of time. In order to crack the reading comprehension part and to develop reading skills, it is very much required to develop the habit of reading every day. Reading newspaper is a good option but just reading hard facts that happen every day cannot be up to the mark to develop your reading skills. So it is better to prefer feature stories, opinion pieces in editorials, business magazines, etc., can help you build your reading and comprehension skills quite faster.

    Tips and Tricks to Improve Reading Comprehension Skills

General Intelligence and Reasoning Section

This section tests the candidates’ ability to think and problem solving skills. The questions asked in this question are mainly the brain teasers and sometimes can be quite tricky to answer.

Topics covered in the General intelligence and Reasoning Section

General Intelligence and Reasoning SSC CGL

The Verbal Reasoning section covers the 66% of the General Intelligence and Reasoning Section and questions are asked from topics like Series, Ranks, Direction, Arrangement, Coding, Decoding, Analogy and Classification/Odd Pair, Syllogism and Statement Conclusion.

The Non-Verbal Reasoning section covers the 34% of the General Intelligence and Reasoning Section and questions are asked from topics like Figure Formation, Dice, Triangle, Rule Detection, Images, Completion of Pattern, Mirror Images, Figure Matrix and Paper Folding, etc.

Tips to crack General Intelligence and Reasoning Section

So, let’s look at some ways through which you will be able to ace the General Intelligence and Reasoning Section of SSC CGL 2018 Exam.

  • Improve your logical skills: As this section test candidates’ ability to think and problem solving skills, therefore it is required by the students to sharpen their logical and analytical skills.
  • Command over concepts: Both Verbal and Non Verbal Types of Concepts should be focused by the candidates. The understanding of Directions should be accurate, i.e., identifying which direction is West, North, East and South. Series is the most important topic, but it is also very difficult to master.
  • Focus on one topic at a time: Take one topic at a given time, reasoning requires you to think in a certain way and doing 2-3 different types of topics in one go may not be fruitful.
  • Don’t make unnecessary assumptions: Always Remember that the given question will be solved by the data given only, don’t make unnecessary assumptions or judgment while solving the problem. Use smart and appropriate tricks and method for solving any problem.
  • Remember Alphabetical Order: Always remember the sequencing of alphabets i.e. which alphabet comes after/before the particular alphabet and you should also remember their numerical position as per 1 to 26.

Know the SSC CGL 2018 General Intelligence and Reasoning Preparation Strategy

General Awareness (GA) and General Knowledge (GK) Section

This section is considered to be one of the high scoring sections of SSC CGL Exam. It aims at testing the candidates’ general awareness and knowledge of current affairs taking place around the world and in India.

Topics covered in the GA and GK Section

GA and GK SSC CGL

From the above pie-chart it can be analysed that General Science and Static Gk covers the major portion of GA section SSC CGL Tier-I Exam. Let’s look in detail the topics covered under different heads of GA and GK Section.

  • General Science: This section covers around 40% of the GA Section and questions are asked mainly from Biology, Physics, Chemistry, Daily Science, etc.
  • Static GK: This section covers around 40% of the GA Section and questions are asked from static topics like Indian Politics, History and Culture, Economy, Geography, etc.
  • Current Affairs: This section covers around 10% of the GA Section and questions are asked from topics like recent development in Sports, Awards, Politics, Finance and Banking sector, International happening, etc.
  • Miscellaneous: This section covers around 10% of the GA Section and questions are asked from topics like National Schemes, Computers, Book Names and Authors, Logical Analysis, Important Days, etc.

Tips to crack GA and GK Section

So, let’s look at some ways through which you will be able to ace the GA and GK Section of SSC CGL 2018 Exam.

  • Read to increase knowledge: Read magazines, newspapers, weekly GK Blog online and watch news channels for SSC General Knowledge.
  • Always create notes: It will help you to revise all the topics which you have covered in SSC Current Affairs. Static GK mainly pertains to Culture, Indian History, Geography (India + World), Environment, Economy and Polity. Instead of cramming mindlessly, make notes and mind maps to remember facts, a chronology of events, cause and effect, etc.
  • Revise the notes: Revision plays an important role in this section. Reading once won’t give you benefit. You have to memorize these points by revising frequently.
  • Focus on Important topic first: The exam usually has more questions from Static GK than Current Affairs. Therefore, focus more on static GK and simultaneously stay in touch with Current Affairs. Also, try to prepare the subjects in the following order of priority:

Science Polity History Geography Economy Miscellaneous

Know the SSC CGL 2018 General Awareness (GA) and General knowledge (GK) Preparation Strategy

Preparation Strategy for SSC CGL Tier-I Exam

Let’s now look at the ways to ace and score high in all the four sections of SSC CGL Tier-I Exam:

  • Regular Practice: Make a habit practicing previous year paper and mock test every day to improve your speed and accuracy. Solve previous year papers as there are many questions which are repeated.
  • Build a Proper Study Plan: Follow a proper strategy and a time table for all the sections of question paper.
  • Practice Important Topics: Students can look into the chapter-wise analysis mentioned above and focus on the important topics first.
  • Focus on your weak areas: First try to focus on you weak areas and spend more time improving them. Devote more time to your weak areas and less time to your strong areas.
  • Read the complete question first: Students are required to avoid the mistake of reading incomplete questions and arriving at incorrect answer eventually. Read the questions carefully and check what is being asked.
  • Rule of Elimination: Use method of elimination in confusing options and try to get answers by it.
  • Avoid any guess works: Guesswork may lead you to wrong answers and will increase negative marking. Also, don’t waste much time on one question and move onto the next if you are not sure about the correct answer.
  • Time Management: Give more time to sections that you are stronger in. This will ensure that you can effectively use the time duration of the exam. Remember that there are no sectional time limits and no sectional cut offs. So your job is to simply maximize your score however you can.
  • Try different strategy and select the best: Try different order of attempt patterns in your mock tests. Sometimes start with English Comprehension section first or sometime with Quantitative Aptitude section first or may be your toughest section first. See which strategy works best for you.

If you found this information on ‘SSC CGL 2018 Tier-I Exam: Preparation Tips and Strategy’ useful, then do visit www.jagranjosh.com/staff-selection-commission-ssc for more such information on SSC CGL 2018 EXAM.

English Language and Comprehension Section

DISCLAIMER: JPL and its affiliates shall have no liability for any views, thoughts and comments expressed on this article.

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