The Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) is an all-India examination that is considered as a minimum requirement to apply for various fellowships and scholarships in pure science and engineering research.

The Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) is an all India examination administered and conducted jointly by the Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore, and seven Indian Institutes of Technology. There are eight zones, each one of which is administered by an institute.

Zone 1: Indian Institute of Science, Bangalore

Zone 2: IIT Bombay

Zone 3: IIT Delhi

Zone 4: IIT Guwahati

Zone 5: IIT Kanpur

Zone 6: IIT Kharagpur

Zone 7: IIT Madras

Zone 8: IIT Roorkee

Each year one of these institutions will be selected as the organising institute for GATE. Several government organisations consider GATE qualification as a minimum requirement to apply for various fellowships.

Further admission to postgraduate programmes with scholarships / assistantships in engineering colleges / institutes is open to those who qualify in GATE examination. GATE qualified candidates with Bachelor's degree in engineering / technology / architecture or Master's degree in any branch of science / mathematics / statistics / computer applications are eligible for admission to Master's degree programmes in engineering /technology / architecture as well as for doctoral programmes in relevant branches of science with scholarships / assistantships. To avail the scholarship, the candidate must secure admission to such a postgraduate programme, following the prevailing procedure of the admitting institution.

However, candidates with Master's degree in engineering / technology / architecture are eligible for admission to relevant doctoral programmes with scholarship / assistantship without appearing in the GATE examination.

Qualifying in GATE was considered as a condition for eligibility or scholarships in Master of Pharmacy programme. But now there is a separate test, GPAT (Graduate Pharmacy Aptitude Test), held under the aegis of AICTE for pharmacy graduates. They are not being considered for GATE admission.

Bachelor's degree holders in engineering / technology / architecture and those who are in the final or pre-final year of such programmes can apply for exam. Master's degree holders in any branch of science / mathematics / statistics / computer applications or equivalent, and those who are in the final or pre-final year of such programmes are also eligible.

Candidates in the second or higher year of the four-year integrated Master's degree programme in engineering / technology or in the third or higher year of five-year integrated Master's degree programme and dual degree programme in engineering / technology can apply.

Candidates with professional memberships like AMIE, AMIETE that are recognised by UPSC/ AICTE as an alternate qualification in lieu of B.Tech. degree are also eligible.

Structure

A candidate can apply for only one of the 21 papers shown below:

Aerospace engineering

Agricultural engineering

Architecture and planning

Biotechnology

Civil engineering

Chemical engineering

Computer science and information technology

Chemistry

Electronics and communication engineering

Electrical engineering

Geology and geophysics

Instrumentation engineering

Mathematics

Mechanical engineering

Mining engineering

Metallurgical engineering

Physics

Production and industrial engineering

Textile engineering and fibre science

Engineering sciences

Life sciences

The candidate has the freedom to choose a paper. However, the choice should be appropriate to the discipline of his qualifying degree.

The eligibility criteria of the programme / institution in which the candidate desires admission may also be kept in mind while choosing the paper.

Once a choice of paper is given in the application, permission will not be given to change it. Each paper has a general aptitude component carrying 15 marks.

The papers in engineering sciences and life sciences are of a general nature, comprising the sections listed below. A candidate has to answer three sections apart from the general aptitude questions. There is a compulsory section as well.

Sections in engineering

Engineering mathematics (compulsory)

Fluid mechanics

Materials science

Solid mechanics

Thermodynamics

Polymer science and engineering

Food technology

Sections in life sciences

Chemistry (Compulsory)

Biochemistry

Botany

Microbiology

Zoology

Food technology

The GATE examination consists of a single paper of three hours.

There will be 65 multiple choice objective questions with a maximum of 100 marks. Thirty questions will carry one mark each and the remaining 35 questions two marks each, making the total 100 marks. The question paper will consist of objective questions. For multiple choice type questions, each question will have four choices for the answer.

There is negative marking for wrong answers.

However, aerospace and textile papers will consist of 60 questions of multiple choice type and five questions of numerical answer type. There is no negative marking for numerical answer type questions

The examination in aerospace, geology, mining, and textile will be held online.

The GATE committee will decide the qualifying score each year.

There are norms for the selection of candidates for admission to postgraduate programmes (Master's and Doctoral) with MHRD scholarship / assistantship. The performance in GATE is an important criterion. If the candidate is to be selected through interview, minimum 70 per cent weight is to be given to the performance in GATE. The remaining weight (30 per cent maximum) can be given to the candidate's academic record or performance in interview.

Candidates opting for engineering sciences or life sciences paper may be further examined (by interview / written test) by the admitting institution. In such cases also the weight for performance in GATE should not be less than 70 per cent.

A candidate declared "GATE qualified at the time of admission" is entitled for MHRD fellowship for 24 months unless he loses it because of poor performance.

JRF

CSIR awards research fellowship for GATE-qualified candidates with BE / B.Tech. / B.Arch. to pursue research leading to Ph.D. This is known as the “GATE qualified Junior Research Fellowship” (JRF-GATE). Research fellows selected under this scheme have fine opportunity to work with CSIR scientists with state-of-the-art research and development facility and obtain Ph.D. degree. These fellowships are available only at CSIR laboratories.

Fresh BE/ B.Tech. degree holders with valid GATE score can apply.

The selected candidates can pursue Ph.D. There are two possibilities under this:

Direct admission to a Ph.D. programme of university / IIT / NIT.

After joining as JRF-GATE, the candidate may pursue M.Tech. as part of the Ph.D. programme, where the thesis semester (last semester) should be spent at the CSIR laboratory relating to lab specialisation in order to keep the continuity for the Ph.D. programme.

The fellowship will be given for five years within which the candidate should complete the Ph.D. degree. The monthly fellowship is Rs.16,000 for the first two years and Rs.18,000 (SRF) thereafter. In addition, there is HRA and a contingency grant of Rs.20,000 per annum.

JRF-GATE should register for Ph.D. within two years of joining, otherwise the fellowship is deemed to be cancelled and withdrawn. JRF-GATE will not be deployed in any sponsored project.

Selection

Selection of GATE qualified JRF can be done by the Director of the CSIR laboratories, who would address the Human Resource Development Group of CSIR for the issue of award letters. M.Tech. candidates (either with B.Tech. / M.Tech. or with M.Sc. / M.Tech.) are not eligible for this fellowship. They have a separate opportunity for direct senior research fellowship through interview.

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