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GATE 2017 Topper Interview – Rajasekhar Reddy AIR 6 (EE)

Exam specific questions

  1. How was GATE paper this year? Give us some insights into GATE-2017 paper and compare it to past year question paper.

I wrote both gate 2016 and 2017. Compared to GATE 2016 I felt GATE 2017 little bit tricky and lengthy but as I have prepared very well it didn’t effect me much. Almost all one mark questions were easy with little calculations and 2 marks questions were quite lengthy and time consuming to answer .

  1. How did you feel after seeing first few questions? Did you feel relaxed and calm or you were anxious during first few questions? If you felt anxious then how did you calm yourself?

I was anxious till the time the exam got started and as soon as exam started I felt very relaxed and calm as I was able to answer initial questions easily.

  1. How did you go about attempting the paper? How did you distribute time among various sections like did you attempt 1 mark questions or 2 marks questions first? Please give a detailed description of time management strategy you followed?

My plan was to complete aptitude part first in 15 minutes , then one mark questions in 45 minutes and then 2 marks questions in 80 minutes. After starting aptitude I was able to solve all one mark questions and when I moved on to two marks questions in aptitude I was not able to understand 2 two marks questions. By that time almost 15 minutes got completed and I thought when I see these questions at last moment I might not answer them properly and thought of taking 5 more minutes and I was able to complete those questions and it boosted my confidence a lot. Then I moved on to technical section ,While attempting 1 mark questions I was able to complete 21 questions within desired time and it boosted my confidence a bit more. When I moved to 2 marks section I was able to solve only 15 questions and I skipped those questions which were lengthy and I have noticed that I donot know concepts or formulas for 4 questions and I thought of not visiting them again as it will waste my time. Then I revisited the remaining questions and solved 59 questions totally.

  1. What was the impact of Online Calculator on GATE Exam? How did you prepare yourself to tackle the Online Calculator?

As I have practiced a lot in mock tests I got very familiar with calculator and in the final exam not all buttons in the calculator were visible properly but as I have practiced a lot(even while solving previous year papers I solved them using the gate calculator app), so it did not create a much impact on me.

  1. What do you feel about the increasing weightage of Numerical Answer Type Questions? How to improve accuracy in order to score well in Numerical Answer Type Questions?

NAT problems plays a key role in success. To ensure full marks in those questions write the solution step by step in the notepad provided to you and if you revisit it during last half an hour you can check whether you have done correct or not easily. Though I have done all these steps I lost 3 marks in NAT questions as I thought those very simple questions and I might not go wrong in them and I made a mistake of taking square as square roots and square root as square in 2 problems in a hurried manner.

Preparation Strategy

  1. What was the motive behind you appearing for GATE exam?

I wanted to work in PSU , so I attempted GATE 2017.

  1. When did you start preparing for GATE exam?

I have joined a coaching institute in the month of MAY and I started preparing parallely.

  1. Up to what date were you able to complete the course once? What was your target as to how many questions to practice in each subject? What was the sequence in which you prepared the subjects?

As I was preparing for both GATE and ESE , it took much time and as there were more classes and I was able to complete the course only once by December 10th .I practiced only those questions which were asked in the previous year papers and problems from class notes. At first I completed networks, digital and measurements subjects as these are very much useful for other subjects also and then I made entire syllabus into 2 parts : PART 1( control systems, signals , analog, EMFT, networks, digital and measurements) and PART 2 (Power systems , machines, power electronics) and prepared both the parts parallely and allotted more time to PART 2. In the month of January I prepared maths + aptitude daily for 2 hours.

  1. Which subjects according to require more practice and which subjects need to be read from standard textbooks?

We should understand the concepts of all the subjects but even after understanding subjects like networks, Power systems, Power Electronics need more practice as there will be a lot of practice models and the chance of asking NAT questions in these is very high.

  1. Which study material and standard books would you recommend for GATE Aspirants in each subject?

If you are following any coaching institute then class notes will be more than enough . I have referred textbooks of machines and Power Electronics by P.S.Bhimbra only for 3 to 4 concepts and for the rest of the subjects I have not touched text books.

  1. How did you keep the subjects fresh in your memory the entire time? Did you revise the subjects regularly or you left the revision for last few months? What was your strategy for revision in the last few months?

I revised the subjects whenever I felt I am loosing grip on them and I prepared my own short notes so that I can cover entire syllabus of a subject within 45-50 minutes. In the month of January I revised only the short notes and I kept updating it and I revised the class notes only when I felt I forgot a critical concept .Overall I have revised class notes of PART 1 subjects only once and PART 2 subjects twice and most of the time I revised class notes.

  1. What is the role of mock tests in your success in GATE exam? How many mock tests did you attempt? When did you start attempting mock tests?

Mock tests play an important role in success. I bought test series from 3 institutes including k-test and they help a lot in knowing our mistakes and weaker areas. I attempted nearly 25 mock tests and 30 subject wise tests. I started giving these tests from the month of December.

  1. How was your score in Mock Tests? Is there any correlation between mock test performance and actual GATE performance?

In the first mock test I attempted I have got only 40 marks. Later on I kept analysing after each mock test and improved my marks by each and every exam and in the end I used to get around 65 marks . I used to attempt the mock tests within 130-140 minutes as in the final exam you will require more time due to the pressure you feel and I answered the questions in a one go in all the mock tests. There will be no direct correlation with Mock tests and actual gate but if you try to rectify all the mistakes you have made in them it will be much more useful and you will get more marks than in the mock tests( I have got around 77.05 marks in final exam which was 12 more marks than I used to get in the mock tests and I have got a rank under 50 only once but at the end I ended up getting AIR 6 in final exam). So try to get more than 60 marks in each mock exam and keep improving the performance.

  1. Did you purchase/use any of the Kreatryx Products? If yes, how was it beneficial to you?

I purchased K-test and it was very much useful in boosting my self confidence and analyzing my mistakes.I recommend the future aspirants to definitely try it.


Personal Questions

  1. What is the role of undergraduate studies or college studies in your GATE prep?

If you study the subjects conceptually it will be more useful and the percentage you get in the undergraduate program do not play a much role in the preparation. It will be useful only if you understand and study the subjects conceptually.

  1. How did you motivate yourself for such a long journey towards GATE?

No job now and working in PSU were the only reasons motivated me.

  1. Did you expect such a result after giving the GATE exam?

I expected that I would get below 200 rank after giving gate exam as per the ranks I was getting through mock tests and I have not even dared to count the marks after giving exam thinking that I will get even a bit more tension and I just relaxed for that one month and I have counted the marks only 2 days before actual results got released and it gave a big surprise to me.

  1. How did you feel the moment you saw the results?

That was a magical moment in my life and I will not forget it throughout my life.

  1. What is the role of family and friends in your success in GATE exam?

My parents encouraged me a lot while preparing for it and told me to do whatever I wish to do to pursue my dreams and career. Most of my friends were working in MNCs and they always supported me a lot and kept on encouraging me.

  1. Who would you dedicate this GATE result to?

I would dedicate this success to my family, friends who were always with me whenever I was feeling tough.

  1. What is the success mantra that you would like to give to other GATE aspirants which has been critical for your preparation as well?

First all of you need to know that GATE is not a tough exam if you prepare well and I have improved my rank from 7819 in GATE 2016 to 6 in GATE 2017. Making short notes, revising, analyzing the accuracy level and maintaining a separate book for mistakes I have done in the test series have been critical for my success mantra.

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