What is in the CMA Final Exam?
by Swati, on 19 Apr, 2019 6:00:00 PM
What is in the CMA Final Exam?
Scroll down and find out.
Gone are the days when every college graduate was looking to become either an engineer or a doctor. Times have changed and the past few years have seen an increase in new vocational career options in the fields of CS, CA, CMA to name a few. In this blog post, we’ll be digging deeper into the CMA Final exam and how you can prepare well for it.
If you are reading this, chances are you have already cleared the Foundation and Intermediate levels of the CMA exams. This is the final exam you have to pass and so let's delve deeper into what's involved in this paper.
But before we do so, if you want study material that covers the entire CMA Final Syllabus, just sign up on our platform by clicking on the link below:
The CMA Final Syllabus
The exam is known as the CMA Final exam. ICMAI is the conducting body. The full form is The Institute of Cost Management Accountants of India. Previously the body was known as the Institute of Cost & Works Accountants of India.
The CMA Intermediate exam is a pen and paper based offline descriptive exam. The exam is split into two groups of four papers each. Each paper is worth 100 marks and is of 3 hours' duration. You can choose to appear for one or both groups together. But at the time of registration, you will have to register for both groups together.
The exam is held twice yearly. Once in June and the other in December.
Now, not everyone can register and appear for the exam. You’ll have to fulfil some minimum requirements. Let’s now look at what those are.
Eligibility Requirements and Registration
Let’s check to see your CMA Final Eligibility:
- You should have passed the Intermediate course of ICMAI and enrolled for the CMA Final Course
- You should have completed a mandatory 7 day Industry Oriented Training Programme (IOTP)
- You should have registered for the 3 year Practical Training component of the course and have completed at least 6 months of this training
The chart below gives you a quick overview of the eligibility criteria:
The registration procedure is similar to CMA Intermediate.
Log on to the ICMAI Student Registration page and get started.
You can complete your CMA Final Registration with the following documents and details handy:
- Passport Photo
- Your Signature
- Age Proof
- 10th Pass Mark sheet
- 12th Pass Mark sheet
- CMA Intermediate Pass (both Group-I & Group-II) Mark sheet/Certificate
You can receive your study material by opting for either:
Oral Coaching Mode: This means that students can attend oral coaching classes at the Chapter/Regional Council chosen by them.
Postal Coaching Mode: This means that students have access to postal test papers only.
You can have a look at all the Regional Chapters/Councils by referring to the table below:
Address of Regional Councils
Western India Regional Council "Rohit Chambers", 4th Floor Janmabhoomi Marg, Fort Mumbai - 400 001 Ph : 022-22872010/ 22841138/ 22043406/ 22043416 Fax : 91- 022- 22870763 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Website : www.icwai-wirc.org
The State of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Goa and the Union Territories: Daman Diu, Dadra, and Nagar Haveli.
The State of Andhra Pradesh, Karnataka, Kerala, Tamil Nadu, Pondicherry and the Union Territory: the Lakshadweep
Eastern India Regional Council 84, Harish Mukherjee Road, Kolkatta - 700 025 Ph : 033 -24553418 /24555957 Fax : 91 033-2455-7920 Email: email@example.com
The States of Assam, Arunachal Pradesh, Bihar, Jharkhand, Manipur, Meghalaya, Mizoram, Nagaland, Orissa, Tripura, West Bengal, Sikkim, the Union Territories: The Andaman and Nicobar Islands and Foreign Countries.
Northern India Regional Council 3, Institutional Area, Lodi Road, New Delhi - 110 003 Ph: 011 - 24626678 / 24615788 Fax: 24622156 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org
The States of Delhi, Haryana, Himachal Pradesh, Jammu and Kashmir, Punjab, Rajasthan, Uttar Pradesh, Uttaranchal and the Union Territory: Chandigarh.
Now, in order to appear for the exam, you'll need to have completed either oral and postal coaching. Here are the conditions to appear for the CMA Final Exam:
Conditions for appearing in the Examination
If you want to appear for the exam, you must first register. That is clear. But you should also completed oral or postal coaching by ICMAI and gotten a certificate of completion.
Postal Coaching Completion Requirements
To complete postal coaching, you'll need to download and answer the test paper uploaded in the student section of the website. Mail your answers to the nearest Regional Office. You'll need to obtain a minimum of 40% to get your coaching completion certification. Only then will you be able to appear for your examination. The table below shows you the last date of submission for answer sheets for postal coaching clearance:
|Examination||Last Date to Submit Answer Sheet|
|CMA Foundation June Term Exam||31st March|
|CMA Foundation December Term Exam||30th September|
Oral Coaching Completion Requirements
If you have opted for oral coaching, you'll need to get admitted to a regional council/chapter/recognised coaching centre. The duration of coaching lasts 4 months and has a minimum of 240 lecture hours for Lectures and Tutorials. After the coaching period ends, you'll need to appear for a 3 hours written exam for each subject and secure a minimum of 40% marks each. If you fulfill this requirement, you are then eligible to appear for the CMA Final Exam.
