SSC JE Civil Engineering Preparation Hacks | SSC JE Preparation


If you are a graduate in civil engineering and structural engineering and you dream of a government job, then the SSC Junior Engineers (JE) examination is an ideal opportunity for you. However, the exam itself is extremely competitive and you need to have an excellent strategy to see your name in the final merit list. So, how should you go about SSC JE civil engineering preparation? Here, we would try to give you some insights into how to prepare for SSC JE civil engineering in the most effective way.

Knowing the SSC JE Civil Engineering Syllabus

SSC JE Exam Pattern

The SSC JE exam is conducted in two stages – Paper I and Paper II.  In Paper I, you would be asked questions on General Awareness, General Intelligence and Reasoning and the branch of engineering that you choose. Once you pass Paper I, you would need to sit for Paper II. In Paper II, you would be asked questions only on the branch of engineering that you choose. Therefore, when you choose civil engineering, you would need to answer questions on it in both Papers I and II.

Paper I is a computer-based and MCQ type test. On the other hand, Paper II would be descriptive in nature, where you would have to write long answers. The detailed SSC JE exam pattern is as follows:

Paper Sections Asked Maximum Marks Duration
Paper – I General Awareness 50 2 Hours
General Intelligence and Reasoning 50
Part A- General Engineering (civil & structural) 100
Part B- General Engineering (electrical)
Part C- General Engineering (mechanical)
Paper – II Part A- General Eng. (civil & structural) 300 2 Hours
Part B- General Eng. (electrical)
Part C- General Eng. (mechanical)

To find out more about the exam pattern, click on the link below.

SSC JE 2019 Exam Pattern

SSC JE Exam Syllabus

Before you even think about how to study, you should know about what to study. This is the reason why it is important to know about the SSC JE civil engineering syllabus. For a detailed look at the syllabus, please click on the button below:

SSC JE 2019 Civil Engineering Syllabus

In Paper I, you would also be required to answer questions on General Intelligence and Reasoning and General Awareness. To check the syllabus for SSC JE Reasoning section, click on the button below:

SSC JE 2019 Reasoning Syllabus

SSC JE Civil Engineering Preparation: Tackling Paper I

As said before, the first stage of the exam is Paper I. You need to qualify Paper I to sit for Paper II, which is the final stage of the exam. Civil Engineering questions would be asked in the ‘General Engineering’ Section. Since this is the first stage of the process, you need to be cautious when it comes to preparing for Paper I.

Let us first do an analysis of the questions asked in the previous years examinations. We have broken down the syllabus into different topics. We have also provided the information on the level of difficulty and the number of questions asked from the particular section.

Topic No. of Questions Difficulty Important Subtopics
Building Materials & Construction 15-20 Moderate Cement, Concrete, Stone & Brick Masonry, Aggregates, Timber & Paints.
Surveying 10-12 Easy to Moderate Principles, Linear Measurement, Angular Measurement & Levelling, Contouring, Tachometric Survey, Curve Setting, Earth Work Calculation, Advanced Surveying Equipment.
Hydraulics 10-12 Moderate Fluid properties, hydrostatics, measurements of flow, Bernoulli’s theorem, Flow in open channels & pipes, Pumps & Turbines. Note that you should devote time to Pumps and Turbines only after you cover the rest of the topics.
Strength of Materials 10-12 Easy Elasticity constants, types of beams (determinate and indeterminate), Bending Moment and Shear force diagrams of simply supported, Cantilever and over hanging beams, Torsion and Springs, Columns.
RCC Design 10-12 Easy Limit State and Working Stress methods, Refer IS 456:2000 code to solve Direct questions, Singly Reinforced Beams & Double Reinforced Beams, Shear Strength, Columns, Slabs & Footings, Staircases, Retaining wall, Water tanks.
Steel Design 8-12 Easy to Moderate Refer IS800:2007 to solve Direct Questions, General design principles including riveted & welded connections, Column, Tension Members, Beam, Roof Truss & Girder.
Estimating, Costing and Valuation 5-8 Easy Estimation & Measurement of Brick work (Modular & Traditional bricks), RCC work, Shuttering, Timber work, Painting, Flooring, Plastering, Trapezodial formula, Simpson’s rule, etc.
Soil Mechanics 5-8 Moderate Basic principles including phase diagram, index properties, classification. Permeability & effective stress, Compaction & consolidation. Shear strength of soils – a) Triaxial shear test b) Direct shear test c) Vane shear test. Bearing capacity of soil. Earth pressure theories.
Irrigation Engineering 3-5 Moderate Water Requirement of crops – Definition, necessity, benefits, 2II effects of irrigation, types and methods of irrigation, Hydrology – Measurement of rainfall, run off coefficient, rain gauge, losses from precipitation – evaporation, infiltration, etc. Water requirement of crops, duty, delta and base period, Kharif and Rabi Crops, Command area, Time factor, Crop ratio, Overlap allowance, Irrigation efficiencies. Design of canals – a) Lacey’s theory b) Kennedy’s theory c) Type of canal
Weir and barrage, Floods & River training including cross drainage works.
Transportation Engineering 0-4 Easy Highway Engineering: Geometric design, Pavement design, Highway materials including aggregates & bitumen, Traffic engineering, Railway Engineering.

