GATE 2020 Topper Interview - Piyush Tiwari GATE 2020 Topper, AIR 17 in Computer Science and Information Technology: If you are someone from the Computer Science stream and planning to appear for GATE exam, you have landed at the right place where Piyush Tiwari (AIR 17) shares his thoughts and experiences in GATE 2020 topper interview. This bright brain from Jabalpur believes in multiple aspects of preparation that include online content, various books, online coaching, senior’s advice, etc. Having attempted two attempts with 400+ ranks and then landing upon AIR 17 in GATE 2020, Piyush has understood the nerve of the exam that helped him prepare effectively and that can help the future aspirants as well. So go through the complete GATE 2020 topper interview below and get the mantra of success.

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GATE 2020 Topper Interview, Piyush Tiwari, AIR 17 CS/IT - Understand the twist of questions

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

Piyush - I have done my primary and secondary schooling from Sagar, Madhya Pradesh and higher secondary studies from Jabalpur. Then I continued further studies from Jabalpur Engineering College, Jabalpur in the Information Technology branch.

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Careers360- What was the GATE paper you appeared in? What rank did you get in GATE 2020? What is your GATE score and how many marks did you secure out of 100 in GATE paper?

Piyush - I appeared for GATE 2020 (Computer Science Engineering - CSE) after the 2018 (AIR 414) and 2019 (AIR 410) attempt. I secured AIR 17 in GATE 2020 with a score of 943 and 79.33 out of 100.

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Careers360- What was the reason you appeared for GATE 2020? Pls elaborate.

Piyush - Well I have been playing cricket since years and all my seniors in the team shared that they aim for PSU recruitment through GATE. That’s where this thought came into my mind. However, some have warned me that there are not many PSUs for computer science, still I didn’t change my mind and prepared. With a rank of 400+, I would have got admission into Masters easily, but I was eyeing on PSUs, that’s why it took three attempts.

Careers360- Have you applied to any PSUs recruiting through GATE? Which ones? Is there any plan for Masters?

Piyush - Right now there are no applications available except for POSOCO, however, I am currently working with UPPCL. Regarding Masters, I am still in conversation with my seniors as to what I should go for.

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?

Piyush - I started preparing for the GATE exam in 2017 as 2018 was my first attempt. As there are not many coaching centres in Jabalpur for GATE preparation, so I went for online content. There was an online coaching named ‘’ which I didn’t find up to the mark later on. Then I continued with ‘Ravindrababu lectures’ and all this landed me at 400+ rank in the first and second attempts which was not sufficient for PSUs. Then I referred to some standard books and in 2019 I went for ‘Made Easy’ and 'GATE Applied Course' which landed me in the list of GATE 2020 toppers with AIR 17. Talking about study hours, I gave 4-5 hours on normal days which increased with the GATE exam approaching. Basically my preparation involved some books, online material and previous year GATE question papers.

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

Piyush - For preparation people should kickstart in 3rd semester, and be serious by the 5th semester during bachelors degree. One advantage is that 2-3 subjects are already there in every semester which are there in the GATE syllabus. So if students keep this in mind in the very beginning, they can save half of the time by clearing the concepts there only. Together with semesters, students should focus on theoretical aspects as this helps much in keeping the doubts clear and solving the numericals as well.

Careers360- How important do you feel GATE 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?

Piyush - One should start solving the mock tests at least 6 months before the GATE exam is conducted. One should follow numerous exam papers including GATE, CMI, ISI, ISRO, JEST and many more where there is much scope for practising good questions. One should also refer to the GATE overflow book for practice.

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

Piyush - Apart from online preparation, I referred to the following books for particular subjects:

  • Algorithm - Cormen

  • Theory of Computation - Peter Linz

  • Computer Organization and Architecture - William Stallings

  • Operating System - Galvin

  • Computer Networks - Forouzan; Tanenbaum

  • Database Management System - Korth

  • Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications - Kenneth Rosen

  • Digital Logic and Number representation - Morris Mano

Out of all the books mentioned above, one should study specific and relevant parts just to clear doubts except that of Morris Mano which should be thoroughly studied from. Compiler design is one subject for which coaching material deemed enough to me.

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

Piyush - When I cleared GATE 2018 with AIR 414, I could definitely go for masters from any of top 10-15 institutes for Computer Science (had NIT Warangal and IIT Roorkee in the list). But as my target was PSU, and I consecutively twice got the 400+ rank, so for me keeping up with preparation was really hard and not being deviated was a task. Apart from this, what I feel is CS is the easiest branch and people from other branches are also giving it a try. So there is nothing difficult with the subject but keep going is the biggest deal.

Careers360 - Why did you not pursue Masters after GATE 2018 and try for PSU later on?

Piyush - That would have proven really hard for me as I personally don’t believe in partial dedication in anything. If I would have pursued Masters, I would not be getting indulged that much into college while preparing for GATE. So there would be no point if some placement drive takes place and I am not qualified for it. In 2019, I only prepared for GATE and couldn’t achieve much, what would have happened had I been doing Masters as well.

