SSC CGL Preparation 2023: Subject-Wise Tips and Strategy

SSC CGL Preparation 2023: Subject-Wise Tips and Strategy

BySachin Awasthi  |  Updated on: Jan 4, 2023
SSC CGL Preparation 2023 is crucial for your success in the exam. Check SSC CGL preparation strategy and tips followed by every topper and learn how to prepare for SSC CGL exam.
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SSC CGL Preparation 2023 contains some tips and strategies to be followed while preparing for the upcoming CGL exam. SSC Combined Graduate Level exam comprises four tiers out of which two tiers are considered the main stages of the SSC CGL exam. The first two tiers comprise computer-based objective questions while the third tier is a descriptive pen and paper-based test.

In addition to Tier 1, Tier 2, and Tier 3, the SSC board also conducts Tier 4 for some specific posts which comprise of Data Entry Skill Test (DEST) and Computer Proficiency Test (CPT). Below, we have shared some SSC CGL Preparation tips and strategies to prepare for Tier 1 and Tier 2 of the SSC CGL Exam 2023. Also, check the subject-wise SSC CGL preparation strategy as per the latest exam pattern and syllabus.

SSC CGL Preparation 2023

Before we jump onto the SSC CGL preparation strategy 2023, you must know the weightage of each tier of the SSC CGL exam. The weightage of Tier 1 and Tier 2 exams is 200 Marks and 400 Marks, respectively. The Tier 1 exam of SSC CGL includes four subjects as listed below in the table:

Subject

Number of Questions

Maximum Marks

Reasoning

25

50

General Awareness

25

50

Quantitative Aptitude

25

50

English Comprehension

25

50

Total

100

200

Here are some important points to note:

  • Each part is of equal importance, so candidates have to focus on each & every part of this exam.
  • It should be noted by candidates is that there is a Negative Marking of 0.5 marks in this Exam.
  • Remember that there is no section-wise cut off in this Exam.

Note: Click here to know the latest SSC CGL Syllabus.

Below mentioned are some key SSC CGL preparation tips 2023 that you must keep in mind:

  • Focus on Important Topics: List down important topics and make sure you study those topics and practice a lot of questions.
  • Work on your weak Areas: It is very easy to go along well with your strong areas, but it is best to work on your weaker areas and give them your best shot. Practice on the weak areas so that it is possible in the examination to solve them more easily.
  • Go Through Previous Year Question Papers: This will help candidates to have an idea of the examination pattern. Aspirants should practice the papers during the revision time so that they can know the time limit and can practice weak areas.
  • Practice is the ultimate way to succeed: The Final thing you should do is practice more and more. The more you practice the more you develop your understanding. So practice the mock papers available at the Byjus Exam Prep Application.
  • Don’t Overburden Yourself: It is important not to overburden yourself while preparing for the examination. This is the most important requirement for maintaining focus and concentration.

Let us check the subject-wise preparation strategy for the SSC CGL exam in the sections below.

SSC CGL English Preparation Tips

English subject is built on three essential components: vocabulary, comprehension, and grammar. Therefore, focusing on these 3 key issues will give you an edge in preparing this subject. Here are some important SSC CGL preparation tips 2023 for English:

  • Start reading the newspaper daily and especially the editorial section. List down the important words you find and try searching for the synonyms and antonyms for those words.
  • Practice Reading Comprehension and Cloze test regularly.
  • To solve CLoze Test questions, find logical relations between all options. Know that all sentences in the passage are logically connected, hence, read it and choose the option that best fits the sentence and makes sense with the next one in the passage.
  • Solve SSC CGL previous year question papers to get a good idea about the paper pattern.
  • More than 50 per cent of the question paper is based on grammar, therefore, work on the fundamentals of grammar.
  • While solving the question paper, analyze the given options, use the option elimination method for a clear distinction.
  • In order to solve questions on spotting errors, read the complete sentence carefully and check subject-verb agreement. 
  • For Fill in the Blank questions, read the statement carefully and choose the word from the options which is suitable for the answer. Use the method of elimination by simultaneously checking which of the options best satisfies both entries.
  • In the process of reading comprehension, identify the tone of the article, this will help you understand the essence of the article and answer the questions easily.

SSC CGL Preparation Strategy for Math

The SSC CGL preparation for the Quantitative Aptitude section is important as it is the most important area, or you can say is the deciding area for a candidate in the merit list. It occupies the top spot in terms of the weightage it carries in the CBT. 50/200 in Prelims and 200/400 in Mains make it 250/600 or 41.67% of your success (or failure) in SSC CGL exam.

