GATE Syllabus for CSE – Topics, Subject-wise Weightage Analysis

GATE CSE syllabus has been specifically planned to help the aspirants of GATE 2023 understand the right topics for the preparation of the exam. The Computer Science Engineering or CSE syllabus of GATE is vast, and therefore, candidates should have a clear know-how of the various topics to prepare, based on the subject-wise weightage.

The GATE syllabus 2023 will be almost similar to 2022, and no changes are expected in the eaxm pattern either. The GATE CSE syllabus revolves around the topics that the aspirants must have studied while pursuing under graduation course. GATE CS paper mainly comprises the questions from the topics of CS & IT, such as Computer Organization and Architecture, Digital Logic, Programming and Data Structures, Theory of Computation, Algorithms, Compiler Design, Databases, Operating System, and Computer Networks.

This article will help candidates to comprehend the most crucial aspects of GATE CSE syllabus including subjects, weightage, previous years’ CSE cut off stats, exam pattern, etc. 

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GATE Syllabus for CSE 2023 – Section-wise Topics

The syllabus given below is as per the previous years’ notification. In case of any changes in the GATE syllabus for CSE for the year 2023, we will update this page. Till then, candidates can go through the section wise CSE syllabus for GATE given below. 


Subject Topics
Discrete Mathematics 
  1. Propositional & First Order Logic
  2. Sets, Relations, Functions, Partial Orders & Lattices, Groups, Graphs: Connectivity, Matching, Colouring
  3. Combinatorics
  4. Counting, Recurrence Relations, Generating Functions
Linear Algebra
  1. Matrices
  2. Determinants
  3. System of Linear Equations
  4. Eigenvalues & Eigenvectors
  5. Lu Decomposition
  1. Limits
  2. Continuity & Differentiability
  3. Maxima & Minima
  4. Mean Value Theorem
  5. Integration
  1. Random Variables
  2. Uniform
  3. Normal
  4. Exponential
  5. Poison & Binomial Distributions
  6. Mean, Median, Mode & Standard Deviation
  7. Conditional Probability & Bayes Theorem


Boolean Algebra Number Representations
Combinational & Sequential Circuits Computer Arithmetic (Fixed & Floating Point)


Machine Instructions & Addressing Modes Alu, Data Path & Control Unit
Instruction Pipelining Memory Hierarchy:

  1. Main Memory & Secondary Storage
  2. I/O Interface (Interrupt & DMA Mode)


Programming in C. Recursions Arrays
Stacks Queues
Linked Lists Trees
Binary Search Trees Binary Heaps


Searching Sorting
Hashing Asymptotic Worst Case Time & Space Complexity:

  1. Greedy
  2. Dynamic Programming, Divide and Conquer
  3. Graph Search
  4. Minimum Spanning Trees
  5. Shortest Paths
Algorithm Design Techniques


Regular Expressions & Finite Automata Context-Free Grammars
Push-Down Automata Regular & Context-Free Languages
Pumping Lemma Turing Machines & Un-decidability


Lexical Analysis Parsing
Syntax-Directed Translation Runtime Environments
Intermediate Code Generation


Processes Threads
Inter Process Communication Concurrency & Synchronization
Deadlock CPU Scheduling
Memory Management & Virtual Memory File Systems


Err Model Relational Model:

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  1. Relational Algebra
  2. Tuple Calculus
  3. Sql. Integrity Constraints
  4. Normal Forms
  5. File Organization
  6. Indexing (E.G., B & B+ Trees)
  7. Transactions
  8. Concurrency Control


Topics Subjects 
Concept of Layering
  • Lan Technologies (Ethernet)
  • Flow & Error Control Techniques
  • Switching
  • Ipv4/Ipv6
  • Routers & Routing Algorithms (Distance Vector, Link State)
  • TCP/UDP & Sockets
  • Congestion Control
  • Application Layer Protocols (DNS, SMTP, POP, FTP, & HTTP)
Basics of WiFi Network Security
  • Authentication
  • Basics of Public Key & Private Key Cryptography
  • Digital Signatures & Certificates
  • Firewalls

GATE CSE – Subject-wise Weightage Analysis of 5 Years

Candidates can gain the insights of subject-wise weightage in the previous 5 years’ GATE CS & IT exam with the help of below table. It will help them decide how much emphasis they should lay on different sections.  

