Life is a test that begins right at birth. As soon as you step into the world the competition starts. Especially, when it comes to jobs which is the most cut-throat thing waiting out there to put you up against others. Though the software and IT sectors are ruling the job market, there are still many young Indians who want to serve the nation and want to make a career in the army. However, to become a part of the Indian Armed Forces, you will have to clear Services Selection Board interview. In this article, we will inform about the most commonly asked SSB interview questions and SSB interview best book.
SSB Interview Questions, Procedure, Syllabus
Just like in most fields, one has to clear SSB interview to make it into the armed forces. It is an interview that is conducted to test the knowledge and attitude of the candidate. Joining the army is a matter of pride and many students work day in and day out to prepare for this interview. Let us learn more about SSB.
What is SSB?
Like in a school or a college you have an entrance test, similarly, when applying for certain departments or posts there are certain rounds or tests that you need to go through, and one such body that you need to pass through when considering becoming a member of Indian Armed Force is Services Selection Board. This organization is the one that is responsible for assessing candidates for the Armed forces and needs to separate the eligible ones from the rest.
There are various personality and intelligence tests rounded off by interviews, where a candidate has to answer various SSB interview questions in order to prove their eligibility. The tests are written as well as practical in nature so both aspects of a person can be tested. And the people who assess these tests also belong to Indian Armed Forces with their specialization being in fields like Psychology, Interviewing, etc.
The process of going through SSB lasts for 5 days with each day having a different test that you need to ace. India has 13 such boards across India of which 5 are for the Navy and the remaining 8 are split into 2 equals of 4 for the Army and Air Force.
Common SSB Interview Questions
Interview rounds for any and every post are different in nature. For SSB the interview might be different from what it might be for a college student opting for a particular course. However, you still need to prepare yourself for what comes next, right? Yes, so keeping that in mind we now go through all the possible SSB interview questions that you might come across if you are an aspirant as well. You should also go through SSB interview best book and notes to know more about these questions.
There are various topics to which the questions can be related, so we will look at them in that format.
- You can be asked the meaning of your name.
- Similarly, there is a possibility that you are asked about the meaning of the name of your family members.
- You might have to speak about where you come from and what is the specialty or relevance of that place.
- You may also be asked to mention any famous person who originated from the same place as you.
- You also might have to talk about your past and current work.
- There can be questions on your strength and weaknesses where you mention a few of each.
- You can be asked about how you manage/use your share time.
- You might be asked to talk about your hobbies, passion, interest, etc.
- Explaining your day-to-day routine might also possibly come up as one of the SSB interview questions.
- You might have to spill the beans on your academic performance from 10th standard to graduation.
- You might be asked to share your grades from each standard.
- You can be asked about your sports and extracurricular activity participation from school and college days.
- You might be asked to mention your best friend and favorite school teacher and the reason for taking their name.
- You can be asked to name your favorite subject and your relationship with friends and teachers.
- You can also be asked to name teachers you didn’t like and the reason for the same.
- You might be asked about the best or worst person you came across and the reason for taking their name.
- Here you might have to tell the type of person you would like as a friend.
- You might also have to share the type of people you don’t like.
- You might be asked to share places that you have been to with friends.
- You might have to share a few qualities of your best friend.
- You can also be asked to share differences between you and your best friend.
- You might have to name qualities of your best friend that you don’t like.
- You might have to share what your friends think of you.
- You might have to share things that your friends don’t like about you.
- You can also be asked to explain who your friends are your friends.
- You can also be asked to share instances where your friend needed your help.
- Naming and numbering the people in your family.
- Naming people, you don’t like in your family and why.
- You might have to share a little about your equation with your family members and might have to speak on whom you are closer to and why and whom you admire.
- Might have to compare yourself with a common quality of the family.
- Might have to compare yourself to your brother or sister as well.
- You can also be asked to share things you don’t like about your father.
- Might have to share your parent’s feelings about you.
- Similarly, might be asked how your siblings feel about you.
- Occupation and salaries of people working in the family.
- You might be asked about your girlfriend or boyfriend and your plans for marriage with them.
