Comparison of GATE and ESE syllabus for Civil Engineering

SUBJECT                                    GATE UPSC ESE

Engineering Mathematics

Linear Algebra: Matrix algebra; Systems of linear equations; Eigen values and Eigen vectors.

Calculus: Functions of single variable; Limit, continuity and differentiability; Mean value theorems, local maxima and minima, Taylor and Maclaurin series; Evaluation of definite and indefinite integrals, application of definite integral to obtain area and volume; Partial derivatives; Total derivative; Gradient, Divergence and Curl, Vector identities, Directional derivatives, Line, Surface and Volume integrals, Stokes, Gauss and Green’s theorems.

Ordinary Differential Equation (ODE): First order (linear and non-linear) equations; higher order linear equations with constant coefficients; Euler-Cauchy equations; Laplace transform and its application in solving linear ODEs; initial and boundary value problems.

Partial Differential Equation (PDE): Fourier series; separation of variables; solutions of one-dimensional diffusion equation; first and second order one-dimensional wave equation and two-dimensional Laplace equation.

Probability and Statistics: Definitions of probability and sampling theorems; Conditional probability; Discrete Random variables: Poisson and Binomial distributions; Continuous random variables: normal and exponential distributions; Descriptive statistics – Mean, median, mode and standard deviation; Hypothesis testing.

Numerical Methods: Accuracy and precision; error analysis. Numerical solutions of linear and non-linear algebraic equations; Least square approximation, Newton’s and Lagrange polynomials, numerical differentiation, Integration by trapezoidal and Simpson’s rule, single and multi-step methods for first order differential equations.



Engineering Mathematics and Numerical Analysis


Structural Engineering

Engineering Mechanics: System of forces, free-body diagrams, equilibrium equations; Internal forces in structures; Friction and its applications; Kinematics of point mass and rigid body; Centre of mass; Euler’s equations of motion; Impulse-momentum; Energy methods; Principles of virtual work.








Solid Mechanics

Bending moment and shear force in statically determinate beams; Simple stress and strain relationships; Theories of failures; Simple bending theory, flexural and shear stresses, shear centre; Uniform torsion, buckling of column, combined and direct bending stresses.


Solid Mechanics

Elastic constants, Stress, plane stress, Strains, plane strain, Mohr’s circle of stress and strain, Elastic theories of failure, Principal Stresses, Bending, Shear and Torsion.




 Structural Analysis

Statically determinate and indeterminate structures by force/ energy methods; Method of superposition; Analysis of trusses, arches, beams, cables and frames; Displacement methods: Slope deflection and moment distribution methods; Influence lines; Stiffness and flexibility methods of structural analysis.





Structural Analysis

Basics of strength of materials, Types of stresses and strains, Bending moments and shear force, concept of bending and shear stresses; Analysis of determinate and indeterminate structures; Trusses, beams, plane frames; Rolling loads, Influence Lines, Unit load method & other methods; Free and Forced vibrations of single degree and multi degree freedom system; Suspended Cables; Concepts and use of Computer Aided Design.


Construction Materials

Construction Materials: Structural steel – composition, material properties and behaviour; Concrete – constituents, mix design, short-term and long-term properties; Bricks and mortar; Timber; Bitumen.




Building Materials

Stone, Lime, Glass, Plastics, Steel, FRP, Ceramics, Aluminum, Fly Ash, Basic Admixtures, Timber, Bricks and Aggregates: Classification, properties and selection criteria; Cement: Types, Composition, Properties, Uses, Specifications and various Tests; Lime & Cement Mortars and Concrete: Properties and various Tests; Design of Concrete Mixes: Proportioning of aggregates and methods of mix design.

Construction Management

Types of construction projects; Tendering and construction contracts; Rate analysis and standard specifications; Cost estimation; Project planning and network analysis – PERT and CPM.

Construction Practice, Planning and Management:

Construction – Planning, Equipment, Site investigation and Management including Estimation with latest project management tools and network analysis for different Types of works; Analysis of Rates of various types of works; Tendering Process and Contract Management, Quality Control, Productivity, Operation Cost; Land acquisition; Labour safety and welfare.

Concrete Structures

Working stress, Limit state and Ultimate load design concepts; Design of beams, slabs, columns; Bond and development length;

Prestressed concrete; Analysis of beam sections at transfer and service loads.

Design of Concrete and Masonry structures:
Limit state design for bending, shear, axial compression and combined forces; Design of beams, Slabs, Lintels, Foundations, Retaining walls, Tanks, Staircases; Principles of pre-stressed concrete design including materials and methods; Earthquake resistant design of structures; Design of Masonry Structure. 
Steel Structures

Working stress and Limit state design concepts; 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.

Design of Steel Structures:

Principles of Working Stress methods, Design of tension and compression members, Design of beams and beam column connections, built-up sections, Girders, Industrial roofs, Principles of Ultimate load design.

