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IBPS PO 2021 Exam Pattern and Syllabus

Updated On -

Oct 3, 2020

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Simran Nigam

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IBPS PO 2021 will be organized by IBPS (Institute of Banking Personnel Selection). It is a government recruitment agency which is fully dedicated to placing job seekers on reputable positions in banking sectors. Get the latest bank recruitment news here

IBPS Prelims 2021 is the qualifying exam to appear for IBPS PO Mains. IBPS PO Prelims will be conducted in October 2021. IBPS PO Mains is scheduled in November 2021. The final selection of the candidate will be done on the basis of the Interview which is scheduled in April 2022. Check  IBPS PO Mock Tests 2020 

The pattern of IBPS PO which is almost same from the last year that is selection is done on the basis of Prelims test, Mains and the interview.

IBPS Prelims will have 100 questions which are of objective nature. The total duration of the exam is 100 marks total with a time duration of 1 hour. Prelims will include 3 subjects, namely:

  • Quantitative Aptitude
  • Reasoning
  • English

Check IBPS PO Sectional Tests 2020

The time duration of IBPS Mains will be 2 hours in which candidates have to solve 200 questions. The total weightage of the exam will be 200 marks. The Mains will include:

  • Quantitative Aptitude
  • Reasoning
  • English
  • Computers
  • General Awareness

The syllabus of both the papers i.e. Prelims and Mains for subjects Mathematics, Reasoning and English will be the same. However, the level of difficulty will vary as per the marks allotted to that particular subject. Check IBPS PO 2021 Exam Pattern

Candidates need to prepare for General Awareness and Computers once they clear the Prelims paper, for the Mains Exam. Candidates are advised to solve Practice Papers for IBPS PO Exam for a better grip over the exam pattern

IBPS PO 2021 Exam Pattern for Prelims

The initial stage of IBPS PO exam is the Preliminary exam. It is conducted in computer-based mode at the allotted exam centre. There are 100 questions divided into 3 sections- Quantitative Aptitude, Reasoning (Verbal and Non-verbal) and English Language. Check Here IBPS PO 2020 Syllabus

The complete duration of the exam is 1 hour. The question paper for IBPS Prelims 2018 will be English or Hindi. Here is the weightage of different sections in the IBPS Prelims exam:

Here are the important highlights of IBPS PO Prelims Exam Pattern 2018:

Total questions 100
Total Marks 100
Time Duration 1 hour
Mode of Exam Online
Exam Language English/Hindi
Negative Marking For each wrong answer, 0.25 marks will be deducted.

IBPS PO 2021 Exam Pattern for Mains

IBPS PO Mains is conducted in online mode with 200 questions objective type in nature. The questions are divided into five sections namely Quantitative Aptitude, Reasoning, English Language, General Awareness and Computer Knowledge. 

The weightage of each section is given below:

There is a separate time limit for each section while the overall time duration for the exam is 2 hours. The questions are in English or Hindi. One Mark will be awarded for every right answer. Negative marking prevails in the exam so attempt questions carefully. Here are the details of the IBPS PO Exam Pattern for Mains:

Total questions 200
Total Marks 200
Time Duration 2 hours
Mode of Exam Online
Exam Language English/Hindi
Negative Marking For each wrong answer, 0.25 marks will be deducted

IBPS PO Mains Schedule: Section-wise

There is a separate time duration for each section of IBPS Mains. Given below is the schedule for each section in the exam:

Section Time Duration
English Language 30 minutes
Quantitative Aptitude 40 minutes
Reasoning 40 minutes
General Awareness 20 minutes
Computer Knowledge 10 minutes

Examination Centers for IBPS PO.

IBPS PO 2021 Preparation

Each subject has a different pattern based on the syllabus and the topics that subject include.

The question papers for IBPS exams are designed in such a way that it filters out brilliant students having excellent knowledge of Reasoning, Quantitative Aptitude, English and Computers. Along with the Excellency in these subjects, candidates must also be well updated with General Knowledge and Current Affairs.

Read Current Affairs 2020 for free before appearing for IBPS PO 2021 Exam

The candidates who are wishing to appear in the exam should check the IBPS PO 2018 Exam Pattern to manage their preparation accordingly.

  • Increase Speed and Accuracy

The candidates who are preparing for IBPS PO should have very good speed while solving question paper as they have to solve many questions in limited time duration.

To score well in the exam, accuracy is also important with speed. To increase the speed and accuracy, candidates can solve IBPS PO Previous Years Question Papers and Mock Test Papers.

  • Attempt Easy Questions First

In order to utilize the time in an efficient way, the candidates are advised to solve the easier questions first as these questions won’t take much time to be answered.

Focus on Important Sections 

The candidates are required to set their command on all the sections in the IBPS PO Exam. Here are a few tips to aid the preparation of each section:

  • The General Awareness section is the most important section for aspirants to focus on. The candidates should keep themselves updated with Current Affairs and Static General Knowledge Questions.
  • English is another section which should be set on priority as many candidates who belong to Hindi Medium face problems in answering the question asked in English Paper.
  • The Quantitative Aptitude Section consists most of the questions of 10th Level Mathematics, so candidates who have a great interest in mathematics can easily score in this section. The main key to score maximum marks in this section is practice. So, practising Math on daily basis can lead you to gain a good score in this section.
  • The Reasoning Section is quite easy if it is prepared wisely. This section doesn’t take much time to solve the questions.
  • The Computer section is based on basic computer knowledge so students can easily score in this section.