- You might also be asked to talk about your physical relations if any.
- You can be asked about watching adult films.
- You may also have to share the reason for watching adult films.
- You might be asked to name qualities that you like in your boyfriend or girlfriend.
GK and Current Affairs
- You might have to give your thoughts on Ukraine Russian war.
- You can also be asked about the existing knowledge that you have about the Indian army.
- You can be asked to share some recent headlines going around in the country.
- You may have to explain why you plan on joining the armed forces.
- You may also be asked to explain your plans in case you get rejected.
- Might have to share other planned career paths if this doesn’t work out.
- You will be asked if you tried for NDA and if yes then why didn’t you succeed.
- You might be asked about your efforts toward NDA.
- What benefits do you think you might get if you end up getting selected for the Armed forces.
- Your suggestions on improvement needed in the Indian Armed forces.
- You might have to share your views on the Kashmir issue.
- You may also be asked to give your views on modernization in the Indian Armed forces.
SSB Interview Best Book
There are many books that claim to be SSB interview best book. SSB has been in place for decades now and so naturally there are 100s if not 1000s of books out there on this subject. At the end of the day, this is a very subjective question that cannot be approached on a macro level. Some people might like books focused on SSB interview questions, while others might want more knowledge on psychological tests, and so on, and thus, different books would be the number 1 choice for different aspirants. Knowing the SSB interview syllabus is compulsory before purchasing any such book.
5 Days SSB Interview Procedure
By now we know that SSB interviews take 5 days. In these 5 days, there are different stages and tests that take place to decide the eligibility of a candidate. We will now go through the details of this 5 Days SSB Interview Procedure to see what goes on behind the scenes.
Stage I – Screening Process
The dress code is formal for this stage and the candidates have to report to the SSB gate or railway stations as their letters instruct them to. From here they will be taken away for breakfast and resting and will be given cheat numbers which will be required later. Then the candidates begin by giving an Officer Intelligence Rating test. Here there are verbal and non-verbal logical reasoning questions that early candidates had to write answers for but today mark on an OMR sheet. Different sets come with a different number of questions and the time allotted is also different for it which is all mentioned beforehand.
Next up is the Picture Perception and Description test which again consists of two parts. The first part is the perception part and the next is the description part. So, first, you are shown a picture for around half a minute then you spend the next minute recording your observations and understanding of the picture. Lastly, you are given 4 and a half minutes to build a story around your observation and understanding.
Once this is done it is break time for the candidates who are later sorted into groups on the basis of their chest numbers. This is where the discussion tests begin and the team members have to explain their story in a minute. Post this the team then has to discuss amongst themselves and form a common story which will be narrated by a group member of their choice. After all the groups are covered the results are calculated and the shortlisted candidates will stay back for stage II while the rest are sent back.
Stage II (Day 2) – Testing
This is the stage where the SSB interview questions mentioned above come into the picture. This test goes on for 3 days and also requires candidates to wear formal dress. In this round, the candidate will go through 4 tests back to back.
The first test is a Thematic Appreciation Test where the candidates are shown 12 slides in the form of a slide show. Of these 12 slides, the first 11 have a picture and the last one is blank and they have to write a story on all of them. They are given four and a half minutes for each slide.
Next up is the Word Association test, where there are 60 words and the candidate gets 15 seconds to record a response to each word by writing phrases or related words to the original word. Then you have a Situation Reaction Test in which you are given 30 minutes and 60 situations. During this time, you have to write a reaction to all the given situations.
Next up is the Self-Description Test where the candidate needs to write paragraphs on Parent’s Opinions, Teacher’s Opinions, Friend’s Opinions, Self-Opinions, and Strengths and Weakness related stuff. All of this covers your Day 2 and Day 3.
Stage II (Days 3 and 4) – Ground Testing Officer Tests
The dress code for this round includes wearing a white t-shirt, shorts, socks, and shoes just like on PT days in school. This test has 9 tasks that the candidate needs to perform and they are supervised by the GTO. The test may be divided into 6 and 3 tasks in two days or all tasks in a day with breaks. Here again, the candidates are sorted into groups based on their chest numbers. As you can see this is probably the most hectic day of 5 days SSB interview procedure.
