Electromagnetics: Preparation Strategies for ESE/IES 2021

Updated On -

Jul 18, 2020

Abanti Pramanik's profile photo

Abanti Pramanik

Exams Prepmaster

Indian Engineering Services (IES) or Engineering Services Examination (ESE) is for engineering graduates who wish to work for the Government of India. The examination is conducted on a national level once a year. The Union Public Service Commission (UPSC) is the body in charge of conducting the exam. The minimum qualification for an aspirant to appear in this examination is a degree in engineering. Anyone from the age of 21 to 30 can apply. The application fee is 200 rupees. The selection process has three rounds - preliminary, main exams and interview. Preliminary exams contain objective type questions. On the other hand, conventional descriptive-type questions are asked in main exams. There are a total of 495 vacancies across the country for ESE 2021. If selected, functions extend to and are not limited to telecommunications, central water engineering, Indian railways, central engineering services, to name a few.

Latest Update-

In the light of covid-19 pandemic, a number of entrance examinations stand postponed. Let’s take a look at the important dates that IES aspirants must remember.

Prepp Test Series

ESE 2021- Important Dates

  • Release of the official IES 2021 notification: 4th week of September 2020
  • Online applications for IES 2021: 4th week of September 2020
  • Last date to fill online application form: 4th week of October, 2020
  • Admit card release date: 2nd week of December, 2020
  • Preliminary examinations: January 3, 2021
  • IES preliminary exam result: March, 2021
  • Main examination: June 27, 2021
  • Final results: September, 2021

ESE 2021-Exam Pattern

Now that we know the important dates to remember, let’s take a look at the exam pattern. As mentioned above, the IES entrance exam is conducted in 3 phases.

Phase 1 (Preliminary)

  • There are two question papers which consist of multiple choice questions.
  • The maximum marks in these objective type papers are 500, 200 marks in paper 1 and 300 marks in paper 2.
  • Marks scored in this stage will be taken into consideration while forming the merit list.
  • The examination follows the negative marking scheme. One-third marks will be deducted for every wrong answer. If a candidate gives two answers for the same question, it will be treated as a wrong answer (even if one of them is correct). One-third marks will be deducted in this case also.
  • If a candidate chooses not to answer a question, no marks will be deducted.

ESE Preliminary papers

Paper 1

Subject: General Studies and Engineering Aptitude

Maximum marks: 200

Time allocated: 2 hours

Paper 2- subject specific- Civil/Mechanical/electrical/electronics

Maximum marks: 300

Time allocated: 3 hours

Phase 2 (Mains)

  • The second phase of the examination consists of two conventional-type question papers.
  • The maximum marks for both papers are 600, 300 for each.
  • These question papers are only in english and are supposed to be answered in the same language.

ESE Mains papers

Paper 1- subject specific (Civil/electrical/Mechanical/Electronics)

Maximum marks: 300

Time allocated: 3 hours

Paper 2

Maximum marks: 300

Time allocated: 3 hours

Phase 3 (Interview)

The third and the final stage is an interview or a personality test. On this stage, the candidates’ leadership skills, intellectual curiosity, social awareness and integrity is put to a test.

How to prepare for Electromagnetics?

Now that we have covered the basics of IES entrance exams, let’s take a closer look at how to prepare for electromagnetism. It is one of the most important areas of study for both IES and GATE. Many candidates take electromagnetics for a tough subject. They find the subject challenging from their graduation days. If the concepts remain unclear from an early stage, it would be difficult for a candidate to perform well in IES entrance exams. Here is a list of a few things that you must know before you start preparing.

Marks weightage

  • In preliminary examinations, a candidate can find at least 7 to 10 questions on electromagnetics which will constitute 14 to 20 marks.
  • The questions will range from basic to advanced electromagnetics. In the main examination, a candidate can expect questions of at least 25 to 50 marks.

Topic-wise importance

  • The subject includes electromagnetics basics, static electric fields, types of materials, static material fields, Maxwell’s equations.
  • Electromagnetics is heavily based on mathematics. It would not be a good idea for a candidate to skip any topic in electromagnetics. All the topics are linked to one another, skipping any one of them would mean not being able to understand the rest of them.
  • Foundation of the subject should be strong before one jumps to the advanced stage. Fundamentals of electromagnetics can be understood by understanding the physical interpretations and visualization.

General tips on preparing Electromagnetics for ESE exam

  • Remembering formulae
    • Quick problem-solving requires a sharp memory to remember all the formulae.
    • It will be helpful if the candidate understands and memorizes the formulae.
    • Making handwritten notes and coming back to it to give it a thorough revision is highly recommended.
  • Practice, practice and practice
    • Electromagnetics is a mathematical subject. Electromagnetism basics and engineering mathematics can help a candidate understand the subject in its entirety.
    • The subject involves a number of formulae and numericals.
    • Mathematical problems can only be solved by regular and thorough practice. Dedicate a few hours of your day to problem-solving.
    • This will not only help you come across various possible questions but will also help you solve the problems in a quick manner.
  • Dealing with theory
    • Even though Electromagnetics is highly mathematical in nature, there are a number of topics which are theoretical.
    • For instance, types of materials is one such topic that is memory-based but requires thorough revision.
    • Candidates can keep the theoretical topics for the last few days. If need be, make handwritten notes and keep coming back to them for revision.
  • Reliable books and study material
    • It is highly recommended for a candidate to only rely on his/her handwritten notes.
    • While preparing for competitive exams, maintaining handwritten notes saves time and the candidate does not have to depend on extra books or reading materials.
    • One can always come back to their own notes for better understanding of concepts and revision.
    • If a candidate must depend on an extra book, then Schaum’s series is a good one. Sadiku can also be referred to, for both theory and equations.
    • Many times, a candidate gets caught up with finding study material and reference books online and ends up studying from unreliable sources. Have confidence in your own notes and avoid looking for extra reference books.
  • Take mock tests
    • If you are through with the preparation stage but still feel under confident, it would be a good idea to take a couple of mock tests.
    • Start slow by taking mock tests without a time limitation. This will help you revise the concepts better. You may also come across questions that are slightly challenging but it will help you brush up the topics.
    • Once you are confident enough to go a step further, try taking test series in a time bound manner. It will be challenging in the beginning but it is the best technique to prepare you for the entrance exam.
    • This process will help you identify your strengths and weaknesses which you can later work upon.

Finally, no entrance exam is too difficult to crack. IES is one of the most sought-after exams which provides an individual with ample amount of opportunities. The platform makes it possible for an engineering graduate to work under the government in a domain of their liking. Every hour spent on preparation would be worth it.

*The article might have information for the previous academic years, please refer the official website of the exam.