Geotechnical Engineering Soil Mechanics

Origin of soils, soil structure and fabric; Three-phase system and phase relationships, index properties; Unified and Indian standard soil classification system; Permeability – one dimensional flow, Darcy’s law; Seepage through soils – two-dimensional flow, flow nets, uplift pressure, piping; Principle of effective stress, capillarity, seepage force and quicksand condition; Compaction in laboratory and field conditions; One-dimensional consolidation, time rate of consolidation; Mohr’s circle, stress paths, effective and total shear strength parameters, characteristics of clays and sand.

Geo-technical Engineering

Soil exploration – planning & methods, Properties of soil, classification, various tests and inter-relationships; Permeability & Seepage, Compressibility, consolidation and Shearing resistance, Earth pressure theories and stress distribution in soil; Properties and uses of geo-synthetics.






Foundation Engineering

Sub-surface investigations – scope, drilling bore holes, sampling, plate load test, standard penetration and cone penetration tests; Earth pressure theories – Rankine and Coulomb; Stability of slopes – finite and infinite slopes, method of slices and Bishop’s method; Stress distribution in soils – Boussinesq’s and Westergaard’s theories, pressure bulbs; Shallow foundations – Terzaghi’s and Meyerhoff’s bearing capacity theories, effect of water table; Combined footing and raft foundation; Contact pressure; Settlement analysis in sands and clays; Deep foundations – types of piles, dynamic and static formulae, load capacity of piles in sands and clays, pile load test, negative skin friction.

Foundation Engineering

Types of foundations & selection criteria, bearing capacity, settlement analysis, design and testing of shallow & deep foundations; Slope stability analysis, Earthen embankments, Dams and Earth retaining structures: types, analysis and design, Principles of ground modifications.

Water Resources Engineering Fluid Mechanics

Properties of fluids, fluid statics; Continuity, momentum, energy and corresponding equations; Potential flow, applications of momentum and energy equations; Laminar and turbulent flow; Flow in pipes, pipe networks; Concept of boundary layer and its growth.


Forces on immersed bodies; Flow measurement in channels and pipes; Dimensional analysis and hydraulic similitude; Kinematics of flow, velocity triangles; Basics of hydraulic machines, specific speed of pumps and turbines; Channel Hydraulics – Energy-depth relationships, specific energy, critical flow, slope profile, hydraulic jump, uniform flow and gradually varied flow.

Fluid Mechanics, Open Channel Flow, Pipe Flow

Fluid properties; Dimensional Analysis and Modeling; Fluid dynamics including flow kinematics and measurements; Flow net; Viscosity, Boundary layer and control, Drag, Lift, Principles in open channel flow, Flow controls. Hydraulic jump; Surges; Pipe networks.

Hydraulic Machines and Hydro power

Various pumps, Air vessels, Hydraulic turbines – types, classifications & performance parameters; Power house – classification and layout, storage, pondage, control of supply.




Hydrologic cycle, precipitation, evaporation, evapo-transpiration, watershed, infiltration, unit hydrographs, hydrograph analysis, flood estimation and routing, reservoir capacity, reservoir and channel routing, surface run-off models, ground water hydrology – steady state well hydraulics and aquifers; Application of Darcy’s law.


Hydrological cycle, Ground water hydrology, Well hydrology and related data analysis; Streams and their gauging; River morphology; Flood, drought and their management; Capacity of Reservoirs.






Duty, delta, estimation of evapo-transpiration; Crop water requirements; Design of lined and unlined canals, head works, gravity dams and spillways; Design of weirs on permeable foundation; Types of irrigation systems, irrigation methods; Water logging and drainage; Canal regulatory works, cross-drainage structures, outlets and escapes.

Water Resources Engineering

Multipurpose uses of Water, River basins and their potential; Irrigation systems, water demand assessment; Resources – storages and their yields; Water logging, canal and drainage design, Gravity dams, falls, weirs, Energy dissipaters, barrage Distribution works, Cross drainage works and head-works and their design; Concepts in canal design, construction & maintenance; River training, measurement and analysis of rainfall.

Environmental Engineering Water and Waste Water

Quality 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, effluent discharge standards. Domestic wastewater treatment, quantity of characteristics of domestic wastewater, primary and secondary treatment. Unit operations and unit processes of domestic wastewater, sludge disposal.

Water Supply Engineering

Sources, Estimation, quality standards and testing of water and their treatment; Rural, Institutional and industrial water supply; Physical, chemical and biological characteristics and sources of water, Pollutants in water and its effects, Estimation of water demand; Drinking water Standards, Water Treatment Plants, Water distribution networks.

Waste Water Engineering

Planning & design of domestic waste water, sewage collection and disposal; Plumbing Systems. Components and layout of

sewerage system; Planning & design of Domestic Waste-water disposal system; Sludge management including treatment, disposal and re-use of treated effluents; Industrial waste waters and Effluent Treatment Plants including institutional and industrial sewage management.


Municipal Solid Wastes

Characteristics, generation, collection and transportation of solid wastes, engineered systems for solid waste management (reuse/ recycle, energy recovery, treatment and disposal).


Solid Waste Management

Sources & classification of solid wastes along with planning & design of its management system; Disposal system, Beneficial aspects of wastes and Utilization by Civil Engineers.

Air Pollution

Types of pollutants, their sources and impacts, air pollution meteorology, air pollution control, air quality standards and limits.