The questions in this section are designed to test the ability to appropriate use of numbers and number sense of the candidates. The scope of quantitative ability is clearly defined and is limited to class 10th level mathematics. If you have good command over this section, you can score 40–45 marks. All you need to do is attempt the questions with good accuracy. The level of this section is expected to be moderate.

Maths syllabus can be divided into Arithmetic, Data Interpretation & Advanced Maths. Elaborating further, this section consists of questions on topics like Profit and Loss, Time, Distance and Work, Average, Alligation, Elementary Mensuration, Algebra, Trigonometry, Geometry, etc.

Note: It is important to analyse previous year papers and find out the break-up of questions. This will help you to find out which area needs more practise and time so that you can plan out your study schedule. 

Topics

SSC CGL Tier 1- 2019

SSC CGL Tier 1- 2018

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2017

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2016

SSC CGL Tier 1 2015

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2014

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2013

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2012

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2011

SSC CGL Tier 1 -2010

Algebra

2-3

3

2-3

2-3

04

05

05

05

00

06

Average

1-2

1

1

1-2

03

02

02

02

03

03

Percentage, Profit and Loss, Interest

2-3

2-3

4

2-3

07

07

06

05

14

06

Trigonometry

3-4

3

2-3

2-3

09

07

08

09

00

00

Geometry

1-2

5

2-3

3-4

06

14

09

12

05

03

Basic Maths

1

1

2-3

2-3

04

03

01

05

11

11

Ratio & Proportion

1-2

1

1

1-2

02

01

03

01

03

03

Number System

0

0

1-2

1-2

03

03

02

02

05

06

Data Interpretation

4

4

4

5

05

05

07

05

04

03

Time and Distance

1

1

1

2-3

03

03

05

02

05

06

Miscellaneous

3-4

3-4

3-4

3-4

04

00

02

02

00

03

Total

25

25

25

25

50

50

50

50

50

50

From the above table, we can see that most of the Quant paper is concentrated on the following 5 topics.

  1. Trigonometry
  2. Geometry
  3. Data Interpretation
  4. Algebra
  5. Percentage/ Profit, Loss & Discount

Check the SSC CGL preparation strategy for each of these topics below.

1. Trigonometry

Generally, easy questions are asked on trigonometry in Tier I. So you need to prepare the basics. But remember the pattern of questions should be of SSC CGL. No other exam like NDA, CDA will work.

Do you need to learn so many formulas of Trigonometry?

The answer would be “NO”. You need not remember so many formulas, only 3-4 are enough. You need to remember the basics about sin θ, cos θ, tan θ, cot θ, Sec θ, cosec θ, and their relationship. Then 3 basic formulas and a table for θ value of the angle. The most important thing is you must fluent in the table as most of the questions can be solved by putting value. You need not solve the entire question, just put the value of θ and will get the answer.

2. Geometry

Geometry in the SSC CGL exam is considered the most important topic. Most of the questions are directly related to properties. So, SSC CGL preparation for the Geometry topic can be done by revising the properties of Lines, Angle, Triangle, Quadrilateral, Polygon, Circle, Concept of Triplet, etc.

3. Data Interpretation

Nearly all the D.I. questions are based on ratio, percentage, and average chapters of arithmetic which you can easily solve within 3-4 minutes and score good marks.

4. Algebra

It includes questions on Algebraic Identities, Factorization, Simplification of Polynomials, and Simplification of Fractions. Practicing all types of questions from these topics is a must. Algebra is closely connected to all other topics in the Quantitative Aptitude section. It will be useful in Data Interpretation, Geometry, Percentage, etc.

5. Percentage/ Profit, Loss & Discount

You should know the basic rules applied in these chapters. By heart learning formulas and their application would be a perfect way to solve many questions. Basic calculation and approximation concepts should be strong as they directly drive the candidate to the right option. Try to use shortcut tricks for saving time.

Solved just By taking 100 as base

Example: What is the percentage profit in selling an article at a discount of 20% which was earlier sold for 40% profit?

  1. a) 20%
  2. b) 14%
  3. c) 28%
  4. d) 12%

Solution: Let’s take Rs.100 as the cost of the article. The man was selling the article for Rs 140 (100 cost + 40 profit), now he is selling at a discount of 20%, now 140*20/100 = 28. New selling price = 140-28 = 112. Therefore, the answer is D.

