SBI Clerk English Preparation Strategy
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A false perception of English not being an important subject for banking exams is something that should be shattered immediately. Especially, if you look at SBI Clerk examinations; English as a subject is now as crucial as other technical subjects because SBI doesn’t consider individual cut-offs anymore. Due to the non-consideration of individual cut-offs; aggregate marking in SBI Clerk becomes significantly important. You are now being expected to score fairly well in all the subjects.  

Why is English in SBI Clerk such a difference-maker? 

Ideally, like we mentioned all the subjects are crucial but the generalised attitude towards the subject is what makes it a difference-maker. This is further explained in the points below: 

  • Many aspirants are simply scared of English preparation and do not pursue the subject with complete dedication or end up ignoring it.  
  • Most of the students focus on maths and reasoning and give less time to English. 
  • An ideal picture seen in the results tells us that the difference between the scores of aspirants who perform well in English is too high if compared with aspirants who do not do well. So, either aspirant scores really good or really bad. However, in other subjects, such a pattern isn’t observed.  

If you are somebody who falls in the same category and does wonder why your all-India rank doesn’t stand out this could be the most accurate explanation of the same.  

A question arises here – What should be done? I was weak in English throughout my school life or my schooling was done in Hindi medium, will I be able to crack SBI clerk

The simple answer is a “Yes.” What you need to do is make a change in your attitude towards the subject. You don’t have to look at it as something which can’t be learned. You may need to put some extra effort but that’s true for every aspirant preparing out there. Some struggle with maths and some with linguistic-based subjects.  

Complete SBI Clerk 2021 Strategy 

Let us first look at the maximum marks, questions, time allocated for both prelims and mains.  

          Phase    Number of Questions/maximum marks  Time Duration 
SBI Clerk Prelims                                 30/30     20 mins 
SBI Clerk Mains                                 40/40     35 mins 

As you are aware by now that the SBI clerk exam pattern has changed this year, and for both prelims and mains. The timings for both are separately timed. Your approach should be to prepare accordingly. Various components of English include vocabulary, verbal ability, comprehension reading, and English grammar.  

SBI Clerk Prelims Free Mock

SBI Clerk English Syllabus  

The overall syllabus from the perspective of both prelims and mains is not that vast but one should focus on the aspect that English as a subject is an opportunity for scoring high marks.  

SBI Clerk Prelims English Syllabus  Expected Number of Questions 
Fill in the Blanks  5-10 
Sentence Correction 5-10 
Reading Comprehension 10-15 
Sentence Rearrangement 
Idioms and Phrases 1-2 
Vocabulary 1-2 
Cloze Test 5-7 
Synonyms and Antonyms 4-5 

 SBI Clerk English Mains Syllabus

  • Reading Comprehension
  • Sentence Reaarangement
  • Sentence Correction
  • Fillers
  • Synonyms and Antonyms
  • Cloze Test
  • Idioms and Phrases

Note: The information about the number of questions expected is an interpretation based on the previous SBI clerk exams.  

The syllabus for mains is quite similar if compared with prelims.  

SBI Clerk Prelims Free Mock

Tips for preparing different components of the English section: 

Reading Comprehension 

Solving multiple comprehensions on a daily basis is the best practice you can follow for acing the English section. Reading comprehension will directly or indirectly cover various aspects of the entire syllabus.  

A comprehension solving exercise works on enhancing your reading skills and speed, learning synonyms, antonyms, storytelling, grammar, sentence formation, vocabulary, etc. Now, you might have seen a clear vision of how reading comprehensions can be a real catalyst in SBI clerk examinations.  

Verbal Ability 

In such a section you will be asked to rearrange sentences also known as para jumbles. You will be given 5-6 sentences which if arranged correctly will form a paragraph. You have to arrange all the sentences in a proper sequence. A question can also be asked in the end based upon the paragraph.  

Somebody who is good at solving para jumbles is good at maintaining the balance of speed and accuracy. With 5-6 sentences to be read, it can be time-consuming for most people. So, one of the strategies would be to develop speed reading skills by reading as much as you can daily. While reading newspaper editorials you should also focus on the ideas, issues, and vision expressed by the writer. Both comprehensive and speed reading will help in solving the verbal ability questions. 

Important Books for English Preparation 

  1. English Grammar and Composition by Wren and Martin 
  2. Objective General English by R.S. Agarwal 

General Tips 

  • Measure your language skills & improvement at regular intervals. For example – You can evaluate your reading speed (words read per minute) by noting your speed every week. Similarly, you can track your average time taken to solve the English section by taking free mock tests. You can even take bi-weekly mock tests and even mini-mocks to evaluate your performances.  
  • For any banking aspirant, a healthy reading habit is a must. You may start slow but eventually, help yourself to grow further.  

Remember, the English subject is rather an opportunity to balance your aggregate score and to have leverage over others. Taking it for granted or being scared isn’t helping us at all. It’s better to face the challenges in order to come out prepared for the final day. If you have any queries regarding the English section for the SBI clerk exam; feel free to ask them below in the comments section.  

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