GATE 2019 Topper Interview Gaurav Srivastava AIR 27-”Practice a lot & focus on accuracy than speed”
Prabakaran K, 04 Apr 2019, #GATE
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GATE 2019 Topper Interview - Gaurav Srivastava has emerged as one of the GATE toppers in the Electrical Engineering paper, securing AIR 27, the result of which was released by IIT Madras on March 15. He secured 92.67 out of 100. A combination of strong determination, undivided focus and hours of self-study, helped Gaurav Srivastava, one of the toppers of GATE 2019 exam. He appeared in GATE 2018 but not got enough score for getting into the PSU’s. “It feels really good and I want to thank my parents; they have always helped me to achieve this mark”, Gaurav Srivastava said. Speaking about his preparation strategy, Gaurav Srivastava didn’t take any coaching and he believes self-study is the best method of preparation. In an exclusive interview with Careers360, Gaurav Srivastava, GATE 2019 Topper talked about GATE examination, his preparation strategy, challenges, and also gave some tips for aspirants.

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

Gaurav Srivastava: My name is Gaurav Srivastava. I’m from a small town Ballia in UP currently residing in Lucknow. I had completed my B Tech in Electrical Engineering in 2018 from Shri Ramswaroop Memorial College of Engg and Mgmt affiliated to Dr APJ Abdul Kalam Technical University, Lucknow.

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Careers360: What was the GATE Paper you appeared in? What rank did you get in GATE 2019? What is your GATE 

Gaurav Srivastava: I appeared in paper EE in GATE 2019 and secured AIR 27 with 92.67 marks.

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

Gaurav Srivastava: No, it was my second attempt. In 2018, I appeared for Gate for the first time and couldn’t get a good rank (my rank was 479) due to college works and lack of proper guidance and study materials.

Careers360: What was the reason you appeared for GATE 2019? Please elaborate.

Gaurav Srivastava: I am from a private college so there is only one way i.e., to appear in the GATE to get into good core sector jobs or IITs for better higher studies.     

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

Gaurav Srivastava: I have applied to all the PSUs recruiting through GATE like NTPC, PGCIL, IOCL, POSOCO, BARC etc.

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?

Gaurav Srivastava: I started my preparation from mid of 4th year of my B Tech. I read all the standard textbooks thoroughly and prepared self-notes. I used to devote 3-4 hours in college working days and about 10 hours a day on weekends.

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?

Gaurav Srivastava: Yes sure. I built my concepts while preparing for GATE 2018 but can’t practice many questions due to time constraints. I started for GATE 2019 in the month of July-August and this time my sole aim was to practice a lot of questions so I joined test series of two institutes i.e., Kreatryx and ace academy and also solved question banks like RK Kanodia.

The time table is required but there is no hard and fast rule. One must be clear that how much time is required for particular a subject. Then instead of making a time table for 6 months, try to set your daily or short term goals.

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?

Gaurav Srivastava: Mock tests are very much important for a gate aspirants. At this point, I would like to clear that tests should be an integral part of one’s preparation i.e., one shouldn’t think that I will cover the entire subject then give a test.

Previous year question papers are important and must be solved as a whole in a span of 3 hours, not by subject wise as it gives a clear idea of the level of preparation. Only previous year question papers can’t guarantee success.

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

Gaurav Srivastava: I followed standard books and NPTEL lectures along with some free online resources. Following are the sources which I have followed apart from previous year gate questions:

  • Power Electronics: video lecture by BG Fernandes, IIT Bombay, PS Bimbhra, Ned Mohan, Question Bank by BNSS Shankar (Available online).

