Toppers’ Tips for SSC CGL | Strategy to clear SSC CGL

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The Staff Selection Commission has released the SSC CGL Notification 2022. The most-awaited SSC CGL 2022 exam is scheduled to be held in December 2022. Knowing previous year toppers strategies will help you get important tips for your preparation. To help you kick start your SSC CGL preparation, today we bring to you, Toppers’ Tips for SSC CGL.

Toppers’ Tips for SSC CGL

Strategies and tips from toppers of SSC CGL are mentioned below :

Sumit Kumar

i. Math – I started taking weekly mocks on Oliveboard, which helped me in finding my weak points and rectifying them timely.

ii. English – Didn’t buy any paid course for it. Studied the basic grammar from Neetu Singh book and practised questions from Mirror of common errors and MB Publication. Did Vocab(OWS +Idioms) from MB publication. Synonym + Antonym from books. And took mocks simultaneously and analyzed it.

iii. Reasoning – Studied basic first from YouTube. Then solved the PYQ questions. Paid special attention to questions from the series, coding-decoding, figure counting, and missing numbers. And the last as usual… Mocks.

Ankit Kumar – AIR 32, SSC CGL 2017

His strategy :

Quant : I used to solve 100+ questions from Previous Years’ question papers daily and took weekly mock tests. For basic concepts, I went through Quantum CAT (by Sarvesh Kumar Verma) and particularly liked the way of instruction in the book, to approach any question. From these sources, I noted difficult questions and the different methods/tricks to solve them. This note helped me in revision just before the mains exam. Besides these, a few YouTube channels helped me, especially in Advance Maths. 

Reasoning : Practicing previous years’ questions is sufficient. In my opinion, you don’t need any special books. If you don’t know how to solve some kind of questions, taking help from FB group/youtube will suffice.

English : Note down all the Vocabulary, Idioms and Phrases, phrasal verbs, One Words Substitutions, etc, from any part of the question paper, which are new to you or you forget frequently; revise this note multiple times before the exam.

You should revise the grammar rules to avoid mistakes in Common Errors, Sentence Improvement, sentence completion, etc. If your Comprehension section is weak, do read the English Newspaper daily. It helps tremendously in the long run.

I followed the advice of my seniors sincerely and started reading the newspaper ‘Times of India’, as I had heard that English Newspaper is almost a panacea for SSC English preparation.

Time management is very important for this exam. In CGL Tier-1 Exam, you have to attempt 100 MCQs (Reasoning, Quantitative Aptitude, English & General Awareness) in 60 min. Attempting paper in GAEnglishReasoning, and Quant – Order will help you give your maximum attempt and solve the whole paper in the stipulated time. 

Read Ankit Kumar’s Success Story here.

Kapil Mittal – Cleared SSC CGL 2017

Advice to aspirants :

Quant : To start with, I cleared the basic concepts (not the shortcuts or tricks) of each topic and then learned the tricks to solve maximum questions in 2 hours. I solved the Maths textbook of Kiran Publications chapter-wise and afterwards started attempting mock tests of different coaching institutes. Within no time, I realized that Oliveboard was one of the best among all as its online interface is user friendly and they set the paper of same level as of SSC CGL which helped me to face examination without any fear.

First of all I started reading Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis and Vocabulary from SP Bakshi‘s book. And I used to revise the learnt words again and again on daily basis for nearly one and a half hours in the morning. And then I started watching English TV series and it helped me, as many times the words I had read in the book were used in the episodes and I was able to recall them easily.

English : Please note that the Grammar part is essential and for that SP Bakshi is a very good book. I also took offline coaching in Jaipur for learning grammar concepts which helped me a lot to get a good grip in this section. I see most of the students not preparing English well and hence they struggle particularly in this section. Solve Oliveboard Test Series regularly and try to use the new words that you have learnt on a daily basis.

