IIT Bombay Admission Experience for PhD 2019
I got a call for Ph.D. Test & Interview on around 26th
April and Interview was scheduled for 18th
May so there was enough time for me to revise my topics.
May, sharp at 9:15 a.m. orientation started and around 9:45 exam started for 2 hours. First was a written test which is of the type Fill in the Blank. It consisted of around 45 questions (sub-questions included) and I did around 33 correctly (believe me if you’re a gate aspirant you can do it in the first 30 minutes only). Minimum cutoff criteria -> they will only select a maximum of 50 people but instead only 30+ students were selected for the advanced test and I was on the list.
The same day around 4 p.m. advance test started which was a totally subjective test and 7 questions from every gate subject like Algorithms, Compiler, Networks, TOC, Machine Learning, etc. were asked. We had to solve any 2 of the given questions and this was a bit more difficult than the previous one. The subject in which you answer the question will decide your Interview panel. I answered from Algorithms, TOC, and networking (It was not an elimination round but questions were asked in the interview from it).
Next-Day morning at 9 I was there and Interview started. Remember we had to choose 2 out 7 questions i.e we have to give 2 different interviews. My area of specialization was Algorithms and TOC so my first Interview happened in TOC something like this:
Two professors were taking interviews one was young and the other was experienced.
- Prof: Tell me something about yourself?
- Me: Told.
- Prof: Then he started asking me about my project since I was 2018 (recently graduated).
- Me: Told but I was interrupted in between
- Prof: So why did you select TOC and in what area you want to specialize in. Also tell us why not machine learning?
- Me: I told I want my area of interest is algorithms and TOC is base of algorithms. In short Optimization and Complexity Theory. Machine learning can is on top of Algorithms i.e for one to pursue machine learning must have a very good foot in algorithms and mathematics. (Quite impressed and said good)
- Prof: Then he started asking questions from tests on optimization like how did you solved some question and in which I was stuck in one part of the section. Interviewers were quite helpful so after sometime I was able to give them proper answer.
- Prof: Okay you can go now.
- Me: (while I was leaving) …
- Experienced prof: You did very good in networking tests then why not networking?
- Me: I explained them that my area of interest is in algorithms where networking is completely a different field in which algorithm is only one part of it other is like system architecture, maintenance, etc.
- Prof: Okay you can go now.
Overall it was going nice and after sometime I was called in Algorithms panel for interview.
Same as previous two professors one young and other will sit and judge your skills.