We suggest that you go over the ‘Conditions for appearing in Examination’ issued by the directorate of studies and students thoroughly, to ensure you fit all the criteria to appear.
You can read more details in our post on how to register and appear for CMA Final.
Let’s now move on to the papers of the CMA FInal Exam.
Papers of the CMA Final Exam: Overview
As mentioned earlier, the CMA Intermediate papers are divided into two groups of four papers each. Each paper is worth 100 marks and is of 3 hours duration. It is a pen and paper exam. You can choose to appear for one or both groups. But when registering, you will have to register for both groups. The groups are named 3 and 4 and the papers are numbered from 13 on. This is because the papers in CMA Foundation are numbered from 1 to 4, and the papers in CMA Intermediate are numbered from 5 to 12 which are split into groups 1 and 2.
These are the papers of Group 3 -
- Paper 13: Corporate Laws and Compliance
- Paper 14: Strategic Financial Management
- Paper 15: Strategic Cost Management – Decision Making
- Paper 16: Direct Tax Laws and International Taxation
- Paper 17: Corporate Financial Reporting
- Paper 18: Indirect Tax Laws and Practice
- Paper 19: Cost and Management Audit
- Paper 20: Strategic Performance Management and Business Valuation
Let’s take a brief look into what the subject matter of each paper is, so that you can make up a CMA Final study plan when studying.
Paper 13: Corporate Laws and Compliance
ICMAI has introduced this paper, Corporate Laws & Compliance, at the CMA Final level where you will gain knowledge on assessment on assessment if the organisation has complied with the applicable regulatory framework. You will also learn how to evaluate the essence of Corporate Governance for effective implementation and the role of a Corporate in socio-economic development is required for an Audit.
The paper is of three hours duration and is a pen and paper descriptive exam. It is divided into three sections. Here are the sections, topics covered and weightage:
SECTION A: COMPANIES ACT (Weightage – 50%)
- The Companies Act, 2013
SECTION B: OTHER CORPORATE LAWS (Weightage – 30%)
- SEBI Laws and Regulations
- The Competition Act,2002 and its role in Corporate Governance
- Foreign Exchange Management Act,1999
- Laws related to Banking Sector
- Laws related to Insurance Sector
SECTION C: CORPORATE GOVERNANCE (Weightage – 20%)
- Corporate Governance
- Social, Environmental and Economic Responsibilities of Business
Want to get the best CMA Final study material that covers the complete syllabus for the Corporate Laws and Compliance paper? Sign up below and get a free trial:
Paper 14: Strategic Financial Management
ICMAI has introduced this paper Strategic Financial Management at the CMA Final level where you will be involved in outlining and implementing the main goals and objectives of a business.
The paper itself is of 3 hours' duration, an offline descriptive exam split into 4 sections. The sections and topic-wise weightage are as follows:
SECTION A: INVESTMENT DECISIONS (Weightage – 25%)
- Investment Decisions, Project Planning and Control
- Evaluation of Risky proposals for Investment decisions
- Leasing Decisions
SECTION B: FINANCIAL MARKETS AND INSTITUTIONS (Weightage – 20%)
- Institutions in Financial Markets
- Instruments in Financial Markets
- Capital Markets
- Commodity Exchange
SECTION C: SECURITY ANALYSIS AND PORTFOLIO MANAGEMENT (Weightage – 25%)
- Security Analysis and Portfolio Management
SECTION D: FINANCIAL RISK MANAGEMENT (Weightage – 30%)
To get study material pertaining to this paper, Financial Risk Management, sign up for our comprehensive video lectures below:
Paper 15: Strategic Cost Management - Decision Making
ICMAI has introduced this paper, Strategic Cost Management-Decision Making at the CMA Final level where you will develop skills of analysis, evaluation and synthesis in cost and management accounting. You will also gain an understanding of and build the capability of solving issues relating to the design and implementation of cost management models in modern firms.
The paper itself is split into four sections and is of 3 hours' duration. Here are the topic-wise weightages:
SECTION A: COST MANAGEMENT (Weightage – 20%)
- Cost Management
SECTION B: STRATEGIC COST MANAGEMENT TOOLS AND TECHNIQUES (Weightage – 50%)
- Decision Making techniques
- Standard Costing in Profit Planning
- Activity Based Cost Management – JIT and ERP
- Cost of Quality and Total Quality Management
SECTION C: STRATEGIC COST MANAGEMENT - APPLICATION OF STATISTICAL TECHNIQUES IN BUSINESS DECISIONS (Weightage – 30%)
- Application of Operation Research and Statistical Tools in Strategic Decision Making.
