GATE CSE preparation for those who did Diploma

This is post for those students who are preparing GATE CSE and who did Diploma + Engineering. ( Instead of Normal route of 11-12th Science & Then Engineering)

Majority of students who do engineering after diploma will be bad in Mathematics in General. (Diploma course do not have rigorous maths and Diploma students also miss first year math courses in engineering due to direct second year admission.) Of course this might not apply to few good Tier 1 Diploma colleges, but in general diploma students are in disadvantage when it comes to maths.

So how should diploma students prepare for GATE CSE ?

  1. Do not prepare Linear Algebra, Calculus first, keep them for end.
  2. Prepare Discrete Maths (Very easy) & Discrete Probability. Keep Continuous Probability to prepare for end.
  3. Prepare all Computer Science subjects, Aptitute.
  4. Prepare Linear Algebra. At least prepare enough that you’ll be able to solve 1 mark questions. Detailed study is Optional
  5. Prepare Calculus & Continuous Probability enough to solve easy questions. Detailed study is Optional.

If you prepare Computer Science subjects completely, it wont be too hard to crack GATE. Make sure you do not spend months preparing for Linear Algebra, Calculus, Continuous Probability.  If you are not good in it, you might want to break day in three part, give two for revision of all previously completed subjects & Then do this LA,Calculus in last part. No matter what happens do not start your GATE preparations with LA,Calculus and start preparation of LA,Calculus only when you’re through with all other subjects.



Do read strategy of AIR 1 , GATE 2016.


Just like you, everyone out there is studying 10hrs a day. But what makes a difference is your strategy.


  1. Finish your syllabus thoroughly as soon as possible. (lays the foundation)
  2. Make sure you are strong in basics, no need to waste time in advanced topics, just adhere to the syllabus (most important)
  3. Practice previous years’ GATE questions and good online test series. (improves your understanding of concepts. I joined a couple of test series and did previous years’ papers).
  4. Sleep for 8hrs/day. (helps rejuvenate your mind)
  5. Be regular in your studies. Study for neither 15hrs nor 0hrs in a day. Don’t exhaust yourself too much in a day that you end up taking leaves for next 2 days.
  6. Do the right things and do them right; throw away the unnecessary things from your life (I left Fb, WA) and…

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What to do 2 days before exam

Well you should go and check your exam Centre well before 2 days before exam. Don’t keep that for doing in last 2 days, last 2 days before actual exam you should just relax.

There is one MOST important thing you should do in last 2 days, Go to Gate website, and explore your mock interface. This is really important, I’ve not seen anyone stressed this before. Do remember sometimes in exam you might be told not to click on some UI , which might keep some important information from you. So even if you have given lot of mocks, do remember to go through Mock interface. You might also want to go through entire CALCULATOR documents. Do not trust scientific calculator GATE committee gives, you. It’ll have limitations, which if you missed, will mean loss of marks to you. This will take max 2 hours for you. Do this 2 days before exam.

Now after you have checked mock interface, spend rest of time relaxing your mind and body.

For relaxing body, try to take good sleep, rest, eat good food. Do not study at all in this 2 days, if you have prepared in entire year, you do not need to prepare in last 2 days, also even if you have not prepared, you’re not going to do much in last 2 days either. Best thing is resting your mind and being ready for exam.

For relaxing mind, I’ll recommend watching first 2 minutes of every episode of Suryaputra karna serial in reverse order, i.e. Krishna Seekh (Starting few episodes do not have this Krishna video’s)  -> LINK . This video’s are really nice and it’ll help you calm your mind. I did exactly same 2 days before exam. This will help you to be calm.

There is no reason for worrying/taking tension/doing anything that might harm you in those 3 hours. Even in exam 3 hours, you need to be very calm for giving exam successfully. I used to watch this Motivational video by Krishna(First 2 min). This video tells that you should be living in presence and you might be able to count 1 hour again , but you wont get it back. Remember for our exam situation is more difficult that this, we might be able to count 3 hours everyday from next day, but we will not get those 3 hours back until entire year is gone.So we should not worry about results in those 3 hours, we should not think what we did not prepare for exam in this 3 hours. Do not waste this 3 hours, give your BEST.Best luck 🙂

Do watch video lecture ->

By Pritam Pasun, Techtud, nice one about day of exam .