Reasoning : In reasoning, there are  few topics that are very important such as Clock, Calendar,Dice and Series. I solved the Kiran book chapter-wise and made note of important questions in a separate notebook and revised it at the end. I feel this is the only way to score well in reasoning because in SSC CGL exam reasoning is not as much logical as it is in Bank Exams. Apart from this I went through all the previous papers and Oliveboard Mock Test Papers and practiced them.

General awareness : I went through previous year question bank, Lucent GK and Paramount notes of GK. But I would suggest not to spend most of your time in this section because even if you do, scoring well is a bit difficult as compared to the other sections.

Read Kapil Mittal’s Success Story here

Soumyarshi Das – Cleared SSC CGL 2016

Some special advice to the candidates:

1. Continue your preparations with a positive mindset and have faith on your hard work.
2. Always Study in a screen free zone (Use of Mobile, television etc should be restricted)
3. Never forget to make daily, weekly and monthly plan to reach your success without any delay or hassles
4. Do not delay in collecting necessary books, contents and resources. Have your materials ready well in advance
5. Guardians should not be tensed as their anxiety may be transmuted to the candidate. They should encourage the candidate and build favourable atmosphere to perform well
6. Do not think much about cut off and any change in the scheme of examinations. If you are a deserving candidate you are bound to succeed
7. Take as many mock tests as possible and analyse them with due diligence to identify:
A. How many questions are you not being able to attempt and why
B. What are the chapters/topics that are bothering you?
C. Are you solving the questions in the shortest method possible?
D. What is your position with respect to the topper of the test
E. The Number of silly mistakes and how to minimize them
F. Whether are you being able to remain consistent with your marks
8. Do not get demotivated if you cannot score well in a particular mock test rather your focus should be on fixing the problems that frustrated your progress

Read Soumyarshi Das’ Complete Success Journey

Suvart Sharma – AIR 11, Cleared SSC CGL 2016

One has to be concise with study material because basics remain same, whether you do it from one source or multiple. Work on basics, the key is obviously English and Maths. The more you are good in these two, the better will be your score and rank.

For Maths – Rakesh Yadav Class notes would cover all the different types of questions (available on the net).

For English – for basics/ grammar: Use any class notes available in the market or Neetu Singh’s English Book (available on the net) and for grammar practice – Use Pearson’s or Arihant’s book. Don’t forget to stress on the static part of English i.e. One-word substitution, Idioms & Phrases etc as they are quite scoring – once done and assure you the marks.

For Reasoning – there is no need of any book, only mock tests would suffice the purpose.

For Expert Help on Reasoning topics, Register here

For GS – if you get time go for some class notes etc no need to study in depth (just get the things familiar), don’t put too much time reading Lucent’s book. Also, don’t waste excessive time on GS, first make your command on Maths and English as Cost/benefit ratio is high in GS(i.e. high input and less output) and also it is somewhat unpredictable as well. Spending some time and energy on other two would fetch you more marks.

After getting all this done, try to solve as many mock tests as you can and nothing else is required. Mock tests are the panacea for clearing this exam,  trust me and the Oliveboard Mock Test Series was of great help for me in doing this as I solved all the packages available with them which helped me to improve my score and enhanced my preparation for this exam.

Read Abhinav Gupta’s Complete Success Journey

Aman Kumar – Cleared SSC CGL 2016

I selected OLIVEBOARD mock test for SSC CGL mains after lots of research on google/Quora (earlier I gave Oliveboard mock test for SBI PO pre). In Tier 2 mock, there were 10 Quants paper and 5 English. Quant paper was brilliantly designed, and English paper was above par of SSC level. I practiced all mocks of OLIVEBOARD and finally got 331/400 in SSC CGL tier 2. And finally, after tier 3, I got AIR-961 (Post- Central Excise Inspector) in my first attempt and dream of getting the top post in central government from SSC CGL became true.

