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What is in the CMA Intermediate Exam?

by Swati, on 17 Apr, 2019 6:00:00 PM

Recently completed your CMA Foundation course or just looking for some information on what you can expect from the CMA Intermediate Exam? Well, you’ve come to the right place. 

We will talk about the syllabus, the number of papers, topic-wise weightage as well as a few pointers to help you succeed.

But before we do so, if you want study material that covers the entire CMA Intermediate Syllabus, just sign up on our platform by clicking on the link below:

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The CMA Intermediate Syllabus

Introduction

Eligibility Requirements and Registration

Papers of the CMA Intermediate Exam: Overview

Paper 5: Financial Accounting

Paper 6: Laws & Ethics

Paper 7: Direct Taxation

Paper 8: Cost Accounting

Paper 9: Operations Management & Strategic Management

Paper 10: Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management

Paper 11: Indirect Taxation

Paper 12: Company Accounts & Audit

Passing Requirements and General Study Tips

Introduction

The exam is known as the CMA Intermediate 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

For starters, you need to check your CMA Intermediate eligibility for whether or not you can apply for this much sought-after course. If you fulfil the following criteria, then you are eligible:

  1. Passed your Senior Secondary School Examination (10+2) from a government-recognised Board of Education AND
  2. Passed the Foundation Course of the Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICMAI) OR
  3. Graduated in any discipline other than Fine Arts from a recognized board of education OR
  4. Passed the  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 OR
  5. Passed Foundation of ICSI / Intermediate of ICAI

We can now move on to all the documents you will require during your CMA Intermediate Registration process. Keep in mind that you apply for the exam in two ways:

  • Offline Registration
  • Online Registration

For offline registration, you will require the hard attested copies of the following documents, along with 3 passport-size photographs:

  • Matriculation Certificate
  • 10+2 Certificate/Mark sheet
  • Degree

For online registration, you will need to upload the following documents along with filling in the different sections of the online form: 

  • Passport-size photo (colour) in JPG/JPEG format
  • Age Proof Certificate (PDF format) with size not exceeding 300 KB
  • Copy of your signature in JPG/JPEG format
  • Your degrees and certificates with file size of each not exceeding 300 KB

After the entire registration process is complete, you will be ready to have access to the study material.

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:

Regional Chapters of ICMAI

Address of Regional Councils

Area Covered

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: wirc@icmai.in Website : www.icwai-wirc.org

The State of Chhattisgarh, Gujarat, Madhya Pradesh, Maharashtra, Goa and the Union Territories: Daman Diu, Dadra, and Nagar Haveli.

Southern India Regional Council 4, Montieth Lane, Egmore, Chennai - 600 008 Ph:044-28554443/28554326/28528219 Fax : 91- 044- 28554651 Website: www.sircoficwai.com Email: sirc@icmai.in

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: eirc@icmai.in

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: nirc@icmai.in

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 Intermediate 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:

Last Date to Submit Answer Sheets for Postal Coaching
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 Intermediate.

Papers of the CMA Intermediate 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 papers are numbered from 5 to 12 as a continuation of the numbering scheme from CMA Foundation where the papers are numbered from 1 to 4.

These are the papers of Group – 1:

  • Paper 5: Financial Accounting
  • Paper 6: Laws & Ethics
  • Paper 7: Direct Taxation
  • Paper 8: Cost Accounting
And these are the papers of Group - 2:
  • Paper 9: Operations Management & Strategic Management
  • Paper 10: Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management
  • Paper 11: Indirect Taxation
  • Paper 12: Company Accounts & Audit

Now, let's look in detail about what each paper contains.

Paper 5: Financial Accounting

ICMAI has introduced this paper Financial Accounting at the CMA Intermediate level so that you can achieve expertise in the domain of financial accounting. It builds on the concepts you have learned in earlier levels and you will learn how to present and construct financial statements that are understandable to the relevant stakeholders. 

The paper is of three hours duration and is a pen and paper descriptive exam. It is divided into four sections. Here are the sections, topics covered and weightage:

Section A:  Accounting – Basics (Weightage – 25%)

  1. Fundamentals of Accounting
  2. Accounting for Special Transactions

 Section B:  Preparation of Financial Statements (Weightage – 40%)

  1. Preparation of Final Accounts of Profit Oriented organizations, Non-Profit Organizations and from Incomplete Records
  2. Partnership Accounts

Section C: Self Balancing Ledgers, Royalties, Hire Purchase & Installment System, Branch & Departmental Accounts (Weightage – 20%)

  1. Self-Balancing Ledgers
  2. Royalties, Hire-Purchase and Installment System
  3. Branch and Departmental Accounts

Section D: Accounting in Computerized Environment and Accounting Standards (Weightage – 15%)

  1. Overview of Computerized Accounting
  2. Accounting Standards (Specified only)

 CMA Intermediate Paper 5 Financial Accounting Topic-wise weightage

At LearnCab, we cover the topics outlined in this paper Financial Accounting in detail. Click on the link below to see a breakdown of the content available on our platform, sample notes, videos and tips on how to study for this particular paper:

Take me there!