Tips on How to utilize Mock tests and get most out of it !

Update -> GATEoverflow is adding Full length tests in previous year Papers, I strongly advice you that keep last 3-4 years GATE questions (Say from GATE 13-16) untouched and use them as mock exams along with this test series. This real Exams will be much more effective.

Exams link by Gateoverflow ->

This is about how one can utilize mock tests ->

First of all, I find that subjectwise tests are not that important. Remember that in GATE exam you’ll be solving Multiple subject questions at the same time , so it wont matter how many subjectwise tests you gave.

When it comes to Full Length Mock exams , first of all you should have finished one iteration of studying everything completely to start giving mock exams. Do not start giving mocks without preparation.

While giving Full Length Mock exams remember following things ->

  1. Do not give lot of mocks and tire yourselves. Try to give max 1 mock per week.
  2. Try to simulate your exam environment, I had already attempted GATE exam once before starting serious preparation. I used to imagine I’m seating in Actual exam hall before solving any mock.
  3. Try to meditate for 10 minute before mock, try to sit on computer and calm your mind before starting Mock exam, as if it is “REAL” exam.
  4. Mock is not just for practice, there are lot of purposes of exam like
    1. Simulating strategy. Simulate various strategies like
      1. Sequence of sections to solve
      2. How much time to give to every section
      3. Whether to solve exam paper in passes ( I used to solve exam paper in 3 passes ) or whether to solve exam paper in single go (Bad Idea usually)
    2. Making sure one does less silly mistakes by improving practice of giving exam
    3. Getting familiar with interface (Usually interface of many mock tests , is similar to GATE exam)
  5. Once Mock is given, don’t worry to much about marks. Instead first go to every question they have marked as incorrect and solve it again. Try to find out whether it is your mistake and rectify it . Try to create FLASHCARD out of your mistake and do not repeat mistakes. If you think your answer is correct, put that question on Gateoverflow and share link on GATECSE. Usually lot of mocks has mistakes, so after correcting mistakes update your marks accordingly.
  6. Keep trace of marks in mocks you give over time, try to have history of mock marks, so one mock gone wrong does not break your peace of mind. You can find my mock history here.
  7. Do remember this are MOCKS, not REAL exams. Do check my mock history, I used to get around 70.xx marks in last 6-7 mocks, my overall average was 66.xx, got 78.67 actual and 76.11 normalized in GATE 2016. Not everyone gets good marks in Mocks, so do not worry.
  8. Do not give mock when you are not ready to put entire 3 hours with full “PRESENCE OF MIND”. There is no value in giving exam if you are worrying about something else.
  9. Always give mock exam between 9.00AM – 12.00 PM Time or 2.00PM – 5.00 PM time. Once you get your own time slot (Admit card) , only give mocks in that time slot to improve your performance in actual exam.

I’ll keep adding points as and when I remember. Best luck.


Study Plan for Full time preparing Students


This is my attempt to write study plan which might be useful to anyone preparing for GATE full time.

