GATE GUIDE

What to study ?

In this section i will list some textbooks which you can follow during your preparation , you need not limit to these only and go ahead with some more books that you like .

1 . Mathematical Logic: Propositional Logic; First Order Logic.

Set Theory & Algebra: Sets; Relations; Functions; Groups; Partial Orders; Lattice; Boolean Algebra.

Textbook :  " Discrete Mathematics "  by Tremblay and Manohar .

2 . Probability: Conditional Probability; Mean, Median, Mode and Standard Deviation; Random Variables; Distributions; uniform,  normal, exponential, Poisson, Binomial .

Textbook :  " Probability , statistics and queuing theory " by S.C.Gupta & V.K.Kapoor

3 . Combinatorics: Permutations; Combinations; Counting; Summation; generating functions; recurrence relations; asymptotics.

Textbook : " Intermediate Mathematics " , S.Chand publications  , authors : B.V.Sastry and K.Venkateswarlu  ( if i remember )

" Higher Engineering Mathematics " by B.S.Grewal for generating functions and recurrence relations . ( Bessel's formula , Lagrangian Polynomial )

" Introduction to algorithms " - Cormen etal ( CLRS )  for recurrence relations and asymptotics

4 .  Graph Theory: Connectivity; spanning trees; Cut vertices & edges; covering; matching; independent sets; Colouring; Planarity; Isomorphism

Textbook : " Intoduction to Graph Theory " by Narsing Deo

5 .  Linear Algebra: Algebra of matrices, determinants, systems of linear equations, Eigen values and Eigen vectors.

Textbook : " Higher Engineering Mathematics " by B.S.Grewal

6 . Numerical Methods: LU decomposition for systems of linear equations; numerical solutions of non linear algebraic equations by Secant, Bisection and Newton-Raphson Methods; Numerical integration by trapezoidal and Simpson's rules.

Textbook :  " Numerical Methods " - by S.S.Sastry

7 . Calculus: Limit, Continuity & differentiability, Mean value Theorems, Theorems of integral calculus, evaluation of definite & improper integrals, Partial derivatives, Total derivatives, maxima & minima.

Textbook : " Intermediate Mathematics " , S.chand publications , authors : B.V.Sastry , K.Venkateswarlu ( if i remember )

8 .  Formal Languages and Automata Theory: Regular languages and finite automata, Context free languages and Push-down automata, Recursively enumerable sets and Turing machines, Un-decidability;

Textbook : " Formal Languages and Automata theory " , J.D.Ullman etal

9 . Analysis of Algorithms and Computational Complexity: Asymptotic analysis (best, worst, average case) of time and space, Upper and lower bounds on the complexity of specific problems, NP-completeness.

Textbook :  " Introduction to algorithms " - Cormen etal ( CLRS )

" Computer Algorithms " - Horowitz and Sahani

A very good textbook on " Algorithms " coming soon from Dr.M.N.Seetaramanth ( Tata Mc Graw Hill publications )

10 .  Digital Logic: Logic functions, Minimization, Design and synthesis of Combinational and Sequential circuits; Number representation and Computer Arithmetic (fixed and floating point);

Textbook : " Digital Logic circuits and Design " by Morris Mano

11 .  Computer Organization: Machine instructions and addressing modes, ALU and Data-path, hardwired and micro-programmed control, Memory interface, I/O interface (Interrupt and DMA mode), Serial communication interface, Instruction pipelining, Cache, main and secondary storage.

Textbook : " Computer Organisation " by Morris Mano

" Computer Architecture " by Briggs and 2 chinese authors  ( blue cover pad )   {   for pipelining  }

12 .    Data structures: Notion of abstract data types, Stack, Queue, List, Set, String, Tree, Binary search tree, Heap, Graph;

Textbook :  " Data structures "  Schaumm's outline series

" Data structures in  PASCAL "  by Horowitz and Sahani

" Data structures and Algorithms " by Weiss etal

" Introduction to algorithms " - Cormen etal ( CLRS )

13 .    Programming Methodology: C programming, Program control (iteration, recursion, Functions), Scope, Binding, Parameter passing, Elementary concepts of Object oriented, Functional and Logic Programming