Noise Pollution: Impacts of noise, permissible limits of noise pollution, measurement of noise and control of noise pollution.

Air, Noise pollution and Ecology

Concepts & general methodology.



Transportation Engineering Transportation Infrastructure

Highway alignment and engineering surveys; Geometric design of highways – cross-sectional elements, sight distances, horizontal and vertical alignments


Geometric design of railway track


Airport runway length, taxiway and exit taxiway design.

Highway Pavements

Highway materials – desirable properties and quality control tests; Design of bituminous paving mixes; Design factors for flexible and rigid pavements; Design of flexible pavement using IRC: 37-2012; Design of rigid pavements using IRC: 58-2011; Distresses in concrete pavements.

Traffic Engineering

Traffic studies on flow, speed, travel time – delay and O-D study, PCU, peak hour factor, parking study, accident study and analysis, statistical analysis of traffic data; Microscopic and macroscopic parameters of traffic flow, fundamental relationships; Control devices, signal design by Webster’s method; Types of intersections and channelization; Highway capacity and level of service of rural highways and urban roads.


Planning & construction methodology, Alignment and geometric design; Traffic Surveys and Controls; Principles of Flexible and Rigid pavements design.



Alignment, methods of construction, disposal of muck, drainage, lighting and ventilation.



Railways Systems

Terminology, Planning, designs and maintenance practices; track modernization.




Terminology, layouts and planning.



Layout, planning & design.

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).


Classification of surveys, various methodologies, instruments & analysis of measurement of distances, elevation and directions; Field astronomy, Global Positioning System; Map preparation; Photogrammetry; Remote sensing concepts; Survey Layout for culverts, canals, bridges, road/railway alignment and buildings, Setting out of Curves.



Basic knowledge of Engineering geology & its application in projects.

Proper Channel for PSU to UPSC

About Author 


Author has worked with NHPC Ltd.(Central PSU) for more than 3 years and while working cleared UPSC ESE three times consecutively in 2012, 2013 and 2014. Author has received awards from the Chief Minister of UP twice for securing Merit Positions in High-School and Intermediate Examinations of UP Board and also honored by Department of Science/ UP for securing highest marks in Science in High-School Examination. Author also bagged the Silver Medal of the University in B. Tech. Author has a deep interest in Hindi Literature and also received the title of “Manas Mandal Sudharak” from Manas Samiti Kanpur.


I have found many candidates preparing for exams conducted by UPSC while working with PSU or Some other government organization. Some of the candidates are always concerned for the transfer of service agreement bond, technical resignation, proper channel and resignation procedure etc.

I have appeared in UPSC ESE consecutively three times starting from 2011 to 2014 along with working in NHPC Ltd. (Miniratna Company). I got selected with AIR-144, 073, 157 in ESE-2012, 2013 and 2014 respectively. Since I was working with a PSU, I always applied for the exam duly intimating my parent organization at each stage of the selection procedure. I have also found that many candidates do not intimate to their parent department while applying for any Competitive exams due to many reasons.

Let us understand the consequences if you will not intimate your parent organization:

  • Since UPSC does not ask for any experience certificate and No Objection Certificate for appearing in ESE, you can hide the fact without indicating in DAF (Detailed Application Form) and without intimating your current department, but it may cause trouble in future because these details will always be in record. Suppose you want to apply for any other post through Deputation, you cannot show your experience of previous job because you have not mentioned it in DAF while applying.
  • If while applying for UPSC ESE, you have not intimated to your current organization. You cannot give resignation indicating that you are going to join Some Central Govt. department allocated through UPSC ESE, but you have to give resignation on personal ground.
  • If you are under any Service Bond Obligation and your bond period is not completed in the current organization, you have to pay the currency of the bond and resignation must be on personal ground.
  • If your current organization is PSU, it must be having EPF (Employee Provident Fund) Scheme, and for State Government/Central Government the Scheme is NPS (New Pension Scheme). If you are coming from PSU, you have to withdraw the amount and If you are coming from State Government/Central Government department you can transfer your NPS account, without withdrawing your money, But for the transfer of account your resignation must be through proper channel.
  • If you are appointed through the ESE, you will get pay-protection and balance leave transferred, only if your earlier employer was a State Government/Central Government organization and resignation is through proper channel. In case of PSU, no provision of pay-protection is there.
  • In the rarest of the rare case, you may be in trouble if your current organization informs to UPSC that you have not applied through proper channel without intimating them. It may result into cancellation of candidature and a case may also be registered under Section-420 of IPC.

Proper Channel

Many candidates are not aware of the facts that every communication to the Human Resource division of the organization should be through proper channel. Proper Channel simply means that you have intimated through your controlling/reporting officer to the head of the division to the HR section of the organization, indicating “through proper channel” at the top of the letter. (E.g.- Chief Engineer ⇒Divisional GM ⇒ Divisional ED ⇒ GM (HR))

Technical Resignation

Technical Resignation simply means that you have applied through proper channel intimating at all the phases of the selection procedure.

