Recruitment into the Defence Forces - Air Force, Navy and Army

Recruitment into the Defence Forces, especially in the officer rank, is no easy task. One has to go through many layers or written and practical tests including an extensive medical exam to be finally selected. Along with practical and theoritical knowledge one should develop various qualities called the Officer Like Qualities or OLQ for short in order to be selected. Selection Boards mainly concentrate on your qualities apart from your marks.

The procedure or steps common to all services are listed below.

Intelligence tests
Here all you have to do is attempt all questions; however there are no negative marks for wrong answers. Each paper contains 40 questions. The procedure is bit different in AFSBs but the question paper pattern remains same.

Here your communication skills are tested. The assessing officers mainly look at your body language, your ability to narrate a story in an innovative way, fluency of language, eye contact with the group during the discussion. The best way to get screened in is to display all above mentioned qualities during your interaction.

Psychology test
Psychology test is one of the most important tests with regards to SSB. The psychologist decides on a person’s character through his actions and ideas during the test. Positive thinking is more important attribute that they look for during psychology tests. Always make sure you narrate a story in a innovative but simple manner. Try not to complicate the narrative with long sentences. Always develop a story which you can relate to. For example: - if they ask you what will you do when a person has mistakenly fallen into a lake, when he doesn’t know to swim. In this situation rather than elaborating the story make it simple just by saying dive in, swim and pull him to shore. But remember one main thing in this case if you are mentioning dive and swim you must be a swimmer or you must know swimming and if you are not a swimmer then think of any other option. Don’t try to look overly heroic in front of the assessing officers.The background processes happening after the tests are many. The assessors combine all of your responses with WAT, TAT and SRT. Other than all this the most important thing is Self-Description, you must always describe yourself more by your actions rather than your answers. Besides, answers are also important but always remember first impression is the best impression. Your outlook, body gestures, way of approach, fluency, expression are some of the important qualities which decides your performance in the psychology test.

Group Tasks
The most critical factor to keep in mind during group task is team work. Commanding doesn’t mean you shout at other candidates in your group, instead you should aim to bring out their best and cross the obstacle as a team. Group obstacles need your contribution and motivation of the group. Don’t panic during individual obstacles; always try to do your best at your allotted task. PGT, HGT, FGT expects you to give logical ideas. The most important thing to be remembered here is to enjoy and try to bring out new ideas during the task and try to finish it as quickly as possible. As far as GD and GPE is concerned, it’s what you did in PPDT, but you get a good chance to speak out. Rather than just completing the task try and do it an innovative way, don’t try unnecessary stunts when you can complete the task in a simple manner. Whatever you do try to enjoy, display your energy and boost others energy also.

Interview is the trickiest part of all the tests. Always be aware that you do not lose your self-confidence and courage. You have to maintain eye contact while speaking to the officer. Follow the rules and regulations, try to maintain the body gestures and talk fluently without blabbering. Answer to the point always, if you don’t know the answer just say I don’t know rather than making false statement. For freshers, be thoroughly prepared with your personal background(family,education,friends). For repeaters, be prepared with little of technical, happening in the services and GK. Don’t fall prey to any myths like if the interview goes on for long, he is border or if 30 min he is selected. I would rather suggest you to give your best in all the areas.

This is the last chance in the case of candidates who have performed a bit lower than expected. Be prepared for SRTs, and common questions like how was your stay, which are the places you visited, what would you like to see improved, any suggestions, etc.