Quick Tips : How to Prepare for GATE 2018?
GATE is typically conducted in the in the first week of February which leaves an average window of 3 months of preparation time left. Graduate Aptitude Test Engineering (GATE) is the country standard exam for admission into colleges for pursuing post-graduate programmes on behalf of DoE, HRD and National Coordinating Board by IITs and IISC. Apart from this, several Indutry leading PSUs and other organisations accept GATE score as eligibility for employment opportunities. The exam pattern typically includes MCQs and Numerical Value Answers wherein you’re expected to answer from your memory or with a one-line computation. Apart from this, there are questions on Subject matter Comprehension, application of concepts, mathematical data questions and those wherein a problem statement has to be analysed and the question solved.
An analysis of GATE exam pattern reveals that Engineering and Mathematics questions make up for majority of the questions. Students are allowed to choose from only one of the 23 available areas of specialisation. Therefore, it is important that that align with the field one is good at and sees prospects in. For admission into PSUs, historically, a rank below 200 was required and into old IITs, a rank below 500. Aspirants should first determine the kind of end result they anticipate from GATE- whether it is PSU or M.Tech, and if either, the standard of organisation they are aiming for. In general, however, the following tips are suggested.
- A minimum of four months of study is suggested before attempting the exam. Don’t leave all your time for study too. Ensure you have at least a month before the exam for revision and practise
- Practise of old papers and revision papers has proven effective for several candidates while attempting GATE. Ensure you have enough time to do this
- Formulas are just as important as the application. Don’t spend all your time in memorising formulae.
- Ensure you have your basics right because Comprehension type questions depend on your understanding of the basics of the subject chosen.
- Ensure you are good at basic maths. Peruse CBSE books for 10th and 11th standards to ensure you top in General Aptitude. However, don’t focus a large amount of time on this as this is worth for only 5 out of 90 marks.
- Don’t tire yourself out. Research has shown that, for technical subjects more than general arts and aptitude subjects, monotonous repetition for prolonged hours has a negative impact on knowledge retention. That being said, ensure you spend about 6-7 hours a day on weekdays and slightly longer on weekends.
- Take ample amount of breaks. Don’t tire yourself out
- Sleep and drinking copious amounts of water is something that’s strongly suggested to keep the body healthy and mentally ready for the exam
- Practise basic computer skills and speed for ease in answering the exam.
- Work on your application skills. Ensure that your speed of solving matches accuracy. Constantly time yourself to understand where you stand and where you hope to reach
- Always remember that there is negative marking in GATE (1/3 of the base marks for the question). So ensure you know the answer perfectly before you answer it. Don’t lose out on your score by a few hopeful guesses. In many cases ranks are won because someone else made the mistake of placing a few too many hopeful guesses
- Monotonous static statements like laws, formulae and definitions fade with disuse. Make sure you recite them regularly so as not to lose touch
- Do not go outside your syllabus. It is highly unlikely that the questions will go outside your specialisation. The likeliness can be gauged by the previous question papers. Keep in mind whatever’s relevant for your subject, no matter how remote, falls under the purview of your subject. But don’t go finding threads where there are none.
Do well, and always remember to leave yourself enough room for lax in preparation schedules. All the best.
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