#CareerBytes: GATE or IIT-JAM - Which is better for you?
Graduate Aptitude Test in Engineering (GATE) and IIT JAM (Joint Admission Test for MSc) are two of India's most sought-after national-level entrance exams. These exams are conducted for admitting students to postgraduate courses at top educational institutes. However, many students often have doubts and are confused about what to choose: GATE or IIT JAM. Here's everything to know about GATE and IIT JAM.
A little about the GATE entrance exam
GATE is conducted jointly by the Indian Institute of Science (IISc), Bangalore and the seven old IITs on a rotational basis every year. It is mainly held for admission of graduate engineers to postgraduate courses in engineering/technology (ME, MTech, and PhD) at premier educational institutions. Many other top universities and colleges accept GATE scores for admission. GATE scores are also used for PSU recruitment.
What you need to know about IIT JAM
IIT JAM is held by any one of the seven old IITs for admitting candidates with BSc and applied sciences degrees to post-graduation courses offered by IITs, IISc, IISERs, NITs, and other top institutes. Those who qualify IIT JAM can get accepted to master's degree courses in science such as MSc (four semesters), Joint MSc and PhD, and MSc-PhD dual degree among others.
Who can appear for GATE and IIT JAM?
To apply for GATE, the candidate needs to hold at least a bachelor's degree in engineering/technology. In order to be eligible for IIT JAM, candidates should have a bachelor's degree in science or applied sciences with a score of at least 55% in graduation. However, engineering graduates can also appear for IIT JAM. But the eligibility depends on the engineering branch they graduated in.
About different exam papers and validity of scores
GATE is conducted for 25 engineering disciplines while IIT JAM has papers for seven subjects, including Mathematics, Physics, Chemistry, Mathematical Statistics, Geology, Biological Science, and Biotechnology. GATE score of a candidate is valid for up to three years while IIT JAM score is valid only for one year. However, GATE scores are valid for three years only for postgraduate admissions and not PSU recruitment.
GATE or IIT JAM: Which one should you choose?
GATE is meant for BTech/BE graduates while IIT-JAM is primarily conducted for BSc degree holders. Engineering graduates can go for both GATE and IIT-JAM. However, those who are interested in engineering/technical fields should ideally go for GATE; this will also allow them to opt for PSU jobs. Students who want to pursue R&D career in sciences and inter-disciplinary science/technology fields can go for IIT-JAM.