GATE Physics Syllabus 2023 PDF Download

By Mrinmay Ganguly|Updated : September 19th, 2022

IIT Kanpur has released the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 on the official website for candidates to download. Knowing the detailed syllabus of the exam you are preparing is essential. The question papers in the exam will be formulated strictly following the GATE Physics syllabus. If you are planning to prepare for the exam, you must check the section-wise GATE 2023 Physics syllabus.

The GATE Physics syllabus provides extensive information you must know before preparing for the exam. Better planning and time management can help you crack the upcoming GATE 2023 exam and get admission to your dream program. Thus, you can download the GATE Physics syllabus PDF given below. Here, we will discuss the GATE Physics syllabus 2023, the examination pattern, essential points to know about the exam, and the marking scheme in detail.

Table of Content

GATE Physics Syllabus 2023

GATE Physics syllabus 2023 consists of topics from General Aptitude and core Physics. The majority of the questions, i.e., 85 percent, are from the core subject (Physics), with the remaining 15% coming from General Aptitude topics. A total of 55 questions from core physics and 10 questions from general aptitude will be asked.

The GATE syllabus for Physics constitutes nine sections. The topics covered under these sections are mentioned below:

  • Mathematical Physics
  • Classical Mechanics
  • Electromagnetic Theory
  • Quantum Mechanics
  • Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics
  • Atomic and Molecular Physics
  • Solid State Physics
  • Electronics
  • Nuclear and Particle Physics

The GATE Physics syllabus for all these sections is discussed in detail below.

Section 1: Mathematical Physics

The Mathematical Physics section of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 includes topics such as Cauchy’s theorem, tensor ideas, differential equations, etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Mathematical Physics section.

Vector Calculus: Matrices; similarity transformations, diagonalization, eigenvalues, and eigenvectors; linear vector space: basis, orthogonality, and completeness; linear differential equations: second-order linear differential equations and solutions utilizing special functions. Cauchy-Riemann conditions, Cauchy's theorem, singularities, residue theorem, and applications; Laplace transforms, Fourier analysis; basic tensor ideas: covariant and contravariant tensors.

Section 2: Classical Mechanics

The Classical Mechanics section of the GATE 2023 Physics syllabus includes topics such as Hamilton’s equations, relativistic kinematics, inertia tensor, etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Classical Mechanics section.

Subjects

Topics

Lagrangian Formulation

Symmetry and conservation rules; D'Alembert's principle, Euler-Lagrange equation, Hamilton's principle, calculus of variations; Small oscillations: coupled oscillations and normal modes; central force motion: Kepler problem and Rutherford scattering; Hamiltonian and Hamilton's equations of motion; Liouville's theorem; canonical transformations: action-angle variables, Poisson brackets, Hamilton- Jacobi equation; rigid body dynamics: inertia tensor, orthogonal transformations, Euler angles, Torque free motion of asymmetric top; Hamiltonian and Hamilton's equations of motion; Liouville's theorem.

Special Theory of Relativity

Relativistic kinematics, Lorentz transformations, and mass-energy equivalence.

Section 3: Electromagnetic Theory

The Electromagnetic theory section of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 includes topics such as Poynting vector, Poynting theorem, Maxwell’s equations, etc. Further, the important topics of this section are Electrostatic and magnetostatic problems, including boundary value problems; image method; variable separation; dielectrics and conductors; magnetic materials; multipole expansion; Maxwell's equations; scalar and vector potentials; Coulomb and Lorentz gauges; electromagnetic waves in free space, non-conducting and conducting media; reflection and transmission at normal and oblique incidences; Electromagnetic wave polarization; Poynting vector, Poynting theorem; energy and velocity of electromagnetic waves; radiation from a moving charge.

Section 4: Quantum Mechanics

The Quantum Mechanics section of the GATE Physics syllabus includes topics such as variational method, WKB approximation, angular momentum, etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Quantum Mechanics section.

  • Quantum mechanics postulates
  • Uncertainty principle
  • Schrodinger equation
  • Dirac Bra-Ket notation, linear vectors, and Hilbert space operators
  • Step potential, finite rectangular well, tunneling from a potential barrier, particle in a box, harmonic oscillator, one-dimensional potentials.
  • Degeneracy in two and three dimensions
  • Hydrogen atom
  • Angular momentum and spin
  • Angular momenta addition
  • Variational method and WKB approximation
  • Time-independent perturbation theory
  • elementary scattering theory
  • Born approximation

Section 5: Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics

The Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics section of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 includes Bose-Einstein condensation, ensembles, phase equilibria, etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics section.

Subject

Topics

Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics

Thermodynamic laws

Macrostates and Microstates

Phase space

Ensembles

Partition function, Free energy, Thermodynamic quantities calculation

Classical and quantum statistics

First and second-order phase transitions, phase equilibria, and critical point

Degenerate Fermi gas

Black body radiation and Planck's distribution law

Bose-Einstein condensation

Section 6: Atomic and Molecular Physics

The Atomic and Molecular Physics section of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 includes topics such as Frank-Condon Principle, Raman effect and NMR etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Atomic and Molecular Physics section.

  • Spectra of one and many-electron atoms
  • LS and jj couplings in spin-orbit interactions
  • Fine and hyperfine structures
  • Zeeman and Stark effects
  • Electric dipole transitions and selection rules; rotational and vibrational spectra of diatomic molecules; electronic transitions in diatomic molecules
  • Franck-Condon principle
  • Raman effect
  • EPR, NMR, ESR, X-ray spectra
  • Lasers: Einstein coefficients, population inversion.

