Hi, I am Parth Shah who secured 51 marks in Gate 2019(first and maybe the only attempt) and will like to share my story. If you are looking at how to get good rank than this blog might not be helpful but if you are looking for how to avoid the mistakes that can stop you from getting good rank than this might be useful.
First time ever I came across the GATE exam was while reading The Strategy posted by Ankita Jain(AIR-1 GATE2016). I too decided to prepare for GATE and like everyone dreamt of getting AIR-1. But as I was in the 2nd year of college I was not at all serious about GATE exam and thought there was plenty of time to prepare for GATE. I tried to read a few subjects from the standard books which were suggested on GATECSE site but was not able to follow the routine. The major mistake which I made was that I just read the theory from standard books but never tried to solve questions from them.
In the year 2018 during the month of June, I decided to prepare seriously for the GATE exam and started full-time preparation. The second mistake which I made was while reading from standard textbooks I never made notes and as I had read the concepts in 2017 I had to revisit many concepts from the standard books again. As it was the month of June so I started with one subject, tried to understand the concepts and solve previous year questions on that subject. The third mistake which i made was not following the 80-20 rule i.e. if you are able to solve 80% questions on your own then you are strong with your concepts. I was not able to correctly solve even 60% of the questions. During the month of November, I tried to finish the syllabus of all subjects and gave a full-length test just to make sure where I stand and to my surprise, I just scored 46 marks. During the month of November due to university exams, my preparation got slow down. The fourth mistake which I made was not revising the subjects at regular interval of time and as result, during the month of December I had to revise all the subjects again and the revision went on till January. Already the heat was on as it was January and many aspirants have already given many mocks and were scoring well. I still remember in the mids of January I gave one more full-length test but again the marks were not improving and this time the result hit me so hard. It affected my health and my preparation came to halt. The remaining, month of January I was not able to prepare properly due to tension and pressure.
During the day of the examination, I began with 2 marks section, followed by 1 marks and lastly aptitude. In many questions I got stuck and lost the track of time, as a result, I was not able to solve many questions even though knowing it.
This was the story about my preparation and the mistakes which I made were:
- Not making the notes from standard books properly.
- Not solving the questions from standard books.
- Not following the 80-20 rule while solving previous year questions.
- Not revising the subjects at regular interval of time.
- Not keeping the track of my mistakes.
- Not practiced enough for Engineering mathematics, Discrete Mathematics.
- Kept aptitude too late to practice(was not able to solve even previous year questions properly.)
- Not able to maintain the monotony during the preparation(Sometimes studied for 12 hours and sometimes studied hardly for 2-3 hours).
- Rather than understanding some concepts properly in CAO, TOC, Algorithms I directly tried to solve questions. (If the base is not strong there is no meaning of solving any number of questions.)
- Got so tensed that last 20-25 days I was not able to study properly.
Things to Keep in Mind While attempting EXAM:
-->Read complete question properly and make sure to read the keywords like NOT,TRUE,FALSE,CORRECT,INCORRECT,MAXIMUM,MINIMUM,%,UNITS,Decimal Places,distinct,balanced,at least,at most ,etc.
-->Take time to interpret the given data and meaning of the question.
-->Always keep the track of time while solving. If you get stuck in any questions try to revisit that question later.
-->Read all options Carefully.
-->Even though you get the answer from option try to get the final answer.Don't leave it in halfway.
-->Ensure you are marking the correct option.
-->Take no pressure at all(I know it is easy to say but at least try to keep your mind calm.).
I believe that failure in GATE 2019 was from my side but GO always stood by to help me. The answers I found here were amazing. The way people dedicate their time to write answers over here and how people argue over the answers unless they get satisfied was wonderful. Thanks to the entire team of GO for maintaining such a wonderful platform. Thanks to the team of GATECSE for maintaining the resources for the preparation on their site, they were very helpful during preparation. Finally thanks to each and every member of the GO who have directly or indirectly helped me during the preparation. All the best to future aspiriants and heartiest congratulations to all the toppers of GATE 2019. :)
PS: If there are any grammatical mistakes please ignore it.