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SBI PO 2018 Exam Pattern

Last Updated - August 09, 2017

SBI PO is conducted every year for the recruitment of eligible candidates for the post of Probationary Officer at the State Bank of India branches across India. SBI PO Exam Pattern is decided and released by the State Bank of India. SBI PO Exam is conducted in three phases namely Preliminary (Phase I), Main (Phase II) and Group Discussion & Interview (Phase III). The official dates and notifications for the exam will be released on SBI official website i.e. www.sbi.co.in.

  • Candidates will have to clear all the three phases to be eligible for selection.
  • Phase I and Phase II are conducted in online mode i.e. they are Computer Based Test (CBT)
  • Prelims will have Objective questions i.e they will. E multiple choice MCQs.
  • The Main exam will have 2 levels in which Level 1 will have objective type questions and Level 2 will be of descriptive type.
  • Negative marking in both the exams will be applicable.
  • Candidates qualifying Phase I will be able to sit for Phase II and similarly candidates qualifying in Phase II will then be eligible to appear for GD and interview round for final recruitment as a Probationary Officer.
  • Every section (except English Language) will be available in English as well as Hindi. Candidates will be able to select the language of their preference.

SBI PO 2018 Exam Pattern Highlights

Exam ModeOnline (Phase I and Phase II)
Number of papers 2 (Phase I and Phase II)
Question Paper Type Multiple Choice Questions (Phase I and Phase II Level 1) and Descriptive Type (Phase II Level 2)
SBI PO 2018 Total Marks100 (Phase I) and 200 (Phase II)
Exam duration1 hour (Phase I) and 3 hours (Phase II)

SBI PO 2018 Exam Pattern Details

Phase I

Candidates clearing the Phase I exam will be eligible to sit for Phase II. The detailed marks division is given below:

Section NameNo. of QuestionsTotal Marks
English Language3030
Quantitative Ability3535
Reasoning Ability3535
Total100 questions100 marks

Other details are as follows:

Mode of Examination – SBI PO Phase I will be conducted in online mode. Candidates appearing for SBI PO Exam will be allotted a desktop, where they will be first shown all the instructions and guidelines and then the questions will appear.

Number of Sections - There will be 3 sections.

Duration of Exam - The exam will be of 1 hour (60 minutes).

Type of Questions -  Questions that will be asked in the exam will be multiple choice questions with 1 correct answer.

Marking Scheme – Each question will be of 1 mark and a negative mark of 0.25 will apply for each incorrect answer.

Language - Candidates will be able to answer the question in either Hindi or English except for the English Language section.

Phase II

Candidates who have qualified Phase I can appear for Phase II. Phase will be divided into 2 parts -

Level 1- Objective test and

Level 2- Descriptive test

The details for level 1 are as follows:

Section NameTotal QuestionsMaximum Marks
Reasoning and Computer Aptitude4560
Data Analysis and Interpretation3560
General, Economy and Banking Awareness4040
English Language3540
Total155 Questions200 marks

Other details are as follows:

Mode of Examination – SBI PO Phase II Level 1 will be conducted in online mode.

Number of Sections - There will be 4 sections.

Duration of Exam - The exam will be of 3 hours (180 minutes).

Type of Questions -  In level 1, questions that will be asked in the exam will be multiple choice questions with 1 correct answer. In level 2, 2 descriptive questions based on letter writing and essay writing will be asked. The questions will be of 25 marks each.

Marking Scheme – In level 1, each question will be of 1 mark and a negative mark of 0.25 will apply for each incorrect answer. In level 2, each question will be of 25 marks.

Exam Pattern for the descriptive Level 2 of Phase II:

Level 2 of Phase II will be conducted immediately after the candidates are done attempting the Objective Test. Candidates can find the key features for SBI PO Phase II Level 2 Test listed below.

  • The exam will be conducted in online mode i.e. candidates will be alotted a desktop in which they will have to type in their answers.
  • Candidates will be given 30 minutes to complete the Descriptive part of the Phase II Level 2 paper.
  • There will be a total of 2 questions in this section namely Letter writing and Essay Writing.
  • Each question is of 25 marks.
  • Candidates must note that the Descriptive paper of a candidate will be checked only if he or she qualifies in the Objective test as per the qualifying marks decided by the exam conducting body.

