GATE is an exam that consists of three sections namely Engineering Mathematics, Technical Subject and General Aptitude. The weightage of each of these sections is 15%, 70% and 15% respectively. One of the biggest mistakes that candidates make during this exam preparation is that they neglect the general aptitude. General aptitude for GATE is also an important aspect when preparing for the whole exam. Each mark is equally important in this exam as a single mark can decide whether the candidate can get into their dream institute or is eligible for a job.
One can expect a totally different question for the general aptitude section. Many candidates believe that they will complete the general aptitude at the last minute as it holds only 15% weightage or assume that it is an easy section and they can solve it. However, In the GATE exam, the questions asked can be twisted or totally different from the one which the candidate has not expected. Hence, it is essential to prepare for this section.
The General Aptitude for GATE consists of a total of 15 marks that comprises 10 questions. The questions are divided into 1 mark MCQ (5 questions) and 2 marks MCQ (the other 5 questions). This section covers two main topics that are Verbal Ability and Numerical Ability.
The Verbal Ability covers topics such as:
Grammar, Sentence Completion, Sentence Correction, Vocabulary, Reading Comprehension, Error Spotting and Critical Reasoning.
The Numerical Ability Covers Topics such as:
Profit & Loss, Data Interpretation, Time and Clock Sequence, Progressions, Analytical Reasoning, Simple and Compound Interest, Direction Sense, Venn Diagrams, Ages, Time and Work, Blood Relations and Partnerships.
How to Prepare for this section?
- The first and the foremost thing before starting the preparation is to make a study plan. A study plan will help the aspirants to plan their day to day activities in terms of the studying hours.
- Devote at least an hour daily for the general aptitude section rather than keeping it for the last minute. Make it a daily habit of solving the aptitude questions. A last-minute hassle is very dangerous and when it comes to preparing such high-level exams, one should keep in mind to prepare from day one itself.
- Do not pick up a specific learning method or approach to solve the problems. Remember that each problem is different from the other and the questions asked in the paper can be totally different from the one which candidates have prepared. It is important to look at each problem with a new mindset in order to solve it effectively.
- It is crucial that candidates visualize the problem while solving it. Visualization can help candidates to solve the problems that were obvious or were simple.
- Some problems need calculations so in order to do that candidates must be quick with their calculations. The time for this exam is limited and hence the calculations should be practiced from day one to avoid wasting time in the examination.
- Before looking at the solution or giving up while solving a particular problem, calm yourself and try to solve it multiple times.
- It is also important that candidates take a break from the studying routine. Play sports, outdoor games or go for a walk. Sometimes taking a break can help candidates to clear their minds and prepare more energetically for the exam.
- Keep the habit of reading books or newspapers to improve English and getting command over the language.
- Collect previous years question papers. These papers will help the candidates to know the level and type of questions asked in the examination.
- Lastly, take mock tests and keep on practicing daily. There are many mock tests available online which can help candidates for practicing and managing their time.
Which Books to Refer to?
There are many books available in the market as well as online which will help candidates to prepare thoroughly for the exam. Some of the best books to refer to are Quantitative Aptitude for Competitive examination by R.S Aggarwal and A Modern Approach to Verbal & Non-Verbal Reasoning by R.S Aggarwal. Note that before referring to any other books check the credibility of the sources.
The General Aptitude for GATE can be easily cleared if one follows these steps. It is important to prepare for this section as it weighs 15 marks in the entire examination. This section also helps the aspirants to build their IQ level and tests their knowledge which can be beneficial for scoring in other subjects too.