IBPS RRB 2020 Officer Scale 1 Exam Analysis


The Institute of Banking Personnel Selection (IBPS) is an agency that works with the Central government to recruit candidates for various public sector bank jobs. The exam in discussion in this article is for personnel to be recruited to work in Regional Rural Banks (RRB). The IBPS RRB 2021 exam official notification released on June 7, 2021, has announced a total of 11,687 vacancies for Officer Scales 1, 2, 3 and Office Assistant posts.

IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 Notification 2021

The IBPS conducts national-level exams for various banking posts every year. Through these exams, the IBPS recruits both Grade A and B post banking personnel. The Officer Scale 1 is a Probationary Officer post that works with Regional Rural Banks. This year, IBPS has announced 4658 openings for the post of IBPS RRB Scale 1 Officer.

In this article, we will make a detailed analysis of the IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 Exam held in 2020. The objective behind this exercise is to study and analyze the exam pattern while preparing our own strategy for the upcoming exam. In order to avoid missing any deadlines, take a look at the table of important dates for this exam given below. 

Online Application start dateJune 8, 2021
Payment of Application Fees/Intimation Charges (Online)08th to 28th June 2021
IBPS RRB Preliminary Examination
(Officer Scale-1 & Office Assistant)
August 1, 7, 8, 14 and 21, 2021
Result of Online exam- PrelimsSeptember 2021
Officer Scale 1 Mains ExamSeptember 25, 2021
InterviewOctober/November, 2021
Provisional Allotment (Final Result)January 2022

IBPS RRB PO Prelims 2020 Exam Analysis

Reviewing and analyzing the previous year’s question paper is an important part of preparing for any exam. By studying the previous year’s exam, aspirants can perceive the sectional and overall assessment standard of the exam. We will look at the thematic distribution of questions, important topics from every section, last year’s cut-off marks and the standard of assessment of each section in this article. The IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 exam is conducted over 3 phases- Prelims, Mains and Interview. In this article, we will analyze the Prelims and Mains paper in detail so that we can prepare ourselves for this year’s exam. 

IBPS RRB Bank PO Prelims 2020

Let us begin with the Prelims paper. This paper consists of 2 sections, namely Reasoning and Quantitative Aptitude. Each section is assessed for 40 marks each for which a composite time of 45 minutes is allotted.


TopicsNo. of QuestionsLevel
Seating Arrangement10Easy-Moderate
Coding Decoding5Easy
Blood Relation1Easy

The highest number of questions were asked from Seating Arrangement and Puzzles. Also, since there is a penalty of 0.25 marks for every wrong answer, candidates should not make any blind guesses. In order to ensure that candidates do not leave any questions unanswered, candidates must not spend more than half a minute on any question on average.

Quantitative Aptitude

TopicsNo. of QuestionsLevel
Quadratic Equation5Easy
Data Interpretation- Pie-Chart, Tabular DI12Easy- Moderate
Quantity I & Quantity II5Easy
Series (Missing)6Easy
Arithmetic Word Problem12Easy-Moderate

From Quant, the highest number of questions were asked from Data Interpretation and Arithmetic Word Problems. The question volume for the remaining topics was more or less evenly distributed. As you can see, no questions were asked from Simplification and Approximation, Percentage, Profit & Loss and Time & Work. However, this does not mean that any topic should be left out of the preparation altogether. This topic-wise break-up has been provided so candidates can gauge which topics carry more weightage in the exam. The overall level of assessment was moderate to easy. 

Candidates must note that while the syllabus and exam pattern for the Office Assistant exam and Officer Scale 1 exam is the same, the question papers were not common. 

IBPS RRB PO Mains 2020 Exam Analysis

English Language

TopicsNo. of QuestionsLevel
Reading Comprehension10Easy to Moderate
Error Detection4Easy
Sentence Correction3Easy to Moderate
Para Jumble5Easy to Moderate
Word Replacement4Easy to Moderate
Fill in the blanks4Easy
Match the column4Easy

The English language paper assessment level was moderate to easy. As is always the case, the maximum number of questions were based on Reading Comprehension wherein candidates were given a passage that they had to read. This was followed by candidates answering a number of questions asked based on the passage. 3-6 questions were asked on various other topics such as Error Detection, Sentence Correction and Word Replacement. If candidates have a strong language front, this section should be easy for them to obtain a good score on. 


The Reasoning section of the IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 exam was moderate. Let us analyse each topic to understand the weightage given to each in the exam. 

TopicsNo. of Questions
Seating Arrangement 10
Puzzles (8 Person likes different food), Box Based Puzzle (8 Box with variable countries)10
Coding Decoding (Chinese Coding)1
Order Ranking (Height arrangement)3
Data Sufficiency3
Blood Relation3
Alphabet (Meaningful word)1
Logical Reasoning3

As you may have noticed, Puzzles and Seating Arrangement topics were given similar weightage in the Prelims paper as well. This is clearly indicative of the importance of the 2 topics for this exam. While candidates should not ignore any other topic, they must give due importance to Puzzles and Seating Arrangement Puzzles so that they can solve them quickly and correctly in the examination. 

Quantitative Aptitude

The Quantitative Aptitude section of the IBPS RRB PO exam 2020 was moderate to difficult.  

TopicsNo. of Questions
Data Interpretation15
Series (Missing)5
Arithmetic Word Problem10

From the Quantitative Aptitude section, the major focus of the paper was on Data Interpretation. Questions based on Bar Graphs and Pie Charts were assessed. As you can see, the same weightage was given to DI and Arithmetic Word Problems in the Mains exam as it was in the Prelims paper. Needless to say, for this exam, DI and Arithmetic Word Problems were the most important topics from Quant. 