  • Electrical machines: PS Bimbhra, NPTEL lectures by Prof. D. Kastha

  • Power systems: CL Wadhwa, Stevesons and QB by BNSS Shankar

  • Network: Alexander Sadiku, Schaum’s series

  • Control system: M Gopal, Norman Nise

  • Analog: Boylestad

  • Microprocessor: Gaonkar

  • Digital: Moris Mano

  • Signal and systems: Oppenheim and NPTEL lectures by S.C. Dutta Roy

  • Measurement: AK Shawney

  • Maths: BS Grewal 

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

Gaurav Srivastava: One should focus more on semiconductor devices, choppers, inverters, dc machines, transformers, op-amps etc but one must cover each and every topic given in gate syllabus.

Careers360: what was the toughest aspect of your GATE preparation?

Gaurav Srivastava: The toughest part is to retain the concepts for which continuous revision of short notes is required.

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

Gaurav Srivastava: I used to listen to music to relieve the pressure. One must take care of health also (I suffered a lot as I ignored this.)

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.

Gaurav Srivastava: Yes, I have made a strategy for how to attempt gate exam and followed the same for giving the mock tests also. I used to attempt in sequence i.e., first aptitude section then 1 marks technical and after that 2 marks questions. I allocated more time for 2 marks questions (approx. 90 mins) and keep some time reserved for last moment revision. One must skip a question if it seems tough and attempt those at a later stage.

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

Gaurav Srivastava: This year exam is very easy for electrical engineering so there is no such difficulty in the execution of strategy.

Careers360: Any advice for the future aspirants?

Gaurav Srivastava: I prepared from the self-study that too from a private college (not reputed like IITs, NITs) and I strongly believe one can do better with a proper strategy, hard work and above all family support.

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Scope for ECE students through gate examination???

Manidipa Kundu Student Expert 11th Dec, 2019
see after clearing gate exam you do have 2 options. you can go for higher studies in reputed colleges of India like iiits, iits, nits even you can go for foreign universities like nangyang university Singapore. other option you do have which is PSU. ecil, DRDO, barc, coal India, bel this organization recruits electronics engineer through gate score, however the number of vacancy is really less compare to electrical engineering. you need to have rank within 200 to get cal from PSU.
hope you may understand

How many Psus or private companies are recruiting geologists based on their Gate performance?

Parvathi Ramachandran 10th Dec, 2019

Greetings !!

Lot of Private companies in mining , Petroleum sector will definitely recruit geologists in upcoming years. Apart from this every year SSC conducts geologist Exam for recruitment. With full confidence and prospects you may start your preparation , definitely you will be able to clear the exam. If any doubts, pls feel free to ask.

Wish You Good Luck !

Thank You !!


Important reference books for gate and UPSC geology

Ameya Narendra Parkar 10th Dec, 2019
Dear Nirav
I would like to tell you Reference books are really important while preparing for GATE OR UPSC EXAMS
As Matter of fact reference books are important part for any examination.
Reference book will helps you in nourishing your knowledge and concepts and also your understanding of particular subject.
Reference books contains many problems on a single topic which allows you to practice numerous problems for preparation of Examination.

I hope you understand this information.

All the best

2 year drop for GATE exam .............????

Aditi Amrendra Student Expert 9th Dec, 2019

See, its a very tough call to drop for 2 years for GATE and its definitely not advisable but if you don't have any financial burden or any kind of pressure from home then you can do it but again its too risky and you will have to ensure that if you are going thia then you will give your 100% best and get a good rank because then only you will succeed or else the pressure will get upto you you will suffer badly.So, think smartly and decide wisely.

Good Luck

Is 70 marks in GATE is sufficient to get any PSU for electrical for general category?

apuroop sri durgesh 9th Dec, 2019

Hi Syam!

There are no measurements which could enable you to realize what rank/marks will cause you to get set in PSU's. It fluctuates from test to test, relies upon characteristics of the toppers, paper trouble level and selection of hopefuls who scores superior to you and also it will be based on number of vacancies in PSU that particular year you are appearing for GATE exam. In any case, for a definite sure determination in a PSU then you ought to be in TOP 200.

Check out this link:

Hope this helps!

All the best!

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