SSC CGL Tier I : How to Start your Preparations

I know a lot of you are already facing anxiety as the SSC CGL 2016 exam is approaching. Today, we will be discussing a how to start SSC CGL exam preparations.

First of all, let us discuss the syllabus in brief so that it is easy for us to lay-out a study plan keeping in mind the subjects and topics.

Tier-1: SSC CGL Tier-1 would consist of 200 Multiple Choice Questions from four Sections which are English, Reasoning, Quantitative Aptitude and General Awareness. Each section has 50 Questions and Each Question carries 1 mark each.
The Time Duration is 2 hours and there will be a deduction of 0.25 marks for every wrong answer. Further, there won’t be a sectional cut-off in tier-1.


SSC CGL focuses a lot on vocabulary when it comes to passages. So, please make sure to read my article on how to improve your vocabulary by clicking on the link :- How to Improve English Vocabulary

I would suggest you to buy Wren & Martin. It has grammar explained with all appropriate rules which will enable you to have a clear understanding. Plus this book has various exercises at the end of each chapter to help you practice well.

I have made English Grammar notes, you can download it for free here.

Well, honestly, English is something which needs a regular practice and should be done daily rather than doing it in a month.


I have gone through at least a dozen of Reasoning books but none of them were satisfactory. While there are dozens of good books for other subjects but no good book is available for Reasoning. Within next few days I will release my Reasoning ebook.

Downloads :-

The topics that are generally covered under reasoning are:
  1. Analogy (Number, Word and Alphabet)
  2. Similarity and differences
  3. Problem-Analysis and problem solving (Decision making)
  4. Venn-diagrams
  5. Statement and Conclusion, Statement and Argument
  6. Coding & Decoding
  7. Number Series, Alphabet Series and Word Series
  8. Blood-Relation
  9. Seating Arrangement and Dictionary Arrangement.
I would suggest giving each topic, at least 3 days. Learn the basic rules and steps in one day and practice the questions related to the topic for the next two days. This would help you to get hold of the topic well.

Practice, practice and practice because reasoning requires it a lot. In order to master this section, you should practice it daily for minimum 3-4 hours.

I personally do this section in the morning with a fresh mind. Even if you wake up at 9, you still have a lot of time to practice reasoning. Take up a topic and do all the questions related to it, be it in the book, internet or anywhere. So, by the time the date for examination is near, you would have attempted almost all the questions related to a particular topic and it would increase your chance to score more.

Quantitative Aptitude

Again the strategy of using at least three days for each topic would help you at the last moment. It would help you to revise thoroughly.
The topics include:
  1. Trains
  2. Time & Work
  3. Time & Distance
  4. Average
  5. Simple & Compound Interest
  6. Profit & Loss
  7. Mixtures & Allegations
  8. Trigonometry
  9. Partnership
  10. Mensuration
I have the Quantitative Aptitude Made Easy book. Believe me, half the battle is won if you have mastered this book. I take up one chapter daily and practice all the solved examples first and then the main questions. This book has a wide variety of questions and examples which helps your brain to function well.
Learn tables and square roots up to 30 (by heart) and cube roots up to 20. I know you might have heard it a million times by now, but it is the trick to save a lot of time in the examination. It saves your time by avoiding all those small calculations.

Further, focus on your strengths first. Yes, focus on what you already know initially; master it and then move on to your weak areas.

Also, give extra attention to mensuration and trigonometry as it lifts up your scores really well.

General Awareness

As for general awareness, install GK Digest Android application. It is your Bible. Also, stay tuned for another article coming up next, where I will share my thoughts on how to prepare for this section.

This article is written by Monica Dass

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