Number Series is an important topic in competitive exams, with a specific focus as five questions are dedicated solely to this section. It holds significant importance in various exams. Candidates preparing for competitive exams can secure 45 marks in just 23 minutes by understanding the different types and patterns of number series in both reasoning and quantitative aptitude.
These series follow the pattern of addition or subtraction of even or odd numbers.
Example 1: What should come in place of question mark in the following series: 19, 23, 39, 75, ?, 239.
In Example 1, given above, the difference between first no. (19) and last number (239) is 220.
Example 2: What should come in place of question mark in the following series: 10, 31, 95, 288, ?, 2609.
As we can see in the above example, the difference between the first number (10) and the last number (2609) is 2599 in five steps, which indicate us to check multiplication trick between the numbers.
(288*3) + 4 = 868, is the correct answer.
Note : While checking multiplication trick always start from right end of the sequence.
Example 3: What should come in place of question mark in the following series: 30, 34, 43, 59, 84, 120, ?.
(a) 169
(b) 148
(c) 153
(d) 176
(e) None of these
Correct Answer is Option (a)
The given pattern is:+4, +9, +16, +25 and so on.
So, missing term is 169 = 120 + 49
Example 4: What should come in place of question mark in the following series: 40, 54, 82, ?, 180, 250.
(a) 142
(b) 124
(c) 136
(d) 163
(e) None of these
Correct Answer is Option (c)
The pattern is: +14, + 28, + 42, + 56, + 70
So, missing term is 82 + 42 = 124
Example 5: Find the wrong number in the belowmentioned series:
0, 1, 3, 8, 18, 35, 264
(a) 62
(b) 35
(c) 18
(d) 8
(e) None of these
Correct Answer is Option (a)
There is a pattern in difference between the consecutive numbers:
0  1 = 1 ← 0^{2} + 1
1  3 = 2 ← 1^{2} + 1
3  8 = 5 ← 2^{2} + 1
8  18 = 10 ← 3^{2} + 1
18  35 = 17 ← 4^{2} + 1
Next difference should be 5^{2} + 1 i.e. 26.
35  61 = 26 ← 5^{2} + 1
From above the correct sequence would be: 0, 1, 3, 8, 18, 35, 61 and
so, the wrong number is: 264
Example 6: Find the wrong number in the belowmentioned series:
5531, 5506, 5425, 5304, 5135, 4910, 4621
(a) 5531
(b) 5425
(c) 4621
(d) 5135
(e) 5506
Correct Answer is Option (a)
The number should be 5555 in place of 5531.
72, 92, 112, 132, 152, 172…
Example 7: Find the wrong number in the belowmentioned series:
6, 7, 9, 13, 26, 37, 69
(a) 7
(b) 26
(c) 69
(d) 37
(e) 9
Correct Answer is Option (b)
The number should be 21 in place of 26.
The pattern is: +1, +2, +4, +8, +16, +32
Example 8: Find the wrong number in the belowmentioned series:
1, 3, 10, 36, 152, 760, 4632
(a) 3
(b) 36
(c) 4632
(d) 760
(e) 152
Correct Answer is Option (d)
The number should be 770 in place of 760.
The pattern is: ×1 +2, ×2 +4, ×3 +6, ×4 + 8, ×5 +10, ×6 + 12, …
Question: 4, 18, 48, 100, 180, ___.
This type of series is based on the square of a number that is in the same order and one square number is missing in that given series.
Example 11: In the following options, a few number series are present. One of them has an error, pick the wrong one out:
(a) 3, 9, 15, 21
(b) 9, 81, 225, 441
(c) 441, 529, 676, 841
(d) 900, 841, 784, 729
Answer: (c)
Solution: The first series is just an A.P. with a common difference of 6. Now, we can see that the second sequence is the perfect square sequence. This series can be formed from the series given in option A. The third sequence is a twotier square series but in place of 841, we must have 900. This is a wrong series. The last series is also a square series. So the correct option or the wrong series of the four options presented above is C) 441, 529, 676, 841.
Example 12: What should come in place of question mark in the following series:
841, ?, 2401, 3481, 4761
Answer: 29^{2}, 39^{2}, 49^{2}, 59^{2}, 69^{2 }
Example 14: What should come in place of question mark in the following series:
289, 225, 169, ?, 81
Answer: 17^{2}, 15^{2}, 13^{2}, 11^{2}, 9^{2}
This type of series is based on the cube of a number that is in the same order and one cube number is missing in that given series.
Example 15: What should come in place of question mark in the following series:
3375, ?, 24389, 46656, 79507
Answer: 15^{3}, 22^{3}, 29^{3}, 36^{3}, 43^{3}
(Each cube digit added with seven to become next cube number)
Example 16: What should come in place of question mark in the following series:
729, 6859, 24389, ?, 117649, 205379
Answer: 9^{3}, 19^{3}, 29^{3}, 39^{3}, 49^{3}, 59^{3}
Example 17: What should come in place of question mark in the following series:
1000, 8000, 27000, 64000, ?
Answer: 10^{3}, 20^{3}, 30^{3}, 40^{3}, 50^{3 }
Example 18: 6, 15, 35, 77, 143, __.
