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GATE Syllabus for Civil Engineering (CE)

Last Updated - July 19th 2019

GATE Syllabus and exam pattern have remained the same over the years. The examination is conducted for 25 different engineering disciplines. GATE Civil Engineering syllabus comprises 3 sections namely- General Aptitude, Engineering Mathematics and Civil Engineering. The weightage of the sections is 13%, 15% and 72% respectively. 

Latest: Registration window for the exam closed on October 1, registrants can download their admit cards from January 3. Download now!

  • This year, GATE 2020 is scheduled for February 1, 2, 8 and 9, 2020 in CBT mode.
  • The exam includes 2 types of question - Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) and Numerical Answer Type (NAT)
  • Syllabus for Civil Engineering paper mostly covers the graduation level topics
  • GATE Syllabus for civil engineering section includes the question from seven sections

Direct link to download GATE Civil Engineering (CE) syllabus PDF 

The sections are as follows:

Engineering MathematicsWater Resources EngineeringGeomatics EngineeringTransportation Engineering
Structural EngineeringEnvironmental EngineeringGeotechnical EngineeringTransportation Engineering
  • The paper consists of 65 questions worth 100 marks
  • Engineering Mathematics is the most important section. The section carries around 13% weightage of the Civil Engineering section.

GATE is a national level online test which is conducted for admission to M.Tech/ PhD in the field of engineering and technology. It is conducted on a rotational basis by zonal IITs and IISc Bangalore. 

GATE 2020 Syllabus for Civil Engineering (CE)

GATE Syllabus of Civil engineering consists of seven sections namely- Engineering Mathematics, Structural Engineering, Geotechnical Engineering, Water Resources Engineering, Environmental Engineering, Transportation Engineering, and Geomatics Engineering. The detailed syllabus of all sections is mentioned below. 

Civil Engineering is a professional engineering discipline that deals with the design, construction, and maintenance of the physical & naturally built environment, including works like roads, bridges, canals, dams, and buildings. It is traditionally broken into a number of sub-disciplines.

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Engineering Mathematics

Linear AlgebraMatrix algebra; Systems of linear equations; Eigen values and Eigen vectors.
CalculusFunctions of single variable, Limit, continuity and differentiability, Mean value theorems, Evaluation of definite and improper integrals, Partial derivatives, Total derivative, Maxima and minima, Gradient, Divergence and Curl, Vector identities, Directional derivatives, Line, Surface and Volume integrals, Stokes, Gauss and Green’s theorems.
Differential equationsFirst order equations (linear and nonlinear), Higher order linear differential equations with constant coefficients, Cauchy’s and Euler’s equations, Initial and boundary value problems, Laplace transforms, Solutions of one-dimensional heat and wave equations and Laplace equation.
Complex variablesAnalytic functions, Cauchy’s integral theorem, Taylor and Laurent series.
Probability and StatisticsDefinitions of probability and sampling theorems, Conditional probability, Mean, median, mode and standard deviation, Random variables, Poisson, Normal and Binomial distributions.
Numerical MethodsNumerical solutions of linear and nonlinear algebraic equations Integration by trapezoidal and Simpson’s rule, single and multi-step methods for differential equations.

Preparation Books for Engineering Mathematics

Engineering Mathematics is the most important section of GATE Exam. This section carries around 13% weightage of questions in the exam. Here are some important books for preparation of engineering mathematics. 

  • GATE Engineering Mathematics by Abhinav Goel and Suraj Singh
  • Engineering Mathematics - Vol.1 by Sharma J.P
  • Engineering Mathematics - Part 1 by Dr. D.S.C.
  • Advanced Engineering Mathematics by Sastry S.S
  • Problems and Solutions in Engineering Mathematics by T.C. Gupta

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Structural Engineering

TopicSub Topic
MechanicsBending moment and shear force in statically determinate beams. Simple stress and strain relationship: Stress and strain in two dimensions, principal stresses, stress transformation, Mohr’s circle. Simple bending theory, flexural and shear stresses, unsymmetrical bending, shear center. Thin walled pressure vessels, uniform torsion, buckling of column, combined and direct bending stresses.
Structural AnalysisAnalysis of statically determinate trusses, arches, beams, cables and frames, displacements in statically determinate structures and analysis of statically indeterminate structures by force/ energy methods, analysis by displacement methods (slope deflection and moment distribution methods), influence lines for determinate and indeterminate structures. Basic concepts of matrix methods of structural analysis.
Concrete StructuresConcrete Technology- properties of concrete, basics of mix design.
Steel StructuresAnalysis and design of tension and compression members, beams and beam columns, column bases. Connections- simple and eccentric, beam–column connections, plate girders and trusses. Plastic analysis of beams and frames.

