GATE exam is one of the biggest exams that is attempted by B.Tech/B.Arch graduates from across the country. This is the largest examination conducted for graduates who are interested to pursue their higher education or a post-doctoral course in India. GATE stands for Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering. GATE is conducted every year by one of the IITs (Indian Institute of Technology) or IISc Bangalore (Indian Institute for Science).

GATE is an online national-level examination which serves as a gateway for aspiring B.Tech/BE graduates to get admission into ME, M.Tech or a direct PhD admission with one of the IITs, NITs, or IIITs in India. The All India Rank for GATE is valid for 3 years after taking part in the examination. This article will provide all the information required to apply for the GATE 2021 examination being conducted for admissions in 2021.

GATE exam was held in February 2020 and the results for the same were announced in March. Candidates who clear the respective cut-off for the university are eligible for admission at that particular university.

Factors to be considered for GATE 2021

While applying for GATE 2021 or any other examination for that matter, it is important to understand everything that is involved with the examination, such as:

  • Application Window
  • Eligibility
  • Exam Pattern
  • Exam Centres
  • Syllabus
  • Important Dates
  • Cut-offs
  • Result
  • Mock Tests and Sample Papers

These are crucial factors that determine your candidature for the examination. And factors such as syllabus, exam pattern, and mock tests give you an edge during the preparation process for the examination.

GATE 2021 Exam Date

The following is a tentative schedule of expected dates based on the dates for GATE 2020. These dates will be updated soon by the conducting authority for the GATE 2021.

GATE 2021 Exam Event Event Date
Application Window Will be tentatively open for the whole month of September 2020
Last date to request changes in the submitted application form Tentatively the third week of November 2020
Admit Card Release The first week of January 2021
GATE 2021 Exam February 2021
Result Declaration March 2021

GATE 2021 Eligibility Criteria

It is important to make sure that you satisfy all the eligibility criteria before applying for the examination. If you are found to be ineligible after submitting the application form, your candidature will be cancelled without any refunds of the application fee.

Candidates who have graduated or who are in the final year of their bachelor’s course are eligible to apply for the examination. Other eligibility criteria include:

  • Year of graduation of the candidate should either be 2020 or before 2020.
  • Candidates who are pursuing or have graduated from the following course are eligible to apply for the examination:
BE/B.Tech B.Arch MCA/MA/MSc or equivalent Int. MSc/Int. BS-MS
Int. ME/MTech after BSc Int. ME/MTech or Dual-Degree Professional Society Examinations BSc (Research)
  • In the case of integrated courses, candidates are supposed to be graduating in 2023 or should have graduated before 2023.
  • Candidates should be graduating from or should have graduated from a recognized university.

Candidates of non-Indian origin are also eligible to apply if:

  • They have graduated from or are in the final year of a bachelor’s degree in engineering or technology of 4 years duration.
  • They have graduated from or are in the final year of a master’s degree of 2 years duration in any relevant subjects in science.

GATE 2021 Exam Pattern

The exam pattern is a set of facts about the exam paper that will give you an idea about the structure, type, and the number of questions being asked in the examination. However, the conducting authority does have the power to change the exam pattern if they decide that it is necessary. But these changes will be notified before the examination so that the candidates can prepare better.

The exam pattern for the GATE 2021 examination is as follows:

Mode of the examination Online i.e; Computer-based Test
Number of subjects/papers 25 subjects, which are referred to as papers
Language English
Duration 180 minutes (3 hours)
Number of sections General Aptitude and branch of engineering chosen
Type of questions Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQ) and Numeric Answer Type Questions (NAT)
Marking Scheme Questions are either 1 mark or 2 marks depending on the difficulty of the examination. The negative marking scheme is included only for MCQs, where ⅓ of the total marks for the question is deducted.

Note: NAT questions will not have negative marking.

GATE 2021 Syllabus

GATE consists of 25 different subjects that can be chosen by the candidate based on his/her field in the bachelor’s degree. The syllabus is different for each of the 25 subjects. The various subjects with the subject code for the GATE 2021 are as follows:

