Day 3 & 4 – GTO Tests

GTO stands for Group Task Officer. GTO tests are conducted on 3rd & 4th day of SSB. In whole SSB interview process, these are the only tests in which candidates have to perform some outdoor activities. That’s why it is the most enjoyable part of SSB for most of the candidates. The Group Task Officer accesses your performance in a group and your performance under pressure.

Following 9 tests are conducted by group testing officer on day 3 and 4:

1. GD-Group Discussion

2. GPE (Group Planning Exercise)

3. PGT (Progressive Group Task)

4. HGT (Half Group Task)

5. Snake Race

6. IO (Individual Obstacles)

7. Command Task

8. Lecturette

9. FGT (Final Group Task)

Now we will talk about each test separately.

1. Group Discussion

GD stands for Group Discussion. It is first GTO test. For GD, candidates are divided into smaller groups of 10 or 12 members.  Candidates are made to sit on chairs in a circle in a room. Two group discussions are conducted by the GTO, one after the other.

In the first GD, the GTO gives 2 or 3 topics of common interest (social issues and current events).The group members have to choose one topic. One minute is given for deciding the topic. As the group decides the topic, the GD starts. 10-20 minutes will be given for this group discussion.

GTO conducts 2nd GD just after the first end. He will give the second topic of GD to the candidates. This topic will be of his choice. The duration of 2nd GD will also be 10-20 minutes. During complete GD, the GTO remains away from the circle & access everybody from behind.

2. Group Planning Exercise

Group Planning Exercise (GPE) is the 2nd GTO test. It is also known as Military Planning Exercise (MPE). In GPE, candidates will sit according to the chest numbers in a semi-circle order. Then a situation chart will be given to you. GTO will explain the complete situation to you. There will be various problems in it. You have to find a practically possible solution for these problems by utilizing the men power available there in the situation. You will have to handle all problems given in the situation within given time limit.

After the explanation, GTO will give you cards, having written whole situation on it. 1-2 minutes will be given to you for reading it and then it is taken back from you. Then GTO asks the candidates for any doubt.

After that an answer sheet will be given to you. You have to write the practical solution for the given situation in it and then it is taken back from you. Here comes the discussion part. You have to discuss your solution with other group members. The main aim is to reach on a common practical solution of given problems set. After discussion, GTO ask the group to choose one candidate that can convey the common solution to the GTO. He asks for suggestions and hence GPE ends.

3. Progressive Group Task

In PGT, there will be a set of obstacles. You and your group members have to cross these various obstacles along with the given load by taking help of supporting materials. Load can be a box or a drum. Supporting materials includes rope, plank and Balli i.e. wooden log. There is no fixed time limit of completing the obstacles. It depends on performance of your group & on the difficulty of the task. If your group is performing well, GTO will increase the difficulty level and decrease the time period. There will be 3-5 obstacles in Progressive Group Task.

There will be a set of rules. These are rules of color, rules of supporting materials, rule of 4 foot etc. Listen to the GTO carefully, because he will explain each and every rule to you. You just have to follow his instructions.

Rule of Color

The obstacle’s structure will have three colors paints on it. Usually candidates find these colors- White, Black/Blue & Red. These colors are not fixed. It changes from board to board and one selection centre to other. –

White: You can stand on it and can also put the helping materials and load on it.

Black or Blue: Only you can stand on it. Helping material and load must not touch that part of structure.

Red: Red means restricted area. Neither you nor any other material (helping material or load) can touch that part.

Rule of supporting materials

You can’t tie two rigid supporting materials on each other.

Rule of 4 feet:

You cannot jump more than 4 feet in any case.

4. HGT (Half Group Task)

This task is similar to Progressive Group Task or better say smaller version of PGT.  The only difference is that, here the group is divided into half.  Means if there were 12 candidates in PGT, there will be only 6 in HGT. Candidates have to cross similar obstacles with same rules (color, load, supporting materials etc.) and in same manner. The difficulty level of obstacles may vary.

5. Snake Race

Snake race is also known as Group Obstacle Race. This is the real task that makes you sweat and use your physical strength. Here the candidates are divided into 4-5 groups of 10-12 candidates in each group.

Each group is given a 6-8 foot long Jute & thick clothes made material known as Snake. Along with this snake, you & your group have to cross a number of obstacles e.g.

Spider web, 10 Feet wall, Balli Bridge, Inclined Balli with having cuts & Iron pipes structure

During whole race you and your group members have to hold the snake tight & it must not touch the ground. Before starting of race, GTO will explain all rules and restrictions. You just have to follow them.

To fill you with “JOSH”, GTO will ask you to choose a war cry E.g.:- ‘BHARAT MATHA KE JAI’, ‘VANDE MATARAM’, ‘JAI HIND’ and “HAR -2 MAHADEV” etc. You have to shout this war cry during whole race.

6. Individual Obstacles

As the title suggest, here candidates have to perform individually .They have to cross a set of 10 obstacles. These obstacles have different difficulty level and marks. The obstacle having highest level of difficulty will contain the maximum marks i.e.10. The obstacle having lowest level of difficulty will contain the minimum marks i.e.1. Marks of 10 Obstacles are mentioned below-

1+ 2+ 3+ 4+ 5+ 6+ 7+ 8+ 9+ 10=55

 Candidates have to cross these obstacles in 3 minutes. If they complete all 10 before 3 minutes, they can repeat any number of obstacles.

10 Individual Obstacles are listed below:

1. Jumping over drum

2. Jumping over screen after climbing inclined plank

3. Zig-Zag Walk

4. Tarzan swing

5. Burma Bridge

6. Double ditch

7. Double tower jump

 8. Rope climbing

9. Hanging the rope after jumping from the tower

10. Commando walk

7. Command Task

In command task, GTO calls the candidates one by one in a random order. It is also similar to PGT & HGT. The only difference is that here only a single person has to give ideas to cross the obstacles i.e. the commander.

In this task you get some authority and powers. GTO ask you to choose two subordinates from your group. You can choose any two candidates. With taking help of these subordinates; you have to cross a number of obstacles (usually 1-4). In this task only the commander will give instructions and those subordinates will follow those instructions.

8. Lecturette

In this task, candidates are made to sit on chairs in a semi-circle. The G.T.O will sit behind the candidates. The GTO will have a pack of cards. Candidates will come according to the chest numbers and pick a card. That card will be having 3 topics. Candidates have to choose one topic and have to speak on that topic in front of the group for 3 minutes.  Extra 2-3 minutes will be given to prepare the topic.

As first candidate start speaking, the next candidate come and pick the card and walk away. During these 3 minutes he has to choose the topic and prepare for it. Then he starts speaking and next candidate pick the card, walk away and so on.

At the end of 2.30 minutes the G.T.O will ring a bell to tell the candidate to sum up his points. As 3 minute complete, he will ring the bell again to tell the candidate to stop speaking.

9. FGT (Final Group Task)

This is last GTO task. If some candidates were not able to perform well in PGT or HGT, they can perform here. It is the last chance for them. Full group of 10 or 12 or 15 candidates will perform this task. Similar obstacles (3-4 obstacles) will be there as were present in HGT & PGT. The rules for FGT will be same as they were in HGT and PGT e.g. Color rule, Out of Bound Area rule etc.

Hence the two days long GTO process ends.


1. Mud surfaces (i.e. ground) inside the task area are known as OUT OF BOUND AREA. You can’t stand or put anything on ground. All free area in surrounding of obstacles structure is thought to be painted RED.

2. Candidates can only repeat any obstacle only when he/she has completed all the 10 obstacles.

3. Lecturette topics will be of common social issues or current events.