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What is the US CMA course? And how difficult is it?

US CMA stands for Certified Management Accountant, and it is one of the highest-paying professions, which is globally recognized and managed by IMA. (Institute of Management Accountants). The finance professionals and accountants pursuing CMA gain expertise in the field of management accounting and have immense knowledge in topics like internal controls, technology and analytics, planning, budgeting, and forecasting along with topics such as risk management, corporate finance, and professional ethics, which is of utmost importance for any professional today which is also a part of US CMA course syllabus

Since now you have got a better understanding of what US CMA is all about, you would be thinking how is it different from US CPA, which again is a course that has a lot of demand and is also globally recognized. Well, US CPA is more about auditing and taxation and US CMA is more about management accounting and budgeting. The eligibility is also different for both courses. Let’s now have a look into the US CMA course details along with the duration and other details.

The CMA eligibility criteria are as follows:

  1. Having a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university or any equivalent degree is mandatory.
  2. Along with a bachelor’s degree having two years of relevant work experience in management accounting or financial management is also required.
  • Whereas in CPA, the requisite includes:
    1. Having a bachelor’s degree from an accredited university along with a post-graduation, preferably in Commerce such as, (Master’s in Commerce) MBA, or a member of ICAI, (Institute of Chartered Accountants of India) member of ICWA, (Institute of Cost and Works accountants) or CS. (Member of Company Secretaries in India)
    2. Indian CA, along with B.Com, may also be accepted by certain states in the US. However, the exact criteria may vary from state to state. In such cases, you can always contact our counselors, who are the right people to guide you and help you take that career jump for you to achieve and get into your dream job.
    3. You need to have a total of 120 credits to appear for the CPA examinations and need a total of 150 credits to acquire a license. Some states also require the candidate to have 1-2 years of experience under a qualified CPA.
    4. The candidate should also complete the four-part assessment in 18 months to acquire the CPA license.

CMA Course Eligibility in India

Now let us answer the most frequently asked question which is, how difficult it is to crack the US CMA examination

  • The CMA exams take place in two parts. Part, one consists of Financial Reporting, Planning, Performance, and Analytics where the average pass rate is about 34%, and part two that consists of Strategic Financial Management and has a pass rate of 46% globally. However, the pass rate differs from region to region. 
  • The topics covered in the CPA course are much broader as compared to CMA. The CMA course has a slightly smaller range of topics but is covered in depth. It&rsquo’s been noticed that students need to equally dedicate their time for each part of the CMA exam as they have to while preparing for the CPA exams. If you focus and study with the tips that we have elaborated further, it won’t be that difficult.


  • IMA provides its students with complete flexibility wherein they are required to complete their CMA examinations within 3 years from the date of registration. The CMA course duration is a minimum of 6 months to a year. The examinations are conducted in January/February, May/June, and September/October. 
  • The examinations, including both parts, are MCQ-based with a total of 100 MCQs, along with two 30 minutes essay questions. The best part about this is that there is no negative marking involved, and the students have complete freedom to choose which part they want to choose first. The candidates can check the detailed syllabus first and then decide how they want to continue further.

Top Secrets to Pass your CMA Exams in First Attempt

Tips and Tricks to Crack the CMA Exams in the First Attempt:

  1. Stick to a schedule: The best thing you can ever do is plan your study according to the topics that need to be covered beforehand and allocate time which will surely help you to ace your examinations. By sticking to this schedule, you should always leave additional time in your hand for revision and for any last-minute doubts. 
  2. Having a CMA review by your side: To make it easier for you to crack the CMA examinations, IMA has now made it even easier than before by introducing a CMA exam review kit. It also provides a personalized learning experience so that you can focus more on your weaknesses than strengths. 
  3. Learning from your own experiences: IMA has made it mandatory to have 2 years of relevant work experience in the field of Management Accounting or Financial Management. With this valuable experience that you might have gained, it’s best to start with the topics you haven’t studied before then the topics which you have already covered in your work experience. This will make it much faster for you to cover all the topics strategically. 

Frequently Asked Questions on CMA New Practical Training

Frequently Asked Questions:

  1. Does CMA have any value in India?

    Ans: Most of the companies in India are multinational companies and to eliminate the competition, the students who have additional global certificates are preferred. It also acts as a passport and opens all doors globally.

  2. What is the salary offered to professionals who have completed CMA? 

    Ans: The salary offered to CMA qualified professionals starts from 4 Lakhs per annum which can go up to 8 Lakhs per annum, depending on the skills acquired by you and your ability to crack the interview. 

  3. Am I also eligible for getting any exemptions? 

    Ans: Unfortunately, no exemptions are offered for the US CMA course.

You should opt for a US CMA course if you are interested to build a career in the field of Management Accounting and if topics like Cost Management, Financial Statement Analysis excite you. It is a globally recognized course that provides immense job opportunities. Are you ready because now it’s your time to be the next Chief Financial Officer?