  1. Reading toppers strategy, deciding own strategy,deciding books etc (15 days) -> In this initial phase aspirants should read all old toppers blog / experiences regarding GATE preparation, read and decide what books/video lectures/materials they are going to prepare. They can make rough plan about what to do in remaining year.
  2. Full time preparation (6-7 Months) -> In this time student need to actually prepare every subject.
    1. Repeat for every subject
      1. Watch lectures form or any other source for lectures
      2. Read reference books, refer for list.
      3. Solve reference book questions
      4. Solve Newgradiance questions
      5. Solve TIFR Questions
      6. Solve Previous year GATE questions from Gateoverflow
      7. Prepare notes if required, but MUST prepare flashcards according to strategy given here by Pragy Agrawal ->
      8. If time permits, give subject wise tests (Not necessary after doing steps 1-7)
      9. Keep revising flashcards of all subjects whatever ready
    2. Time allocation to every subject -> Change order , no of days according to time available. Total days => 165 days + 15 days as buffer. This is based on my experience of last year.
      1. Discrete Maths -> 15 days
      2. TOC – >15 days
      3. Compiler -> 15 days
      4. Databases -> 10 days
      5. Data Structures -> 10 Days
      6. Programming -> 10 days
      7. Algorithms -> 15 days
      8. Computer Network -> 15 days
      9. Operating system -> 15 days
      10. Digital Logic -> 10 days
      11. CO -> 15 days
      12. Engineering Maths ( calculus, LA , Continious Probability) -> 10 days
      13. Aptitude + English -> 10 days
  3. First revision (2 months) ->
    1. Re-read every reference book once if possible
    2. Solve all GATE questions again from Gateoverflow for each subject.
    3. Keep revising Flashcards.
    4. Start giving 1 full length test per week. This will be best idea. Do analyze this full length test in detail.
  4. Final revision (Assuming 1-2 months remaining)
    1. Revise flashcards of all subject as many times possible.
    2. Start solving Random GATE questions, use Random question book Generated by Gateoverflow.
    3. Continue giving 1 Full Length test every week.
    4. Try to read PPT’s from reference book/ summary of reference books if possible

If you prepare like this not only you’ll learn all subject very well, but also due to solving reference book + TIFR + Newgradiance questions along with previous year questions, you’ll be very clear with all concepts. So you’ll not fear the exam. I prepared very similar to this and it works. Of course it is hard way, but if you prepare hard way, GATE will be very easy !

Update -> GATEoverflow is adding Full length tests in previous year Papers, I strongly advice you that keep last 3-4 years GATE questions (Say from GATE 13-16) untouched and use them as mock exams along with this test series. This real Exams will be much more effective.

Exams link by Gateoverflow ->


How I prepared for GATE? – I used strategy of previous years toppers.


When I decided to write about my preparation I collected it all together and all recollected is that whole strategy I had I got from posts various toppers. So now Instead of writing each and every thing again, I’m going to write post link & I’m going to tell what I got from each blog post 🙂 You can built your strategy from there 🙂

  1. => I got list of books from to use from him. This is essential read for any future toppers. Read this blog to see how someone can get AIR 1 in just few months of preparation in first attempt. Thank you Ravi for your blog.
  2. => This is really nice blog. Do have a good read. Thanks Tamjit for writing this blog. Best thing you can get from this is -> “ REMEMBER THERE IS NO SHORT CUT TO HARD WORK
  3. => This is blog by Pragy Agrawal. Best thing to take from this is “Flashcards”. This flashcards help me revising. Thanks Pragy for this blog.
  4. => This is blog by Pradeep Pandey. Please check ‘’ this post . That is must. Every post by Pradeep is like Gold mine for serious preparing students. Thanks Pradeep for thsi blog 🙂
  5. Check answer by Arvind Devraj here -> He talks about which reference books to use and how to study. This is really great post, and you should definitely go through it if you are serious. Thanks Arvind for writing this blog.
  6. and are two good resources for any serious GATE aspirant. You must go through this websites. Thank you Arjun Suresh , Kathleen bankson for creating this huge corpus of questions, for Gateoverflow book and compiling toppers blog, linking good video lectures etc.
  7. => This is motivational blog by Prof Ravindra Babu ravula. You will get many good things out of it. Thank you Ravindra for writing this nice blog.

There are other toppers blog I’ve read but this were the best ones which I used 🙂

Now I’ve listed everything from where I got , it is time to say Thank you.

I want to first thank my parents for supporting me in my decisions 🙂

I want to thank my managers at work Kanchan Patwardhan, Nilesh Arte, Siddhesh Naik-Kurade for supporting my dream. Without your support , guidance I could not have got this success.

I want to thank every professor who wrote good books on Computer Science and taught free lectures. I want to thank Jeffery Ullman, Shai Simpson , Tim Roughgarden, Kamala Krithinivasan for their lectures. I would like to thank Jeffery Ullman again for NewGradiance test series.

