SSB is an organization that assesses the potential candidates to be commissioned as an officer in the Indian Armed Forces. SSB comprises of a panel of DIPR trained Armed Forces Officers who act as assessors. These asessors are the Psychologist, Group Testing Officer and Interviewing 0fficer. The board evaluates the suitability of the candidate for becoming an officer using a standardized protocol evaluation system which constitutes of Personality & Intelligence tests and interview.
All except Army Medical Corps members must qualify in the "SSB". The interview involves a battery of psychological tests of personality to assess the suitability of a candidate for being commissioned in the Armed Forces. These tests help the SSB to select candidates with Officer Like Qualities "OLQs". Responsibility of Services Selection Board is to assess and recommend the candidates. Successful candidates are thereafter required to undergo a comprehensive medical examination and if found fit are then included in trhe overall "merit List".
The qualities "looked for" in potential candidates during the selection process includes intellect, responsibility, initiative, judgment under strain, ability to reason and organize, communication skills, determination, courage, self-confidence, speed in decision making, willingness to set an example, compassion and a feeling of loyalty towards the nation.
Candidates who clear the UPSC written examination as well as Territorial Army candidates recommended by the Prilimary Interview Board (PIB) are allotted a SSB Centre to attend. Service candidates move to the allocated SSB on movement orders issued by respective Headquarters/units.
A detailed "Call Up letter" for SSB Interview is issued to each candidate by respective Selection Centres. This call up letter can also be accessed on www.joinindianarmy.nic.in under "Officers Selection". This detailed call up letter gives out the firm date and time for candidates top report at the Railway station which is generally between 7AM and 8AM on the specified date. Each candidate is received at the Railway Station by a representative of the SSB and escorted to the SSB Centre. On arrival at the Centre, candidates are required to produce their Educational Qualification documents for verification. Post verification, candidates are allotted a "Chest Number" which would identitfy the candidate throughout the SSB process.
Day 1, Screening test – Stage I
Post verification of documents and allotment of Chest Numbers, candidates are put throgh the Screening Test which icomprises of a verbal and non-verbal intelligence test (About 50 questions each) and a Picture Perception and Description Test (PPDT). In this test, a picture, either hazy or clear, is shown to the candidate for 30 seconds.Thereafter the candidate,in the next one minute, must record the number of characters seen in the picture and in next four minutes the candidate must make a story about the picture in over seventy words. The candidate must record the mood, approximate age and gender of the first character they saw, known as the "main character". Thereafter. in stage two of the PPDT, the candidateare handed over their stories to revise, formed into groups where each candidate is required to narrate his story in under one minute. The group is then asked to create a common story involving each or their perceived picture stories under the watchful eyes of the assessors.
After the completion of the screening tests and evaluation by assessors, the unsuccessful candidates are asked to leave the SSB Centre. The successful candidates of Preliminary Tests are required to complete the Personal Information Questionnaires (PIQ) which forms the basis for the individual candidate interview.
On Day 2, a Thematic Apperception Test (TAT) or picture story writing is conducted. This test is quite similar to the PPDT Candidates are shown a clear picture for thirty seconds and they are required to write a story in the next four minutes. Twelve such pictures are shown sequentially. The last picture is a blank slide inviting the candidates to write a story of their choice. Candidates do not need to remember the number of characters in each picture and there is no group discussion at the end of the test.
Thereafter, the candidates are put through a Word Association Test(WAT). In this test, candidates are shown sixty simple everyday words in sequence. Each is shown for fifteen seconds. For each word, the candidates is required to write the first thought that comes to mind in response to the word shown.
On the same day candidate is put through another test called Situation Reaction Test(SRT) in which a booklet of 60 situations are given out and candidates are required to give out thgeir response in 30 minutes. This test is followd by a Self Description Test which consists of 5 questions relating to the candidates Parent's, Teacher's, Friend's and his/her own perception about himself/herself.
The third and fourth day tests are conducted by the Group Testing Officer. These are tasks which including Group Discussion; Group (military) Planning Exercises; Progressive Group Tasks; Small (half) Group Tasks; Individual Tasks (obstacles); Group Obstacle or "Snake Race"; Command Tasks; Lecturette and a Final Group Task.
On day 2, 3 or 4 along with GTO tasks, individual candidate interview is also conducted by the Interviewing Officer. It is based on the Personal Information Questionnaires filled by the candidates on day 1 and other General Knowledge.
On day five, all the Officers attired in Uniforms attend the Conference wherein each candidate has a conversation with the panel of assessors. The assessors look for confidence and expression when speaking; a positive attitude in adversity and honesty. Thereafter, the final results are announced. Successful candidates undergo an intensive medical examination which takes approx three to five days at a military hospital. The unsuccessful candidates are required to leave the Centre.
Successful Candidates will undergo for the Medical Examination further for three to five days at a military hospital. If found physically fit, their names are included in the Final Merit List.
In case of any medical defect or disease, wherein the Candidates can be cured, they are made temporarily unfit and given 40 days time for cure. IN case the desease is of a permament nature, like flat foot, knock knees etc., then the candidate is declared as `not medically fit `for the armed forces and rejected.
The Pilot Aptitude Battery Test (PABT) is administered to candidates who want to join the Flying Branches only of the Indian Air Force, Indian Navy, Indian Army or Indian Coast Guard. This test is conducted during the SSB interview. Candidates can sit the PABT only once. The PABT includes the Instrument Battery Test, a Sensory Motor Apparatus Test (SMA) and a Control Velocity Test (CVT).
More recently, the "Computerized Pilot Selection System" (CPSS) has been used. It was created by former president of India Dr. A.P.J. Abdul Kalam with the Defence Institute of Psychological Research and the Air Defence Establishment, groups within the Defence Research and Development Organization. It was developed to determine aptitude for use of intellect with respect to advanced aircraft.
CPSS machine simulates an aircraft cockpit. Video games played by the candidate on a screen in front of him are scored best of three games. It tests hand, leg, and vision and hearing coordination.
Course: SSB Coaching
Duration: 14 days (Approx 6 hours per day)
Fees : 11,500/- + Applicable GST
Timing : 0930 - 1600 hrs daily.( No Holidays/Sundays)