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GATE 2022 Syllabus for Psychology (XH - C4) - Important Chapters, Best Books, Sample Questions

Abhik Das
Abhik DasPublished On: April 23, 2021 | GATE

Find out all the details regarding the GATE Psychology exam which is going to be conducted in February 2022. With the addition of the two new subject papers in 2021, GATE will be conducted for a total of 27 papers henceforth. 

GATE 2022 Syllabus for Psychology (XH - C4) - Important Chapters, Best Books, Sample Questions

Earlier GATE was used to be conducted for admission into only postgraduate level programmes like M.Tech, MS, M.E, Direct PhD etc offered at various institutions of national repute like the IITs, NITs, IISc Bangalore etc. From GATE 2021 onwards, the exam will also be conducted for subjects from two new streams - Humanities & Social Sciences and Environmental Science & Engineering. Aspirants who wish to study subjects such as Psychology, Philosophy, Sociology, Linguistics, Economics, English and Environmental Science and Engineering from one of the reputed GATE participating institutions can now apply for the GATE exam. 

This article comprises all the details regarding the GATE 2022 exam which is to be conducted for the Psychology subject like syllabus, important topics, sample question papers, best books, exam pattern etc. Check out all the details regarding GATE 2022 Psychology exam from the sections below. 

GATE 2022 Psychology Syllabus

All the important topics on which the questions in the Psychology paper of the GATE 2022 exam will be based have been provided below. Candidates can simply access the GATE 2022 Psychology exam syllabus by clicking on the link provided below - 

Detailed Syllabus for Psychology Paper of GATE 2022 Exam

GATE 2022 Psychology Chapter-Wise Syllabus

Here is the list of all those important chapters from where the GATE 2022 Psychology paper questions will be formed - 

Name of the ChapterImportant Topics
Applications of PsychologyPsychological disorders: Conceptions of mental disorders; Assessment and diagnosis, DSM and Other tools, PTSD and Trauma; Psychotherapies: Psychodynamic, Phenomenological/Experiential therapy; Behaviour therapy; cognitive therapy; biological therapy, Applications of theories of motivation and learning in School: Factors in educational achievement; counselling & guidance in schools, Application of theories of motivation, learning, emotions, perceptions, group dynamics & leadership to organizational setup, Issues of Personal space, crowding, and territoriality.    
Development Across the Life Span    Nature versus nurture in human development, Prenatal development: Chromosomes, Genes and DNA. Physical, cognitive and psychosocial development in infancy, childhood, adolescence and adulthood, Theories of ageing, Moral development.
Social PsychologySocial perception: Attribution; impression formation; social categorization, implicit personality theory, Social influence: conformity, compliance and obedience, Attitudes, beliefs and values: Evaluating the social world, attitude formation, attitude change and persuasion, cognitive dissonance, Prejudice, discrimination, Aggression, power and prosocial behaviour, Belief systems and value patterns. Group dynamics, leadership style and effectiveness, Theories of intergroup relations and conflicts.
Motivation, Emotion, Stress and CopingApproaches to understanding motivation: instinct, drive-reduction, arousal, incentive, humanistic, Achievement motivation, Intrinsic motivation, aggression, curiosity and exploration, Emotions: nature of emotions; biological basis of emotions, Theories of emotions: James-Lange, Canon-Bard, Schachter and Singer, Lazarus, Definition of stress; what are stressors; cognitive factors in stress, Factors in stress reaction: General adaptation syndrome; effect of stress, Coping with stress: problem-focused coping; emotion-focused coping, REBT and meditation
PersonalityTheories of personality: Psychoanalytic, behaviourist, social cognitive view, humanism and trait and type theories, Biology of personality and Assessment of personality.
CognitionThinking, Intelligence and Language: Basic elements of though: Concepts, Propositions, Imagery. Current paradigms of cognitive psychology – Information processing approach, ecological approach, Problem-solving: Methods of problem-solving, Strategies and obstacles, Role of Metacognitive processing, decision-making: choosing among alternatives, Intelligence: Theories of intelligence (Spearman; Thurstone; Jensen; Cattell; Gardner; Stenberg) and Emotional Intelligence; Measuring intelligence, Individual differences in Intelligence; Role of heredity and environment, Difference between Intelligence, Aptitude and Creativity
Perception, Learning, Memory and ForgettingWhat is a sensation, sensory thresholds and sensory adaptations, Vision, hearing, touch and pain, smell and taste, kinesthesis and vestibular sense, Perception: role of attention; organizing principles of perception, gestalt perception, depth perception and illusions, Theories of learning: classical conditioning, operant conditioning, social learning theory, cognitive learning, Memory: encoding, storage, retrieval, Information processing theories of memory, Retrieval in Long term memory, reconstructive nature of long-term memory, Forgetting: encoding failure, interference theory, memory trace decay theory, the physical aspects of memory.
Biological and Evolutionary Basis of Behaviour Heredity and behaviour Evolution and natural selection, Nervous system, structures of the brain and their functions, Neurons: Structure, functions, types, neural impulse, synaptic transmission. Neurotransmitters. Hemispheric lateralization, The endocrine system types and functions, Biological basis of Motivation: Hunger, Thirst, Sleep and Sex. The biological basis of emotion: The Limbic system, Hormonal regulation of behaviour. Methods of Physiological Psychology: Invasive methods – Anatomical methods, degeneration techniques, lesion techniques, chemical methods, microelectrode studies, Non-invasive methods – EEG, Scanning methods, Muscular and Glandular system: Genetics and behaviour: Chromosomal anomalies; Nature-Nurture controversy [Twin studies and adoption studies]
PsychometricsFoundations of Psychological measurement; Basic components: scales and items’ Construction and analysis of items: Intelligence test items, performance tests, Ability & Aptitude test, Personality questionnaires. Method of test construction, Standardization of measures: Reliability, Validity, Norms, Application of assessment and measurements in Tests— Applications of psychological testing in various settings-educations, counselling and guidance, clinical, organizational and developmental.
Research Methods and Statistics
  • Approaches to research: Philosophical worldviews & criteria involved in the approach. Research design: quantitative & qualitative, mixed methods.
  • Designing research: Research problems, purpose statement, Variables and Operational Definitions, Hypothesis, Sampling.
  • Nature of quantitative & qualitative research: Structured, semi-structured interviewing, self-completion questionnaires (Survey), observation, Experimental, Quasi-experimental, Field studies, Focus groups discussions, Narratives, Case studies, Ethnography
  • Ethics in conducting and reporting research
  • Statistics in Psychology: Measures of Central Tendency and Dispersion. Normal Probability Curve. Parametric and Non-parametric tests Affect size and Power analysis.
  • Correlational Analysis: Correlation [Product Moment, Rank Order], Partial correlation, multiple correlations. Special Correlation Methods: Biserial, Point biserial, tetrachoric, phi coefficient. Regression: Simple linear regression, Multiple regression. Factor analysis: Assumptions, Methods, Rotation and Interpretation.
  • Experimental Designs: ANOVA [One-way, Factorial], Randomized Block Designs, Repeated Measures Design, Latin Square, Cohort studies, Time series, MANOVA, ANCOVA. Single-subject designs.