I will like to thank Ravindra babu ravula for nice lectures on many subjects and constant guidance he gave to me over email. I wish I had not ignored his advice on taking breaks or it could have saved me back pain 😦

I will like to thank Arjun suresh for all the guidance he gave me for every step from last year. I want to thank him for guiding me on right path. He adviced me for TIFR questions which helped me. His Gateoverflow is the resource I used the most.. Thank you Arjun for your help and for Gateoverflow.

I will like to thank all Professors from ACE academy pune for guidance. I will specially like to thank Professor Suresh Lokhande for all the lectures worth remembering he gave me. I’ll never forget his lectures in my entire life. People from ACE academy were very helpful (Including staff).

I would like to thank Virtual GATE test series and Testbook Test series for good quality tests.

I will like to thank entire Gatecse group on Facebook and everyone in community for their support and guidance. Thank you all !

Free Test Series for GATE

Hi, I’ll talk about free test series available. If you want to join any coaching class/paid test series you can join ACE, Testbook , Made Easy etc.

Okay, then what to do with test series ? Usually test series provide following type of test

  1. Chapter wise
  2. Subjectwise
  3. Mock Test
  4. Aptitude Tests (Previous year papers from all branches)

Let me be honest, I feel that neither Chapter wise or Subject-wise tests are necessary. Only full length mock tests are needed for GATE preparation. Though at the same time, I will still recommend from where to get these tests.

I’ll tell you how you can do this kind of tests for free.

Chapter Tests -> Doing this tests from  any paid test series is not required, free stuff is enough. You can get chapter wise test questions from Reference books. Newgradiance is  enough for chapter tests for many subjects. They are free. Gateoverflow book by Gateoverflow also contains chapter wise test series. You can find Gateoverflow book at Gatecse.

Subject wise tests -> Doing this tests from  any paid test series is not required, free stuff is enough. You can get whole collection of subjectwise tests free of cost from VirtualGate which is sponsored by Techtud . Doing all tests from NewGradiance may also serve purpose of solving Subject-wise Test series for subject it provides.

Full Length Tests -> For this I believe best strategy would be not to see any questions from few papers. Example -> Suppose I’m preparing for GATE 2017 and I want to have few “Real” mocks, in that case what I’ll do, I wont touch GATE 15 & GATE 16 papers while practicing questions. Then when I’m done with preparation, I have  5 “Real” GATE papers for giving Mock exams. I’ve done this , I’ve used 2 papers of GATE 15 as mock exam, for getting online touch we  can use online calculator and pdf reader. Believe me previous year mocks are best test series possible if you have not seen any question from that paper. In case you have solved few questions from them, it is useless (In my case I used to remember all questions.)

Apart from this VirtualGate which is sponsored by Techtud  is also very nice resource for getting 3+ Full lenght tests. They have already released virtual GATE 2015,2016-1,2016-2 and we can expect at least 2 more in 2017.

About Aptitude Tests -> You should try to solve all previous year aptitude tests papers from all branches. It’ll help you getting idea about Aptitude questions in general. You can use for getting difficult questions.

Link to previous year aptitude questions Till 2015 ->

For after 2016 aptitude sets check respective IIT/IISc site for GATE and download papers. Remember all papers for any branches in same time slot have same aptitude questions.


Do not Overstudy

I studied in first 6 month of preparation  like crazy. I used to wake up at 5.00 AM , I used to start study in early 6.00 after getting ready and used to study till 11.00 PM. I used to seat for hours straight on computer reading books, watching video lectures, practicing questions etc.  I was gone crazy for GATE. I was so determined, I could study for hours straight and was able to concentrate even at 10 PM even after preparing from 6-10PM. was it right way to go ? Guess ?


NO, it is worst way to prepare for any exam. Please do not do something like this .

Now you would ask, why I’m saying please do not prepare with this passion ? because if you prepare like this it’ll hurt your health badly. I used to sit for long hours before and due to that my back started paining badly. Back pain was so severe that I could not even sit at one place without feeling the pain. Then I went to doctor and confirmed that my back pain was just due to wrong seating posture and nothing serious has happened. At the same time I was told do not sit in one place in same position for hours like this. This happened about 3 month before exam, if it had happened week before exam, I might have to forget everything. I had to spend one week taking rest before resuming studies.

