Important Numerical Ability Topics for SBI Clerk Prelims Exam

By BYJU'S Exam Prep

Updated on: September 25th, 2023

Numerical Ability constitutes a very important component of the preparation for the SBI Clerk Examination. Not only it is challenging for the non-technical background students, but it often requires practice and continuous training for the aspirants with Science and Commerce backgrounds. Thus here, we are providing important Numerical Ability topics that are asked in the SBI Clerk Prelims exam.

To qualify for SBI Clerk 2023, one needs to have a strong foundation in all the Numerical Ability topics to clear the cut off. Hence, having a proper understanding of numerical ability topics for the SBI Clerk and other bank exams is as important as other sections.

Numerical Ability Topics For SBI Clerk

The important topic of numerical ability in SBI Clerk are stated as Quantitative Aptitude. The questions of Quantitative Aptitude, like several other questions, are application-based questions. The questions will not be direct but will try to check the conceptual clarity of the aspirant by giving analytical questions. 

Expertise can come with a lot of practice and a clear understanding. The first step in this process is understanding the SBI Clerk Syllabus, what you are expected to know, and how much you are expected to understand. 

Important Numerical Ability Topics For SBI Clerk Exam

The important topics for Numerical Ability in the SBI Clerk exam are covered within the Mathematics syllabus of class 10. But, as mentioned earlier,  the application of these concepts in answering questions, is the key to clearing the questions on the Quantitative Aptitude section. The topics for this section are as follows:




Simplification & Approximation


Calculation Short Tricks


D.I Basics


Number series


Quadratic Equation


Simple Interest


Compound Interest


Mixture & Alligation






Pipes & Cisterns


Age-based problems


Profit, Loss & Discount


Ratio & Proportion


Time, Speed & Distance


Time & Work



Marks Distribution For SBI Clerk Prelims Numerical Ability

While appearing for a competitive examination, one needs to have a good understanding of one’s strengths and weaknesses and the requirement for the examination. In these competitive examinations, one need not come first or second to clear the exam; but clear the cut off. In this case, a smart strategy for clearing the exam would be to prepare oneself.


Number of Questions


8-10 questions

Number Series

1-2 questions

Quadratic Equations

4-5 questions


1-2 questions


0-2 questions

Time and Work

1-2 questions

Time, Speed, and Distance

0-2 questions


1-3 questions

Profit and Loss

2-3 questions

Simple and Compound Interest

0-1 questions

Ratio and Proportion

1-3 questions

Number System

1-2 questions

Surds and Indices 

0-1 questions

Boats and Streams

0-2 questions

Permutation and Combination

1-2 questions


1-2 questions

Mixtures and Allegations

1-2 questions

Pipes and Cisterns

0-1 questions

Data Interpretation

5-6 questions

Based on the above data, if an aspirant prepares herself objectively- prioritizes the more important areas as compared to the other one; the result is bound to be positive. It is essential to have clarity on the numerical ability concepts and then use the tricks to prepare effectively and accurately. This way time can also be managed and the preparation will not be cumbersome.

Important Tips To Prepare Numerical Ability For SBI Clerk

One needs to be honest about their strengths and weaknesses and work on the areas that require attention. Once the concepts are understood well, one should practice SBI Clerk Mock Tests rigorously and prepare strategies for examination. Time yourself and ensure you stick to it. Get expert advice on your results and ways to improve performance. 

  • On average, about 35 questions appear from numerical ability each holding one mark. The ideal time to finish these questions is 18-20 mins. What is important to remember is that there is a negative marking of ¼ for every question.
  • Looking at the time of 60 minutes for the entire paper, one needs to have the right amount of speed to answer the questions. Since the number of questions is limited and there is negative marking, one needs to get the questions accurately right. Some aspirants are very accurate but take more time to finish. 
  • Alternatively, some aspirants finish quickly but make lots of mistakes- neither of the two would work as both speed and accuracy are important. Moreover, in order to get the speed and accuracy right, one needs to go through a great amount of practice. 
  • Practice the topics individually, one by one. Do as many questions and cover the different variants in that topic. Go through the previous year’s SBI Clerk cut-off and SBI Clerk question paper to understand the pattern and level of questions asked.
  • When all topics are individually covered, write a mock test within the time limit and mark yourself to take care of speed and accuracy.
  • This two-step method may sound simple but often becomes challenging in the second step. One needs to be able to identify the gaps in understanding a particular topic if there are repeated mistakes and practice enough to be well-versed in answering all types of questions. Start with the easy types of questions and then move on to the more difficult questions.  
  • As for the second step, one needs to understand the type of questions that aspirants are expected to answer faster and other questions that require slightly more time. For example, Number series questions should be completed in 30-40 seconds; whereas geometry, mensuration, etc. can take a little more time. 
  • Data interpretation questions can be attempted faster with a greater amount of practice. Once the concepts are clear, you can work on short-cuts
  • Some topics require the memorization of formulas and steps. It is important to ensure that it is practiced enough to be imprinted in the minds. Also, aspirants often get over-ambitious and prepare themselves for the difficulty level of questions. This doesn’t help because often they would overthink even a moderate level of questions and end up losing marks. 
  • People who fear Numerical ability, often leave some questions that they are unable to attempt. This is a mistake because Numerical Ability constitutes an important section as the other ones as clearing sectional cut-off is important. 

Like other competitive examinations, there is pressure to clear the SBI Clerk examination and the challenge lies in clearing the topics of Numerical ability in the SBI Clerk Preliminary examination. One needs to be focused, sincere, and hardworking to appear for the paper, answering questions accurately and within time.

What aspirants often forget in this race is that at the end of the day, it is an examination. It is not a test for life and will not determine success or failure. It is very important to be level-headed during the course of the preparation and also after the completion of the test. If you qualify, don’t get over-confident; if you don’t qualify, don’t get under-confident. 

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