Paper 6: Laws and Ethics

ICMAI has introduced this paper, Laws and Ethics, at the CMA Intermediate level to help you understand the laws and environment under which businesses operate in IndiaYou will understand, to a greater depth, various business laws, with special emphasis on online contracts, etc. You will also get a better grounding in ethical principles. 

The paper is of three hours duration and is a pen and paper descriptive exam. It is divided into four sections. Here are the sections, topics covered and weightage:

Section A: Commercial Laws (Weightage – 30%)

  1. Indian Contract Act, 1872
  2. Sale of Goods Act, 1930
  3. Negotiable Instruments Act, 1881
  4. Indian Partnership Act, 1932
  5. Limited Liability Partnership Act, 2008

Section B:  Industrial Laws (Weightage – 25%)

  1. Factories Act, 1948 
  2. Payment of Gratuity Act, 1972
  3. Employees Provident Fund Act, 1952
  4. Employees State Insurance Act, 1948
  5. Payment of Bonus Act, 1965
  6. Minimum Wages Act, 1948
  7. Payment of Wages Act, 1936

Section C: Corporate Law (Weightage – 35%)

  1. Companies Act, 2013

Section D: Ethics (Weightage – 10%)

  1. Business Ethics

CMA Intermediate Paper 6 Laws and Ethics Topic-wise Weightage

If you want more information about the paper Laws and Ethics, breakdown of content available on the LearnCab platform, sample notes and videos, click on the button below:

Show me more!

Paper 7:  Direct Taxation

ICMAI has introduced this paper, Direct Taxation, at the CMA Intermediate level to help you achieve your main goal as a CMA which is profitability analysis and budget preparation. To do this effectively, you need to understand all the expenses of the company. Hence you must gain an understanding of the framework under which an individual or a business entity is taxed.

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:  Income Tax Basics (Weightage – 10%)

  1. Introduction to Income Tax Act, 1961
  2. Income which do not form part of Total Income (Section 10, 11 to 13A)

Section B: Heads of Income and Computation of Total Income and Tax Liability (Weightage – 70%)

  1. Heads of Income and Computation of Total Income under various heads
  2. Clubbing Provisions, Set off and Carry forward of Losses, Deductions
  3. Assessment of Income of different persons
  4. Corporate Taxation
  5. TDS, TCS and Advance Tax

Section C: Administrative Procedures and ICDS (Weightage – 20%)

  1. Administrative Procedures
  2. Income Computation and Disclosure Standards – Basic Concepts only

CMA Intermediate Paper 7 Direct Taxation Topic-wise Weightage

Want to know about this paper Direct Taxation? Just click on the link below:

Know More!

Paper 8: Cost Accounting

ICMAI has introduced this paper, Cost Accounting, at the CMA Intermediate level where you will learn about the process of recording, classifying, summarising and analysing all costs incurred in performing a process or product. This will help you shore up your core competency areas.

The paper is of three hours duration and is a pen and paper descriptive exam. The topics covered and weightage are as follows:

  1. Introduction to Accounting
  2. Cost Ascertainment - Elements of Cost
  3. Cost Accounting Standards
  4. Cost Book Keeping

(The collective weightage of the above 4 topics is 40%)

  1. Methods of Costing (Weightage – 30%)
  2. Cost Accounting Techniques (Weightage – 30%)

CMA Intermediate Paper 8 Cost Accounting Topic-wise Weightage

Cost accounting is probably the most important topic that a CMA should know. Want to know more about this topic in detail? Click on the button below.

Click here!

Paper 9: Operations Management & Strategic Management

ICMAI has introduced this paper Operations Management and Strategic Management at the CMA Intermediate level where you will learn details about Operations Management and Strategic Management. Here you need to be able to identify ways and means to help businesses reduce their costs and how and why product planning works along with how best to manage resources. 

