GATE Exam Pattern 2020
Sansar.chhikara, 14 Aug 2019, #GATE
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GATE Exam Pattern 2020 - Indian Institute of Delhi released the subject wise GATE 2020 exam pattern. Candidates can get to know about the type of questions asked in the exam, total number of questions, marking scheme of the exam, details about negative marking and other important information about the exam through GATE exam pattern 2020. This year the authorities have also announced a new paper of Biomedical Engineering (BM). The exam pattern of GATE has announced by IIT Delhi through an official brochure PDF. GATE exam will consist of both multiple choice questions and numerical type questions (MCQs & NAT). The marking schemes for different type of questions will be different. One common subject in all the GATE papers will be General aptitude and the other subjects will vary according to the paper for which student is appearing for. With the help of GATE 2020 exam pattern, candidates are able to familiarize themselves with the nature of the exam, type of questions and a lot more related to the entrance test. Read the article below to check complete exam pattern of GATE 2020.

Latest: [Download free Question Papers and Sample Paper of GATE, Click here]

GATE Exam Pattern 2020 in Highlights



Exam Duratioln

3 hours (180 minutes)

Number of Questions


Total Marks


Questions Type

There will be two question types:

  • Multiple Choice Questions (MCQ)

  • Numerical Answer Type (NAT) Questions

Number of sections

GATE 2020 question paper will comprise of total 3 sections except for AR, CY, GG, EY, XL, PH and MA papers :

General Aptitude Engineering Mathematics (for XL papers it is Chemistry) Subject – Specific section

General Aptitude Section

The GATE paper will also consist of a compulsory General Aptitude (GA) section constituting of 10 questions. 5 of questions among 10 will carry 1 mark and the rest 5 will carry 2 marks each. Therefore, the total marks for this section will be 15 marks.

Marking Scheme

MCQs carrying 1 mark each– 1/3 mark will be cut for every wrong answer.

MCQs carrying 2 marks – 2/3 mark will be cut for every incorrect response.There is no negative marking for Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions

GATE 2020 Exam Pattern - Paper Code Wise Subject Weightage

Paper Code

Exam Pattern

CE, CS, EC, AE, AG, BT, CH, ME, MN, MT, EE, IN, TF, XE, PE, ST and PI

GA (General Aptitude) – 15%

Engineering Mathematics – 15%
Subject of the Paper – 70%

AR, CY, GG, EY, XL, PH and MA

GA (General Aptitude) – 15%
Subject of the Paper – 85%

GATE Sample Paper

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GATE Exam Pattern 2020 - Marking Scheme

Paper Code

General Aptitude Marks

Subject Marks

Total Marks

Negative Marking





  • 1/3rd Mark will be deducted for 1 mark question

  • 2/3rd Mark will be deducted for 2 mark question

XE (Section A +

any two sections)




XL (Section P +

any two sections)




GATE 2020 Marking Scheme - Other Key Points

  • Engineering Mathematics and General Aptitude will be compulsory sections of GATE 2020 which will include 15% weightage each in total marks in GATE 2020 papers with codes AE, AG, BT, CE, CH, CS, EC, EE, IN ME, MN, MT, PE, PI, TF and XE. The left 70% weightage will be given to the subject selected by the student.

  • In case of GATE 2020 papers AR, CY, EY, GG, MA, PH, ST and XL there will be a compulsory section of General Aptitude (15% of the total marks). The rest 85% weightage will be given to the selected subject.

GATE 2020 Exam Pattern - Important Information

GATE 2020 Papers (Except GG, XE, XL)

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  • The questions asked in the exam will be multiple choice questions and numerical answer type.

  • GATE 2020 papers will have 15 questions which will carry 1 mark each and 30 questions which will carry 2 marks each.

GATE 2020 Geology and Geophysics Paper (GG)

  • The Geology and Geophysics Paper of GATE 2020 will be divided in two parts namely Part A and Part B.

  • Part A is mandatory for all the candidates

  • Part B will comprise of two sections – Geology (Section I) and Geophysics (Section II)

  • It is upto the candidates which section they want to attempt.

  • Part A of the paper will contain 25 questions carrying 1 mark each. Numerical answer type questions will also be present in this section.

  • Part B (Section I and II) will contain 30 questions carrying 2 marks each.

GATE 2020 Engineering Sciences (XE)

  • This paper will have one mandatory section which all candidates have to attempt i.e., Engineering Mathematics

  • Another compulsory section will be General aptitude which will carry 15 marks.