Preparation Books for Structural Engineering

  • Structural Engineer's Pocket Book by Fiona Cobb
  • Fundamentals of Structural Engineering by Jerome J. Connor and Susan Faraji
  • Structural Engineering Formulas by Ilya Mikhelson
  • Structural Analysis by R. C. Hibbeler
  • Structural engineering reference manual by Alan Williams

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Geotechnical Engineering

TopicSub Topic
Soil MechanicsOrigin of soils, soil classification, three-phase system, fundamental definitions, relationship and interrelationships, permeability &seepage, effective stress principle, consolidation, compaction, shear strength.
Foundation EngineeringSub-surface investigations- scope, drilling bore holes, sampling, penetration tests, plate load test. Earth pressure theories, effect of water table, layered soils. Stability of slopes-infinite slopes, finite slopes. Foundation types-foundation design requirements. Shallow foundations-bearing capacity, effect of shape, water table and other factors, stress distribution, settlement analysis in sands & clays. Deep foundations–pile types, dynamic & static formulae, load capacity of piles in sands & clays, negative skin friction.

Preparation Books for Geotechnical Engineering

  • Fundamentals of Geotechnical Engineering by Braja M Das
  • Geotechnical Engineering by T. G. Sitharam and T.N. Ramamurthy
  • Principles of Geotechnical Engineering by Braja M Das
  • Geotechnical Engineering Design by Ming Xiao
  • Geotechnical Engineer's Portable Handbook by Robert W Day

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Water Resources Engineering

TopicSub Topic
Fluid Mechanics and HydraulicsProperties of fluids, principle of conservation of mass, momentum, energy and corresponding equations, potential flow, applications of momentum and Bernoulli’s equation, laminar and turbulent flow, flow in pipes, pipe networks. Concept of boundary layer and its growth. Uniform flow, critical flow and gradually varied flow in channels, specific energy concept, hydraulic jump. Forces on immersed bodies, flow measurements in channels, tanks and pipes. Dimensional analysis and hydraulic modeling. Kinematics of flow, velocity triangles and specific speed of pumps and turbines.
HydrologyHydrologic cycle, rainfall, evaporation, infiltration, stage discharge relationships, unit hydrographs, flood estimation, reservoir capacity, reservoir and channel routing. Well hydraulics.
IrrigationDuty, delta, estimation of evapo-transpiration and Crop water requirements.
Design oflined and unlined canals, waterways, head works, gravity dams and spillways. Design of weirs on permeable foundation. Types of irrigation system, irrigation methods. Water logging and drainage, sodic soils.

Preparation Books for Water Resources Engineering

  • Irrigation and Water Power Engineering by B.C. Punmia, Ashok Kumar Jain, Arun Kumar Jain, and Pande Brij Basi Lal 
  • Water Resources Engineering by Gupta
  • Water-Resources Engineering: International Edition by David A Chin
  • Water Supply Engineering by Santosh Kumar Garg
  • Hydrology and Water Resources by Experienced Professor

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Environmental Engineering

TopicSub Topic
Water requirementsQuality standards, basic unit processes and operations for water treatment. Drinking water standards, water requirements, basic unit operations and unit processes for surface water treatment, distribution of water. Sewage and sewerage treatment, quantity and characteristics of wastewater. Primary, secondary and tertiary treatment of wastewater, sludge disposal, effluent discharge standards. Domestic wastewater treatment, characteristics of domestic wastewater, primary and secondary treatment Unit operations and unit processes of domestic wastewater, sludge disposal.
Air PollutionTypes of pollutants, their sources and impacts, air pollution meteorology, air pollution control, air quality standards and limits.
Municipal Solid WastesCharacteristics, generation, collection and transportation of solid wastes, engineered systems for solid waste management (reuse/ recycle, energy recovery, treatment and disposal).
Noise PollutionImpacts of noise, permissible limits of noise pollution, measurement of noise and control of noise pollution.