Also, Check IBPS PO Sectional Tests 2020

IBPS PO 2020 Syllabus

IBPS PO Exam Syllabus is a complete guide of course that covers all the important topics on which the IBPS PO question paper will be based. Here we provide you with the topic wise syllabus with preparation books of each:

IBPS PO Syllabus for Quantitative Aptitude

This section includes questions from basic mathematical topics. Here are the important topics to be focused on while preparing for Quantitative Aptitude:

  • Ratio and proportion
  • Averages
  • Time and work
  • Speed, Distance and time
  • Percentages
  • Partnership
  • Volume and Surface Area
  • Permutation and combinations
  • Simple and compound interest
  • Quadratic Equations
  • Probability
  • Profit, Loss and Discount

Practice All India IBPS PO Mock Tests 2021 for free of cost

The complete syllabus of Quantitative Aptitude is tabulated below:

Ratio and proportion Permutation and combinations
Averages Simple and compound interest
Time and work Quadratic Equations
Speed, Distance and time Probability
Mixture and allegation Trigonometry
Percentages Profit, Loss and Discount
Partnership Mensuration
Volume and Surface Area Elements of Algebra
Height and Distances Data Interpretation- Pie charts, Tables, Bar & Graphs and Line charts
Logarithms  -

IBPS PO Syllabus for Reasoning

This section of IBPS PO is scoring if the concepts are clear and well-practised. Here are a few important topics that must be focused to score well:

  • Syllogism
  • Coding-Decoding
  • Blood Relations
  • Series Test
  • Number, Ranking and time sequence
  • Direction sense Test
  • Decision-making test
  • Input/output
  • Sitting Arrangement
  • Puzzles
Analogy Passage and conclusions
Classification Alphabet test
Word formation Series Test
Statement and conclusions Number, Ranking and time sequence
Syllogism Direction sense Test
 Statement and assumptions Decision-making test
 Statement and arguments Figure series
Coding-Decoding Input/output, Assertion and reasoning
Blood Relations Sitting Arrangement

IBPS PO Syllabus for the English Language

This section is further classified into sub-sections. Here are a few important topics to be covered and practised in IBPS PO 2018:

  • Error Correction
  • Sentence Rearrangement
  • Fill in the Blanks with Modals, Articles etc.
  • Comprehension
  • Answering questions based on Unseen Passages
  • Vocabulary
  • Synonyms

The detailed syllabus for English is tabulated below:


Homonyms Antonyms
Synonyms Word Formation
Spelling -


Spotting Errors Phrases and idioms
Direct and Indirect speech Active/ Passive voice

Reading Comprehension

Theme Detection Passage completion
Topic rearrangement of passage Deriving Conclusion

IBPS PO Syllabus for General Awareness

Given below are the topics from which the questions of General Awareness section are made:

Current affairs related to national and international issues of the last 6 months Overview of the Indian Financial System
History of the Indian banking system Recent credit and monetary policies
Introduction to National financial institutions like RBI, SEBI, IRDA, FSDC etc and of International organizations like IMF, World Bank, ADB, UN etc. Abbreviations and Economic terminologies
Banking Terms Important Government Schemes on capital & money market

IBPS PO Syllabus for Computer Knowledge

The table given below gives the detailed syllabus for Computer Knowledge section in IBPS PO Mains:

Basics of Hardware and software Windows operating system basics
Internet terms and services Basic Functionalities of MS-Office (MS-word, MS-Excel, MS-PowerPoint)
History of computers Networking and communication
Database basics Basics of Hacking, Security Tools and Viruses

Recommended Books

Selecting the right books is very important for sure success in any exam. It reduces efforts. Selecting the best books to simplify your learning process and enhances your chances of doing best in the Exam.

Books that the candidates need to refer for the exam are very important as it helps to make your speed as well as concepts clear. If you go for easy books all through the preparation it will not help in solving the toughest questions, though knowing the formulae can make you solve even the toughest questions but practising beforehand with the difficult questions and that too with the time management will save your time in the exam.

Here are the list books that the candidate must refer for best results:

Books for Quantitative Aptitude

Subject Book Name Author
Quantitative Aptitude Quantitative Aptitude R.S.Aggarwal
Quantitative Aptitude Quantitative Aptitude Test N.K.Singh
Quantitative Aptitude The Complete Success Package – Bank PO Arihant Publications

Books for General Awareness

Subject Book Name Author
General Awareness Guide to Banking General Awareness R.Gupta
General Awareness Manohar Pandey Book Arihant Publications

Books for Computer Knowledge

Subject Book Name Author
Computer Knowledge Objective Computer Knowledge & Literacy Kiran Publication
Computer Knowledge Computer Awareness Arihant Publication

Books for the English Language

Subject Book Name Author
English Essential English Grammar Murphy
English General English R.S.Aggarwal

Books for Reasoning

Subject Book Name Author
Reasoning Verbal- Non-Verbal Reasoning R.S.Aggrawal

*The article might have information for the previous academic years, please refer the official website of the exam.