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IBPS Bank Exam 2013: New rules explained

Last updated on: December 3, 2012 14:29 IST

IBPS Bank Exam 2013: New rules explained



Anil Nagar, Director, Bank Power Institute, Delhi tells us why a career in banking is prospective for the Indian graduate and goes on to share important details about the new changes in the IBPS bank exam.

For the young generation, banking has emerged as one of the most lucrative career providers.

With positions being available at various levels from Bank Clerks to Bank Probationary Officers (PO), the prospects look brighter for Indian graduates.

For those considering a career in banks, there is a greater job security and the salary is also very good, the greatest high being their loans for employees.

Till recently, careers existed only in nationalised banks, but with liberalisation, a host of private banks have been set up thus widening the horizon for the aspiring candidate. As a result, the demand for trained professionals has increased substantially.

On November 15, 2012, Union Finance Minister P Chidambaram announced that public sector banks and financial institutions will hire about 63,000 personnel comprising officers and clerks.

This has created a fresh hope for aspirants looking for government job in public sector banks.

As per the announcement, among the total of 84,489 bank vacancies, selections for about 63,000 positions including officers and clerks will be made this fiscal year.

Recruitment in PSUs

All PSUs, except the State Bank of India and its associate banks, recruit through a Common Written Examination (CWE) conducted by the Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS).

As per the current system, IBPS conducts following four types of Common Written Exams (CWEs) every year:

  • CWE for Probationary Officer (PO) posts
  • CWE for Clerical Cadre recruitments
  • CWE for Regional Rural Banks (for both assistant level and officer level)
  • CWE for Specialist Officer posts (like IT Officer, Marketing Officer, HR, Agriculture etc)

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Image: Image for representational purposes only
Photographs: Courtesy


What are the new changes?

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The Common Written Exam for clerical cadres is scheduled on December 15, 16, 22 and 23, 2012.

Last year around 43 lakh candidates appeared for the CWE for Clerk and this time, the number is expected to be around 30 to 35 lakhs.

Also, this year there have been some major changes in the clerical recruitment process. Some of the changes are as given below:

Online test: Till last year, the IBPS used to conduct all its exams in the paper pencil format. But, as per the latest notification, IBPS will conduct all bank recruitment tests online.

The CWE Clerical, will be the first CWE to be conducted online. As a matter of fact, the IBPS CWE (Clerical) will become India's largest exam to be conducted online.

Change in age criteria: This year, candidates who are in age group 20 to 28 years are eligible to apply for this exam (as on October 1, 2012). Till last year, the minimum age to apply was 18 years.

Changes in the educational qualification: From this year, candidates need to have a minimum graduate degree to apply for the Common Written Examination for clerical cadre recruitment.

Until last year, the minimum eligibility criteria to apply for the CWE was 10+2 pass.

Change in the exam format: Last year's CWE for clerk had 250 questions, with five sections of 50 question each: Quantitative Aptitude, Reasoning, English, General Awareness and Computer.

This time, sections will remain the same, but each section will have only 40 questions (instead of 50 earlier) and thus total number of question in IBPS Clerical 2012 exam, will be 200.

The total time to attempt the paper has also been reduced to two hours (against an earlier time of two and half hours).

Illustration: Uttam Ghosh

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Expert tips to succeed

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In keeping with the new changes, here are some expert tips and strategies that will help candidates make the most of the exam and perform better:

Familiarity with the online interface: Since this is the first time, test will be online, candidates should be mentally prepared for this new format.

In fact, IBPS will also publish the details of the format (look and feel) on its website, yet candidates should practice some online tests available on the internet (free or through paid websites).

It will give them the desired confidence on the exam day and during the exam. Candidates will be able to build the momentum only if they are familiar with the format.

Time management: Although being able to manage time is very essential for every competitive exam, in the case of the CWE, candidates should keep in the mind that the exam duration has been reduced to two hours (as compared to last year, when it was two and half hours).

Avoid hopping between various sections: To avoid wastage of time, candidates are advised to complete one section at a time and then move to the next section. If they keep on doing four to five questions from each section and moving around between sections, it will result in losing precious time.

Refine your strategy: This includes -- which section to attempt first and which should be attempted last and also how much time should be devoted to each section.

There are no fixed rules for above, but it has be a individual strategy -- keeping in mind that IBPS CWE contains sectional cutoffs and candidates are expected to maintain a minimum score in each section.

So, one should form a strategy such that s/he is able to clear the sectional cutoffs and also maximise his/her overall score.

Illustration: Dominic Xavier

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