Service Agreement Bond Transfer

Now-a-days, every organization like PSUs, BARC, DRDO etc., is following a trend of Service Agreement Bond. The bond mentions that you have to serve under that organization or Defence Services or Government of India for a particular period of time. If you have applied through proper channel, your bond gets transferred to the new organization clearly indication that you must complete the remaining period of the bond with the new organization. If you have applied through proper channel, it is the responsibility of your previous organization to communicate with the Concerned Ministry about your bond obligations and you need to sign the new bond with the new Organization for the remaining period of bond and it will be sent back to your earlier employer.

Intimation Stages

Many times it happens that candidates intimate only at the time of application only, but you must intimate the present employer at each phase like while application, while filling DAF and Interview and Finally resignation. While taking leave for appearing in exam, you should clearly mention that you are talking leave for appearing in Examination.

The aim of this article is to familiarize the peoples about the common mistakes that may create problem in your bright future and also aware the candidates about the procedure to be followed while applying for UPSC ESE or any other Examination.

For any query, please comment.



Hello Everyone

It is my constant endeavor to develop this blog as platform for all IES aspirants. I want to include as many diverse experiences of people as i can. In this article Nishek Jain shares his journey if becoming IES through mechanical engineering. I hope this article helps you in your preparation and overall guidance. He can be reached at



My Choice:

In Engineering we do a lot of multiple choice questions (MCQs) and answers to many of them are found by eliminating the not so suitable options. It was a similar situation. I graduated in 2011 and got opportunity to work in core mechanical engineering company for 3 years. The job was ok but after almost 2 years the work started becoming redundant and I was not happy. So I started looking for other options. I could think of 4 options:

  1. Job Change
  2. MBA
  3. Civil Services
  4. Engineering Services

Job Change was eliminated because I did not really know how to do it. I applied at few job portals and at websites of some good companies but did not get any good interview calls. Also I could not find many good companies where my specific experience of 3 years could be used and I might not be treated as a fresher.

MBA was again eliminated because I gave CAT two times with my job but could not get 99+ percentile because of less preparation and somehow I did not want to spend more time for CAT preparation.

Civil Services, though seemed very lucrative career choice, was again eliminated because I knew that I was not at all good at writing big essays and theoretical questions.

Finally Engineering Services, 1st question was: “Can I clear this exam?” I did a lot of research. Found some friends who have already cleared this exam, discussed with them. Had a look at the previous year papers and was finally confident that if I prepare well I can clear this exam.

2nd question was: “Will it really provide a good career and a solution to my present problem?” Again after a lot of research, the answer was yes. Engineering Services (especially Railways) provides a very dynamic and challenging career. There is a huge impact of your work on society and nation building and it is one of the most coveted and respectable job for engineering graduates. So, Engineering Services it was.


My Preparation:

I left my job and took coaching at Made Easy. I wanted to give just one best try so I thought of not leaving any help or support which I could get and so I thought of taking coaching and it was very helpful.

As it had been a long time since college, so coaching helped in recalling all the concepts in a faster way. Also, periodic tests were helpful in judging the present level of preparation. Good competition in the coaching centre motivated me to study harder. So, coaching was very helpful in my case, but I would not say that it is essential.

If one is a final year student or a recent pass out (or anybody) who remembers the basic concepts and can revise them on his own, then self study can be sufficient.


Strategy for anybody:

For Technical Part:-

  1. Revise all the technical subjects studied in college (if you did) or join a coaching centre to help you do that.
  2. If you are joining a coaching centre then revise your Class Notes on the same day. Practice the questions suggested by teacher and make short notes.
  3. No need to purchase books if you don’t have any. You don’t have that much time to go through all the books. Notes of good coaching centers are sufficient which are available at photocopy shops outside coaching centers.
  4. Practice previous 10-15 years IES questions both objective and subjective yourself. Many questions get repeated exactly or at least the type of questions remains more or less same.
  5. Join a good All India Test Series and give all the tests seriously.


For English and General Studies (GS):-

English and GS are going to play very important role (atleast till ESE 2016), so this area needs special attention and this is the section which helped me a lot. I got 140 in this paper.. 🙂

For English:-


  1. “VoLT Vocabulary” App: It is a recently launched android app which is very good for fast and fun vocabulary learning. It is based on the book “VoLT- Vocabulary Learning Techniques” by Abhishek Jain which I used for Vocab preparation. But now there is app and it is free so you can go for that.
  2. Word Power Made Easy by Norman Lewis: Very good book for vocabulary improvement but a bit lengthy and time taking.

Grammar, Sentence Correction etc:

English Theory Book of Made Easy and Previous year questions of this section really help. Same mistakes are repeated many times.

For General Studies (GS):

GS section consists of 2 parts: Static and Dynamic. Static one i.e. Geography, Polity, Biology & History and Dynamic one i.e. Current Affairs. For the Static part notes of any good coaching institute may help but for Dynamic part I recommend notes of A.P. Singh Sir from Made Easy.

In short:

 Focus on technical concepts and practice more and more questions. Revise the class notes (or short notes) again and again. Previous 10-15 years questions and a good Test Series is must. For ESE-2016, General Studies and English are also equally important, so do focus on them if you are a serious aspirant and want to clear ESE 2016. From 2017 onwards, what happens to this part of the exam is yet to be seen.


