Picture Perception & Description Test (PPDT)

Picture Perception & Description Test (PPDT)


Requirement in PPDT

PPDT involves three aspects- first is writing a story, second is narrating the story & third is a discussion on the story in a group.
You will be shown a black & white, hazy photo for 30 secs.
You are required to write some particulars in the available box in the answer sheet, which includes No of Characters, their Age, Sex & Mood.
You have to identify the main character & build the story around him/her. It is convenient to name the character (helps in discussion stage).
You are required to describe what the scene in the photo depicts (what is going on?)
You have to visualize & write, what led to the present scene (what happened in the past?)
You have to foresee the future & write it. (What will happen in the future?)
The entire story has to be written in about 3 mins & submitted.

Tips for Story Writing in PPDT


Pre-prepared Story. Some coached candidates (generally ACC & SCO entries), come with a misconception that the time is too less to make a story & hence come with a pre-prepared story & fit it there. Often the main character in such stories is narrated as a young man who joins the Defence Services & also gets a decoration!  This type of story is made even when there is nothing in the photo to suggest any part of such a story! There are several such “positive” coaching academy type stories which can be easily found out by the assessors. Such stories have an adverse impact on the clearance of the Stage 1 by the subject candidate.
Stories Displaying Wrong Interpretation of Positive Thinking. Experience shows that quite a few coached candidates are over enthusiastic about “positive thinking” & display it in an unnatural manner in their stories.  E.g: In an obviously tragic scene such candidates will state that the mood of the main character is positive. Such stories can be easily found out & have an adverse impact on the clearance of the Stage 1 by the subject candidate.
Common Misconceptions.Some male candidates have a misconception that the main character must be of their age and gender!  As a result of this wrong notion some candidates write story about a male character while the photo shows a female. This goes against them because the assessors are led to conclude that such candidates are unable to interpret clearly what is shown & lack practical sense


Write a natural & realistic story that comes to your mind on seeing the picture. The moods, etc of characters should be stated as observed.
Positive thinking means that even if the photo shows something adverse, or tragic, the candidate foresees that in the future things will become all right, with the main character playing a proactive part in the same.
The main character should be proactive & do something for the betterment of the existing situation.

PPDT Discussion Requirement

Candidates are organized in groups of 14-15 for group discussion. Each candidate is required to narrate his story by turn. After everyone has narrated his/her story the group is required to discuss the same & arrive at a consensus story. The group is required to nominate a leader who has to narrate the story on behalf of the entire group.

Tips for PPDT Discussion:
  • Narrate your story confidently in a clear voice in about one minute.
  • Remain confident about being selected, remain relaxed & do not feel pressurized to force your views on others, in the fear that others will dominate you.
  • Don’t look at the assessors while narrating the story, or during the discussion.
  • Listen to the speakers attentively.
  • Be polite, give your ideas & views only, & do not argue with others.
  • In case the entire group is shouting, as happens in some repeater groups, do not try to out shout others, but await your turn patiently.
  • Do not try to dominate the discussion by speaking more. The quality of your views is more important than how much you speak.
  • Do not repeat your views.
  • Help the weak members to talk.
  • If the story of the majority of the group is similar to yours, it is easy to contribute to the discussion.
  • In case your story is different from the entire group, it is sensible to change your views & help the group in forming a consensus story, rather than trying to guide the group towards your perspective.
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