How to Crack IBPS Clerk Mains Exam – Tips & Strategy!

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

IBPS Clerk Exam is Scheduled in the month of December 2017 as per the official Notification through IBPS Calendar. You should also stay updated on other bank exam notifications. IBPS Clerk is easy to crack if you are clear with your basics. As Selection in this IBPS clerk depends on the marks scored in mains, no interview is conducted in the IBPS Clerk Exam. Check out the selection process for IBPS clerk .


Many of you will appear for the same. It is scheduled on 4 different days which is to be held on 07th, 08th, 14th & 15th December 2017 as per the official calendar by IBPS. So now the focus is on the strategy  to crack IBPS clerk 2017 with the remaining time left for it. It is very important to prepare well for the exam. We are sure you would be looking for useful advice for your preparation. Thus the smart way to prepare for this is what we are sharing with you.

Know your exam: It is important to know the exact exam pattern and syllabus for IBPS clerk before appearing for the same. You would really do well if you are aware of the format and the interface of IBPS clerk mains.

The pattern of IBPS Clerk Mains Examination:

Sections No. of Questions No. of Marks
1. Reasoning 40 40
2. Numerical Aptitude 40 40
3. English 40 40
4. General Awareness 40 40
5. Computer 40 40
Total 200 200
Total Composite time:- 120 minutes = 2 hours

Previous Year Analysis: 

Before moving to the section wise preparation strategy for IBPS Clerk Mains 2017, here we are providing section wise analysis of last year IBPS Clerk Exam. The analysis will help you fine-tune your preparation and help you prepare better.

I. Reasoning Ability – 40 Qs

Overall the level of the questions was of moderate level in the previous year IBPS clerk mains.You should check out our section on reasoning ability for a better idea. The details of the syllabus for IBPS clerk exam are as follows –

1. Syllogism – 5Qs

2. Inequality – 5 Qs

3. Data Sufficiency – 5 Qs

4. Sitting Arrangement (Circular) – 5 Qs

5. Linear Arrangement – 5 Qs

6. Number Series Arrangement – 5 Qs

7. Miscellaneous – 5 Qs

8. Coding Decoding – 5 Qs.

To find out how much you know, try our reasoning quizzes.

II. Numerical Ability – 40 Qs

Overall the level of the questions was of moderate level in the previous IBPS clerk mains. Two sets of Data Interpretation questions were asked and the level of the questions was easy and doable. But simplification & Miscellaneous questions were lengthy & calculative. The details of the syllabus for IBPS clerk mains are as follows –

1. Number Series – 5 Qs

2. Data Interpretation – 2 Sets (Table & Pie Chart) – 10 Qs

3. Simplification / Approximate – 10 Qs

4. Miscellaneous Questions – 15 Qs

III. English Language  – 40 Qs

Overall the level of the questions was of easy level in the last IBPS clerk mains. Reading Comprehension, Cloze Test & Para jumbles questions were on Story based and of an easy level. The details of this section of IBPS Clerk syllabus are as follows –

 1. Reading Comprehension – 10 Qs

2. Para Jumbles – 5 Qs

3. Spotting Error – 5 Qs

4. Cloze Test – 10 Qs

5. Fill in the blanks – 5 Qs

6. Sentence Improvement – 5 Qs

For a better idea about this section look up our page on English language

IV. General Awareness – 40 Qs

The section was easy and scoring in the last year’s IBPS clerk mains. The questions were of basic level. Here are the details of General Awareness section

1. Current Affairs – 25+ Qs

2. Banking Awareness – 8–10 ( Find out more about banking awareness)

3. Static – 5–6 Qs

Find out how much you know about General awareness section by taking our General awareness quiz.

V. Computer Section – 40 Qs

This section  in IBPS clerk mains was based on basic knowledge of computers. Questions were very easy. The main areas from which questions were asked are MS Office, Application Software, Hardware, Software, and Input-Output Units. For more details about the syllabus of computer awareness for IBPS clerk exam 2017, take our quiz.

Section wise Preparation Strategy for IBPS clerk mains 

Let us now look at the expected question from different sections as per the IBPS Clerk Mains goes like this –

1. Reasoning Ability – (Level – Easy to Moderate)

1. Syllogism / Alphanumeric Series – 5 Qs

2. Seating Arrangement (Circular) – 5 Qs

3. Linear Arrangement (North-South) – 5 Qs

4. Puzzle – 5 Qs (Floor)

5. Data sufficiency – 5 Qs

6. Inequality- 5 Qs.

7. Coding Decoding – 5 Qs (Number/Symbol coding)

8. Miscellaneous -5 questions

(Miscellaneous questions includes questions based on ranking, blood relations, direction)


1. As you all know, Syllogism questions were not asked in any of the Slots of IBPS Clerk Prelims . So it is expected that IBPS Mains will also follow the same pattern, but we are not 100% sure about this.

2. Also, it is expected that some questions on Logical Reasoning topics may be asked in IBPS clerk Mains like – Statement & Assumption, Course of Action, etc. 