Step by Step Guide for SSC JE Civil Engineering Preparation

STEP 1The Cutoffs – When you are starting your SSC JE civil engineering preparation for Paper I, you would want to know how much marks you need to score to get to the next round. This is the reason why it is important to know the cutoffs. To know the cutoffs for previous years and the expected cutoffs for SSC JE 2019, click on the button below.

SSC JE Cutoff Marks

Your strategy should be to be sure about scoring 10-20 marks more than the expected cutoff, just to stay on the safe side!

STEP 2The Syllabus – Now the thing that you need to do is take a look at the syllabus. You should have covered most of the topics in the syllabus during your graduation. A good thing to do at this stage would identify you ‘strong’ and ‘weak’ topics. Not only would this tell you how much marks you are likely to get, but it would also tell you where you should start your preparation.

STEP 3 – Preparation – Now that you have a sense of direction about what you need to do, you should start with your preparation. It is a good strategy to start with your weak subjects. Especially now, since exams are in next year. You should also follow these tips to ensure that you prepare efficiently for the exam

  • Most of the questions asked in Paper I are theoretical in nature. Questions that involve complicated calculation are less. So, you should work on your concepts.
  • Always refer to previous year questions to understand the question patterns and the topics they focus on.

STEP 4 Mock Tests – Mock tests are a great way to test your level of preparation. You should try to go for sectional mock tests, as they would show how well you are prepared for each of the topics.

Example Questions for Civil Engineering in SSC JE Paper I

Question 1:

Which of the following represent the crushing strength (MPa) for the good quality stone that is used in the construction of buildings?

1) Less than 20
2) 20 to 60
3) 60 to 80
4) Greater than 100

Correct Answer: (4)

Question 2: 

Calculate the area (square metre) of the formwork required for a beam of 2 m span and a cross-section dimension of 400 mm x 200 mm.


1) 0.8
2) 0.16
3) 1.2
4) 2

Correct Answer: (4)

SSC JE Civil Engineering Preparation: Tackling Paper II

Paper II of SSC JE Civil Engineering is all about writing descriptive answers. Unlike Paper II, where you had questions related to general awareness and reasoning as well, Paper II would be all about engineering. Paper II is about how well you can explain a concept through your writing. This means that not only do you have to know the subject well, you also need to write good answers.

Important Topics for SSC JE Civil Engineering Paper II

It is a wise thing to know about the topics that need your attention daily and the topics that can be done within a month. We have made the division of the subjects on the basis of that.

Topics for Daily Preparation

  • Numerical – Numerical questions require your daily practice right from the start. Practice questions from circuits, machines and generation and transmission. Questions from these sections come often in the exam.
  • Building Materials, Soil Mechanics, RCC Design

Topics for Later Stages of Preparation

The following topics take less time to be completed and hence, you can keep them for later stages of SSC JE civil preparation

  • Transportation Engineering
  • Irrigation Engineering

Answer Writing Tips for SSC JE Civil Engineering Preparation

Here are some of the tips that you should follow for SSC JE  civil engineering preparation that would allow you to write good answers and more importantly, get good marks

Tip #1 – Cover the Complete Syllabus – Paper II wouldn’t give you too many options. So, you should try and cover as much of the syllabus as you can.

Tip #2 – Draw Diagrams –  If there is a scope of drawing a diagram, then go ahead and draw it! Answers with diagrams always get good marks in SSC JE exam. Just remember to label the diagrams properly and you would be scoring good marks.

Tip #3 – Show the Steps – When you are asked to make calculations, you should always clearly mark the steps. This would help you good marks without a doubt.

SSC JE Civil Book for Preparation

The books that you studied from during your graduation would be enough to cover the topics in SSC JE Electrical Syllabus. You can also take the help of the following books for solving questions.

So, these were some of the hacks and tips that you should follow for your SSC JE  Civil Engineering preparation. Hope, they were of help to you. For more such hacks and tips, feel free to check other articles on our website. Study smart and you would be able to crack SSC JE exam 2019 with flying colours.

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