Play with options

Example: A man bought 18 oranges for 100 rupees and sold 12 oranges for 100 rupees. Calculated profit percentage.

  1. 33.333%
  2. 50%
  3. 66.666%
  4. Can’t be determined

It can be easily seen that man saved 50% of what he sold. He saved 6 oranges while he sold 12 oranges. Clearly, the answer is 50%.

There are a couple of mistakes done by aspirants while attempting the quantitative section in the SSC CGL exam. Enough practice to avoid these mistakes is included in the SSC CGL preparation strategy 2023 to score well in this section. Let us have a look at some common mistakes:

  • Not Reading Questions Completely: In the quant section, this is the most common mistake made by students. In a hurry to solve questions faster, you don’t read questions clearly and end up making mistakes. This problem can cause frustration as even after solving the question methodically, you will not get the relevant option. And then, it becomes a herculean task to identify where you went wrong. Hence, read twice before you go ahead and start solving.
  • Avoid Risky Shortcuts: If you have practiced a particular shortcut or trick on many questions during your preparation then go ahead. But, if you have just read some shortcut or any trick during the last leg of your preparation, avoid using it in the exam as you do not know the conditions in which this particular shortcut can be applied. Solve the question using a conventional way even if it takes more time.
  • Guess Work: Absolutely avoid any guesswork as negative marking is the main point to be kept in mind as far as competitive exams are concerned.

SSC CGL Preparation Tips for General Awareness

General Awareness (GA) is a scoring section if the candidate tackles it wisely. GA section doesn’t require any calculations and therefore it is the least time-consuming section. Candidates can attempt this section very quickly and accurately if they know the correct answer. Here are some important SSC CGL preparation tips for the General Awareness section:

  • Analyze the General Awareness questions in the SSC CGL previous year papers.
  • Focus more on the static part as around 60 percent of the GA section is covered by this part only. This section includes topics like Indian History, Geography (Indian + World), Indian Economy, Polity & Culture, Biology, Chemistry, Computer & Mobile Technology, Nutrition, Physics, etc.
  • Also go through the miscellaneous topics including Union Budget, Demonetization, Economic Survey, Important Authors and Writers, Oscar Winners, famous seaports & airports and their location, State Animals and Symbols, Important Institutions of India and World and their locations (World Bank, RBI, IMF, BRICS, etc.).
  • Read NCERT textbooks of Science, Social Science from Class 6 to 10 along with Class 11 and 12 for Geography and History subjects, particularly.
  • For Current Affairs, read about Sports, Honours & Awards, Government Schemes & Projects, Summit & Conferences,  Science & Defense, Appointment, National & International Affairs, Books & Authors, Obituaries, Important Dates & Days etc.
  • Follow the golden rule of regular revisions of all topics to secure good marks in the GA section.

One of the best SSC CGL preparation strategy is to attempt 1 mock paper every day with a fresh mind followed by the analysis of test results. Solve the SSC CGL mock tests series provided by BYJU'S Exam Prep for regular practice.

SSC CGL Exam Preparation Tips 2023 For Reasoning

The reasoning section in the SSC CGL exam is generally found easier by the candidates than the Quantitative Aptitude section. It takes comparatively less time to solve reasoning questions as compared to mathematics. The test will include questions on similarities and differences, space visualization, problem-solving, analysis, judgment, decision-making, visual memory, figure classification, etc. The test will also include questions designed to test the candidate’s abilities to deal with abstract ideas, symbols and their relationship, arithmetical computation, and other analytical functions. Some important SSC CGL exam preparation tips for General Intelligence and Reasoning section are listed below:

  • Covering general problem-solving skills, one should focus on the topics of logical deductions and general logic applications.
  • Candidates must read the questions properly and then start solving the problem to avoid making silly mistakes.
  • A few subtopics do require effort and time for solving them correctly and quickly in the examination. Candidates should strive right from the beginning to practice enough questions, so as to quickly recognize the patterns present in the problem.
  • In case, a problem ends up taking too much of your precious examination time, it's better if you would switch to the next question and then come back to the problem if time permits.

Topic-wise SSC CGL Reasoning Preparation Tips

Below, we have also mentioned SSC CGL topic-wise reasoning preparation tips for you to prepare optimally.

Statements & Conclusion: This topic is difficult for many of the candidates. Never use extra knowledge apart from what is given in the statement. If the statement says "Sun rises in the west," then assume that Sun rises in the west and proceed. 

