Tips and Tricks to Solve Input Output Reasoning Questions


How to solve Input-Output Reasoning Questions?

Input and Output reasoning questions are one of the most frequently asked questions nowadays in many government exams like RBI Grade B, SEBI Grade A, NABARD Grade A/B, SBI Clerk, SBI PO IBPS PO, and more. They mostly comprise 4-5 marks in the Reasoning Ability and General Intelligence section. 

These questions may appear to you as lengthy, time taking and slightly complex. So, to ensure that you get these questions correct, it is important that you should know how to solve them. In this article, we are discussing a few input-output questions with tips and tricks to solve them. Let’s begin. 

What is Input-Output?

Similar to the concept of computers, the Input-Output reasoning questions are based on an Input which is given in the form of numbers and words. These numbers or words give out an Output in a certain format. 

Input → Machine → Output

In the Government exams, the question contains one Input, followed by the steps used to get an Output and then the final Output.

Before solving the questions, you must understand the logic behind the questions. It is important that you first understand the concept and then start solving the questions so that you don’t get stuck in between.

Given below are a few solved input-output reasoning questions for your preparation. Solving these will help you in better understanding thus reducing the chances of mistakes.

Input-Output Reasoning Questions

Direction: Study the following information carefully and answer the questions given below.

A number arrangement machine, when given a particular input, rearranges the input following a particular rule.

The following is the illustration of the input and the steps of arrangement.

Input: 567 873 751 239 912 262 492 712 183 376

Step I: 567 378 157 239 129 226 249 127 138 367

Step II: 29 17 02 15 07 10 14 05 05 15

Step III: 21 97 01 25 01 70 10 45 01 55

Step IV: 03 16 01 07 01 07 01 09 01 10

Step V: 5 4 4 5 1

Step VI: 1 4 4 5 5

And Step VI is the last step of the rearrangement as the desired arrangement is obtained.

Explanation: To reach the final output in Step VI certain steps are given. Starting from Step I, the digits of each number are assembled in ascending order. Example: 567 is already in ascending order. Similarly, the second number 873 is rewritten as 378. 

In Step II, in any number, the middle digit is subtracted from the product of the first and last digit. Example: 5*7-6=29; 5*7= 35; 35-6=29. Similarly, in 378; 3*8-7=17.

In Step III, the logic used is: Consider the pair from the left side, the first digits of the pair used to make the number. Say in the pair of 29 and 17, the first digit of 29 is 2 and the first digit of 17 is 1. Thus, by combining these two digits the first number obtained in Step III i.e., 21. The second number of the series is formed by combining the second digits of the same pair i.e., 97. From the pair 02 and 15, the third and fourth numbers are obtained i.e., 01 and 25.

In Step IV, the digits of a number are being added up. 2+1=3, 9+7=16, and so on.

In Step V, you first make pairs of the numbers, then add up the individual digits of the pair starting from the left and then divide by 2. Example: 03 and 16; add the digits i.e., 0+3+1+6=10. The sum of the digits is 10 and now divide it by 2. Thus, 10/2=5. 

Similarly, in 01 and 08; 0+1+0+7=8; 8/2=4. 

In the last step, Step VI: All the numbers are rearranged in ascending order. So, the final output obtained is 1, 4, 4, 5, 5.

Directions: Study the following information carefully and answer the given questions:

Input: glitter situation younger contain visiting hostel ginger

Step I: younger contain visiting ginger situation glitter hostel

Step II: 41      25      27      14      55      14       20

Step III:      66       52      41     69     69       34

Step IV:            19      12      20      30     22

Step V:                    7        -8      -10    8

Step VI:                       -56     80    -80

Step VII:                              24   0

Step VIII:                                24


In Step I, you have to arrange the words from left to right. Arrange the letter which comes last in the English alphabet to the letter which comes first in the English alphabet and repeat the order again. For example: In all the words given, the letter Y comes at the end of the English alphabet series. Thus, the first word is “Younger”. The second word is “contain” because the letter C comes first in the English alphabet series. Now, repeat this order for the remaining words. 

Note: For the same alphabet switch to the second alphabet of the word. Example: In the case of Ginger and Glitter, ginger will come first.

In Step II, each word is replaced by the sum of the numerical position of a vowel in the English alphabet order. For each word add the vowels according to their position in the alphabet series. Example: In the word younger the vowels are: O, U and E. The place value of O is 15, U is 21 and E is 5; add these numbers; 15+21+5=41. 

Repeat the process for the other words.

In Step III, the adjacent numbers are added together to obtain the next number. For example: 41+25=66; 25+27=52; 27+14=41 and so on.

In Step IV, all the digits of the adjacent numbers are added together. Example: In 66 and 41, 6+6+5+2=19; similarly in 52 and 14 we get, 5+2+1+4=12.

In Step V, starting from the left side, subtraction of the second number from the first number is given. Example: 19-12=7; 12-20= -8; 23-30= -10; 30-22=8.

In Step VI, product of the two adjacent numbers is given in Step V. Example: 7*(-8)= -56; (-8)*(-10)=80; -10*8=80.

In Step VII, the sum of two adjacent numbers given in Step VI. Example: -56+80=24; -80+80=0.

In Step VIII, both the numbers are either subtracted or added. 24-0=24 or 24+0=24. 

Thus, the output obtained is 24.

Practice Questions for You!

Input: biscuit decide hideout silent essential author gesture

Which step number is the following output?

‘21 32 24 12 17’

(Answer: 44)

Input: 436 347 553 552 782 654 153 635 634 158

(Answer: 2 3 3 4 5)

Input: glory gained through resolving conflict between these personalities

(Answer: 10)

Input: 23 47 52 69 71 

(Answer: 11 27 31 38 42)

Tips & Tricks to Solve the Input-Output Reasoning Questions

Here are a few tips and tricks to help you solve input-output reasoning problems faster and save time on the final exam:

  • The first and most important step is to carefully read the question and analyse the steps that the Output is focused on. After you’ve thoroughly examined the steps you’ll be able to figure out what pattern is being used to generate the output.
  • You will be able to recognise the pattern followed by looking only at Step 1 and Step 2
  • Since the time to solve the Input could be longer therefore using tabular form to solve the query would make the answer much more complicated
  • If you attempt to answer these questions verbally, you can overlook a few terms and steps which may lead you to incorrect answers
  • If you’ve figured out the pattern in the question,  try applying it to the input given to solve it
  • This topic helps to increase your score in the exam. Understand which type of questions are asked from this topic and you are done
  • Practice more and more

We want to ensure that every student gets the best possible platform to study and prepare irrespective of their economic status in life. We provide many such practice questions in our Free Mock Tests. They are designed by experts after a thorough analysis of such questions. 

Do comment below to get a detailed analysis on practice questions.

Also Read:

CLAT UG 2021: An Approach to Legal Reasoning

Reasoning Quiz (Puzzles): NABARD Grade A, SBI Clerk, RBI Assistant

IBPS SO (AFO) 2020: Reasoning- Short Preparation Tips

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