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SSC CGL Tier 1 2017: Strategy for clearing the exam

Clearing the SSC CGL is not an easy task, especially when candidates target both banking and SSC exams. The SSC exam has a different scheme and syllabus and is different from banking.

education Updated: Mar 25, 2017 15:08 IST
SSC CGL 2017
Clearing the SSC CGL is not an easy task, especially when candidates target both banking and SSC exams. The SSC exam has a different scheme and syllabus and is different from banking.(Pratham Gokhale/HT file photo)

The Staff Selection Commission (SSC) is going to conduct the Combined Graduate Level (CGL) exam in June and there are only a few months that you can dedicate in preparing so that you can secure a seat.

Clearing the exam is not an easy task, especially when candidates target both banking and SSC exams. The SSC exam has a different scheme and syllabus and is different from banking.

Can you clear the SSC in these few months?

If you plan it properly then you may see your name in the final list. Here is an article that could help you draft a plan. And do remember that REGULAR PRACTICE will be the key to success in CGL 2016.

We will target the Tier I and Tier II here.

Below is the scheme of Tier I examination that was introduced last year. You will get 75 minutes to attempt all the 100 questions and each question will carry 2 marks with a penalty of .5 marks if done wrong. So it becomes quite important for you to maintain accuracy otherwise instead of going two steps forward, you may end up half a step behind.

Tips and strategy

1. Reasoning/general intelligence

The reasoning is a test to observe your mental and problem-solving ability. The reasoning is not like numerical skill where you learn some formula and solve the questions by applying that formula. You have to be very careful while answering these questions. And if we talk about the SSC reasoning, 20-25 questions can be done by just using common sense and daily practice can get you above 40 marks. It’s quite easy to score marks in this section provided you practice on a daily basis. Below are some important topics that should be done in order to get good marks.

2. Quantitative Aptitude

Before you start preparing for this section, just keep in mind that quant is not only important for Tier I, but also for Tier II. You all know what to do to get good marks in this section. You need to practice all the varieties of questions and need to learn some shortcut techniques to solve them. The syllabus not only includes arithmetic but also advanced maths. Let us have a look at some of the important topics:

3. General English

Believe it or not, this is the scoring section for SSC CGL. This section is there for both the Tier I and Tier II exams. So, you have to keep this in your mind during your preparation. You have to improve grammar as well vocabulary part to complete this whole section.

4. General studies

General studies is the important section of the exam because you can score more marks in less amount of time. But on the other hand, you have to be equally careful about the time you dedicate for preparation. This section is quite vast and requires a huge amount of time. This may exhaust your mind as you have three other sections to take care of. The best strategy to prepare for this section is to cover the previous years’ question papers.

So here we are giving you detailed syllabus for general awareness:


(i) Important inventions and their inventor

(ii) Important and interesting facts about human body parts

(iii) Nutrition in animals and plants

(iv) Diseases and their causes like bacteria, viruses and protozoa

(v) Last four chapter of NCERT of Class 12 for environment


(i) Chemical properties of substance and their uses

(ii) SI units

(iii) Chemical name of important substances like plaster of Paris etc

(iv) Chemical Change and Physical Change

(v) Properties of gases

(vi) Surface chemistry

(vii) Chemistry in everyday life


(i) Important inventions and their inventor

(ii) SI units

(iii) Motion, sound, light, wave, energy, electricity


(i) Rivers and their tributaries

(ii) Mountain and their important peaks of India and world

(iii) Important cities on the banks of river in the India and the world

(iv) Interior of earth

(v) Basics about Indian climate

(vi) Indian states and their boundaries

(vii) Location of national parks and sanctuaries

(viii) Important volcanoes and their locations

(ix) Important island of world

(x) Important seas in the world

(xi) Minerals found in India and the world


(i) Supreme Court

(ii) Meaning of writs

(iii) Election of President and his functions

(iv) Important constitutional bodies like CAG

(v) Facts about Parliament

(vi) Fundamental duties

(vii) Governor and his functions

(viii) State legislature

(ix) Major constitutional amendments and their importance

(x) Official language

(xi) Emergency provisions

(xii) National political parties and their symbols


(i) Terminology of budget (like national income, GDP, fiscal deficit and much more)

(ii) Five-year plan and its importance

(iii) Famous people in economy

(iv) Institutions and their importance like RBI, Sebi etc


(i) Population census

(ii) Important books and their writers

(iii) First events in sports for India and the world such as first Olympic, first Asian Game etc

(iv) Famous sea ports and airports and their location

(v) State animals and symbols

(vi) Important Indian and global institutions and their locations such as BRICS, World Bank, IMF and RBI etc

(vii) Awards and their importance

(vii) Name of Nobel-winning scientists for important discoveries


(i) Facts about Harappan civilisation

(ii) Vedic culture

(iii) Name of kings who built important ancient temples and institutions such asNalanda

(iii) Medieval Indian chronology and their important systems

(iv) India’s freedom movement and its leaders


(i) Development of computers

(ii) Input and output devices

(iii) Memory

Time Management for SSC CGL mock exam

Make a timetable of how much time you should give to each section. Here is how you can manage time:

For example:

10 min for general knowledge

15 min for English

25 min for reasoning

And remaining 25 min for quantitative aptitude. Make a time map of which section you are going to solve first then the second, third and fourth. Emphasise more on a section that you are more comfortable with and solve it first.

Revision is most important phase of preparation

Many students don’t find much time to read or revise the topics they have completed for each subject. This is where they make a mistake. Make your habit to revise and write down the important things such as maths formula (which you think are time-consuming). The revision will help you to remember the topics easily.

We have got many emails regarding this problem where students can’t seem to remember the things they study. Proper planning will help you achieve the goals you have set for yourself.

(Nagar is the founder and CEO of Adda247. Views expressed here are personal.)