My Interview:

My UPSC Interview went well (according to me) but my marks were not that good. I got 120 out of 200. I practiced for the interview with 3-4 mock interviews but the feel of the real UPSC interview was totally different from any of the mock interview. ESE interview this time was mostly technical, no current affairs etc. Technical questions included many questions related to job experience, some basic concept based questions and few advanced application based questions. I could answer almost 50-60% of the total technical questions but my confidence level was good.


Tips for Interview:

As mentioned above, ESE 2015 interview was mostly technical. Also, as per at the new pattern of ESE which is to be implemented from 2017, major portion of the General Studies like History, Geography, Polity etc. is removed from syllabus. So it is my prediction that ESE interviews in future are going to be more and more technical. So I would like to share following tips:

  • Revise all the technical concepts thoroughly before the interview.
  • If you have worked for a significant amount of time, prepare about your job profile, your significant contribution, recent developments in your area of work etc.

Note: Your English speaking skills play very less role in ESE interview. You just need to know the right answer and should be able to convey it to them.


General (But very helpful) Tips:

In such long preparation duration, feeling low sometimes is a part of the game and it happens with everybody. So whenever such phase comes, you should not get too much tensed or depressed, you should just take some time off the studies and try to do something to cheer yourself up. Watching a movie, hanging out with friends for some time, eating some good food outside may help.

For achieving a big target, a dose of motivation is also very much required time to time. Motivational posters, videos, computer wallpapers etc. are really helpful. My favorite motivational quote is this one by Swami Vivekananda, “Arise, Awake and Stop not till the goal is reached”.



Life In a Psu-A comparative analysis

Welcome Readers,
This following post is the first installment of article written by Ayush Srivastava in which he explains his prior working in IOCL and his subsequent joining in railways. He can be reached at


Hello Folks!!!

This is Ayush Srivastava, IRSE Probationer, 2013-exam batch. I find pleasure in introducing myself, briefly as follows:

Graduation: B Tech (Civil) from Maulana Azad National Institute of Technology, Bhopal.

Graduating year: 2013           Graduating GGPA: 9.41/10.00            PG: None

GATE-2013 AIR: 84                Engineering Services Exam-2013 AIR: 23

Campus Selection: IOCL          GATE Recruitment: IOCL

So I need not tell again that prior to joining the Indian Railways Service of Engineers, I was working with Indian Oil Corporation Ltd., a public sector undertaking, under the Government of India. I was in line for the preparation of ESE since the beginning of my pre-final year, and so I won’t be much of a help in case you ask me WHAT TO DO and WHAT NOT in, say 3 or 4 months, prior to ESE for clearing the same. Seeing the whole lot of time I took in securing a “meh” rank like 23 in an exam like ESE, you are absolutely right with your conclusion that I was (and am) more of an average student requiring a lot of toil to move meager distances and keep things in my small head. But I am not here to talk about myself, but to share something which might help some of you, even though I am not sure of that.

So, after persistent hammering for 2 months, by my very good friend and a great blogger, Amit Singh, I finally present here, solely from my personal experiences, some scribbling related to stuff like:

  1. Life in a PSU
  2. ESE departments and a PSU like IOCL, NTPC and ONGC: An attempt of comparison.


I was selected in IOCL through campus as well as GATE score shortlisting. I joined IOCL on 22.07.2013 and worked there till 30.11.2014. I was working as Project Engineer in the Pipelines Division of IOCL at Allahabad and was involved in the shifting of Barauni-Kanpur underground oil pipeline. I am mentioning about my job profile at IOCL, here, to make you feel the nature of work that I was into. It was the best that IOCL could have offered to a civil engineer. Some major TECHNICAL issues which I looked after were construction of small buildings, preparation of petty estimates, concreting at field, route survey for pipeline and studying soil test reports. Besides these, I had to do a lot of letter drafting.

So what I gathered from my tenure of 16 months in IOCL can be summarized as:

  • You are related to what you have studied in your engineering, between 0%-10%, while you are on job in a PSU. This applies to some of the companies only viz. IOCL, ONGC, NTPC, SAIL and GAIL and that too for civil engineers specifically. I am not talking about core civil PSUs like RITES, NHPC and the like, as I bear no experience of these. Now this may become a point of work dissatisfaction for many (it was for me…I am not sure of others) as to be doing something completely not of your prime interest.
  • In a PSU, or I should say at my office at IOCL, apart from an engineer, I was an unsung stenographer who gathered the material for a letter, the typist who typed it, the incognito peon who carried the draft to the boss for approval, again the typist who corrected it if required, the office boy who dispatched the letter and the neat engineer who then dealt with the party to whom the letter was addressed, regarding the issues therein.

In a nutshell, it was something completely away from involving my authority and decision making. This again made me introspect sometimes, that what am I doing?

  • BUT!!!!!!…. There was this thing called money. Entry basic salary in a PSU is Rs.24900/-. There are a lot of perks apart from salary and a number of loans on meager interest offered by PSUs to the employees. Believe me, you earn a good decent living in a maharatna PSU.