Best Books for GATE 2022 Psychology Exam

Candidates aspiring to crack the GATE 2022 psychology exam with good marks must make sure they have the best books to prepare from and study materials to refer to. After doing a bit of research on what supposedly could be the best books for PG level Psychology entrance exams, we have come up with a list of the following books which should help the candidates achieve their goal - 

  • MCQs in Psychology - Objectives for JRF/UGC NET and Other Competetive Examinations

  • Question Bank Psychology - SLET/UGC NET/SPSC/UPSC/Other Higher Grade Examinations

  • NTA UGC NET Psychology Paper-II (recent edition)

  • Objective Psychology (Popular Master Guide) Paperback

Sample Question Papers for GATE 2022 Psychology Paper

The best way to assess the preparation levels before a major entrance exam is to solve the previous year question papers, mock test papers and sample test papers. As the Psychology paper will be introduced in the GATE exam for the first time, the best way to measure the preparations is to attempt the GATE 2022 Psychology sample test papers available on the official website of the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) Bombay. To start downloading the GATE sample question paper for the Psychology exam, the candidates must click on the direct link provided below - 

The candidates will also find the answer key to the sample question paper at the end of the PDF. 

GATE 2022 Psychology Exam Pattern and Marking Scheme

As the exam pattern and marking scheme of the GATE 2022 Psychology exam will be different from the usual papers for which GATE has been usually conducted to date, we decided to provide the candidates with a detailed explanation of the GATE Psychology exam pattern and marking scheme - 

Name of the Section

Number of Questions 

Marks Carried

Question Distribution

General Aptitude




Reasoning and Comprehension



  • 1 marks x 05 questions = 5

  • 2 marks x 10 questions = 20

Psychology Paper Section



  • 1 mark x 20 questions = 20

  • 2 marks x 20 questions = 40

The marking scheme is given in the table below - 

Marks Carried by Each Question

Negative Marking

1 mark questions

1/3rd of maximum marks carried by each question

2 marks questions

2/3rd of maximum marks carried by each question

MSQ type questions

No negative marking

Get Help From Our Expert Counsellors


How many chapters are there in the GATE 2021 Psychology paper syllabus?

The Psychology paper syllabus of GATE 2021 will have 10 chapters in total.

How many questions will be there in the GATE 2021 Psychology paper final section?

The GATE 2021 Psychology paper final section will comprise questions from psychology subject. There will be a total of 40 questions in this section - 20 questions for 1 mark each and 20 questions for 2 marks each.

How many questions will be there in the GATE 2021 Psychology paper Reasoning & Comprehension section?

The GATE 2021 Psychology paper Reasoning and Comprehension section contains 15 questions - 10 questions for 2 marks each and 5 questions for 1 mark each.

How many marks does the General Aptitude section of GATE 2021 Psychology paper carry?

The GATE 2021 Psychology exam General Aptitude section carries 15 marks.

Will the NTA UGC NET Psychology Paper-II (recent edition) book be enough to prepare for the GATE 2021 Psychology paper?

Yes, you will cover more or less everything if you refer to the NTA UGC NET Psychology Paper-II (recent edition) book to prepare for the GATE 2021 Psychology paper but it is also recommended to refer the additional study materials to be fully prepared.

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