Cracking the General Awareness Section in the PO / RRB Officer Scale / RRB Office Assistant


General Awareness in IBPS Mains

Having seen the need for you to possess wide knowledge, let’s now look at specific exams and their coverage. Understanding the coverage of these exams would allow you to not just plan your preparation better, but also to score well enough to get your dream job.

Assistant and IBPS PO Mains Exams

As a student preparing for the Mains Exams for either RRB or PO, General Awareness is one area I am sure you are worried about. But before we get to understand what you need to do to score high, let’s understand why this area is tested in the first place.

You are a future banker! And as a banker you are going to touch the lives of many people – your diverse set of customers. You are going to interact with the mighty industrialists, young and ambitious entrepreneurs, small time business people, women entrepreneurs, people from challenging backgrounds, agriculturist, farmers and many others. And when you extend your services, you are expected to know a bit about their background. So unlike other professions, a banker is not a specialist; he is a generalist. No wonder then, you are expected to know “something about everything”, and this is what is tested in these exams.

Having seen the need for you to possess wide knowledge, let’s now look at specific exams and their coverage. Understanding the coverage of these exams would allow you to not just plan your preparation better, but also to score well enough to get your dream job.

Regional Rural Banks – Office Assistant & Officer Scale

As you may be aware of, a regional rural bank has its operations predominantly in the rural areas. Two of its main objectives are – financial inclusion and financial literacy. This bank acts as a bridge between the government policies and the rural subscribers. No wonder then that in these tests, the focus is on SOCIAL JUSTICE and POLICIES. A good awareness on recent developments in these areas would win you good marks.

For example, if you were to consider Jan Dhan Account, it has been set up to integrate the unbanked regions and sectors of the Indian population with the mainstream. Also, you should know that the rural banking services are very different from the urban based services in that the rural banks offer sops on a greater magnitude.

The test emphasis is also on similar lines – for instance, in case of the IBPS RRB Office Assistant the general break- up is – about 10 questions from Banking and Economy, 10 questions from Social Justice, 10 questions from the Who & the What and another 10 questions from Banking Sector.

For IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1, however, the emphasis is higher on Banking and Economy. Both exams consist of a General Awareness Section with 40 Questions (each question carries 1 mark) and it is highly recommended that you do not spend more than 15 minutes on this section. For Officer Scales 2 and 3 – the level of questions is of higher difficulty and is also based on the job role you have applied for.

IBPS PO Mains Exam

When it comes to IBPS PO Mains Exam, the nature of the job profile results in a different emphasis in the General Awareness section. As a Probationary Officer, you should be knowledgeable about Banking and Economy to be able to accomplish your responsibilities. The General / Economy / Banking Awareness section consists of 40 questions (1 mark per question) and a majority, around 26 out of 40, of these questions are based on Banking and Economy. Around 10 questions of these are concept based – and that is good news. Why? Because the concepts don’t change every day! These questions can test you on your banking concepts like the cheque and other payment instruments, shadow economy, inflation, monetary policy, terms in vogue, abbreviations and others.

The remaining questions from the banking and economy cover the dynamic or the current affairs aspects. Questions would test your knowledge of the latest interest rates – PLA, Repo and Reverse Repo rates or for example, basic idea of Ind AS 109 or Indian Accounting Standard, a global accounting practice that lenders are mandated to adopt that may lead to initial credit losses or, what is an IFRS? Reading the business dailies and the finance pages of a newspaper like Telangana Today is an absolute must to be able to crack these questions.

The remaining 14 questions (estimated) cover areas like the Awards, the United Nations, the UNESCO and other International Organizations, Important Days, Sports, Books and Authors, Key Appointments, and the departure of the luminaries.

Various websites, including ours – give you daily GK Digests – a compendium of the most important and relevant newsworthy items of the day. Keep tab with such digests to make sure that you do not miss out any important events.

To conclude, ensure that you understand the coverage of questions in the test you are appearing for and prepare accordingly.

While General Awareness and Current Affairs is a vast area – banking concepts are limited and should therefore be focused on in the first place.

And there is no substitute to reading – make sure that you are reading and take notes whenever necessary.

This article - authored by Mr Mohamed Abdullah, was originally published in Telangana Today on 16th October 2017.

Read 230 times Last modified on Monday, 13 November 2017 13:18
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