GATE 2018 Topper Interview Saurav Kumar Singh (AIR 1 - MT) - “Have self-confidence to own the result”
Saakshi Lama, 29 Mar 2018, #GATE
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March 16 brought a smile to Saurav Kumar Singh’s face since GATE 2018 results declared by IIT Guwahati showed that he had topped the exam for Metallurgical Engineering. A student of Metallurgical and Materials Engineering at NIT Warangal, Saurav is a cricket enthusiast who likes playing the sport during his leisure. A desire to join a leading PSU spurred Saurav to take up GATE and prepare for it in such a manner that he not just cracked the exam but topped it. Here, he talks to Careers360 about his preparation methodology, exam strategy and more. To know about Saurav’s success mantras to crack GATE, read the article.

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Careers360: Tell us something about yourself; Where have you done your engineering from and in which branch?

Saurav Kumar Singh: My name is Saurav Kumar Singh and I am from Muzaffarpur, Bihar. At present, I am doing B.Tech in Metallurgical and Materials Engineering at NIT Warangal.

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Careers360: what was the GATE Paper you appeared in? What rank did you get in GATE 2018? What is your GATE score and how many marks did you secure out of 100 in GATE paper?

Saurav Kumar Singh: I appeared for Metallurgical Engineering. I secured AIR 1 in my paper and my GATE 2018 score is 990. I scored 86 marks out of 100.

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Careers360:: Is this your first attempt or did you attempt GATE earlier?

Saurav Kumar Singh: Yes, this is my first attempt at GATE.


Careers360: What was the reason you appeared for GATE 2018? Please elaborate.

Saurav Kumar Singh: My main reason behind appearing for GATE is to join IOCL.


Careers360: Have you applied to any PSUs recruiting through GATE? Which ones?

Saurav Kumar Singh: Yes. I have applied for IOCL, SAIL and RINL.


Careers360: When did you start your preparation?  How did you prepare for the GATE exam? How many hours did you put in per day as per the stage of preparation?

Saurav Kumar Singh: I started GATE preparation from my 6th semester of Engineering. First, I went through the syllabus of GATE 2018 and then I studied standard books and next solved previous year papers. On an average, I studied 4 hours on a daily basis.


Careers360: Have you taken any coaching? If yes- From where? How did it help?

Saurav Kumar Singh: No I did not take any coaching and relied completely on self-study.


Careers360: Can you share any preparation strategies with our readers? When should one start their preparation for GATE? How to schedule study time and make timetables?

Saurav Kumar Singh: The theoretical and numerical portions should be prepared together. Students should always read the topics from the standard books. A formula book should be created for easy revision during the last minute of preparation. I would also like to suggest that one should fix monthly targets and study accordingly to achieve these.


Careers360: How important do you feel mock tests are and why? Is it true that if one solves the previous year question papers, there is a good chance of cracking the exam successfully?

Saurav Kumar Singh: No, I did not give any mock tests of GATE 2018. One of the most important factors in preparation for GATE is to solve the last 10 to 15 years question papers.


Careers360: Which books did you follow for GATE preparation? Please name some very important must read books for GATE

Saurav Kumar Singh: For GATE, I used the following books for preparation.


GATE Preparation Books


Name of the Author

Mechanical Metallurgy

G.E Dieter

Physical Metallurgy

Callister and V. Raghvan



Rate Process

A.K Mohanty

Manufacturing Process

P.N Rao and Dieter

Extractive Metallurgy

NPTEL and H.S Ray

Careers360: Which are the topics one should focus more on? Kindly give us some details

Saurav Kumar Singh: Thermodynamics and Mechanical Metallurgy are one of the most important subjects for GATE examination.


Careers360: What was the toughest aspect in your GATE preparation?

Saurav Kumar Singh: The toughest aspect during GATE preparation was to keep myself motivated throughout the entire time.


Careers360: Name some important topics that you feel are a must read for any student attempting GATE exam?

Saurav Kumar Singh: Just solve the last 5 years papers and analyze the topics which are covering more marks in the paper.


Careers360: What did you do for leisure? Any specific activities that helped you unwind?

Saurav Kumar Singh: During my free time, I played cricket.


Careers360: How should you schedule answering the GATE exam – which section to attempt first and which next? Did you have any strategy? Kindly share your exam experience with us.

Saurav Kumar Singh:Generally, the aptitude part should be completed first because it is easy and scoring. Then I would advise to go for the 1 mark questions and finally give more time to those questions worth 2 marks.


Careers360: What did you feel was a tough thing for you in the GATE exam?

Saurav Kumar Singh: I was not tensed during the examination because I had prepared well for GATE.


Careers360: Any advice for the future aspirants?

Saurav Kumar Singh: My advice would be to practice as much as you can. Have self-confidence and do not worry about the result.

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