In the above example, all the previous tricks are not applicable to get an answer. Hence, We will make factors of the given numbers.
(2,3,5,7,11,13) all are prime numbers in ascending order.
Hence, 13*17 = 221, is the correct answer.
Example 19: 1, 4, 5, 9, 14, 23, ___
In the above sequence, all the numbers are the sum of the previous two numbers.
Therefore, 23+14 = 37, is the correct answer.
Example 20:
In the above sequence, the difference between two numbers is the sum of the digits of the first number.
Hence, 89+17 = 106, is the correct answer.
Example 21:
All the numbers are multiplied by their sum or added by their sum alternately.
Therefore, 11788 + 25 = 11813, is the correct answer.
Example 22:
So, numbers are 12+5 = 17, 536 = 47
Ans. 17, 47
Example 23:
So, the number is 24+3 = 27
Ans. 27
When the numbers of the sequence are given in the decimal form is decimal pattern series.
Example 24:
So, the answer is 18 * 0.8 = 14.4
Example 25: 16, 24, 60, 210, 945, __
The pattern is:
16 * 1.5 = 24
24 * 2.5 =60
60 * 3.5 = 210
210 * 4.5 = 945
945 * 5.5 = 5197.5
While using bracket pattern we multiply first outside and either add or sub based on given number.
Example 26: 3, 28, 180, ____, 3676
The pattern is :
(3+1)*7 = 28
(28+2)*6 =180
(180+3)*5 = 915
(915+4)*4 = 3676
Ans. 915
Example 27: 37, 31, 52, 144, __, 2810
The pattern is :
(376)*1=31
(315)*2=52
(524)*3=144
(1443)*4=564
(5642)*5=2810
Ans. 564
Example 28:
15, 9, 8, 12, 36, 170
19, a, b, __, d, e,
The pattern is :
(156)*1=9
(95)*2=8
(84)*3=12
Similarly:
(196)*1=13
(135)*2=16
(164)*3=36
Ans. 36
This is the latest pattern question asked in the latest exams.
Example 29:
Ans. 33
Example 30:
Ans. 606 + 721 = 1327
A series in which the next term is obtained by adding or subtracting a constant number to its previous term.
Example 1: Find the next term 7, 12, 17, 22, 27, ?
Solution:
The above series is an Arithmetic series where 5 is added to each term to get the next term i.e.
Hence next term will be 27 + 5 = 32.
Example 2: Write the missing term 29, 23, 17, 11, ?
Solution:
The above series is an Arithmetic series where 6 is subtracted from each term to get the next term i.e.
Hence next term will be 11  6 = 5.
A series where each successive number is obtained by either multiplying or dividing the previous number by a specific number.
Example 1: Find the missing term 3, 12, 48, 192, ?
Solution:
Here each number is multiplied by 4 to get the next number i.e.
Hence next term will be 192 x 4 = 768.
Example 2: Find the next term 729, 243, 81, 27, ?
Solution.
Here each number is divided by 3 to get the next number.
Hence next term will be 27/3 = 9
Example 1: Find the missing term 2, 8, 26, 80, 242, ?
Solution:
Here the pattern is (x 3 + 2).
Hence missing term will be242 x 3 + 2 = 728
Example 2: Find the next term 5, 12, 27, 59, ?
Solution:
Here each term is multiplied by 2 and consecutive prime numbers are added.
Hence next term will be 59 x 2 + 7 = 125
A series which is a combination of Arithmetic and Geometric series.
Example: Find the next term 3, 5, 10, 12, 24, 26, ?
Solution:
Here the pattern is (+ 2, x 2, + 2, x 2 …..)
Hence the next term will be 26 x 2 = 52
A series where two series is combined into a single series.
Example 1: Find the next term 2, 3, 5, 8, 8, 13, 11, ?
Solution:
► Here alternate terms starting with 2 forms an Arithmetic series with a common difference as 3. (2, 5, 8, 11)
► Also, alternate terms starting with 3 forms another Arithmetic series with a common difference as 5. ( 3, 8, 13,..)
Hence next term will be 18.
Example 2: Find the next term 3, 5, 7, 10, 11, 15, 15, ?
Solution:
Here alternate terms starting with 3 forms an Arithmetic series with a common difference as 4. (3, 7, 11, 15)
Also, alternate terms starting with 5 forms a Geometric series with a common ratio as 2. (5, 10, 15)
Hence next term will be 20.
1. If the change is slow or gradual, then it is a difference series.
e.g.
2. If the change is equally sharp, then it is ratio series.
e.g.
3. If the rise is sharp initially, but slows down later, then it is formed by adding squared, or cubed numbers.
e.g.
4. If the series is alternating, then it may be either a mixed series or two different operations going on alternately.
e.g.
214 videos139 docs151 tests

1. What are the different types of number series commonly asked in SSC CGL exams? 
2. How can one identify and solve a Perfect Square or Perfect Cube number series in SSC CGL exams? 
3. What is the significance of Factorisation/Prime Factorisation number series in SSC CGL exams? 
4. How can one approach solving a Fibonacci series in SSC CGL exams? 
5. Why is it important to practice different types of number series for SSC CGL exams? 

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