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CMA Course - A Complete Guide

CMA course is gaining immense popularity among commerce students, especially students who want to make it big in their career in the field of Cost and Management Accounting.

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Overview

CMA Full Form: Cost and Management Accounting

Choosing Cost and Management Accounting as a career option is a great idea. CMA course is designed to nurture young minds into business leaders of tomorrow.

Contemporarily, the CMA course is gaining immense popularity among commerce students, especially students who want to make it big in their career in the field of Cost and Management Accounting. If you are also curious to know about the course details, continue reading to find out full details about the CMA course in India.

Note: Generally people tend to confuse between terms like ICWAI, ICWA, ICMAI and CMA. So to remove all your doubts, let us tell you that there is no difference between ICWAI and ICMAI except the name. ICWAI (Institute of Cost & Works Accountants of India) has changed its name to the ICMAI (Institute of Cost Accountants of India). Also, ICWA course has been renamed as CMA course.

Advantages of CMA

CMA exams require a lot of hard work and dedication to get through. But let’s not forget about the advantages one can enjoy after completing the course. Read below to find out the advantages of pursuing a CMA course:

CMA course can land you a better job

CMA course is of the most respected courses in India. It opens up a gateway to opportunities to excel in the field of finance both in India and overseas. It leads to higher chances of landing top-level management jobs that can further put you ahead in your career path.

CMAs are high in demand

CMAs showcase a high level of expertise in the field of Cost and Management Accounting. So, they are highly demanded by the top MNCs for jobs.

High Growth opportunities

CMA course ensures expertise in finance which helps candidates bag more and better career opportunities that are otherwise not possible. CMA students get easier advancement in their career.

High Earnings

Let’s be honest, money is the best motivator when it comes to choosing a career path. And if it’s an important factor for you as well, then choosing CMA as your career option is the right decision.

 

Not only a top-level management job and high earnings but qualifying CMA also ensures career growth, job security, and social reputation.

CMA Duration

CMA course has three levels which are:

  • Foundation
  • Inter and
  • Final

The duration of the course is 3 years.

Eligibility Criteria for CMA course

Before applying for the CMA course, you must first know about the eligibility criteria for admission to the course.

The eligibility criteria for the CMA course is as follows:

Foundation Course

  • A candidate should have passed Class 10 or equivalent from a recognized Board or Institution.
  • Passed Senior Secondary Examination under 10+2 scheme of a recognized Board or an Examination recognized by the Central Government as equivalent thereto or has passed National Diploma in Commerce Examination held by the All India Council for Technical Education or any State Board of Technical Education under the authority of the said All India Council, or the Diploma in Rural Service Examination conducted by the National Council of Higher Education.

Intermediate Course

  • Passed Senior Secondary School Examination (10+2) and Foundation Course of the Institute of Cost Accountants of India/ Graduation in any discipline other than Fine Arts/ Foundation (Entry Level) Part I Examination of CAT of the Institute/ Foundation (Entry Level) Part I Examination and Competency Level Part II Examination of CAT of the Institute.
  • Passed Foundation of ICSI/Intermediate of ICAI by what ever name called along with 10+2.

Final Course

  • Passed Intermediate course of the Institute and completed 15 months of practical training.

How to get exemption in CMA

To clear a group in CMA exams, a student is required to obtain a minimum of 40 percent marks in each of the subjects of a group and an aggregate of 50 percent or more in the group. However, there are certain rules in the CMA course for availing the benefit of exemption and carry forward of marks which are explained below:

Exemption in CMA Exams

If a candidate remains unsuccessful in clearing a group but secures 60 percent or more in any of the paper or papers, he/ she shall be exempted from appearing in that paper(s) in the subsequent attempt. But for the calculation of aggregate in the subsequent attempt, the marks in the exempted paper(s) will be reckoned as 50.

Carry Forward of marks

 If a candidate remains unsuccessful in clearing a group but secures 60 percent or more in any of the paper or papers and minimum of 40 percent marks in each of the remaining papers of that group, he/ she shall be exempted from appearing in that paper(s) in the subsequent attempt and allowed the benefit of carrying forward of the actual marks of exempted paper(s) in the subsequent attempt.

CMA Fees

The details for CMA Foundation, Intermediate, and Final course:

Level of Course

Amount (in Rs.)

