complete Guide to PPDT in SSB

Complete Guide to PPDT in SSB

Picture perception and Discussion test better known as PPDT is a part of Day 1 Screening. In this test, a hazy picture reflects on the screen for 30 Seconds and one has to analyze it so as to make a story on it. Thereafter 4 minutes are given to pen down what you have perceived by way of number of characters, their age, their mood, etc and also to write a story relating to the picture.

Your perception needs to be correct in order to do well in this test. This will be followed by individual story narration and discussion  test. Your power of expression, clarity of language (both grammatical and logical), confidence, participation and ability to accept other’s ideas are all important facets of this test.

Your body language and attitude during the whole test is also of consequence. What you must do is to remain involved with the test throughout.  


PPDT is many a times confused with TAT However they are different in many ways.

ppdt ssb


Notable differences between TAT and PPDT are as follows:
  1. Candidates are assessed through a single story in PPDT while TAT requires 12 stories one after the other
  2. PPDT is a part of SSB screening while TAT is a part of psychology testing
  3. Specific instructions need to be followed for PPDT while that's not the case in TAT
  4. Everyone gets to hear your story in the discussion (PPDT) while there is no discussion in TAT


Now, Let's get a complete idea about PPDT


You will be provided with set of instructions by the officer briefing you. These instructions may slightly vary in different selection Boards and therefore one is advised to follow them carefully. Nonetheless, the following points will always be in common

  1. Total no. of characters shown in the picture.
  2. How many out of them are male, female, (M,F,P)  [P-  stands for person when you are unable to distinguish]
  3. Approximate age of each character.
  4. Mood of each character (+,-,0/N) [0 or N refers to neutral]
  5. Put a circle around the character whom you have identified as your hero
  6. Action and activity.

The sheet that you will be provided with will look something like this  

ppdt ssb

Below is a draft of filled sheet for a better understanding

ppdt ssb


Things to remember while framing a story.
  1. Show maximum involvement of the main character
  2. No exaggeration of hero with awards and rewards
  3. Stick to a practical theme


Once the story is written, members of the group sit in a semi circle where three assessor monitor and observe their actions. Each candidate is given a minute to narrate his story.  Candidates are then asked to discuss the story and come up with a common conclusive story acceptable to all.

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