ESE departments  and a Maharatna PSU: An attempt of comparison:

Now this is something big that I have tried. Please see to it that all the views herein are purely personal and based on my short stay at a PSU and even shorter stay at Indian Railways. Neither I intend to challenge or correct anyone, nor do I mean to offend anyone. This is just what I feel, and if at all it could be of any help to any of you.

  1. You are more involved with the CIVIL engineering you studied in your college in a department like Indian Railways or CPWD, when compared to working in a PSU like IOCL, ONGC, SAIL, NTPC.


  1. You enjoy more authority when you are in an ESE department at the entry level, as against that in a PSU. If I talk of railways, you have a substantial workforce to control and you are to extract the maximum potential of your subordinates under limited conditions, with 100% correctness of the technical aspect of the work.


  1. Your decision making and responsibility sharing is manifold in an ESE department. Particularly in railways a civil engineer is directly related to safety of passengers and so you are to take decisions for your jurisdiction length of track for which you are single-handedly responsible.


  1. Talking of the technical exposures, you will be actually building stuff like bridges and tunnels, and your work won’t be limited to checking concreting in the field. Some of these projects might of national importance like the bridge at Bogibeel which connects Arunachal and upper Assam to rest of India or a bridge over Chenab in J&K., which will definitely instill a pride in you.


  1. Ohh!!! How could I miss this??…..You shall be a Gazetted officer in an ESE department and will enjoy the social status associated with it (if any). Moreover, on a lighter note, now you will be authorized to attest the photocopies of the documents of all the students in your neighborhood and the whole area will be living in the (mis)belief that you can get their tickets confirmed anytime from anywhere to anywhere, in case you join railways.


  1. Yes…I now you are dying to know that….but as far as railways is concerned… will get a house with substantial space, a few good men to look after it and an office vehicle with a driver. I am not aware of the other ESE departments, but I want you to know that I was not provided with a vehicle when I was in IOCL, nor the house allotted to me there, was in a habitable condition.


  1. The cash in hand you get is always better in a Maharatna PSU, as compared to an ESE department. The difference can be as much as Rs 15000/-. Besides the prevailing rate of Daily Allowance (not the Dearness allowance, i.e. DA) is Rs 1150/- in IOCL, while the same is Rs 600/-in railways. You are one of the highly paid sections of Indian Working class (apart from the private corporates) with a highly stable job if you are in a Maharatna.

Now, since I have blabbered a lot of points of comparison on the subject, let me once again tell you that all the above are subjective and my personal perspective. I have heard people being very much satisfied with their jobs in IOCL, NTPC and the like and also there are people who complain of joining some of the ESE departments like MES, CWC and BRO after leaving a job in a PSU. So there are views of all types. What matters is what you want and so what you decide to achieve it.

So, now in a nutshell for civil engineering aspirants!!!!!!!! (again my personal views)……..

  1. If you get a department like Indian Railways or CPWD, then join it, no matter wherever you are working currently, unless point no. 3 is applicable to you.


  1. If you get a department like IOFs or CWC, and you wish to prepare for civil services in future, join it.


  1. If you have worked in a MAHARATNA for 3 or more years, then I think you should NOT consider joining any ESE department, unless point no. 2 is applicable to you. This is because you will be losing a lot of pay-scale, promotions of your parent PSU and moreover seniority for promotions in a department like railways, largely depends on your age. Lesser the age, better chances of promotions in the long run. So if you feel that you have crossed the bar of 26 years before coming to Indian Railways, then you may not be a “Horse for the long run” in railways (I can say of railways only).


  1. If your ultimate aim is IAS, and you are not getting preparation time in your current PSU, neither you want to sit home, then you may consider joining CPWD or IOFs or CWC through ESE, and never ever consider joining railways.


  1. If none of the points 1 to 4 apply to you, are you a hell lot of dissatisfied with your job in your current PSU, you are highly engaged in non-technical works which you feel are not your cup of tea and you may get retarded if you continue the same (just kidding!!!!), then just study hard, write off the damn ESE and come join any department of your like, YOU ARE WELCOME!!!!!!

Ayush Srivastava




Poll between PSU and IES


I have seen that people are confused between PSU and IES most of the time. Those who are already in PSUs face this dilemma even more. So, In this post well do a poll so as to judge that balance lies on which side. Before that ,let’s take a case study. I got this question from a reader of my blog.

Hi…I just want to discuss my confusions about PSU and IES.right now m working in IOCL(Indian Oil corporation ltd.) and preparing for IES-2015. I need your guidance in this regards.
Since I joined in 2013 its been almost an year working here…and as discussed on quora blog I got a deep insight and difference btw psu and ies working area…i m quite aware of the things as discussed by u..but what I want to point out is that there is some kind of politics which happens in psu’s and we have to juss” logo Ki ……… padti h…”…i juss want independence…and work is not that much…the work we r doing is same as done by dypty manager level officers…but its not amusing working here…people play politics…with each other…to show others low in front of boss…(boss is 1 for all) at my station…now regarding salary…right now my basic is 24900-50500 and I m getting around 58000(including HRA+scooter allowance+provident fund)…now plz tells me…the working conditions in IES…(railways or common)…salary with starting pay scale.(since money matters a lot)…promotions period…and max. Tenure at any posting/location…is there any politics there??…plz help me out…