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

Piyush - There are two kinds of students, one aim at qualifying and the other eye to be among the toppers. Former should go for mathematics and aptitude at first as these sections cover 30 marks and are enough for qualifying the exam. These two are crucial for toppers as well because 30 is not a less number. For Mathematics, I suggest students go to Khan Academy. Coming to Digital Design, one can cover it in 3-4 days. Coming to Computer Organization and architecture systems, pipelining, instruction design, cache are the important topics. For Algorithms, complexity, sorting, recurring relations and all the paradigms are important. For Programming and Data Structures, only following the previous trend will do. In Theory of Computation, the first chapter is really easy, being totally contrary to second and third, and regular languages and finite automata is one repetitive topic. Instruction scheduling, paging, disc scheduling, filesystem (capacity, transfer rates) under Operating System. In Computer Networks, one should definitely cover IP addressing, stop and wait, SR, GBN and a basic idea of all layers of computer networks. With all these, one can easily score 50 marks.

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

Piyush - Actually I play the flute, piano and guitar. The latter two require much setup but flute is something handy. So whenever I was not able to concentrate, I would just take my flute and head for the terrace for some time.

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.

Piyush - I have seen some people who read a question, think that this one needs time to solve, and move to another without attempting that one. What I do is solve such question if I can. I believe in going in the order of questions attempting them all in one go unless the question seems beyond control. One more thing to remember is if you want to leave some question to be attempted later, don’t mark it for review and just leave it as the interface sometimes may lead to dilemma. Talking about sections, I think aptitude should be attempted first as it's the easiest and takes lesser time as well. For those who are a bit slow, they can start with the technical part and keep aptitude for later.

Careers360- What did you feel was one tough thing for you in the GATE exam?

Piyush - The toughest part about GATE in my opinion is to be accurate. There are times when we get the answer after solving a particular question but skip out the twist. So, one important aspect during GATE preparation while practising a paper is not just solve but to get hold of the question. To conquer this, there is one GO (GATE Overflow) book for GATE preparation where not only the solution but every aspect of it is explained thoroughly.

Careers360- Any advice for the future aspirants?

Piyush - What I would suggest is that go for some good coaching as you should follow some expert and there are plenty of options available. But the important part is that you should get hold of everything, know what needs to be studied. I have seen people taking coaching who do not trust their instructors and end up wasting their time. After this, one should be done with the syllabus as early as possible and practice for at least 4 months.

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Questions related to GATE

Showing 14419 out of 14419 Questions

hi, I written gate paper in Engineering Science (paper code -xe). I have done my in mechanical engineering . which nits accept (xe gate paper) and which branch or department can i get. ???

NILUTPOL Student Expert 27th May, 2020
Since you have written GATE paper in XE, you won't be eligible for jobs into the PSUs. XE paper is quite easy compared to other paper codes as you have many choices out of which only two has to be attempted. XE paper is specifically for studies into M.Tech and direct PHDs. So you can get into NITs with your GATE XE score.
As you have done bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering, you can get into NITs for mechanical engineering by giving XE paper. All NITs take admission through XE paper.

Engineering Sciences (XE)syllabus majorly divided into 3sections.The first section isGeneral Aptitude and the second section is Engineering Mathematics which is named as section A is compulsory for candidates.The third part comprises sectionsB to H andcandidates have to choose any two sectionsto appear for the exam.
Hope it helps

what is the top strategy to qualifying the gate exam after btech ????

Shivani Chaudhary 27th May, 2020


Following points will help you to qualify GATE :-

1.You are advised to refer the GATE previous year question papers to have an idea about the difficulty level of exam, pattern of exam and questions, topics which are covered frequently or which topic has more weightage over the others.

2. You should have a clear understanding of the GATE syllabus  and exam pattern.GATE syllabus comprises the subjects and topics which are taught at graduate level programs in engineering.

3. You must select the best study material for GATE 2021 preparation to come up with the best result. You should refer to the books which are easy to understand.

4. You must study regularly so that you can cover all the syllabus within time. Regularity in study will help you to score great marks.

5. What you have studied during the whole day you must revise that before going to sleep.

6. You must Practice Mock test daily to check your preparation level and to get a reality check of your Preparation.

For more information follow the following link given below

Hope this will help you!.




anantikakushwaha 27th May, 2020
Hello Aspirant,

Seems like you've completed your BTech through the Electrical Engineering. So the core courses you can choose for MTech which has huge scope are

  • Power system
  • Control system and Automation
  • Power electronics

Regarding interdisciplinary branch you can VLSI, it has a huge scope in industry nowadays.

gate qualified students ko upsee k lie registration krna hai ya nhi?

anantikakushwaha 27th May, 2020
Hello Aspirant,

GATE and UPSEE are both entrance examinations. GATE is a national level exam conducted for admission in various Institutes for MTech/ME courses. And also for getting jobs in various PSUs.

While UPSEE is a state level examination conducted for admission in BTech courses for the state of Uttar Pradesh.

when its happening gate exam in every year

Sharon K Rose Student Expert 26th May, 2020


GATE is usually conducted in the month of February once in a year.The official notification will be released in the month of July/August and registrations will begin in the month of September first week tentatively.And results will be announced in the third week of March tentatively.

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