GATE vs IES Exam Comparison


GATE vs IES Exam Comparison: Engineering has grown into one of the most preferred undergraduate professional course for career by the Indian Youth. Every Year, there is an overwhelming number of students graduating from various engineering colleges located across the country. A significant number among those also start preparing for various graduate engineering examinations, like GATE or ESE. But, undoubtedly, the most common question asked by aspirants is – What is the difference between GATE and IES?

To answer in a few words – A LOT!

There are a significant number of factors which make GATE and IES Examination extremely different from one another. To put things in order once and for all, we have created this GATE vs IES Exam Comparison article. This article will clearly point out the basic differences between GATE and IES Examination.


GATE vs IES: Exam Objective

Understanding the objective behind an examination is extremely important. It basically provides a roadmap of your career graph. Do you wish to pursue higher education or join a company? You need to know all that.

GATE is basically an entrance examination for admissions into ME/ M.Tech in IITs, NITs and other prominent engineering colleges. But, candidates can also apply for various posts in PSUs on the basis of GATE Score. Many public sector undertakings such as BHEL, IOC, NTPC, BPCL, BARC, HPCL, etc., are using the GATE score for selecting candidates for their organizations.

IES is conducted by UPSC. When it comes to IES Examination, the recruitment examination is conducted with the objective of job procurement in the central government departments of engineering. The recruited candidate could be posted to Indian Railway Service of Engineers, Indian Railway Stores Service, Indian Defence Service of Engineers, Indian Ordnance Factories Services, and the Central Water Engineering and Central Power Engineering Service.

Hence, for someone who wishes to pursue further education, selecting among GATE vs IES, GATE will be the obvious choice.


GATE vs IES: Exam Pattern Comparison

In the battle between GATE vs IES, this is probably the most identifiable difference.

GATE will be an assessment of your problem solving capabilities. One Paper, Objective Pattern and only 65 Questions to be attempted in 180 minutes. But here is the catch! These questions are not as simple as you think. Critical Thinking, Systematic Thought Process and Deep Understanding of Concepts are Essential for solving questions. You will be allowed to use a calculator, but without crystal clear understanding of engineering concepts, you cannot crack GATE Examination.

IES Examination is a marathon. There are 5 papers and the exam is conducted for 3 days in total. The Examination will be part objective and part subjective. This is a big problem for a lot of candidates as the subjective pattern calls for legible handwriting, proof reading and a sense of uncertainty due to absence of options. But, when compared with problems asked in GATE Examination, these problems are more labour intensive. Hence, you need to really work on your speed as you will get only 1 minutes for 1 question in IES Examination. You can use calculator but only while attempting subjective paper.

Both GATE vs IES have their own set of roadblocks in terms of exam pattern and structure. We can clearly see both are quite different in terms of exam pattern.


GATE vs IES: Level of Difficulty Comparison

You really want this answered, dont you?

Well here it is then. The comparison between GATE vs IES on the basis of difficulty level should consider both type of questions and time to measure.

As we clearly mentioned above, GATE Exam requires more critical thinking than IES. The time variant is definitely a huge push when compared with IES Exam. But, it nowhere matches to the level of difficulty of questions asked in GATE Examination. IES Exam questions mostly involve a linear approach to solve. But GATE Exam Questions involve multiple concepts, that too, in the right order.

Hence, in this GATE vs IES scenario, GATE definitely takes the lead.


GATE vs IES: Level of Competition Comparison

The assessment of competition is yet another factor candidates should know. The table turns in this level, with IES taking the lead.

IES Exam, conducted by UPSC, is attempted by a lot more candidates than GATE. The ratio which should be considered here, is the number of candidates appearing in exam vs number of vacancies available. This ratio is almost 300:1 when we talk about IES Examination but it is 10:1 in GATE.

Hence, for every 1 seat in IES Examination, 300 students will be competing. Clearly, this round between GATE vs IES clearly goes to IES Examination.

Even though we are differentiating between these exams, we would recommend all the engineering aspirants to attempt both.

The GATE examination is in February or March and the ESE is held later, in May or June. Hence, while preparing for GATE Exam, you will not only cover over 70% of the essential topics of IES Examination, your chances of complementary study will also be more viable. A good score will work as a positive confidence booster for subsequent IES Examination.

Another valuable output from this activity is measuring all the available options. Are you positive that you will crack GATE? What about IES Examination? You need to have a backup option in case one happens to fall out. It is better to put in extra effort once than to wait an entire year. Hence, preparing for both GATE and IES Examination should be the way to be.

Let us know your views in the comments below.

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  1. Thank you !!! I like the way you have explained it in clear & to the point approach.
    And I wanna ask a question that how many attempts I have got or age limit for appearing in both examination as a general candidate ?

    • Good Question Sundar. Allow us to guide you regarding this query.

      Engineering Services Examination 2016
      Age Limit:A candidate for this examination must have attained the age of 21 years and must not have attained the age of 30 years on the 1st January, 2016 i.e. he/she must have been born not earlier than 2nd January, 1986 and not later than 1st January, 1995.
      The upper age limit prescribed above will be further relaxable
      (i) Upto a maximum of five years if a candidate belongs to a Scheduled Caste or a Scheduled Tribe;
      (ii) Upto a maximum of three years in the case of candidates belonging to Other Backward Classes who are eligible to avail of reservation applicable to such candidates. The closing date fixed for the receipt of the application will be treated as the date for determining the OBC status (including that of creamy layer) of the candidates.
      Number of Attempts: There is no restriction on number of attempts in Engineering Services Examination.

      GATE 2016
      Age Limit:There is no age restriction for the candidates who are willing to apply for GATE Exam 2016.
      Number of Attempts: Applicants can give Graduate Aptitude Test in engineering unlimited times, but every result of each attempt is valid for 2 years only after its result date. Aspirants can give this test many times as they want but one should try to clear it in first or second attempt.

      In short,
      ESE/IES exam is limited by Age and not by Number of Attempts whereas,
      GATE exam is neither limited by Age nor by Number of Attempts.

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