Equating (or Normalizing) scores across different sessions of IBPS PO III

Dear Aspirants,

Four sessions of IBPS PO III are already over, many aspirants have been thinking about issues like :

  1. What is a good score to achieve the cut off?
  2. My Paper was “difficult” and my friend’s paper was “easy” and such questions.
  3. Have I attempted enough questions to qualify?
  4. Am I at a disadvantage due to my paper being held in the first session, whereas my friend’s paper was held in the second session?

Bankersadda tries to answer all these questions by making clear the methodology which will be used by IBPS for equating the scores across all sessions.

Some FAQs on this topic

Q. What do you mean by equating scores?

Ans. It is common knowledge that IBPS PO III is held across multiple dates, venues, and shifts, so each shift has a different question paper. Hence, candidates are attempting different questions across different dates (although the underlying syllabus and pattern is the same).

Due to this practice of introducing different question sets for different shifts, it is practically impossible to have two question sets of the same difficulty level. (It is just like fingerprints, no two people can have the same set of fingerprints).

Hence it is but natural that some candidates will end up attempting a relatively easier set compared to another set of candidates.  Therefore, this set of candidates who attempted an easier paper will have a higher average score compared to the set of candidates who attempted the difficult question paper.

Due to this variation in level of difficulty, IBPS will equate the scores of various students across various shifts across the country so that no candidate is at a disadvantage, just because he attempted a difficult set of questions.  This process of equating scores is called “normalization”

 Q. How will scores be normalized ?

Ans. According to Pt. IV. On page 6 of the CWE PO III advertisement

“The corrected scores obtained by each of the candidates in different sessions (if held) will be normalized using equipercentile method”

Thus IBPS will use equipercentile Method to NORMALISE SCORES ACROSS DIFFERENT SESSIONS

Q. How does equipercentile Method Work ?

Ans.  Click here to View/Download Illustration of Equipercentile Method

Q. What is in for me?

What really matters is how you score relative to others in your session, i.e. what is your rank in your session, It doesn’t matter if your friend in some other session has scored more than you.  

  1. Try to solve each question to the best of your ability.

  1. Don’t bother about whether you got an Easy paper or Difficult paper- Scores will be normalized across sessions.

  1. Don’t be distracted by what your friend has achieved in terms of no. of attempts etc in some other session. Focus on Your Exam

  1. Don’t feel that you are at an advantage because you are attempting the paper on a later date, similarly don’t feel disadvantaged if you have attempted the paper on an earlier date.
  We hope that this answers some of your queries and doubts and makes you aware of the reality surrounding this examination.


Happy Reading


Team Bankersadda  and Career Power (formerly Bank Power)!