Foundation

6,000/-

Intermediate

22,000/-

Final

25,000/-

CMA Registration Important Dates

Admission to the foundation course for the ICAI course is open throughout the year However, Students desirous to appear for June Term Examination should apply before 31st January of that year and for December Term Examination should apply before 31st July of that year.

How to enroll for CMA Course

Candidates can enroll for the CMA course through online mode. The following steps can be followed for successful registration in the course:

  • Visit the official website of the institute and click on the CMA registration process.
  • Fill in all the details required and click on save and continue.
  • Upload the documents required for registration and click submit.
  • Pay the course fees through an online payment method.
  • Print the application form for future use.

Documents required for registration:

  • Passport-sized photo
  • Specimen signature
  • Class 10th Marksheet
  • Class 12th Marksheet
  • Graduation degree and Certificates (if applicable)
  • CMA Intermediate Pass (both Group-I & Group-II) Marksheet/Certificate (For candidates applying for CMA Final Course)

CMA Exam Details - Form, Schedule, Pattern

Application Form

Candidates are required to apply for the application process before the due date for Foundation, Intermediate and Final Examinations.

The examination/ application form can be submitted by following the below-mentioned process:

  • Visit the official website of ICMAI - https://icmai.in/
  • Click on the ‘Admissions’ tab
  • Click on the course that you want to apply
  • Fill in the details including, personal details, address details, qualification details
  • Proceed to pay the application fee for your respective course and submit the application form

CMA Application Fee:

EXAMINATION

APPLICATION FEE (INDIA)

(In Rs.)

APPLICATION FEE (OVERSEAS) (In USD)

Foundation Course

1,200/-

60

Intermediate Course (Single Group)

1,200/-

90

Intermediate Course (Both Groups)

2,400/-

Final Course (Single Group)

1,400/-

100

Final Course (Both Groups)

2,800/-

Schedule

CMA exams are held twice a year in the months of June and December. Students desirous to appear for June Term Examination should register before 31st January of that year and for December Term Examination should register before 31st July of that year.

Pattern

CMA is a descriptive (pen and paper mode) exam where each subject carries a weightage of 100 marks and each paper is of 3 hours.

CMA Exam Admit Card

CMA institute issues admit cards to the candidates 15 days prior to the examination. Candidates need to download their admit card and carry it to the exam center along with one photo ID proof validated by Government authorities. 

How to download CMA Admit Card?

  • Visit the official website: icmai.in/studentswebsite/index.php
  • Click on the examination tab
  • Select the ‘admit card’ option from the dropdown menu
  • Click on the exam for which you are appearing
  • Click on print admit card

Contents on CMA Admit Card

  • Name of the Candidate
  • Signature and Photograph of the candidate
  • Roll Number
  • Time and Examination Centre
  • Instructions for the examination
  • Space for invigilator’s signature

CMA Syllabus and Subjects

CMA course is divided into three levels – Foundation, Intermediate, and Final. The new CMA syllabus for the Foundation course includes basic or fundamental concepts of accounting and management whereas the syllabus for the Intermediate and Final Course is divided into two groups which include advanced-level topics related to the field of accounting, cost, management, laws, etc.

Here is a complete subject list for the CMA course:

Foundation Course:

  • Fundamentals of Economics And Management
  • Fundamentals of Accounting
  • Fundamentals of Laws and Ethics
  • Fundamentals of Business Mathematics and Statistics

 

Intermediate Course:

Group I-

  • Financial Accounting
  • Laws and Ethics
  • Direct Taxation
  • Cost Accounting

Group II-

  • Operations Management & Strategic Management
  • Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management
  • Indirect Taxation
  • Company Accounts & Audit

 

Final Course:

Group I-

  • Corporate Laws & Compliance
  • Strategic Financial Management
  • Strategic Cost Management – Decision Making
  • Direct Tax Laws and International Taxation

Group II-

  • Corporate Financial Reporting
  • Indirect Tax Laws and Practice
  • Cost and Management Audit
  • Strategic Performance Management and Business Valuation

CMA Study Material

CMA course requires a lot of hard work and dedication. While preparing for CMA exams students should focus on the study material provided by the institute. Along with the institute’s study material, it is also advisable to enroll in online test series for better performance in the examinations. Candidates should also refer to previous year's questions and answers available on the institute’s website.