AE: Aerospace Engineering EE: Electrical Engineering CS: Computer Science and Information Technology ST: Statistics TF: Textile Engineering and Fibre Science
PH: Physics BM: Biomedical Engineering MA: Mathematics EC: Electronics and Communication Engineering ME: Mechanical Engineering
AR: Architecture and Planning CY: Chemistry MN: Mining Engineering BT: Biotechnology IN: Instrumentation Engineering
PI: Production and Industrial Engineering GG: Geology and Geophysics PE: Petroleum Engineering CE: Civil Engineering MT: Metallurgical Engineering
EY: Ecology and Evolution AG: Agricultural Engineering CH: Chemical Engineering - -
  • XE-A: Engineering Mathematics
  • XE-B: Fluid Mechanics
  • XE-C: Materials Science
  • XE-D: Solid Mechanics
  • XE-E: Thermodynamics
  • XE-F: Polymer Science and Engineering
  • XE-G: Food Technology
  • XE-H: Atmospheric and Oceanic Science
  • XL-P: Chemistry
  • XL-Q: Biochemistry
  • XL-R: Botany
  • XL-S: Microbiology
  • XL-T: Zoology
  • XL-U: Food Technology

These are the various subjects that will be considered to set the questions for the respective engineering fields for the GATE 2021 Exam.

GATE 2021 Registration

The GATE 2021 application form will be available online only. Candidates can visit the official website during the registration window and apply for the examination for their respective field of study.

The candidature for the examination will be confirmed once the application fee has been paid. The fee amount varies with the different reservation/general categories of the candidates.

How to register?

To register for the GATE 2021 examination interested candidates can follow the below steps:

  • Visit the official website for GATE.
  • Click on "New Registration".
  • Enter all the required details such as name, phone number, email id, country etc. Make sure that the phone number and the email id you enter are valid and active.
  • Enter the captcha and click on the "Submit" button.
  • You will receive an SMS and an email about the successful registration with the GATE exam authority.
  • After this, you can start filling out the application form on the official website.
  • Enter all the details in the application form correctly without any mistakes to avoid any issues later.
  • Check all the details twice before submitting the application form.
  • Complete the application process by paying the application fees through the payment portal on the website. 

GATE 2021 Admit Card

The admit card is an important document required to take up GATE. The admit card will be generated only if the candidate submits the application and pay the fee successfully. The admit card will be uploaded on the official website for the examination and can be downloaded by logging in to the portal.

How to download GATE 2021 Admit Card?

  • Visit the official website for the examination.
  • Look for the link that will direct you towards the admit card section.
  • Log in to the portal using the email used during registration and the password that you would have created during the registration process.
  • The GATE 2021 admit card will be displayed on the screen. Check if all the details mentioned are correct.
  • If all the details mentioned on the admit card are correct, download it and make a few copies of the same to carry to the examination hall.

Documents required to be carried with GATE admit card

Candidates need to carry any proof of identification issued by the Government of India along with their admit cards to be allowed to write the examination. The following is a list of documents that are accepted by the authority:

  • Driving License
  • Passport
  • Voter ID
  • Employee ID
  • PAN Card
  • College/University ID
  • Aadhar Card

GATE 2021 Result and Cutoff

The results of the GATE 2021 examination will be announced on the official website. Candidates can log in to the website portal and view their scorecards. The scorecard will contain the AIR or the All India Rank of the candidate. This rank is valid for 3 years after the declaration of the results.

The participating colleges/universities for the GATE 2021 examination will have various cutoff ranks for the different reservation categories and the several engineering courses. If the AIR of the candidate is within this cutoff rank, then the candidate is eligible for admission for that course in that particular college/university.

GATE 2021 Results

The results for the GATE Exam will be announced online only. The GATE scorecard is valid for three years after the announcement of the result. Follow the steps given below to check and download your scorecard:

  • Visit the official website for GATE.
  • Click on the link that will direct you towards the results section.
  • Enter your login credentials to log in to the portal.
  • Your scorecard will be displayed on the screen.
  • Download the same and take a printout of it if you feel like it is necessary.

GATE Cut-off 2021

The minimum marks required by an individual to clear the GATE exam is known as the cutoff. The cutoff varies for the various universities and companies across India. Each institution sets a unique cutoff for the AIR (All-India Rank) that the candidates obtain after the results for the examination are released. If the AIR of the candidate is within this cutoff rank, then he/she is eligible for a position or a seat at that institution. Some of the factors that affect the cutoff are as follows:

  • The number of seats available.
  • The total number of candidates who applied for the examination.
  • The difficulty of the examination.

The cutoff is different for each branch of engineering to give a fair chance to the candidates.

GATE Cutoff 2020

The GATE cutoff for the year 2020 that was released by the official conducting authority is as follows.

