Confused? A person who has attended SSB/AFSB earlier is already familiar with the above terms. Yes, it’s as simple as the words. Freshers are literally those who are attending the interview for the first time and Repeaters are those candidates who are coming for the interview for the next time (which can be ‘n’ number of times). So what’s your league? A Fresher or a Repeater? Read on to find more.
Need For Differentiating Between Candidates
A repeater has an experience of how screening exam is conducted and PPDT is carried out. Also he might be well aware of what happens in the five-day selection process. It is only done to provide equal opportunity and a fair chance to each & every competing candidate. By doing so, a fresher will perform better and will not feel nervous or underestimated. Similarly, repeaters are grouped with other repeater candidates.
Freshers – Advantages & Disadvantages
Fresher candidates are separated from repeaters on the first day itself. So all the candidates who are appearing for SSB/AFSB for the first time, are grouped together. Thus, there’s no problem as everyone in the group is as naive as the other person.
Fresher candidates act in their natural way. They normally don’t have any exposure to any kind of testing procedure before. So, it gives a fair chance for every candidate equally to perform.
Most fresher candidates, however, these days prefer to get training/coaching for SSB interviews before actually attending one. But all of us will accept that hardcore coaching or training will only mask the natural performance of a candidate which the Psychology tests or GTO’s Tasks will very easily unmask.
There is lesser expectation from Freshers as compared to repeaters as repeaters are already well-versed with all the procedures followed during SSB.
Counting on the disadvantages, one can only cite a major disadvantage which is Fresher candidates don’t have the experience of the selection center’s environment. A formal training or coaching can, of course, minimise this disadvantage.
Repeaters – Advantages & Disadvantages
Repeaters are those candidates who have attended SSB/AFSB interviews. If you have faced Stage II testing (i.e. selection board interview) even once, you are termed as a repeater irrespective of how many times you got screened out OR conference out OR applied for any other service i.e Army, Navy and Air Force.
Repeaters are quite well-placed (except those who got screened out) as compared to freshers. They have experience, exposure and necessary information to go through. Repeaters can also figure out what went wrong the last time which they can amend next time. So, we can say that theoretically repeaters have more chances of getting recommended. However, it is not so.
Counting the disadvantages, repeaters have some. First, they’ll have to compete in the group which might consist of someone who has come for 6th time and one who has come for just the 2nd time. This increases the competition inside the group itself, which might result in complete group being washed out in the screening test itself.
Repeaters are expected to be experienced. So everyone expects that they perform in every test in much better way as compared to freshers. This can unnecessarily burden them. Often a misconception floats around that you’ve best chance to clear SSB in your first attempt and your chances slowly diminish when your number of attempts increase. Although this is true upto some extent, but not completely. Repeaters in their 12th or 15th times do have cleared SSB.
So, the key is perseverance. Have faith in yourself and prepare yourself in such a way that no stone is left unturned before facing the interview. This way you can clear the interview in the first round itself.