CMA Classes

A Candidate can prepare for a CMA course through self-study or coaching. But it is always advisable to enroll in Classes to leave no stone unturned in your CMA Course Preparation. Classes will not only help in clearing all the concepts but also provide you with the guidance to channelize your preparations in the right direction. One can also enroll for CMA Course offered by IndigoLearn which is the best platform for CMA preparation. You can learn from the top educators with online/ pen drive classes from the comfort of your home. It has engaging Hd videos which can be accessed anytime, student-friendly notes, exam-style assessments. Not only this but you will also be provided with study materials and summary notes which will help you in last-minute revisions.

CMA Results

In order to qualify for CMA exams, a candidate is required to obtain a minimum of 40% marks in each subject and an aggregate of 50% or more.

How to check CMA results?

CMA results are announced on the website of the institute and can be checked by following the below-mentioned process:

  • Visit the official website: icmai.in/studentswebsite/index.php
  • Click on the examination tab
  • Select the ‘result’ option from the dropdown menu
  • Click on the exam for which you had appeared
  • Enter the identification number and click on “ view result”
  • The result will appear on the screen

CMA Pass Percentage:

The pass percentage for CMA exams for Dec 2019 attempt is as follows:

Examination

Pass Percentage (%)

Foundation

79.35

Intermediate Group I

20.50

Intermediate Group I

31.88

Intermediate (Passed in either one of the groups)

10.83

Intermediate (Passed in both the groups)

24.10

Final Group I

11.12

Final Group II

30.81

Final (Passed in either one of the groups)

18.12

Final (Passed in both the groups)

18.97

 

Career after CMA

CMA opens up a gateway to opportunities to excel in your career. It can land you a top-level management job.

Here are some career prospects that you can explore after completing CMA:

  • Finance Manager
  • Financial Analyst
  • Chief Financial Officer
  • Financial Controller
  • Corporate Controller
  • Chief Investment Officer
  • Cost Accountant

The average salary for a fresher CMA in India is 7 lakh rupees per annum. However, this number can go up to rupees 20lakhs too based on your skills.

With experience and developed skillset, there is no bar on earnings for CMAs.

FAQs

What is CMA?

CMA is a professional course offered by the Institute of Cost Accountants of India which was set up with the objective of promoting and regulating the Cost and Management Accountancy profession in India.

 

How to become a CMA?

CMA has three levels which are Foundation, Intermediate, and Final. After qualifying these three levels, you become a CMA.

 

CMA or CA which is better?

Candidates who aim to pursue a career in Finance are attracted to CA or CMA course. However, the CMA course has gained immense popularity in the last few years. There is ample scope of opportunities after completion of both the courses.

 

Where can a CMA work?

A CMA can work in both the Private and Government sectors. Financial Analyst, Cost Accountant, Manager, Corporate Controller, Management Accountant, CFO are a few of the most common career paths that you can apply for as a CMA.

 

What is the scope of CMA India in other countries?
The demand for CMAs is on the rise over the last few years. There is a lot of scope for a CMA in India and abroad. If you want to make a career in Finance overseas, you should definitely consider doing this course.

 

How to become a CMA member?

After qualifying for the CMA Final exams and successful completion of practical training, you can apply for admission as an Associate Member of the ICMAI on the institute’s website.

 

How do you become a CMA?

You can become a CMA once you clear the Final exams and completely practical training.

 

CMA vs ACCA which is better?

Both CMA and ACCA are respected courses and gaining global recognition. However, it completely depends on you, which one you want to choose. If you want to work in the Middle East, Asia or America, CMA is the right choice for you. But if you prefer to work in the UK or a commonwealth country, then ACCA is a better choice.

 

Who is eligible for CMA?

If you have passed Senior Secondary or Graduation in any discipline other than Fine Arts or Passed Foundation of ICSI/Intermediate of ICAI, you can apply for the CMA course.

 

Which is better CS or CMA?

Both CS and CMA ensure a promising career. If you are interested in the field of Cost and Management Accounting then go for CMA, if you are interested in Law or theory subjects, go for CS

 

CS or CMA which is easy?

Neither CMA nor CS is easy. It entirely depends on your area of interest, hard work, and dedication.

 

How long does it take to become a CMA?

It generally takes around 3- 4 years to become a CMA.