Want to know about how to make good strategic cost management decisions? Sign up for our video lectures now!
Paper 16: Direct Tax Laws and International Taxation
ICMAI has introduced this paper Direct Tax Laws and International Taxation at the CMA Final level so that you gain knowledge on Tax planning, assessment of tax for various assesses and return filing procedures.
The paper itself is of 3 hours' duration and consists of three sections. Here is the weightage of each section:
SECTION A: ADVANCED DIRECT TAX LAWS (Weightage – 50%)
- Return of Income & Assessment Procedure
- Assessment of Various Entities & Tax Planning
- Clubbing of Income
- Set-Off and Carry forward and Set-off of losses
- Deduction in Computing Total Income
- Business Restructuring
- Administrative procedures under Direct Taxation
- Grievances Redressal Procedure
- Settlement of Cases
- Black Money Act, 2015
SECTION B: INTERNATIONAL TAXATION (Weightage – 30%)
- Double Taxation Avoidance Agreements (DTAA)
- Transfer Pricing Issues
SECTION C: TAX PRACTICE AND PROCEDURES (Weightage – 20%)
- Case Study Analysis
Want study materials on Direct Tax Laws and Indirect Taxation? Sign up for our online video lectures now:
Paper 17: Corporate Financial Reporting
ICMAI has introduced this paper Corporate Financial Reporting at the CMA Final level where you will learn how to prepare an entity’s financial reports in accordance with Generally Accepted Accounting Standards as well as recognising, measuring and disclosure of Financial information for various cases like consolidation, combination and restructuring.
The paper itself is of three hours duration and is split into the following sections:
SECTION A: GAAP AND ACCOUNTING STANDARDS (Weightage – 30%)
- Accounting Standards
SECTION B: ACCOUNTING OF BUSINESS COMBINATIONS AND RESTRUCTURING (Weightage – 20%)
- Accounting of Business Combinations & Restructuring
SECTION C: CONSOLIDATED FINANCIAL STATEMENTS (Weightage – 20%)
- Group Financial Statements
SECTION D: DEVELOPMENTS IN FINANCIAL REPORTING (Weightage – 15%)
- Recent Trends in Financial Reporting
- Valuation, Accounting and Reporting of Financial Instruments and others
- Share based payments
- Reporting through XBRL (Extended Business Reporting Language)
SECTION E: GOVERNMENT ACCOUNTING IN INDIA (Weightage – 15%)
- Government Accounting Procedures and Standards
If you want study materials pertaining to Corporate Financial Reporting, sign up below:
Paper 18: Indirect Tax Laws and Practice
ICMAI has introduced this paper Indirect Tax Laws & Practice at the CMA Final level where you gain an understanding on various concepts & issues related to Indirect Taxes in the country. You will also develop the skills to help address issues of conflicts of the assesse and their respective tax authorities.
The paper itself is of 3 hours duration and contains the following sections:
SECTION A: ADVANCED INDIRECT TAX - LAWS & PRACTICE
- Central Excise (Weightage – 20%)
- Customs Law (Weightage – 10%)
- Service Tax (Weightage – 30%)
- Foreign Trade Policy (with special reference to Tax Planning) (Weightage – 10%)
- Central Sales Tax & Value Added Tax (Weightage – 10%)
SECTION B: TAX PRACTICE AND PROCEDURES
- Case Study Analysis (20%)
To access some of the best study material pertaining to this paper, Indirect Tax Laws and Practice, sign up below:
Paper 19: Cost Management and Audit
ICMAI has introduced this paper Cost & Management Audit at the CMA Final level where you will help businesses to control their costs as well as frame opinions on cost accounting records and coming up with various comments on reportable areas.
The paper itself is of 3 hours duration and carries 100 marks. These are the sections and topic-wise weightage:
SECTION A: COST AUDIT (Weightage – 35%)
- Nature, Scope, Utility and Advantages of Cost Audit
- Companies (Cost Records & Audit) Rules,2014
- Professional Ethics, Misconduct, Offences and Penalties
- Cost Accounting Standards
- Cost Auditing and Assurance Standards
- Format of Cost Audit Report – XBRL – Salient Features
SECTION B: MANAGEMENT AUDIT (Weightage – 15%)
- Management Reporting Issues under Cost Audit
- Management Audit – Meaning, Nature, Scope, etc.
