**Tips to attempt simplification & approximation Questions in IBPS Clerk Exam**

The exam of IBPS clerk is conducted in two-phase prelims and main exam. The questions from simplification and approximations are very common in prelims exam. The candidates can score good marks in less time in these questions. This article provides tips and techniques to attempt simplification and approximation questions in IBPS Clerk exam.

The simplification and approximation questions can be solved easily using following basic rules and techniques:-

**BODMAS Rule: –** The very basic rule of calculation is the priority of operators. There are some operators which has high priority over other operators. For example, multiplication has higher priority than addition. This priority can be changed using brackets. To solve this confusion BODMAS rule is used in calculations. The priority of operators using this rule is given below:-

B = Bracket

Order = (Powers, square roots, etc.)

D = Division

M = Multiplication

A = Addition

S = Subtraction

For example we are required to solve the following question:-

24 + (5^{2} – 3) – 60 * 15 / 3 + 5

In such problem start with bracket first and in bracket itself we will use BODOMAS

24 + (25 – 3) – 60 * 15 / 3 + 5 (squaring first)

24 + 22 – 60 * 15 / 3 + 5 (subtraction in bracket)

24 + 22 – 60 * 5 + 3 (Division)

24 + 22 – 300 + 3 (Multiplication)

49 – 300 (Addition)

-251 (Subtraction)

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**Unit digit method: – **In simplification questions at times we can eliminate options using unit digit method. It means instead of solving question until end we can find the unit digit to solve the question.

For example, we are required to solve the following:-

2345 – 489 + 7890 + 45 * 16

- 10466
- 21054
- 9867
- 6548
- 8769

In this question, the unit digit of the answer should be:-

2345 – 489 + 7890 + 45 * 16

5 – 9 + 0 + 0 = -4, since unit digit is negative we will add 10 to it (carry)

10 – 4 = 6, therefore the unit digit of this question must be 6. And 6 as a unit digit is in option A.

In this way, we can save our precious time. This method is very helpful when the options are not similar (not same unit digit). If the options are similar in that case we can use this method with other methods like digit sum method.

**Digit Sum Method: –** In this method, we keep on adding digits of the number till we get the single digit. According to this concept, the digit sum of an equation (addition, multiplication, subtraction) and its result remains same. Using this method along with unit digit can save the huge amount of time. Moreover, you can also get one free mock test with IBPS Clerk test series for attempting similar questions frequently asked in banking exams.

Example: 2011×97+50123 =? × 743, what should come in place of question mark?

(A) 340 (B) 330 (C) 350 (D) 303 (E) 345

Solution:

In LHS 2011×97, unit digit will be 7

In 50123, the unit digit is 3, so when we add these, the addition will have ‘0’ at its unit place.

In RHS, we also need ‘0’ at the unit place, the number which has to multiply by 743 must consist 0 at its unit place. So, option (D) and (E) are eliminated.

Now let’s apply Unit digit and digit sum

In LHS, 2011×97+ 50123

4 × 7 + 11 = 28+11 = 10+2 = 1+2 = 3

In RHS if option is (A), Then 340 × 743 = 7×14 = 7 × 5 = 35 = 8, LHS ≠ RHS

In RHS if option is (B), then 330 × 743 = 6× 14 = 6× 5 = 30 = 3

LHS = RHS, It is the answer. If you check other options it will not satisfy.

**Approximation: – In** approximation problems, the candidates should take the nearest integer. If the square roots and cube roots are present we should take the nearest possible square or cube root.

For example:-

1234.56 = 1234

345.87 = 346

√37.67 = √36 = 6

∛65.6 = 4

The approximate values should be taken very carefully. As the slight change in values can give a different result and if the options are close enough, then there are chances that you end up marking the wrong answer.

The candidates can improve their speed of calculation if they can remember the following:-

- The squares of numbers 1 to 30
- The cubes of numbers from 1 to 20
- The powers of 2, 3, 5, 7, 9 and 11
- Reciprocals of 1 to 20 (in percentage)

The candidates are also required to learn short tricks to find squares, cubes, square roots and cube roots to improve calculation speed.

The candidates should use the percentage method to calculate the multiplication or ratio of two numbers. This method saves time in calculating multiplications and ratios.

For example if we want to find 86 * 40

We will convert it into the percentage form (86 * 40 / 100) * 100

Now this problem converted into finding 40 % of 86, for this we will take help of the following percentages:-

100%, 50%, 10% and 1%

In this problem we need to find 40% = (50% – 10%) = 23 – 8.6 = 14.4, now multiply this number with 100, 14.4 * 100 = 1440

In this way, we can solve the multiplication problems in less time.

For calculating ratio also we can use this method, for example, we want to find the ratio,

450/1020, we will find the 100%, 50%, 10% and 1%, of the denominator and find numerator in sum of these numbers

450 = 510 (50%) – 60 (6%, approx.) = 46% or 0.46

In this way, we can easily compare two numbers and find the ratio. The candidates are advised to go through above methods carefully and practice questions using these methods.

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