In a conclusion…we must have some kind of support…or source if we want quick promotions…or hold transfers…moreover transfers happen after every 4/5 years(if there is no source)…all above management is poor…innocent people cant survive…here…

So wt is promotion and transfer rate there in IES…???wts the criteria…plz tell me briefly…

Now ,after going through his problem we should discuss this so as to gain some insight for our own decision making.We have already discussed about facilities and life of an IES officer. However, his main problem seems to be the politics played in his office. Let me tell you that , politics is the way humans interact with each other. We can’t expect out fellow worker to be nice and sympathetic to our cause. This world is a cruel place to live in , and its nice that we simply play politics not resort to violence. So, wherever you go , politics will follow, whether it is in IES or PSU.  If you want to be completely free of these things then take a job in MNC as these people play less politics and only do their assigned job. In government jobs, a kind of sycophantic behavior is observed because those who don’t want to do their work get appraisal  in this manner.  So in this situation , Kamal is caught between a rock and a hard place.These type of decisions are most difficult to take because they can either make or break your happy life.

Now, what do you think about the choice between IES and PSU? Vote in the poll below.

Madeeasy Award Ceremony pics 2014

Hello Everyone,
In order to encourage IES and GATE aspirants ,i have decided to share some pics of Madeeasy award ceremony 2014 in which IES and GATE toppers of all four streams were felicitated.This Award ceremony took place in April 2014. I am not doing a promotion for them but since i  have studied here and known it too well , i want to share those moments with you.

Sometimes, students ask me about how to motivate oneself for IES. This post is for them, see these pictures and think that one day you could be here. Not only you but your parents would  also be honored by going there. You feel special when you stand on the stage to receive the prize. This medal itself is not important but the recognition of your hard work and success will surely make you and your  family very proud.

So, this is your destiny waiting for you. Go and get it!!!


Surbhi Gautam, IES AIR-1 , Electronics Engineering
Surabhi Gautam,
IES AIR-1 , Electronics Engineering
Abhinav Das ,Electronics Engineeing GATE AIR-03
Abhinav Das ,Electronics Engineering


Bharat Aggarwal,IES Civil Engineering AIR-3
Bharat Agarwal,IES
Civil Engineering AIR-3
Babu Lal,Mechanical Engineering,GATE AIR-3
Babu Lal,Mechanical Engineering,GATE AIR-3
AshishBehera,Instrumentation Engineering ,GATE AIR-1
Ashish Behera,Instrumentation Engineering ,GATE AIR-1
Akash Kumar Aggarwal Electronics Engineering  GATE, AIR-01
Akash Kumar Aggarwal
Electronics Engineering
Ankit Goes ,Electrical Engineerin,GATE, Rank-01
Ankit Goes ,Electrical Engineerin,GATE, Rank-01
Anubhav Gupta , CS & IT GATE AIR-2
Anubhav Gupta , CS & IT
Bharat Kumar,IT GATE Rank-03
Bharat Kumar,IT
GATE Rank-03
Gaurav,Civil Engineering GATE AIR-2
Gaurav,Civil Engineering


IES toppers group photo of all branhes
IES toppers group photo of all branches
GATE toppers group photo
GATE toppers group photo
IES,Civil Engineering Toppers
IES,Civil Engineering Toppers(including myself)

Following are pics of some of  female achievers of IES and GATE. They deserve mention here.

_DSC1251_zpse773b58a _DSC1252_zps5b888e9e _DSC1262_zps775f4d54 _DSC1271_zps747c61c6 book_9_zps5fdc7785 book_23_zps4d65bbf9 book_24_zps9bc8e280 book_54_zps3e83947b DSC_0118_zps0fe10cd3 DSC_0119_zps82e78005

Disclaimer:- I don’t hold copyright for these photograph. Madeeasy Group is the sole owner of these photographs.

IES Examination Format

MARKS There is only one general ability paper of (100+100) 200 marks There are 2 objective papers of 200 marks each. There are 2 subjective papers of 200 marks each.
No of Question 120 120 in each paper Generally 8 main questions out of which 5 are to be done(each paper)
Day of Exam General Ability paper is held on day 1. Objective 1 and objective 2 papers are held on day 2. Conventional 1 and conventional 2 papers are held on day 3.
Duration 2 hours 2 hours each 3 hours each
Exam Timing 9am-11am 9am -11am and 2pm-4pm 9am-12noon and 2pm-5pm
Difficulty level Easy Moderate Difficult
Type of study required Very Extensive Extensive Intensive
Scoring potential Very High High Average
Source of Study Newspapers, magazines
Madeeasy material and class notes of GS,ncert, vocab notes, grammar book, test series
Standard textbooks,madeeasy materials and class notes, test series Standard textbooks, Madeeasy materials and class notes, test series
Strategy Study it all round the year Mostly objective preparation should be finished upto GATE exam Mostly subjective preparation should be done after GATE exam.
On the day of Examination Water Bottle
Admit Card
Black Ball Point Pen
Water Bottle
Admit Card
Black Ball Point Pen
Water Bottle
Admit Card
Blue and Black Pen