Paper Name Paper Code Qualifying Marks
General OBC SC/ST/PwD
Aerospace Engineering AE 27.2 24.4 18.1
Architecture and Planning AR 34.8 31.3 23.2
Agricultural Engineering AG 26.3 23.6 17.5
Biotechnology BT 30.7 27.6 20.4
Biomedical Engineering BM 25 22.5 16.6
Chemistry CY 26.7 24 17.8
Chemical Engineering CH 35.7 32.1 23.8
Computer Science and Information Technology CS 28.5 25.6 19
Civil Engineering CE 32.9 29.6 21.9
Electrical Engineering EE 33.4 30 22.2
Ecology and Evolution EY 42.2 37.9 28.1
Engineering Sciences Minor XE 26 23.4 17.3
Electronics and Communication Engineering EC 28.8 25.9 19.2
Geophysics GG 51.9 46.7 34.6
Geology GG 38.4 34.5 25.6
Life Sciences XL 31.7 28.5 21.1
Instrumentation Engineering IN 34.6 31.1 23
Mechanical Engineering ME 34 30.6 22.6
Mathematics MA 25 22.5 16.7
Mining Engineering MN 32.7 29.4 21.8
Metallurgical Engineering MT 49.2 44.2 32.8
Physics PH 37.2 33.4 24.8
Petroleum Engineering PE 39.8 35.8 26.5
Statistics ST 25 22.5 16.6
Production and Industrial Engineering PI 36.6 32.9 24.4
Textile Engineering and Fibre Science TF 37.1 33.3 24.7

Colleges that accept GATE Score

There are a lot of colleges or universities across India that offer postgraduate engineering courses. Most of them are highly sought after by undergraduate students to pursue the Master's degree in. It is always beneficial to know if the examination that you are writing will be helpful for your admission to a particular college or not. Hence,  here is a list of a few colleges across India that accept the GATE score for higher studies after a Bachelor's course in engineering.

  • Indraprastha University, Delhi
  • IISc, Bengaluru
  • Osmania University, Hyderabad
  • IITs in Bombay, Guwahati, Kanpur, Kharagpur, Madras, Delhi, and Roorkee
  • NITs in Suratkal, Trichy, Jamshedpur, and Warangal
  • B.M.S College of Engineering, Bengaluru
  • Punjab University, Chandigarh
  • Cochin University of Science and Technology, Cochin
  • BITS Pilani
  • BIT Mesra
  • Anna University, Chennai
  • GITAM Institute of Technology, Visakhapatnam
  • C.E.D.T, Mohali

GATE 2021 Preparation Tips

Being able to qualify an examination solely depends on your preparation. Of course, a lot of people just scrape through these examinations based on pure luck, but that is never enough to be able to succeed. To be able to succeed, an individual must put all efforts into preparing for that examination. Here are a few tips to help you to prepare for the examination:

  1. Check out the syllabus: This is the first for the preparation for any examination. If you go through the syllabus, you will get an idea about the topics that seem easy or difficult for you, and based on this you can create a study plan focusing more on the topics that you feel are difficult for you.
  2. Understand the exam pattern: The exam pattern is a good tool to give you an idea about the type of questions, and the weightage of each question towards the total score on the paper. The exam pattern will also give you the duration of the paper which can help you time yourself during the preparation process and divide the total time as required for each question asked in the examination.
  3. Prepare notes: While studying it is always helpful to make notes. This is not just so that you can refer to these points as revision in the future. It is a proven strategy of studying where taking down points that you feel are important to you will help you remember large chunks of information that you studied related to those points. This will be of help to you while you are busy answering the questions, and there are lots of exam hall distractions coming your way.
  4. Practice using a virtual calculator: Often, exams such as GATE or any other computer-based tests have a virtual calculator that the candidate has to use during the examination. The problem with this is that not all of us find it easy to use that calculator and end up wasting a lot of time in the exam. To avoid this, you can practice using the virtual calculator during your exam preparation process. You can find virtual calculators like the one used for the GATE exam on multiple websites on the internet. So during your preparation, make sure to visit these websites and practice on those calculators.
  5. Find the right reference books: There are a lot of reference books available for GATE. Every publisher feels that their book is the best one to be used to prepare for the examination. But, it is always better to do your research about the book before buying it. Check out various reviews from students who had attempted GATE in the previous years, talk to your lecturers, etc. The best option with reference books is to buy the one that you feel will be best for you and buy one or two other reference books, probably second-hand ones to save money, so that you can solve any doubts that you might have during your preparation. While looking for books, make sure to check the GATE syllabus to make sure you are buying the one which covers the most topics.
  6. Constant self-evaluation: Every time you cover a topic, make sure to evaluate yourself by solving the questions related to that topic asked at the end of the reference books. This practice will help you understand the topic better and find the weak points where you might need to prepare harder.
  7. Revision at regular intervals: Evaluating your understanding of a topic right after studying it is a good practice. But it also important to make sure that you are still familiar with the topics that you had covered earlier too. So try to come up with a system designed to your preferences where you can evaluate your knowledge in the earlier topics too as you are moving forward with the syllabus. This way, the information that you studied previously stays fresh too.
  8. Focus on scoring subjects: If you check the paper analysis for the previous year papers, you will find that most of the students find that the Aptitude and Mathematics sections are scoring subjects. This means, that these subjects will have questions that are easier to solve compared to the whole paper and thus help you achieve a better score. Make sure that you study the topics under these subjects too and not ignore them because they are considered easier than the rest.