Ranking Order: Most of the time students answer it incorrectly as they note down wrong data while solving the questions or put the wrong symbol. It is advisable to read the questions thoroughly before proceeding with it. 

Analogy: In this section, you have to relate the meaning of the question and choose the answer out of the given options. Always go through all the given options. Sometimes, we change our answers after going through all the options.  Follow the given systematic approach to find out the answer.

Classification: In this section, you have to find out the odd option i.e. words or letters or numbers which is different from the remaining three options. For this, you must know the squares or cubes or prime numbers, etc. You must be able to differentiate all the aspects asked.

Paper Folding: Tear a small piece of paper and apply the question. You will get the answer in less than 10 seconds. You have to be attentive as options are very similar.

Coding-Decoding: Do not use your brain unnecessarily in this question also. Find out the coding according to the given question.

Dictionary: Four or five words will be given in the question. Follow the alphabetical order & arrange all words according to the order of words in the dictionary.

Word Formation: It is the easiest one but you may be confused in "can be formed" and "cannot be formed". Read the question carefully.

Distance & Direction: Assume any direction and solve the question according to that assumed direction. Make the basic direction North, West, East, South chart and then apply the question in the diagram.

SSC CGL Preparation Strategy for Beginners

If you are going to appear for the SSC CGL exam for the first time this year, then it will be highly beneficial for you to go through the preparation strategy for SSC CGL given below specially written for beginners. Keep practicing hard and follow these tips to modify your study plan if needed.

  • Go through the complete exam pattern and syllabus of SSC CGL.
  • Solve 2-3 mock papers to get to know your weaker areas and strong concepts.
  • Practice questions from your weaker areas more to get a good hold on them and improve your scores.
  • Watch free videos related to various concepts available on the Byjus Exam Prep Youtube channel. Learn short tricks to attempt Quantitative and Reasoning questions in less time.
  • Solve previous year papers of SSC including SSC CGL, CHSL, MTS, etc which share the same syllabus and pattern as SSC CGL.

Last Week Preparation Tips & Tricks for SSC CGL Exam

While SSC CGL preparation is a long-term process, it is important to get into the right mindset just before the exam. The last week is very critical towards building the right mindset. For this, we have compiled some result-oriented tips and tricks for last week of the SSC CGL exam below.

1. Speed and Accuracy

Speed and accuracy play a vital role in the exam. To increase your speed, attempt at least 10 mock tests in the last week and try to solve them in 55 minutes. Note the topics which are taking more time. These topics should be attempted towards the end of the exam. Your focus should be on improving your accuracy by practising more quizzes and mocks.

2. Revision is Necessary

If the important topics that you studied earlier are not properly revised, it is as good as not studied. The revision will help you memorize/ remember what you studied months back. Revise the important Maths formulas, especially the key topics in advanced maths. Revise the short tricks for time and distance, profit and loss, percentage, mixture and allegation, and ratio & proportion. These will help you save your crucial time during the examination.

3. Attempt Mock Test

Attempting a quality online mock test will simulate an exact experience of the real exam. It will not only provide you with a complete performance analysis but also create an actual test environment An online Mock test will help you adjust in accordance with the online mode. It will help you improve your accuracy, speed and time management. The complete solutions of online mock tests will help you analyse your weak areas. After every mock test, find out what exactly is needed to work/ improve on before appearing for the next mock test.

4. Maintain Confidence

If you are confident about your success, then you will surely achieve it You will get confidence from your strong portions, so revise and practice your strong portions To maintain your confidence level do some light exercises. Games or physical exercises are necessary to balance your physical and mental energy If your energy level is balanced, then you feel highly confident, and it will help you handle exam pressure better Have faith in yourself and you will be through. Have a positive attitude and keep yourself motivated. At the end of the day, it is only an exam.

5. Time Management

Time management is the key to success, so you must have proper time management planning Don’t spend too much time on a single question; mark it for review and come back to it only in the end. Your main aim is to utilize every second of exam time, for this you need to have a proper strategy for attempting the question paper. Here is an indicative strategy, you can modify this according to your strengths and weaknesses:

  • First of all attempt Reasoning section in the first 12-14 minutes.

  • Attempt GS portion in 8-10 minutes.

  • Then attempt the English section in the next 10-12 minutes.

  • In last, Attempt Maths in 25 minutes.

  • Leave the last 5 minutes to act as a buffer for the questions which you have marked for attempting in the end.