- Energy Audit, Efficiency Audit, Propriety Audit and Systems Audit
- Evaluation of Corporate Image - Corporate Development Audit
- Impact of Environmental Pollution
SECTION C: INTERNAL AUDIT, OPERATIONAL AUDIT AND OTHER RELATED ISSUES (Weightage – 25%)
- Concept of Internal Audit
- Provisions of Internal Audit under Companies Act, 2013
- Audit Planning, Audit Programme, Audit Working Papers
- Receivables Audit, Audit of Services and Local Bodies
SECTION D: CASE STUDY ON PERFORMANCE ANALYSIS (Weightage – 25%)
Looking for study materials regarding this paper, Cost Management and Audit? Sign up below:
Paper 20: Strategic Performance Management and Business Valuation
ICMAI has introduced this paper Strategic Performance Management & Business Valuation at the CMA Final level where you help in strategic decisions by analysing performance and business valuation.
The paper is of 3 hours' duration like any paper at the CMA Final level. The topic-wise weightage of each section is as follows:
SECTION A: STRATEGIC PERFORMANCE MANAGEMENT (Weightage – 50%)
- Conceptual Framework of Performance Management
- Performance Evaluation & Improvement Tools
- Economic Efficiency of the firm— Impact analysis on Performance
- Enterprise Risk Management
SECTION B: BUSINESS VALUATION (Weightage – 50%)
- Business Valuation Basics
- Valuation in Mergers and Acquisitions
- Fair Value in Accounting Measurement
- Valuation of Intangibles
Want to get the best online video lectures for Strategic Performance Management and Business Valuation? Sign up below:
Let's now look at the passing requirements and some study tips.
Passing Requirements and General Tips
To understand the passing requirements, you should be aware that you can choose to appear for one or both groups of papers.
If you appear for a single group, the passing requirements are as follows:
- you obtain a minimum of 40% marks in each paper of the group and
- you obtain a minimum of 50% marks in the aggregate of all papers of the group taken together.
If you choose to appear for both groups, the passing requirements are:
- you meet the minimum requirements to clear a group individually or
- you obtain a minimum of 40% marks in each paper of both the groups, and a minimum of 50% marks in the aggregate of all papers of both groups taken together.
It is a fairly common question for students as to which option they should choose. In our opinion, it is best to appear for both groups if you have studied well. This is because, as you can see above, the passing requirements are less stringent.
In addition to this, you can get paper-wise exemptions in case you are unable to clear one or more groups of the exam. If you secure 60% or more in any paper or papers, you shall be exempted in that paper(s) from appearing in the immediately successive three terms of examination. Also, qualification based exemptions are available and are outlined in the ICMAI website.
Exemptions are valid for the following categories of students:
- Reciprocal Exemption between ICAI-CMA and ACCA-UK Members as per MoU.
- Clarification on Conversion to Syllabus 2016 and Corresponding exemptions
- Clarification for qualification based subject exemptions granted under syllabus 2012, opting for syllabus 2016
- Exemptions for Engineering Graduates/Engineers pursuing CMA course under syllabus, 2016.
- Exemptions for qualified LLBs pursuing CMA course under syllabus, 2016.
Now, let's move to study tips.
General Study Tips on How to Pass
You should know that ICMAI has its own study material and provides coaching as we said before. The two modes of coaching are oral and postal. To start studying for the exam, we suggest that you look at these materials as a first step. In this day and age, we think you should opt for postal coaching rather than oral coaching. It frees up your time to get additional study materials and you don't have to be bound by lecture classes. Read our post on the benefits of studying online for more details.
Another mode of preparation is by opting for CMA Final online classes. On that note, you can sign up with LearnCab and gain access to hours of video lectures by qualified CMA professionals who have vast knowledge of the subject. Through our CMA video lectures, you can open up a new age of learning. Apart from interactive lectures with charts, diagrams and other such visual-aids, you can also test yourself through quizzes, notes, study material in the form of test papers, etc. You can also have your doubts clarified by our faculty members. Click on the button below to sign up and download our app today:
And if you want any other help or information regarding our services, or any CMA-related query, do get in touch with us at email@example.com! Or comment down below.
Regarding study tips, it's a good idea to plan your study by means of a study timetable. You might want to look at our post talking about how to prepare a study timetable for pointers on how to do this.
Another point to note is that you should try and incorporate efficient study strategies to use your time well. The infographic below gives you a quick overview of some study methods.
You can also check out our blog post, 16 tips to Pass CA, CS and CMA Exams in the FIRST attempt for more details.
We hope you find the information we've given useful. Don't forget to subscribe to our blog if you want to stay up-to-date with everything you need to know about the CMA Final exam, notifications regarding the CMA final result or any change in schedule.