IB ACIO 2020-21 Important Topics To Study Before The Exam | Know Here

The Intelligence Bureau ( Ministry of Home Affairs ) conducts the ACIO exam for the recruitment of assistant central intelligence officers. It is a Grade – II, Group – C ( Non-gazetted, Non-ministerial ), executive post with the Intelligence Bureau. It is a very prestigious exam similar to other government exams such as the SSC CGL. When it comes to exam patterns, the sections/syllabus/topics are similar however, the presentation differs. Thus, the IB ACIO Preparation strategy should be prepared accordingly.

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ib acio important topics

IB ACIO Important Topics

In this post, we would discuss each of the sections of the IB ACIO exam in detail. We would take a look at the common question types and provide IB ACIO preparation tips for the same. Let us first take a look at the examination pattern.

IB ACIO Preparation: Tier-I Exam Pattern ( Objective Type )

Section No. of Questions Maximum Marks Duration
General Awareness 20 20 60 mins
Quantitative Aptitude 20 20
Logical/Analytical Ability 20 20
English Language 20 20
General Studies 20 20
Total 100 100

Total time will be 60 minutes and there will be a negative marking of ¼ mark for each wrong answer.

IB ACIO Preparation: Tier-II Exam Pattern ( Descriptive Type )

Section Marks Time
Essay Writing 30 60 minutes
English Comprehension & Précis Writing 20
Total 50


IB ACIO Preparation 2020-21: General Awareness Section

In this section most of the questions would be related :

  • Security issues
  • Geopolitical issues
  • Social issues
  • Issues related to war, scams etc.
  • About intelligence agencies like CIA, IB, KGB etc.

It is important to understand the issues along with knowing the “what’s” and the “when’s”. Reading newspapers regularly should help you cover all the necessary current affairs.

Other topics that you should prepare are :

  • History
  • Polity
  • Geography
  • Culture

For this, the best resource would be the NCERT books.

IB ACIO Preparation 2020-21: Quantitative Aptitude Section

The quantitative aptitude questions are similar to the ones asked in the SSC CGL paper. The difficulty level is also found to be more or less the same. One can expect some direct questions. Also, the questions in the IB ACIO exam tend to be more tricky than lengthy. Hence, for IB ACIO Preparation, it is a good idea to have a stronghold over the basics and then move on to keeping short tricks handy.

Some important topics for the quant section of the IB ACIO 2020 exam are mentioned below.

  • Simplification / Approximation
  • Quadratic Equations
  • Number Series
  • Averages
  • Time, Speed and Distance
  • Age Based Problems
  • Averages, Mixtures & Alligation
  • SI & CI
  • Percentages, Partnerships, Profit & Loss
  • Time & Work

IB ACIO Preparation 2020-21: English Language Section

For IB ACIO Preparation, the questions types in this section can be broadly categorized under 4 main categories.

  • Grammar: Error Spotting, Phrase Replacement, Fill in the Blanks, Active & Passive Voice, Direct & Indirect Speech
  • Vocabulary: Phrase Replacement, Error Spotting, Cloze Test, Spellings, Synonyms & Antonyms, Phrase – Idiom Meaning, One Word Substitution, Fill in the Blanks
  • Reading Comprehension: Vocabulary-based, Fact-based and Inference-based
  • Verbal Ability: Para Jumbles and Sentence Jumbles

One must realise that scoring in the English section is always easier as it is less time-consuming. However, there is a caveat: one MUST establish a stronghold over basics such as grammar and vocabulary during IB ACIO Preparation. In the following section, we share some tips for the RC section that you can during IB ACIO Preparation. Many people face problems here, so read the following tips to ace your RCs.

  1. Strictly stick to what is given in the passage and assume NOTHING else; even if it is true in day to day situations. Do NOT make any assumptions whatsoever.
  2. It is essential to balance speed and accuracy to score well in any competitive exam. The best way in which you can gauge this is via practising multiple mock tests. Mock tests not only condition you for the real-time exam but also help you analyze your areas of strength and weaknesses.
  3. RC passages can range from a variety of topics such as Philosophy, Psychology, Economics, Politics or even Science. We never know what might come our way. Hence, it is important that we establish a level of comfort with all such genres by reading from multiple sources. Newspapers, especially the editorials and the weekend specials are a good place to start.
  4. A major problem that all candidates face while solving RC questions is that they get confused between 2 options. This happens because we read to understand only what the statements say; whereas the RC questions demand our understanding of the writer’s/author’s perspective as well (this is known as reading between the lines).

IB ACIO Preparation 2020-21: Logical / Analytical Ability Section

Important topics for the reasoning section.

  • Similarities and Differences
  • Analogies
  • Spatial Visualization and Orientation
  • Problem Solving
  • Analysis
  • Judgement
  • Decision Making
  • Relationship Concepts
  • Arithmetic Reasoning
  • Verbal and Figure Reasoning

ib acio important topics

IB ACIO Preparation 2020-21: General Tips

  1. We suggest the following preparation strategy for your IB ACIO 2020 Exam:


  1. After learning each topic, take a sectional test for that topic to measure your progress during IB ACIO Preparation. Continue learning and practising till you’re thorough in that concept and then move on to the next one.
  2. Chances of questions similar to ones that appeared in the 2017 paper appearing in the 2020 exam are high. Solving previous year reasoning question paper will familiarize you with the question patterns and difficulty levels.
  3. Revision is important to retain the concepts learnt during the IB ACIO Preparation phase. Revise each concept 2-3 times before the exam. It’s also important that you practice sectional tests after revising each topic to master it.
  4. Take full-length mock tests after your preparation to measure your progress during IB ACIO Preparation. Mock tests provide you with instant feedback in the form of analytics, which will help you determine your speed & accuracy in solving questions and identify your strong and weak areas. You can also use your performance analysis to fine-tune your IB ACIO preparation by practising more questions from topics you’re weak or slow at.


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