The paper is of 3 hours duration and split into two sections. Here are the weightages:

Section A:  Operations Management (Weightage – 70%)

  1. Operations Management - Introduction
  2. Operations Planning
  3. Designing of Operational Systems and Control
  4. Production Planning and Control
  5. Productivity Management and Quality Management
  6. Project Management
  7. Economics of Maintenance and Spares Management

Section B: Strategic Management (Weightage – 30%)

  1. Strategic Management Introduction
  2. Strategic Analysis and Strategic Planning
  3. Formulation and Implementation of Strategy

CMA Intermediate Paper 9 Operations Management & Strategic Management Topic-wise Weightage

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Paper 10: Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management

ICMAI has introduced this paper Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management at the CMA Intermediate level so that you will be able to identify ways to maximise revenue and ensure that the company runs smoothly in terms of operations. In addition, you will learn how to help businesses keep their costs at a minimum and to leverage their resources properly.   

The paper is of three hours duration and is a pen and paper descriptive exam. It is split into two sections. The topics covered and weightage are as follows:

Section A: Cost & Management Accounting (Weightage – 50%)

  1. Cost and Management Accounting Introduction
  2. Decision Making Tools
  3. Budgeting and Budgetary Control
  4. Standard Costing and Variance Analysis
  5. Learning Curve

Section B: Financial Management (Weightage – 50%)

  1. Introduction to Financial Management
  2. Tools for Financial Analysis and Planning
  3. Working Capital Management
  4. Cost of Capital, Capital Structure Theories, Dividend Decisions and Leverage Analysis
  5. Capital Budgeting – Investment Decisions

CMA Intermediate Paper 10 Cost & Management Accounting and Financial Management Topic-wise Weightage

To know more about this paper, how to study for it and the course content available on the LearnCab platform, click the button below:

Know More!

Paper 11: Indirect Taxation

ICMAI has introduced this paper Indirect Taxation at the CMA Intermediate level so that you can understand the impact of indirect taxes on businesses so as to make effective business decisions. 

The paper is a descriptive paper of three hours duration. The topics covered are as follows: 

  1. Canons of Taxation - Indirect Tax
  2. Central Excise

(The collective weightage for the above 2 topics is 35%)

  1. Customs Law (Weightage – 15%)
  2. Service Tax (Weightage – 30%)
  3. Central Sales Tax and VAT (Weightage – 20%)

 CMA Intermediate Paper 11 Indirect Taxation Topic-wise Weightage

Do you want more information about this paper Indirect Taxation? Just click on the button below:

Show me more!

Paper 12: Company Accounts and Audit

ICMAI has introduced this paper, Company Accounts and Audit, at the CMA Intermediate level, where you will get an in-depth knowledge of how to prepare financial statements including procedures, principles and professional standards. You will also get a basic knowledge of other types of audit to get a general idea of the procedure. This will help you when you perform cost audits of companies. 

The paper itself is of 3 hours duration and is a descriptive exam. It is divided into two sections. Here are the details:

Section A: Accounts of Joint Stock Companies

  1. Accounting of Shares and Debenture
  2. Presentation of Financial Statements (as Per Schedule III)
  3. Cash Flow Statement

(The collective weightage of the above 3 papers is 25%)

  1. Accounts of Banking, Electricity and Insurance Companies
  2. Accounting Standards (AS-11, 12, 15, 16, 17, 18 and 19)

(The collective weightage of the above 3 papers is 25%)

Section B: Auditing

  1. Auditing Concepts (Weightage – 20%)
  2. Provision relating to Audit under Companies Act 30 (Weightage – 30%)

 CMA Intermediate Paper 12 Company Accounts and Audit Topic-wise Weightage

The above is a brief version of the syllabus of CMA Intermediate exam. You can get a detailed version on every CMA Intermediate subject, content available on the LearnCab platform, and tips to tackle each paper by checking out our CMA course resources page

Let us now look at the passing requirements and general tips to pass the exam.

Passing Requirements and General Study Tips

Passing Requirements

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:

  1. you obtain a minimum of 40% marks in each paper of the group and
  2. 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:

  1. you meet the minimum requirements to clear a group individually or
  2. 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.

Paper-wise exemptions

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 outlined on the CMA website. 

Exemptions are valid for the following categories of students:

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. 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.

Also, to help give you the best chance to succeed, we at LearnCab have developed our own study material based on the ICMAI CMA Intermediate Syllabus. You can sign up with LearnCab and gain access to hours of HD quality video lectures by qualified CMA professionals who have a vast knowledge of the subject. Just click on the button below and get a free trial.

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In addition to gathering as many relevant resources as possible, you should also plan your study well. The syllabus is vast and huge. So, it's a good idea to create a timetable of your own. You might want to look at our post detailing how to set up a timetable for ideas. 

You should also try and incorporate efficient study strategies to use your time well. The infographic below gives you a quick overview of some study methods. 

Check out our blog post on this topic for more details. 

So, study hard, eat well and don’t stress out! And if you have questions about any part of this post, write to us at support@learncab.com or comment down below!

Topics:CMA

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