Preparation Books for Environmental Engineering

  • Introduction to Environmental Engineering by David A Cornwell and Mackenzie L Davis
  • Chemistry for environmental engineering and science by Clair N. Sawyer
  • Elements of Environmental Engineering by K. N. Duggal
  • Textbook of Environmental Engineering by P. Venugopala Rao
  • Environmental engineering and sanitation by Joseph A. Salvato

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Transportation Engineering

TopicSub Topic
Highway PlanningGeometric design of highways, testing and specifications of paving materials, the design of flexible and rigid pavements.
Traffic EngineeringTraffic characteristics, the theory of traffic flow, intersection design, traffic signs and signal design, highway capacity.

Preparation Books for Transportation Engineering

  • Principles of Transportation Engineering by Chakraborty and Das
  • Transportation Planning: Principles, Practices and Policies by Sarkar Prabir Kumar, Maitri Vinay, and Joshi G.J
  • Text Book On Transportation Engineering by Chandola and S.P 
  • Highway Engineering by Rangwala
  • Transportation Engineering and Planning by C. S. Papacostas and Panos Prevedouros

GATE 2020 Syllabus CE- Geomatics Engineering

Principles of surveying; Errors and their adjustment; Maps - scale, coordinate system; Distance and angle measurement - Levelling and trigonometric levelling; Traversing and triangulation survey; Total station; Horizontal and vertical curves. Photogrammetry - scale, flying height; remote sensing - basics, platform and sensors, visual image interpretation; Basics of Geographical information system (GIS) and Geographical Positioning System (GPS).
The importance of surveying, principles and classifications, mapping concepts, coordinate system, map projections, measurements of distance and directions, levelling, theodolite traversing, plane table surveying, errors and adjustments, curves.

Preparation Books for Geomatics Engineering

  • Geomatics Engineering: A Practical Guide to Project Design by Clement A. Ogaja
  • Basics of Geomatics by Mario A. Gomarasca
  • Precision Surveying: The Principles and Geomatics Practice by John Olusegun Ogundare
  • Elementary Surveying: An Introduction to Geomatics by Charles D. Ghilani and Paul R. Wolf

GATE 2020Exam Pattern

GATE is an all India competitive exams for engineers from different branches. There are total 25 papers in GATE. Applicants can appear for one paper at one time. Candidates are required to make sure that they go through  GATE Exam Pattern before starting the preparation of the exam. 

  • GATE is held in online mode only (Computer-Based Test).
  • The question paper consists of 65 questions worth 100 marks.
  • The exam includes 2 types of question - Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs) and Numerical Answer Type (NAT).
  • There is no negative marking for NAT but it is applicable for MCQs.
  •  For 1 mark MCQs, 1/3 marks will be deducted for every wrong answer.
  • Likewise, for 2 marks MCQs, 2/3 marks will be deducted.
  • The duration of the exam is three hours. 
  • GATE comprises 3 sections namely- General Aptitude, Engineering Mathematics and specific subject of the paper
GATE Exam Pattern
GATE 2020SectionName of the SectionWeightage
Section 1Engineering Mathematics13% 
Section 2General Aptitude15% 
Section 3Subject Questions72% 

GATE 2020: GATE Syllabus Of Other Papers

Aerospace EngineeringAEMechanical EngineeringME
Agricultural EngineeringAGMetallurgical EngineeringMT
Engineering SciencesXEMining EngineeringMN
Chemical EngineeringCHPetroleum EngineeringPE
Computer Science and Information TechnologyCSProduction and Industrial EngineeringPI
Electronics and CommunicationECTextile Engineering and Fibre ScienceTF
Electrical EngineeringEEBiotechnologyBT
Instrumentation EngineeringIN



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