Is it right to leave PSU and go for IES

Ganesh Pal asks this question
“I have gone through your blog and i like it…and i have got your mail id 4m there..

i have some confusion in my mind regarding IES Preparation…presently m working in NTPC 4m last 3 yrs. nd i hd done coaching in made easy of IES Preparation.   from dat tym i m very keen to be in IES but due to some circumstances  i hadn’t go through….now m in state of confusion due to some reason as my age is 30 yrs nd here i gt good package …but my posting is in worst plant of NTPC ie in Assam…
Please suggest me that at dis age or in dis package is it is right to prepare for IES-2015. ….i have well prepared notes of mine…my branch is mechanical….my college was NIT Allahabad…2009 pass-out…”


Is it right to leave PSU and go for IES after significant years of service in PSUs?
This is a question which has no pet answer only a discussion is possible. So here we are…

These are the few points which we are going to consider while we analyze the situation.

1. When you leave, at that time, you cannot expect the facilities offered by PSU and by an IES service (lets assume railways) will be at par. It can’t be same as you will be entering at junior grade (JG) level, your salary will be less, maybe only 40% of what you are getting from PSU after 7-8 years of service.
Also you might have settled in life and your expenses will be huge than a college freshers, you might be having kids..
These things you have to ask yourself. Can you manage your life in-spite of this drastic change in your professional life.

2. What are your job quality expectations? Are you not satisfied by the quality of work or is it the place of posting that bothers you?
Well if its the quality of work then Engineering services offers you a wide variety of work (like railways, CWS, Roads).
There is a work for every engineer and that to of his/her core branch.
If its because of the place of posting then there is not much respite as the service is of all India level you cannot expect to get your favorite place.

3. I have met a lot of people who has transitioned from PSUs to IES (Specially Railways). Some of them (only few actually) have opted it at the age of 30 something and from PSUs like IOCL etc. One thing for sure is the early you enter in this service the more is scope as the promotion is more or less time bound. So you cant expect to get the top positions.

4. Two versions:
If you ask to a higher officer maybe (SAG) that you have opted IES at the age of about 30 and that too leaving a shining PSU, his first reaction would be “WHY?, aisa kya dikha railways mein, yaha Promotions are slow…re-numeration is not attractive if you compare with PSUs..workload is much (well its everywhere) “.
So for them its not a right decision. But they are mostly people who doesn’t have any experience in PSUs.

And if you ask someone who has switched PSU, He would say ” workload was too much, odd duty hours, far away posting places” these type of things and also one most heard sentence “Class 1 officer ki baat hi kuch aur hai” (I do not certainly agree with it) . Well, Grass is always greener on the other side of court. Well i say, Yes its greener but only a few shades…

PS: I hope this help you in someway to makeup your mind and decide judiciously.

Ravinder Singh
(IRSE 2012 Batch)

IES Objective Preparation

IES examination consists of 2 objective papers on second day.The syllabus is divided into two parts:- Objective paper 1 and Objective Paper 2. You should be thorough with the syllabus of both the papers.

Objective examinations are about speed and accuracy. They test your problem solving skills in very limited time. There are few points you should keep in mind while preparing for objective exam.

1. GATE:-GATE paper is largely similar to IES objective but GATE in more analytical than IES. However you need different strategies to handle these two paper. No. Of questions and their difficulty also vary. GATE is more innovative than IES. UPSC is not very innovative in engineering examinations. Objective exams are scoring but you must have conceptual clarity. GATE is held in January/February, so preparing for GATE definitely helps in IES objective exam. The bottom line is that you can prepare simultaneously for GATE and IES objective.

2. SPEED:-In IES objective paper,there are 120 questions of 200 marks which are to be solved in 2 hour duration. So 1 question per minute should be the rate of solving question. Therefore you should practice objective questions using a watch and sticking to the time. Attempt at least 100 questions. Students are already scoring very good marks in objective papers.Try to maintain speed at the rate of 60 questions per hour. You can’t lower your speed than this else disaster is waiting for you. In one of the paper I could reach up to only 30 questions in one hour so in the next hour i went through 90 question. This is was very risky thing to do. If i had not maintained speed in last hour then you can well imagine the situation. So maintain a steady rate of 60 questions per hour.

3. INSURANCE:-Getting marks in subjective exam is very uncertain but you can be sure of getting every marks in objective exam if you attempt the questions correctly. So here lies the answer to all your worries. Score so well in objective papers that even if you get average marks in subjective exam ,you are pretty safe and still in the race. This is like insurance policy where you get assured returns. If your subjective exam also goes well then your are on the path of being a topper. Always dream of becoming a topper never a qualifier.

5. EXTENSIVE STUDY:-There is a difference between the study pattern when you prepare for objective examination. In subjective study more depth is required but objective papers require wider coverage of the topic. So you have to study extensively for objective and intensively for subjective. Cover almost every topic from far reaches of the books. Don’t leave anything, even study unconventional things.Observe the type of objective questions that are asked from that particular topic. Subjective exam requires practice but objective paper demand a good memory and analytical skills. The more you remember , the better it is. You will have to study from standard textbooks to prepare for objective exam because these demand wider coverage of topic.