First, a group discussion happens where two topics are provided to the candidates, of which they choose one and discuss it. Then post that a second topic is given on which the team again has to conduct a discussion. Any SSB interview best book would have the name of the kinds of topics that you can expect in this round. SSB interview syllabus might also cover possible suggestions for topics that you must be prepared on.
Next is Group Planning Exercise where the GTO uses a map to explain a situation. Then in 10 minutes, each member has to write a way to tackle the situation before they are asked to discuss it with their teams and to come up with a common solution which then one chosen member shares with others.
Next up is the Snake/Group Obstacle Race. Apart from the SSB interview questions which might be fun for some, this is probably the only other fun activity that is there. The team needs to hold a snake and cross multiple obstacles as you race other groups. Your path will have single ramp jumps, 10 feet wall, a double wall, a bar shaped like 8, a spider web, and a giant slide. Also, you or the snake should not touch red color and the snake needs to be held by at least 3 members of a team when crossing an obstacle otherwise time penalties are imposed.
Then you have a progressive ground task where you have 4 obstacle courses that you need to cross and each one is more difficult than the previous one. There will be structures that you need to cross and materials that you need to carry so the task involves using ropes, bamboo, etc. There are also various rules that you need to follow when completing these tasks.
Next, you have a Half Group Task where the group is divided into 2 and needs to tackle just one obstacle. Post that there is an individual task where each candidate picks a card with 4 topics mentioned on it. The candidate chooses one topic from this list and speaks on it for three minutes addressing it to other candidates.
In the next task, you have to cross the 10 obstacles that include Jumping over a single ramp, Jumping over a Double Barrel, Balancing Beam, Screen Jump, Burma Bridge, Tarzan Swing, Double Platform Jump, Double Ditch, Commando Walk, and Tiger Leap with each task giving you points from 1 to 10 in the order they are named. Once you have completed all the obstacles you can choose to repeat any obstacles again if you want.
The next task has a small part like the SSB interview questions part. Here the candidates are asked certain questions and then given a task in which they need to overcome certain obstacles. Lastly, you have a final group task that you need to go through where the team needs to complete one final obstacle.
Throughout the 5 days SSB interview procedure there are multiple instances where you might come across the questions mentioned in this section which you might also come across in the SSB interview syllabus. Here you are asked questions that we have mentioned above and this round may be conducted on days 3, 4, or 5 after the tasks of the day are over. You need to wear formal clothing for this round and the interview might go on for 5 minutes or an hour with the usual time being 40 minutes.
Lastly, there is a conference held where all the candidates arrive in formal and are all packed and ready for what may follow. The candidates are fed and made to rest while the assessors check the eligibility and performance of each candidate. They ask further questions to a candidate that they are unsure about and for the rest, they just ask about general stuff like food, their experience, suggestions if any, etc. Post this the results are announced and the selected candidates proceed for medical tests and the rest just leave for their homes.
SSB Interview Syllabus
The in-depth SSB Interview Syllabus has been laid bare for you above. It is a five-day process with multiple tests. You arrive on day 0 at the place where you have been summoned in your call letter where you are each given chest numbers that become your identity over the coming few days. You have written tests, verbal tests, physical tests, team tests, individual tests, etc. in a 5-day period where you are assessed by various parties involved.
These 5 days are divided into 2 stages where candidates are eliminated after each stage in order to find the select few who in the very end have to go through medical tests at the army hospital over a 3 to 5-day period. During these tests, you are fed and given resting places by the SSB itself.
There are various books written on this subject that you can study various SSB interview questions in order to prepare for the interview as well as other rounds. You will have to pick your own SSB interview best book. So it is not exactly a syllabus per se that you have to prepare for but rather jog your memory through recent events that have happened around the world and also to remind yourself to activate your thinking, interpretation, verbal, reasoning, and problem-solving skills which may come in very handy when the final testing begins.