  • Section A will comprise of 11 questions of total 15 marks. The paper may also contain Some numerical answer type questions..

  • Candidates will have the option to choose any of the section from Section B to H.

  • The sections (B to H) will comprise of 22 questions each carrying 35 marks in total.

GATE Engineering Sciences Paper Pattern


Type of Question

Number of Question

Sub-total (Marks)

Section A (Compulsory)

1 Mark Question



2 Marks Question



Section B to H

1 Mark Question



2 Marks Question



GATE 2020 Life Sciences (XL)

  • Chemistry (Section P) is the compulsory section of the paper which will consist of 15 questions of total 25 marks. This section will also comprise of some Numerical answer type questions.

  • The paper will also have a General Aptitude section of total 15 marks.

  • Apart from Chemistry, the candidates will also have to choose one more section from Q to U. Each of the sections from Q to U will consist of 20 questions carrying total 30 marks

GATE 2020 Life Sciences Paper Pattern


Type of Questions

Number of Questions

Sub-Total (Marks)

Chemistry Section or Section P (Compulsory)

1 mark questions



2 mark questions



Sections Q to U

1 mark questions



2 mark questions



GATE 2020 Paper Codes

GATE 2020 Paper Codes for XE and XL

XE Paper Sections


XL Paper Sections


Engineering Mathematics (Compulsory)


Chemistry (Compulsory)


Fluid Mechanics




Materials Science




Solid Mechanics








Polymer Science and Engineering


Food Technology


Food Technology


Atmospheric and Oceanic Sciences


**XE (Engineering Sciences) and **XL (Life Sciences) papers will consist of sections listed in the table above

GATE 2020 Exam Pattern – Design of Questions

GATE 2020 is a relatively tough exam and will test the abilities of students on various grounds. GATE 2020 will test the following abilities of the candidates

  • Recall – The questions asked in the paper will be directly linked to the principles, facts, formula or laws of the paper the student has selected. The memory and computation skills of the student will also be put to tests in the exam.

  • Comprehension – In GATE 2020 there will be questions that will test the basic understanding of the students in their respective fields of study. Students will have to stress on fundamental ideas to draw out simple conclusions.

  • Application – In this particular category, the candidates will be required to apply their computational and logical reasoning skills.

  • Analysis and Synthesis – In this category the questions will be comprise a mix of data, diagrams and images. Students will be able to solve the questions by analyzing the information contained in them.

Important Instructions for GATE 2020

Candidates appearing for GATE 2020 should keep the following instructions in mind before heading out to the examination centre:

  • Physical calculators, wristwatches and mobile phones are strictly prohibited inside the examination centres.

  • For the ease and convenience of students, a virtual calculator will be provided on the screen of the candidates.

How to attempt GATE 2020?

As you all know GATE 2020 will be conducted in completely online mode, the questions will have to be answered on the computer system provided to the candidates. Students will find a question pallette on the screen and will have to attempt the exam in a prescribed manner. Given below is all the information you need to know about attempting a real GATE exam.

On the top right screen of the candidates, a clock will be present which will denote the time left with the student to solve the questions. Once the time is over, the question-answer screen will automatically close.

How to navigate to a question?

  • On the right side of the screen students will find a serial wise list of questions.

  • Students can directly navigate to a question by clicking on the question number.

  • The question will be displayed on the screen when the question button is pressed.

How to answer a question?

  • In case of multiple choice questions, candidates will have to click on the particular option to select it.

  • To de-select an option, candidates will have to click on the option again. Candidates can also select the clear response option to de-select any option.

  • In case of numerical type questions, candidates will have to enter the answer through the virtual keyboard present on the screen.

How to save answers?

  • To save an answer, candidates will have to click on the “Save and Next” option given on the screen.

  • If candidates are unsure of their answer they can mark the question for review by selecting “Mark for Review and Next” option.

  • Once the time limit all the answers will be automatically submitted.

GATE 2020 Exam Pattern - Important Points to Note

  • GATE 2020 will be conducted in completely online mode through Computer Based Test mode.

  • The exam will have a duration of 3 hours.

  • There will be two question types in GATE 2020 - Multiple Choice Questions and Numerical Answer Type Questions.

  • In case of MCQs candidates will have to select one answer from the 4 options given and in NAT questions students will have to enter the correct answer through the virtual keyboard.D

  • Candidates will be provided with a scribble pad for the rough work.

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