Subjects GATE 2016 GATE 2017 GATE 2018 GATE 2019 GATE 2020
Compiler Design 3.5% 4% 6% 6% 4%
Computer Networks 9% 6.5% 7% 10% 6%
Computer Organization (Important Subject) 7% 9% 11% 3% 11%
DBMS(Important Subject) 4.75% 6% 4% 8% 8%
Design & Analysis Algorithms 10.75% 5.5% 7% 7% 6%
Digital Logic 5% 5% 4% 9% 4%
Discrete Mathematics & Graph Theory 3.5% 7% 12% 5% 10%
Engineering Mathematics (Important Subject) 13.75% 8% 7% 6% 5%
General Aptitude(Important Subject) 15% 15% 15% 15% 15%
Operating Systems(Important Subject) 16.5% 10% 10% 10% 10%
Programming & Data Structure 10.75% 14.5% 10% 12% 12%
Theory Of Computation 9.25% 9.5% 7% 8% 9%

GATE CS Cut Off of Previous Years

The previous years’ qualifying cut off of GATE CSE helps the aspirants understand the estimated score they need to obtain to qualify GATE this year.

Category 2020 2019 2018 2017
General 28.5 29.5 25.00 25.00
SC/ ST/ PwD  19.0 19.7 16.60 16.60
OBC 25.6 26.6 22.50 22.50

GATE CSE Exam Pattern and Weightage Criteria

After gaining an understanding of the GATE CSE syllabus, as elaborated above, the aspirants must be willing to know about the weightage and pattern of exam for the same. Getting acquainted with the GATE CSE exam pattern and weightage criteria will help the candidates to plan their preparations well. 

As per the revised Prime Minister’s Research Fellowship (PMRF) scheme, the qualifying score for GATE exam has been changed to 650 from 750. Also, now the NITs, along with the 25 institutions, will also be eligible to grant the fellowship.

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As per the GATE exam pattern and weightage criteria-

  1. The exam is conducted in online mode for the time duration of 180 minutes, i.e. 3 hours.
  2. As per the marking scheme, some questions carry 1 mark each and other 2 marks each. For questions carrying 1 mark each, 1/3 marks are deducted for wrong answers. And for questions carrying 2 marks, 2/3 marks are deducted for incorrect response. 
  3. It must be noted that there is no negative marking for numerical type questions. 
GATE CSE Exam Pattern



Exam duration

3 hours
Exam mode

Online (Computer-based test)

Type and total number of Question

Total 65 Questions

MCQs and MSQs and/or Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions

Total marks of the exam


Total number of sections


Engineering Mathematics

Subject-specific questions

Marking Scheme

·         1 mark MCQs – 1/3 mark will be deducted for every wrong answer.

·         2 mark MCQs – 2/3 mark will be deducted for every wrong response.

·         Zero marks will be awarded for unattempted questions

·         No negative marking will be done for Numerical Answer Type (NAT) questions

GATE CSE – Weightage of Marks
Sections Number of Questions and Marks per part Number of Questions Maximum Marks
General Aptitude (GA) 5 questions of 1 mark each and 5 questions of 2 mark each 10 15
Engineering Math & CS 25 questions of 1 mark each and 30 questions of 2 mark each 55 85

GATE Syllabus for CSE – Recommended Books

We have given the names of the highly recommended books for the GATE CSE exam below:

  1. An Introduction to Formal Languages and Automata by Peter Linz
  2. Compilers: Principles, Techniques and Tools by Aho & Ullman
  3. Computer Networking: A Top-Down Approach by Kurose & Ross
  4. Computer Organization and Embedded systems by Carl Hamacher
  5. Database System Concepts by Korth
  6. Digital Design by Morris Mano
  7. Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications by Kenneth Rosen
  8. Introduction to Algorithms by Cormen
  9. Software Engineering: A Practitioner’s Approach by Pressman
  10. The C Programming language by Dennis Richie

GATE Syllabus for CSE – FAQs

Q. When will the authorities conduct the GATE 2023 exam for CSE?

GATE 2023 exam is most likely to be conducted in the month of February 2023 by IIT Kharagpur.

Q. How can I access the GATE syllabus for CSE?

Aspirants can visit the official website to access the detailed topic and branch wise syllabus for GATE CSE. Along with the official notification for the GATE exam, the authorities will release the CSE syllabus for the aspiring candidates. The candidates can refer to the detailed GATE CSE syllabus given above in this article.

Q. What’s the ideal preparation plan for GATE CSE 2023?

Candidates willing to appear in the upcoming GATE CSE exam 2023 are recommended to first analyse the syllabus of GATE CSE. Afterwards, they should make a time table with more focus on weaker sections and follow the same religiously. They can also take help from the most recommended books for GATE CSE preparation.

Q. Which books are highly recommended for GATE CSE?

The candidates must also have a look at the recommended books mentioned above in this article. Some of the best picks are ‘Computer Networking: A Top-Down Approach by Kurose & Ross’ and ‘Discrete Mathematics and Its Applications by Kenneth Rosen’. Referring to good books will help the candidates to prepare for GATE CSE 2023 efficiently without leaving any topic untouched.

Q. How many sections are there in the GATE CSE paper?

The GATE CSE paper is divided into two sections – Section A is General Aptitude and Section B includes Engineering Mathematics and Computer Science. 10 questions are asked from Section A and Section B will comprise 55 questions.

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