 General Awareness

TopicNo. of QuestionsLevel
Banking Awareness8Moderate
Current banking Affairs10Moderate
Current Affairs15-17Easy
Static Affairs6-7Moderate

As you can derive from the table above, of the 40 questions from this section, a striking majority was dedicated to Current Affairs. Candidates must be up to date with the Current Affairs, particularly, news from the last 6 months before the exam. Since, this is a Banking exam, it is a given that a good number of questions would be dedicated to Banking Awareness and Current Banking Affairs as was the very case. Last but not the least, Static GK is a very scoring topic. Although comparatively fewer questions were asked from this topic, Static GK is easier to prepare. In a highly competitive exam, such as this, every mark matters. 

Candidates should be up-to-date with their Current Affairs to ensure they score well in this section. To stay on top of your General Awareness preparation you can find weekly updates on all aspects of general awareness on our BeePedia page. Moreover, these BeePedia updates are comprehensive and free and you can download them from the ixamBee website. BeePedia is also available in Hindi. 

IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 Cut-Off 2020

Let us now look at the Cut-offs for the IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 exam. Studying the previous year’s cut-offs gives us an idea as to approximately what score needs to be targeted by the candidates. While cut-offs obviously differ from year to year depending on the level of assessment, a rough idea can be devised for the upcoming exam. In this section, we will discuss the cut-offs for the Prelims paper, Mains paper, and a subject-wise cut-off for the Mains paper. Lastly, we will look at the Final Cut-off as announced in accordance with which provisional allotments are made. 

IBPS RRB PO Prelims Cut Offs 2020

State NameCut-off GenCut-off OBC
J& K52
Andhra Pradesh52.75
Jharkhand54 .25
Tamil Nadu54
West Bengal52

The Cut-off marks for the Prelims exam range from the 40s to the early 60s. This indicates that the overall level of assessment was moderate to easy. The lowest mark scored by a qualifying candidate from the General category was 43.25 from Chhattisgarh. The highest cut-off mark for the General category was 62.75 in Odisha. The lowest mark scored by a qualifying candidate from the OBC group was 46.75 from Uttar Pradesh. 

IBPS RRB PO Mains Cut Offs

Andhra Pradesh61.945276.3876.3876.38
Arunachal PradeshNA43.4443.44NANA
Himachal Pradesh65.6368.5669.3183.2588.38
Jammu & Kashmir70.5051.2565.0680.8189.88
Madhya Pradesh5844.3174.4477.1377.13
Tamil Nadu72.8833.4481.0657.5681.06
Uttar Pradesh52.5629.5064.1970.5670.56
West Bengal62.7547.5663.566980.94

In general, the cut-offs ranged between the 60s and 90s. The high cut-off marks reflect the relatively easy nature of assessment of the Mains paper. The highest cut-off mark was 100.38 for Uttarakhand. It is interesting to note that 100.38 was the cut-off for the General, Scheduled Caste and EWS categories in Uttarakhand.  The lowest cut-off mark was 33.44 for candidates hailing from Scheduled Tribes of/in Tamil Nadu.

Subject-wise Maximum Scores & Cut Off

S.No.Name of TestMax. MarksQualifying Scores SC/ST/OBC/PWDQualifying Scores EWS/General
2Computer Knowledge4005.7508.75
3General Awareness4002.2504.50
4 (a)English Language4003.5007.25
4 (b)Hindi Language4003.5006.25
5Quantitative Aptitude4002.2505.25

With all subjects being assessed on a total of 40 marks, the highest cut-off mark for any subject was 12 for the Reasoning section. Once again, the subject-wise cut-offs are further divided category-wise. The lowest cut-off mark was 02.25 for General Awareness for candidates belonging to Reserved categories. 


Andhra Pradesh50.2553.555652.2070.10
Arunachal PradeshNANANANA46.65
Himachal Pradesh48.7248.185754.6862.80
Jammu & Kashmir61.4852.0556.0859.1272.82
Madhya Pradesh51.8849.5554.7553.5569.58
Tamil Nadu5145.9566.0552.1864.82
Uttar Pradesh52.1546.6852.7051.0272.55
West Bengal53.4256.6850.3849.7064.18

The Final Cut-off is calculated by adding the marks scored in the Mains examination and Interview round. This score is calculated out of 100. The range of cut-offs was between 40 and 70. The highest Final Cut-off was 72.82 for the state of Jammu and Kashmir. Across all categories, the least cut-off mark scored by a qualifying candidate hailing from a Scheduled Tribe was 39.32 from Meghalaya. The lower cut-off marks for the reserved categories is indicative of the accommodation made for them in the Banking exams. 

A good way to gauge this exam’s pattern is by going through the IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 previous year paper. This will allow you to study the exam pattern carefully while also understanding where you stand in your exam preparation. 

Preparing for IBPS RRB Officer Scale 1 Exam and don’t know where to begin? Don’t worry, we have got you covered. At ixamBee you can find all the study material coupled with guidance from subject experts in our online courses. If you are on the edge about whether you should prepare for this exam or not, take a free mock test to evaluate your standing. 

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Also read:

IBPS RRB 2020 Office Assistant Exam Analysis

IBPS RRB Notification 2021: Check All Details

At ixamBEE you can find free Online Test Series, GK updates in form of Beepedia, as well as latest updates for Bank PO, Bank Clerk, SSC, RBI, NABARD and Other Government Jobs.

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