Textbook :  " Programming with C " - Byron Gottfried  , Schaumm's outline series

" Principles of Programming Languages " by Robert W Sebesta  , Addison Wesley

" Programming with C++ " - Balaguruswamy

14 .  Algorithms for problem solving: Tree and graph traversals, Connected components, Spanning trees, Shortest paths; Hashing, Sorting, Searching; Design techniques (Greedy, Dynamic Programming, Divide-and-conquer);

Textbook :  " Data structures "  Schaumm's outline series

" Data structures in  PASCAL "  by Horowitz and Sahani

" Computer Algorithms " - Horowitz and Sahani

" Data structures and Algorithms " by Weiss etal

" Introduction to algorithms " - Cormen etal ( CLRS )

15 .  Compiler Design: Lexical analysis, Parsing, Syntax directed translation, Runtime environment, Code generation, Linking (static and dynamic);

Textbook :  " Principles of Compiler Design " , Aho , Ullman  etal .

" Systems Programming " by John . J . Donovan

16 . Operating Systems: Classical concepts (concurrency, synchronization, deadlock), Processes, threads and Inter-process communication, CPU scheduling, Memory management, File systems, I/O systems, Protection and security.

Textbook :  " Operating system concepts " by Abraham Silberschatz and Peter Galvin

" Advanced Unix Programming "  by  W. Richard . Stevens

" Advanced Unix Programming "  by  N.B.Venkateswarlu  , BPB publications

17 . Databases: Relational model (ER-model, relational algebra, tuple calculus), Database design (integrity constraints, normal forms), Query languages (SQL), File structures (sequential files, indexing, B+ trees), Transactions and concurrency control;

Textbook :  " Database Management systems " - Raghu RamaKrishnan

" Database system concepts " - Silberschatz , Korth , Sudarshan

" Database systems " - C.J.Date  {  normalisation is very lucidly written }

" Principles of Database Systems " - J.D.Ullman   { This is a very good book }

18 .  Computer Networks: ISO/OSI stack, sliding window protocol, LAN Technologies (Ethernet, Token ring), TCP/UDP, IP, Basic concepts of switches, gateways, and routers.

Textbook : " Computer Networks " - Tenenbaum

" Data communications and Networking " - William Stallings

Some more important books :

" Multiple choice questions " - Timothy . J . Williams  , TMH publications

" Gate Question Papers " - G.K.Publishers  { follow it only for questions , answers are all wrong in it }

How to study ?

I will tell you three golden words told by my teacher Dr. M.N.Seetaramanath garu to me when he took me into his hands . Read the subject by posing questions " What " , " How " and " Why "  ( In telugu we say " enduku " , " emiti " , " ela " ) . My another teacher Dr.N.B.Venkateswarlu always stress to analyze the things by working out on the paper and don't take anything for granted , then things would be fine for you and life will be smooth . I promise you that these words are very powerful .

*    I tell you  these Brilliant tutorial materials and all will not help you . follow standard textbooks , read the concepts , understand them , think about how they would be useful and can be applied practically ( what , how , why ) . Try to work out the exercise problems given at the back of each chapter in the textbook ( once again not all , only those which you feel like useful for your preparation , there is no point in wasting your time over 3 starred problems ) . Read two different subjects in parallel so that you wont feel bored .  Try to answer the questions related to a subject after you finish studying it from both " Multiple choice questions " book by williams and questions from all the previous papers related to that subject . This would give you some insight on the GATE questions and build your confidence as well .

** Another thing is that don't worry whether i can do well in GATE as my percentage in university exams is very less , for people who think like that let me clarify  your university percentage has nothing to do with GATE both of them are entirely different ball games all together . The student with good basics , understanding , application will definitely succeed irrespective of the percentage . one more thing is , don't worry even if it was too late to start the preparation for one reason or the other , i tell you 2 months is more than enough for the preparation of the CS paper even if you have not studied much for your university exams .

*** One important note to the undergraduates , see you believe it or not these 4 years of your B.Tech are the best days of your entire life so enjoy them to the fullest , bunking the classes and going to movies , roaming with  friends , going to second show movies , playing cricket , getting ragged by the seniors and ragging your juniors etc ... . Studies is only part of life , it is not everything in life , there are many more beautiful things in life so , don't miss them ( you cannot reuse time unlike space right )

Author: D V Janardhan Rao
In case of any queries mail to the author  ( dvjrao@cse.iitk.ac.in )

Acknowledgements: Dr. N.B. Venkateswarlu garu , Dr. M.N. Seetaramanath garu