Section 7: Solid State Physics

The Solid State Physics section of the GATE 2023 Physics syllabus includes topics such as Diffraction methods, polarizability, ferroelectricity etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics of the Solid State Physics section in detail.

Subject

Topics

Solid State Physics

Free electron theory; band theory of solids: nearly free electron and tight-binding models; metals, semiconductors, and insulators; conductivity, mobility, and effective mass; elements of crystallography; diffraction methods for structure determination; bonding in solids; lattice vibrations and thermal properties of solids; free electron theory; free electron theory; band theory of solids: nearly free electron and tight-binding models; metals, semiconductors, and insulators; metals, semiconductors, and optical properties of solids; Kramers-Kronig relation, intra- and inter-band transitions; dielectric properties of solids; dielectric function, polarizability, ferroelectricity; magnetic properties of solids; dia, para, Ferro, antiferro, and ferri-magnetism, domains and magnetic anisotropy; dielectric properties of solids; dielectric function, polarizability, ferroelectricity; magnetic anisotropy, superconductivity: Type-I and Type-II superconductors, Meissner effect, London equation, BCS Theory, flux quantization.

Section 8: Electronics

The Electronics section of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 includes operational amplifiers, oscillators, active filters etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics of the Solid State Physics section in detail.

Semiconductors in Equilibrium: Negative and positive feedback circuits; oscillators, operational amplifiers, active filters; electron and hole statistics in intrinsic and extrinsic semiconductors; metal-semiconductor junctions; Ohmic and rectifying contacts; PN diodes, bipolar junction transistors, field-effect transistors; negative and positive feedback circuits; oscillators, operational amplifiers, active filters; basic digital logic circuits, combinational and sequential circuits, flip-flops, timers, counters, registers; A/D and D/A conversion.

Section 9: Nuclear and Particle Physics

The Nuclear and Particle Physics section of the GATE Physics syllabus includes topics such as Rutherford scattering, electromagnetic transitions, isospin symmetry etc. Further, let us discuss the important topics in the Nuclear and Particle Physics section.

Subject

Topics

Nuclear and Particle Physics

Nuclear radii and charge distributions, nuclear binding energy, electric and magnetic moments

Semi-empirical mass formula

Nuclear models

Liquid drop model, nuclear shell model

Nuclear force and two nucleon problem

Alpha, beta, and electromagnetic transitions in nuclei

Rutherford scattering, nuclear reactions, conservation laws

Fission and fusion

Particle accelerators and detectors

Elementary particles: photons, baryons, mesons, and leptons; quark model

Conservation laws, isospin symmetry, charge conjugation, parity, and time-reversal invariance.

GATE Physics Syllabus 2023 PDF

The updated GATE Physics syllabus for 2023 comprises General Aptitude and topics from core Physics. The main focus is to assess the candidates' knowledge in core Physics (PH) and therefore have 85% weight with 55 questions in the exam. The remaining 10 questions are asked from General Aptitude (GA) topics of 15% weight.

Candidates can download the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 PDF from the below link.

Download GATE Physics Syllabus 2023 PDF

GATE Physics Exam Pattern

The sectional marking scheme of the GATE Physics syllabus is given in the table below. Candidates can refer to the table below to prepare efficiently for the upcoming GATE 2023 exams.

Section

Distribution of Marks

Total Marks

Types of questions

GA

5Q x 1M = 5M

5Q x 2M = 10M

15 marks

MCQ

PH

25Q x 1M = 25M

30Q x 2M = 60M

85 marks

MCQ, MSQ and NATs

Negative marking for wrong answer - Only for MCQs:

1/3 for 1-mark questions

2/3 for 2-marks questions

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FAQs on GATE Physics Syllabus

  • The GATE Physics syllabus 2023 consists of a total of nine sections which are as follows:

    • Mathematical Physics
    • Classical Mechanics
    • Electromagnetic Theory
    • Quantum Mechanics
    • Thermodynamics and Statistical Physics
    • Atomic and Molecular Physics
    • Solid State Physics
    • Electronics
    • Nuclear and Particle Physics
  • We suggest that you prioritize and cover complex topics first, then approach relatively easier topics. This way, you will have sufficient time for multiple revisions and practice tests.

  • GATE Physics requires dedication, diligence, and intelligent time management to crack. Here are some practical tips for covering the GATE Physics syllabus 2023.

    • Prepare a daily schedule.
    • Start with basic concepts and topics.
    • Solve example exercises and practice questions from each chapter.
    • Practice using online calculators to get familiarized with them.
  • Candidates opting for Physics for GATE 2023 can opt for any one of EC, GG, IN, MA, MT, and ST as their second paper.

  • The recommended books to cover the GATE Physics syllabus are mentioned below:

    • Chapter-wise Solved Papers Physics GATE - Vijay Kumar
    • GATE Guide – Physics - GKP
  • The essential topics in the GATE 2023 Physics syllabus are the Zeeman effect, amplifiers, oscillators, Frank- Condon Principle, insulators, and semiconductors.

  • As per the GATE Physics syllabus, the main topics of the Mathematical Physics section are:

    • Cauchy’s theorem
    • Matrices
    • Eigenvalues and Eigenvectors
  • The level of the GATE Physics syllabus 2023 would be moderate to difficult based on our analysis. The syllabus is based on B.Sc. Physics program at central universities in India.

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