6. Relax your mind

  • Don’t take too much stress on the difficulty level of the exam. If the exam level is tough then it’s not only for you. Normalization is now the part of SSC CGL recruitment process. So, stay calm during the exam time and try to make the best of your attempts. Make sure you get ample sleep in the last week, as it will help you in reducing your stress levels. Do some yoga or meditation in the last week to keep your mind calm.

Best Books for SSC CGL Preparation

Books are an important part of study material for SSC CGL preparation. It is beneficial to include the best books in the study plan while preparing for the SSC CGL exam. Some of the best books for SSC CGL preparation are as follows which will help you to practice high-quality questions and clear your basic concepts:

  • English: Objective General English by S.P. Bakshi, Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis, A Plinth to Paramount by Neetu Singh, Corrective English by A.K. Sigh.
  • Quantitative Aptitude: Magical Books On Quicker Maths by M-Tyra (BSC publication), SSC Mathematics 5800+ by Kiran Publication
  • Reasoning: Lucent Reasoning by Arihant Publication
  • General Awareness: Lucent G.K. by Dr. Binay Karna and Manwendra Mukul

To know more about SSC CGL books for preparation, click on the link provided here.

SSC CGL Preparation Tips FAQs

  • You can start your SSC CGL preparation 2023 by following below mentioned steps:

    • Join BYJU's Exam Prep SSC CGL online classes and refer to some of the best books for SSC CGL.
    • Prepare precise notes that you can refer to for revision.
    • Attempt SSC CGL mock test and solve previous year's question papers.
    • Do revision multiple times.
  • In order to complete the syllabus and SSC CGL preparation in 3 months, you must have a robust study plan and devote equal time to all subjects. Also, make sure to revise all the topics multiple times, attempt SSC CGL mock test, solve the previous year's SSC CGL question papers.

  • It is not difficult to score well in the quantitative aptitude section. In fact, it is considered a scoring section that candidates can attempt with high accuracy. The SSC CGL preparation strategy for the Quantitative Aptitude section includes practicing as many questions as you can from the topics such as Trigonometry, Geometry, Data Interpretation, Algebra, Percentage, Profit & Loss, Discount, etc. Focus on attaining accuracy and learning tricks to find answers in lesser time.

  • It is suggested to start SSC CGL preparation well in advance, but if you have only 1 month to prepare for the SSC CGL exam, then the following tips and strategies can be followed:

    • Go through the latest exam pattern and syllabus.
    • Give at least 8 to 10 hours a day to SSC CGL exam preparation 2023.
    • Solve mock test papers and analyze the test results to learn from your mistakes.
    • Solve SSC question papers of all recent exams that follow the same pattern and share the same Tier 1 syllabus like SSC CHSL, MTS, etc.
    • Solve previous year's question papers of SSC CGL to get a real-time experience of attempting the paper.
  • Yes, candidates must attempt SSC CGL previous year question paper and mock tests to ace up their SSC CGL exam preparation 2023. You can download SSC CGL previous year question paper to practice and score more marks in the exam.

  • English language and comprehension is an important part of the SSC CGL exam which comes in both Tier 1 and Tier 2 exams. It is important for candidates to work on their English Language and Grammar concepts to score good marks on the paper. Follow the SSC CGL English preparation tips 2023 to make a relevant change in your study plan if needed:

    • Read the book "Word Power Made Easy" by Norman Lewis to increase your vocabulary.
    • Practice reading comprehension by solving passages from previous year's papers.
    • Learn grammar rules to easily spot errors, fill in the blanks, etc.

     

  • If you want to clear SSC CGL in the first attempt, you need at least 6 months to 1 year for SSC CGL exam preparation. All the topics that are covered in the syllabus are basic and mostly from the Grade 10 level, but you need to learn some short tricks to find the answers quickly. So, the SSC CGL preparation strategy will help you to make an effective study plan to clear the upcoming exam.

  • If you are going to attempt the SSC CGL exam for the first time this year, you need a solid preparation strategy for SSC CGL that will guide your efforts and make them fruitful. You can take mock test series, and live online classes on BYJU'S Exam Prep to assist your preparations with expert guidance.

  • Candidates should follow last week preparation tips for SSC CGL exam to ensure that they develop the right mindset that is required to crack the exam. Candidates should ensure to practice mock tests and analyse their weaknesses and strength. It is also important keep a cool mind and stay confident to perform well on the exam day.

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