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SSB Full Form

SSB stands for Service Selection Board. It is a recruiting organization of candidates to the Indian Armed Forces. This process is a five consecutive day process.

What is the full form of SSB? SSB stands for service selection board. There are three domains of military service. Namely, the Indian Air Force, Indian Territorial Army and Indian Navy. And this Service Selection board is a five days consecutive selection process done by recruitment officers in the Indian Armed Forces. This process happens after the candidate has cleared the entrance examination with required marks like CDS, AFCAT, etc.

Service Selection Board is an organization that tests the candidate for enrolment in Indian Armed Forces. Every individual has to go through it. The board tests the mental and physical fitness of the candidate using a standard protocol. The protocol consists of evaluating the personality of the candidate, psychology, physical fitness and intelligence for becoming an officer. The board panel consists of mainly a Psychologist, Interviewing Officer and Group Tasks Officer. Out of five days, every day is a new challenge and a new task faced by a candidate. And the one who clears all the stages with the required marks gets selected. Let us discuss day by day tasks and challenges.

Day 0

This is the reporting day on the service selection day. When the candidate has arrived at the organization, he/she has to present their relevant documents and the verification process goes on. One of the officers briefs the candidates about their five-day schedules and tasks and habituates to the environment of the place.  And on this day after verification, the students are given their Chest Numbers for further identification which a student must keep intact.

The day I (Stage – I, Screening Process)

On Day the real process of selection starts. This phase/stage is called the screening process. On this day, candidates are called for the OIR test in the morning. OIR test is an MCQ based reasoning test that contains approximately 50 questions both from verbal and non-verbal reasoning. And 40-45 minutes are given to the students to complete those questions. The ranks are given based on their performance as OIR I for the highest rank and OUT 5 for the least rank.

After this during the afternoon or evening time PPDT (Picture Perception and Discussion test) process starts. In this test, the candidates are shown a black and white picture for 30 seconds during which he/she has to analyze the picture and write a story onto it within the next few minutes. After writing the story, candidates are divided into groups and each group is assigned with an officer. Each candidate then has to narrate their story in front of the invigilator within 1 minute and after everyone has narrated their story everyone has to do a group discussion and come to a common story and narrate it to the invigilator on behalf of every member of the group.

After both the tests the results come. Those who have passed with required marks are screened in and those who have not, are screened out and sent back home on the same day.

Day II (Stage II, Psychology Test)

On day II those candidates who have screened in are sent for a psychology test. This test consists of four different tests, namely, TAT (Thematic Apperception Test), WAT (Word Association Test), SRT (Situation Reaction Test) and SDT (Self-Description Test). 

TAT – It is similar to PPDT, but here there is no discussion. The candidates are shown a clear picture for 30 seconds and he/she has to write a story within the next four minutes. 11 Pictures are shown and the last picture is kept blank. For the last story, the candidate has to write his/her own story.

WAT – Here the candidate is shown 60 different daily use words each for 15 seconds and they have to write a sentence based on that word.

SRT – Here a booklet is given to the candidate which contains 60 questions and for those he/she has to respond in the next 30 minutes.

SDT – In the last test, a candidate has to write a self-description of himself/herself. There are five questions in the test.

Day III and IV (Stage II, Group Test)

On days 3 and 4, a GTO office assigns different tasks to the candidates; they are a combination of solo and group tasks that a candidate has to perform within the stipulated time. These tasks are simple mental and physical tasks. And after that, an Individual Interview is conducted by an Interviewing Officer based on the PIQ form submitted by the candidate on the day I and general knowledge questions.

Day V (Stage II, Conference)

On the final day, a formal conference is conducted by a panel of officers with each candidate. This conference is a simple conversation between the officers and the candidate where the officer’s test/check the confidence, honesty, expression, habits and other life-based skills. And give them relevant marks based on their performance and mark the candidate as recommended or not recommended.

In the end, the result is announced, based on the overall performance of the candidate. And passing or selecting candidates are then allotted in respective training facilities. And the rest are congratulated for reaching this far and being sent back home.


To sum up, SSB stands for Service Selection Board, which is an organization of the Indian Armed Forces for the selection of candidates into the three wings of the armed forces. This selection process is a five-day process that consists of OIR tests, PPDT tests, Psychology Tests, Physical and Mental Fitness Test and at last the Interview and the conference with the officers. And based on overall performance the candidates are selected.


Frequently asked questions

Get answers to the most common queries related to the General Examination Preparation.

Does the SSB pay for traveling to the respective location?

Ans. Yes, the Service Selection Board pays but only for fresh applications. They pay for 3rd AC train tickets and Normal Bus tick...Read full

What is the level of difficulty in an SSB?

Ans. An SSB is said to be quite difficult for students. As the recruiting officers have to select only a few...Read full

How can a person or a candidate apply for SSB?

Ans. Initially, the candidate has to give the pre-exams such...Read full

What is the number of SSB Boards there?

 Ans. In total there are thirteen SSB boards spread across I...Read full