Candidates will have to qualify Phase II to be able to go to Phase III.

Phase III

Candidates qualifying Phase II will be called for the group discussion and personal interview rounds. This will be the last and final round of SBI PO 2018. Candidates qualifying this round will be recruited as Probationary Officers in the various branches of the State bank of India.

The group discussion will consist of 20 marks and the personal interview will contain 30 marks. This brings the total to 50 marks.


SBI PO 2018 Marking Scheme

Candidates can find the marking scheme of SBI PO 2018 Phase I and II mentioned below:

Phase I

Section NameTotal MarksType of QuestionsMarks for Each Correct AnswerNegative Marks for Each Incorrect Answer
English Language30MCQ10.25
Quantitative Aptitude35MCQ10.25
Reasoning Ability35MCQ10.25

Phase II

Candidates who will qualify the Phase I of SBI PO 2018 will be able to appear for Phase II. Phase II will be held in two parts, namely Objective and Descriptive.

For Objective, the following marking scheme applies:

Section NameTotal MarksType of QuestionsMarks for Each Correct AnswerNegative Marks for Each Incorrect Answer
Reasoning and Computer Aptitude60MCQ10.25
Data Analysis and Interpretation60MCQ10.25
General, Economy and Banking Awareness40MCQ10.25
English Language40MCQ10.25

Descriptive test will evaluate candidate’s ability in letter writing and essay writing. The total marks for this section will be 25 marks for each question.

Phase III

After clearing the second phase, candidate will be called for group discussions and interview by the State Bank of India. This phase will be evaluated on the basis of the candidate’s performance in both the group discussion and interview rounds.

Group discussion will be of 20 marks and interview will be of 30 marks bringing the total to 50 marks.


SBI PO 2018 Syllabus

The Syllabus for SBI PO 2018 is given in the table below:

Reasoning Ability - Phase I and Phase II Level 1 Reasoning ability is both required for preliminary test and mains exam. The level of difficulty will vary.
  • Syllogism
  • Statement and Conclusions
  • Directions and Arrangements
  • Ranking
  • Data sufficiency
  • Comprehension Reasoning
  • Coding/Decoding
  • Analogy
  • Classification
  • Quantitative Aptitude
Quantitative Aptitude – The section deals with the candidate’s ability to attempt aptitude related numerical questions.
  • Number Systems and series
  • Simple Interest and Compound Interest
  • Time and Work or Distance
  • Profit and Loss
  • Percentage
  • Average
  • Ratio and Proportion
  • Data Interpretation
  • Probability
English Language - English section is common in both Preliminary Test and Mains Examination of SBI PO examination. This section will test the candidate’s english language skills. This is the only section which the candidate has to attempt completely in English.
  • Reading and comprehension
  • Cloze test
  • Spotting errors
  • Para-jumbles
  • Idioms and phrases
  • Synonyms and antonyms
General Ability section - This section will ask candidates questions based on general and current affairs. The candidate has to be well acquainted with the current happenings to be able to answer this section.
  • Current Affairs of last 6 months
  • Topics related to finance and economics
  • History of Banking
  • Banking Terms
  • Fiscal and Monetary Policies
Computer Aptitude - Candidates will be asked questions related to basic knowledge about computer. It is very important to be acquainted with computer related skills and basic theoretical knowledge to fetch good marks in this section.
  • Hardware and Software
  • Basics of Computers
  • MS Office (MS Word, MS Excel, MS Power Point)
  • Keyboard Shortcuts.
  • Basic internet knowledge and protocols
  • Generations of computer
  • Network Basics (LAN and WAN)

Important Exam Day Instructions

Candidates must keep the following in mind during the exam.

  • Candidates must make a careful note of the exam center well in advance before the exam day and report to the exam center at least 45 mins prior to the commencement of the exam for both Phase I and Phase II.
  • Candidates must carry the admit card with them during all times in the process of the examination.

Time given to candidates for each section of the paper will be different.

  • For Phase I, candidates will get a maximum duration of 60 mins to solve each section.
  • For Phase II Level 1, candidates will get
    1. 60 minutes for Reasoning and Computer Aptitude
    2. 45 minutes for Data Analysis and Interpretation
    3. 35 minutes for General and Banking Awareness
    4. 40 minutes for English Language

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