 Read Aman Kumar’s Complete Success Journey

Sahil Gupta – Cleared SSC CGL 2016

Never fear from your failure. Failure can make your confidence zero, but it can also make you rise to the top level. We fret it, we try to avoid it, and we question ourselves every time we have unconventional ideas. But the truth is, no great success was ever achieved without failure. Whether we like it or not, failure is a necessary stepping stone to achieving our dreams.

 Read Sahil Gupta’s Complete Success Journey

 Abhijeet Singh – Cleared SSC CGL 2016

It all started in January 2016 when after leaving a job in private sector I started preparing for SSC-CGL. After devoting 5-6 months for SSC CGL Tier 1 preparation, I could score only 146.5 in Tier 1 that left me high and dry considering the cut-throat competition. My hope of securing job was dashed to ash after securing this much marks in Tier 1.

But then I heard from somewhere about Oliveboard test series and then from that day I started taking Oliveboard test for SSC-mains and believe me guys I found Oliveboard test series unique in many respects as compared to others. Questions provided by Oliveboard are unseen and of one step higher difficulty than the one we face in actual exams. With utmost sincerity, I would like to thank Oliveboard for providing excellent quality test series that prepared me well for tough exams and eventually I scored 321 in mains.

 Few advices to novice in this field:

1) Brace yourself by clearing your basics of English and maths. For maths start solving each question of Kiran, chapter wise mathematics.

2) For English, SP Bakshi is a good book for clearing concepts.

3) For GK, Lucent is a good book for improving your score.

4) In addition to this, at least 5 mock tests are necessary per week to improve speed.

 Read Abhijeet Singh’s Complete Success Journey

 Akash Maan – Cleared SSC CGL 2016

I started preparation for SSC CGL in March 2016. Before that, I had prepared for CAT 2015.

For QA I referred my CAT books and previous year questions of SSC.

For English- I used the following books: Norman Lewis for Vocabulary, SP Bakshi for Vocabulary and Grammar, Neetu Singh- Volume 1 for Grammar and Voice-Narration and previous year questions of SSC.

More Focus should be on QA from the start. English can be completed in 3 months time, by dedicating 2 hours regularly.

Revise English as much as possible– Especially Vocabulary (Synonyms, Antonyms, OWS, Idioms). Practice grammar, Comprehension, Cloze test, Para Jumble from previous years– preferably paper-wise as mocks.

For English, don’t overdo Grammar, It can backfire. One book of grammar can get you 32-35 out of 45 in Mains. Focus on other parts as well.

Do not differentiate between QA of Prelims and Mains examination. Prepare as a whole.

I took QA Mocks of Oliveboard, and they were a notch higher in difficulty than previous papers and it helped me to manage my time more efficiently. Also, Oliveboard QA questions are conceptual not just repetition of previous years with the change in values and not just calculative without concepts.

Read Akash Maan’s Complete Success Journey

After going through the toppers’ tips for SSC CGL exam, we can come to few points that are common and are sure shot tips for the upcoming SSC CGL Exam. Let’s glance through these tips.

  • Have Clear Concepts
  • Attempt Mock Tests
  • Analyse Mock Attempts
  • Focus more on Weak Areas
  • Read Newspapers Daily
  • Prepare for GK daily

Hope these Toppers’ Tips for SSC CGL help you and their stories inspire you do better in the upcoming



How to analyse mock tests for SSC CGL?

Analyse your mock tests and check :
A. How many questions are you not being able to attempt and why
B. What are the chapters/topics that are bothering you?
C. Are you solving the questions in the shortest method possible?
D. What is your position with respect to the topper of the test
E. The Number of silly mistakes and how to minimize them
F. Whether are you being able to remain consistent with your marks

How to prepare for SSC CGL Reasoning?

Go through the blog to know how toppers prepared for reasoning section

How to prepare for SSC CGL?

Based on toppers’ tips these common tips can be understood : these tips.
Have Clear Concepts
Attempt Mock Tests
Analyse Mock Attempts
Focus more on Weak Areas
Read Newspapers Daily
Prepare for GK daily

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