3. It is expected that the level of Seating Arrangement questions would be of moderate level and in an inward-outward pattern for this year’s IBPS clerk mains.


Easy to solve –

First attempt those questions which require less time like Syllogism, Inequality, Miscellaneous questions.

Time Consuming Questions –

1. Don’t try to start a section with time-consuming topics like – Coding and Decoding, Seating Arrangement or Puzzles.

2. In the case of puzzle, try to consider all the possibilities at hand, thus eliminating them further.

2. Numerical aptitude – (Level – Moderate)

1. Simplification/ Approximation-10 Qs

2. Data interpretation-10 Qs

3. Number series -5 Qs

4. Miscellaneous questions – 15 Qs

The miscellaneous questions will include questions from various topics like profit and loss, age, area, average, boats and stream, partnership, simple and compound interest etc.

Tips: This section will take much time.

First, go to the topic you have practiced the most. This will save you the time. Do not devote so much time to a single question. Be alert while doing calculations.

Easy to solve 

First attempt those questions which require less time like Data Interpretation, Simplification, and Number series.

Time Consuming 

Don’t try to start the section with time-consuming topics like profit and loss, age, area, average, boats and stream, partnership, simple and compound interest etc.

Note: Based on the changes in pattern of IBPS PO main examination the question pattern may vary.

3. English Language (Easy to Moderate)

1. Reading comprehension -10 Qs (Story Based)

2. Cloze test – 10 Qs (Story Based)

3. Para Jumbles -5 Qs (Story Based)

4. Spotting error -5 Qs

5. Sentence improvement -5 Qs


Easy to solve –

In this section of the IBPS clerk mains, start by attempting questions from sentence improvement, cloze test, error spotting and sentence rearrangement.

Time Consuming 

If RC would be based on Story then please try to attempt at least 6 – 7 questions from this topic. You can at least attempt 4 questions from this topic like synonyms and antonyms.

4. General Awareness (Easy to Moderate)

This section is considered as the most scoring section in IBPS Clerk Exam. The questions mainly consist from current affairs (mainly last 2 – 3 months), banking questions and static based.

1. Current Affairs – 25 + questions are expected to come from current affairs.

2. Banking Awareness – 8 – 10 questions are expected to come from Banking Awareness topics.

3. Static Gk – 5 – 6 questions are expected to come from Static Gk.

Note: Attempt those questions in which you are 100% confidence, in order to increase your attempt in this section don’t do guesswork

5. Computer Knowledge (Easy to Moderate)

This section is the easiest of all in the IBPS clerk exam. Basic knowledge of computer is enough to score well in this particular section. Questions include basic input output questions, networking, MS office (excel and word shortcuts), windows and hardware and software.

Tips and Strategies:

Last year, the average attempt ranged between 145 and 165 for IBPS clerk mains. The level of difficulty will be same for this year, too. Do not waste much time on any one section.

In the beginning, start with the section that is less time consuming and can be performed in few minutes that is COMPUTER. Next, approach to the section you are comfortable with.

Our advice is first to take up sections like – Computer, General awareness, and English. Thereafter Reasoning and Numerical Aptitude. This will avoid any confusion and you will be able to move hassle free.

Time Management:

We are suggesting you the below-given strategy to attempt IBPS Clerk Mains for scoring good marks with clearing sectional cut offs. A total of 2 hour is allotted for all the five sections in this examination. To qualify each section and to score overall good marks, time management is very important. To master your timing skills make a target time and achieve it. So, here we bring to you a time allocation strategy across each section.

Section Time to Spend in Each Section No. of Questions that can be attempted in given time with maximum accuracy
Computer 10-12 31-33
General Awareness 12-15 30-32
English 22-25 25-30
Reasoning 30-35 25-30
Numerical Ability 35-40 22-27
Overall 120 minutes 133-152

If you follow above time management in each section and attempt all the questions with100% accuracy you can attempt approx. 133 to 152 questions during IBPS Clerk Mains 2015. You must know the IBPS clerk cut off 2016 to find out how much you need to score.

Do’s and don’ts:

1. Do not devote so much time to a single question.

2. Do not lose your calm.

3. Do not be in a hurry while doing a question

4. Do not guess the answer.

5. Do attempt the questions left in the remaining time.

6. Do read all the questions properly.

7. Do relax and stay calm.

8. Do attempt only those questions you are sure of.

You should know the eligibility criteria for IBPS clerk 2017 to find out if you qualify or not. Do not forget to see the IBPS clerk job profile and salary, it will help you know what you’re signing up for.

Remember, accuracy & time management is the key to getting through this exam!



Team gradeup

IBPS Clerk

Our Apps Playstore
SSC and Bank
Other Exams
GradeStack Learning Pvt. Ltd.Windsor IT Park, Tower - A, 2nd Floor, Sector 125, Noida, Uttar Pradesh 201303
Home Practice Test Series Premium