GATE Exam Previous Year Papers

A good way to revise for any examination is to solve mock tests and previous year question papers. Particularly, solving previous year question papers will help you understand the pattern better. Here are a few of the previous year question papers for GATE.

Benefits of Qualifying GATE

There are a lot of benefits that an individual will get after qualifying the GATE exam. Some of these benefits are as described below.

Jobs and PSU

By qualifying the examination, the individual is automatically eligible for PSUs (Public Sector Undertakings) given that the other eligibility criteria are also satisfied. There are a lot of benefits of working at PSUs. PSU through GATE is an amazing opportunity for individuals to get a secure job and a good plan. Various PSUs that accept the GATE score are as follows:

  • Power Grid Corporation of India (PGCI)
  • Gas Authority of India Limited (GAIL)
  • Oil and Natural Gas Corporation (ONGC)
  • Indian Oil Corporation Limited (IOCL)
  • Hindustan Aeronautics Limited (HAL)
  • National Thermal Power Corporation (NTPC)
  • Bharat Heavy Electricals Limited (BHEL)
  • Nuclear Power Corporation of India Limited (NPCIL)

Other than PSUs, a few private companies also hire candidates based on their GATE scores. So, attempting and qualifying the examination will be an advantage for you over other candidates who have not taken the examination.

Master's and PhD Programs

Candidates who qualify the GATE examination can apply for their higher studies at prestigious institutions like IITs, NITs, etc. Interested candidates also have a chance at getting a reserved seat at various IIMs across the country. Graduating your higher studies from prestigious institutions as these will give you some amazing opportunities in your career.

Higher Education at Foreign Universities

Through the GATE examination, an individual can pursue his/her higher studies in foreign countries too. A few universities in countries such as Germany, Singapore, etc have partnered with GOAPS to provide higher education for candidates who qualify the GATE examination. The candidates' applications to these selected universities will be accepted based on their GATE scores.

Fellowship Opportunities

Candidates who qualify the GATE examination are eligible for a lot of benefits from various government organisations that support research and development. Some organizations are BARC, MHRD, CSIR, UGC, etc. The MHRD (Ministry of Human Resource Development) provides a scholarship to candidates who qualify the GATE examination. CSIR provides the JRF (Junior Research Fellowship) and the SRF (Senior Research Fellowship) to GATE qualified candidates. UGC provides a monthly scholarship of INR 12,400/- to individuals who have qualified GATE. BARC also provides scholarships to facilitate the candidates who qualify this examination.


1> Is there an option to check the GATE application status?
Answer> Yes, there is an option to do that. Just log in to the GOAPS official website and check the application status for GATE.

2> What to do in case of a power outage or bad internet connection during the online payment of application fee?
Answer> In case this happens, first check the status of application fee on the official GOAPS website. Usually, the money will not be deducted from the bank account but if it is deducted and not being reflected on the website, it will be returned to the account in a week or so. In the meantime, it is advised that the application fee be paid again to ensure the successful submission of the application.

3> What are the documents that can be provided as proof of identity to the GATE exam authority?
Answer> Aadhar Card, College ID, Driving License, Passport, Employment ID, or PAN Card for Indian Candidates. For foreign candidates, the document for proof of identity is any government-issued ID card, Passport, College ID, or Employment ID.

4>How many GATE papers can one candidate apply to?
Answer> Each candidate can apply for only one GATE paper. More than one is not allowed.

5> Can the details in the GATE application form be changed after it is submitted?
Answer> The candidate can apply for a change in the details such as the GATE paper he/she wants to apply for or the examination centre only after the last date to submit application forms and this will be facilitated only against payment of a fine/fee.

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