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What is TAT ??

Thematic Apperception Test is a very effective technique used by the psychologist in order to examine the three attributes of psychology i.e. perception, cognition and behavior. Based on this the psychologist get to know a great deal of one's personality. The intention of the test is to ask the candidate to give an appreciation of his own qualities without being conscious of it, and that to in a given time constraint.


What to do in TAT ??

TAT consists of a series of 12 pictures which are shown to the candidate on the projector for 30 sec. Every picture shown has a situation which gives the base of the story. Here, story is the candidate's reaction in the form of thoughts to that particular environment.

From this story an assessment of the candidate's personality is drawn by the psychologist



Total time duration for TAT is 60 min.

Time for projection of each picture is 30 sec and 4 min for writing the story.

11 pictures + one blank picture (virtual story).



A tangible or sensible action plan requires the following four things :-

Picture Analysis

Identification of Characters (Main Character and Side Character)

Establishment of Theme or Central Idea

Writing the Story




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Picture Analysis

Picture Analysis includes the following three points:-

Background Identification: Urban-Rural, Plain-Jungle, Mountains-River, etc

Significant Infrastructure: Police Station, Red Cross Sign, Board, PCO, etc

Current Action Going on in Picture: Planning, Thinking, Working, Flying, etc



Identification of Characters

Each picture consists of two types of character:-


Hero is the main character or central figure. A candidate should identify the hero by his age and sex and give him a name. No need of surname. The purpose behind this is that it shows the ambitiousness and dynamism of candidate. Following are the three attributes of hero :-

NAME: Name should be short, sweet, modern and meaningful.

STATUS: Status of the hero should be decent, socially acceptable and showing his own ambition and surroundings.

ATTITUDE: Attitude of the hero should be positive, practical, dynamic and pleasant.

Side Characters

These are the one's who assist the hero in achieving his goal.



Establishment of Theme

Based on the above analysis and calculation, candidate decides the central idea i.e "What the hero has decided to do".


Writing the Story

A good story writing involves the following three key points:-

What led to the Situation

This is the beginning part of the story which constitutes 3-4 lines. Here a need or problem or challenge is presented and along with the identification of hero, the aim of the hero is given.

What happened Afterwords

This is the middle part of the story and constitutes 7-8 lines. This part gives the description of the actions of the hero. The efforts or steps he takes, the methods he adopts and his journey to achieve his aim, all these things are to be given in this part. This part is most important one as it reflects the personality of the candidate, on the basis of which the assessment is done by the psychologist.

What is the Final Result or Outcome

This is the end part of story which constitutes 2-3 lines. This part reflects the final outcome and shows the result of hero's efforts.





Write the story in a single paragraph.

Handwriting should be neat and clean without any cutting and overwriting.

Write the story in past indefinite tense and in third person.





Your story should not have more than one hero.

Do not give name to the side character.

Do not write a negative story.

Do not give any heading/title to the story.

Do not describe the picture, instead you should give your thoughts and feelings for the same.

Do not write any moral at the end of story.

Do not put any prefix like Mr. or Shri with the name of the hero.

Do not use pessimistic and negative words such as weak, hopeless, injured, miserable, guide, sad, etc, while expressing the attitude of hero.



Piece of Advice

As I have already mentioned that the last picture is the blank picture in which candidate has to make a virtual story. Therefore, it is advisable for each one of you to prepare one story in advance, before going for the SSB as per the guidelines mentioned above.






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0 #23 speech level singing 2014-11-10 03:48
You actually make it seem so easy with your
presentation but I find this topic to be actually something that I think I would never understand.
It seems too complicated and extremely broad for me.
I'm looking forward for your next post, I'll try to get the hang of it!
+1 #22 Dr Lakshmikanth P 2014-02-26 13:04
Hi ,

i congratulate the team to give some in puts upon cracking SSB. its useful to understand and to assess the exam how it will be. but the utility could be realised only after attempting the real exam. how ever i will come back again after i give the exam . but surely i need to say some confidence to carack the exam by your inputs. Thankks
0 #21 abhishk patro 2013-05-19 17:15
very very very thanx for your suitable advic ei ha sbeeb selected for nda in iaf as a pilot thanyou sir your advice to think the story before really hepls............
0 #20 arunpandi 2013-01-14 19:21
Quoting vikas sundriyal:
respected sir, yesterday i have been conferenced out in ssb of nda. means i dont have OLQs. sir how the OLQs can be developed? and how long it will take..?? :-|

Vikas if u r conference out doesn't means u don't have OLQ. Everyone have OLQ but they may be not sufficient enough to get recommended or SSB officers may think u r not suitable for this time. So my friend don't lose faith and the truth is answer lies within u. So just analyse what really went wrong during ur SSB and correct it next time.
Regarding the development of OLQ, the best and easiest way is just fake it, yeah do things what a real gentlemen or a good soldiers do often. Just pretend u r an officers and do things. Eventhough it is an easiest way actually it is not, it require a lot of self control, Try this u will find some results soon, good luck
+1 #19 vikas kumar 1987 2012-11-15 12:20
@ #15 sachin tripathi :

you can think of the imaginatory slides, like a boy climbing a foot hill, site of an accident on road, boy standing on a railway platform.. etc

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