So from there onward I started taking breaks in study , I started using Pomodoro technique and stopped non stop preparation. I used to study for 25 minutes & then took 10 minutes break. Out of those 10 minutes I used to spend 8 minutes in walking on terrace in sunshine for healthy vitamin D (Which I lacked due to 6 months over-study) and also started to workout every morning.

Now I’m fully recovered, some back pain is there, but according to Doctor it might take few more months to stop back pain completely. I’ve been told to do more physical activity and stop seating on Computer for hours without breaks.

So morale of the story –> Passion, Determination everything is good as long as it is not hurting you. If you are dead tomorrow your GATE rank is not going to benefit you in any way. So take care of your body, take breaks every 25 minutes unless you are giving mocks.

Check first 2 minutes of following videos ->

Video Regarding Moha 1 -> Here Krishna tells one should know where to stop and control the Moha (Desire) . Even though Moha of doing more study is good thing for exam, do not overdo it , stop after period of 25 minutes and take break. Watch Video.

Video about one should know where to stop -> In this video Krishna talks about we should know where to stop , it is not always necessary to keep going. Self restraint is also very important for life.In our case we should stop after studying for 25 minutes and take break of 10 minutes before restarting. Watch video.

Video about Patience => In this video Krishna talks about Importance of Patience (Sanyam) for success. For success patience is very important quality. For long term success one should be able to stop study after time and take break, and have patience to do that. Watch video.


Regarding Job

I’ve seen people not taking up jobs and instead go to full time preparation mode immediately after BE/BTech.I believe that is wrong for those from 3rd-4th Tier college students. Instead they should first go for campus placement post BE and prepare along side job until one gets 3 digit rank like 400-700. In case one gets good rank immediately (Top 250) then one can join IIT, but if someone get 400-700 rank then it will be wise decision to do full time preparation afterwards.

Why one should go on job immediately after college instead of taking drop for GATE ->

  1. Jobs give people some “Real” knowledge, where as in colleges of India, usually Clerk with Engineer degree are shipped out. It is this jobs that make them “Engineers” not the degree certificates. Whatever learning happens , it happens in training period of jobs and work.
  2. Job gives peace of mind , it’ll keep your family and friend quite till you get good rank. For those who take full year drop without good rank as backup, so called “Well wishers” will come to eat the brain , what next if you fail etc. Even while giving exam, you will remain calm if you have job as backup.
  3. Job gives money for things one needs -> Yeah this is true, you can buy whatever you need for preparation and other things, for entertaining, for internet, for recharges or any other expense. Those who have big education loans, should try to clear them, it is possible only via job.
  4. Job gives reason for getting IIT -> While working on job, it it has service based job, looking at seniors/peers and work pressure, one get enough reasons to try for IIT, including Money.
  5. Job gives you valuable experience -> Even though in IIT experience does not matter much for placements, in life, in Gate preparation too, the experience you gain while doing job helps you.
  6. Job will teach you value of time and money -> It’ll help you work harder once you drop a year, because you’ll know that how much work you’ll be doing in any job. Once you start earning money automatically you’ll know the value of money.
  7. You get weekends, 2 leave per month on every IT job easily , so it wont be too hard to prepare either.

This post is for those who are considering not to take job for preparing GATE and do not even have good ranks in final year. Do take job and get experience, it’ll be helpful. Do not take drop unless you are ready.


If you are in job, how you can prepare for GATE while working ?

  1. You get 2 days off per week, use them to the extend possible.
  2. You will get 2 days leave per month (Majority companies) use them for GATE preparation.
  3. You will get 8 to 10 holidays per year in any company , use them for GATE preparation.
  4. Before GATE you can take some leave (From 1 week to 3 months) based on your company policies.
  5. If your company gives you cab, you can revise while traveling.
  6. You can get flash card app ANKI on your mobile ,even while working you might revise for 5 minute in between  work breaks.