What is Certified Management accountant (CMA)?

CMA is a universally recognized certification program that is especially designed for finance professionals and students passionate about management accounting. This course is offered by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), a USA based institution that provides CMA (US) certification. Moreover, only the authorized partners of the IMA can offer CMA coaching to the students. SISF being one of them.

Furthermore, CMA is an accounting label that certifies an expertise in financial accounting and strategic management. This course is especially designed for scholars who want to gain expertise not just in accounting, but also in financial management and strategic planning. Individuals who achieve this designation are signified as CMAs, thereby making them subject experts in the field of budgeting and budget forecasting, corporate investments, risk management and also analytics and Information Technology (IT). A CMA is eligible to perform a variety of roles including a Chief Financial Officer (CFO), financial controller to name a few.

CMA certification is given by an international organization named Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). CMAs are entitled to fulfil strict set of professional standards, besides clearing two level of examinations. That brings us to question about how to become a CMA which is discussed below.

How to become a CMA?

As mentioned earlier, CMA certification is issued by the IMA. Hence their first requirement is, the prospect must have a detailed knowledge in accounting and business management. They must also hold a bachelor’s degree in any stream (excluding arts) to apply for this course. Mentioned herewith is the eligibility criteria of CMA:

The applicant must fulfil at least 1 of the two conditions ie:

  • Have a bachelor’s degree from an accredited institution or
  • They must have a professional certification.

The students must submit their transcripts of bachelor’s degree to the IMA for verification, where the IMA will evaluate the same. Note: In case if your college does not come under the accredited list, then you have to request the foreign credential evaluation committee to evaluate your transcript and accordingly submit their report to the ICMA. Next option is holding a professional certification. The IMA has specified a list of certification courses that fulfil the CMA course requirement. So you just have to keep checking the updated lists and accordingly ask your respective institution to send a letter that confirms your participation in that specific course to the ICMA authorities. In case if you are still in school and have not graduated yet, you can still qualify to take this course. All you have to do, is to give a proof to the IMA that you are student, by registering yourself for at least 6 credits per semester in that academic year. Thereafter you have to submit your degree confirmation letter to the ICMA within a duration of 7 years of clearing the CMA exams. Finally after clearing all the exams the Institute to Management Accountants (IMA) rewards a CMA certificate to the passing candidates.

CMA Course Structure

Certified management accountant (CMA) comprises of two parts that are:

icon Financial Planning, performance and analytics.

  • Cost Management
  • External Financial Reporting and Decisions
  • Technology and Analytics
  • Performance Management
  • Internal Controls
  • Planning, Budgeting, and Forecasting

iconStrategic Financial Management

  • Corporate Finance
  • Risk Management
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Professional Ethics
  • Decision Analysis
  • Investment Decisions

Moreover, each part comprise of 100 multiple choice questions and 2 essay type questions. Applicants can take any part first, as per their convenience and preparation. Although it is recommended to begin with the part you are most comfortable with. Besides, they are also given the liberty to appear for both the exams on the same day or at varied time, depending on how much time they have for studies.

The exams are conducted 3 times in one year, which will be in the month of

  • January/ February
  • May/ June
  • September/ October

Why CMA?

CMA is often chosen by students who hold interest in corporate financial accounting and strategic management. Individuals often select this course because it covers the topics that are not even included in the Certified Public Accountant (CPA) course. While a CPA’s work is mostly focused on preparing audit reports and income tax return, a CMA’s work on the other hand, includes management and high-level executive duties as well. A CMA’s work comprises of corporate budget analysis for in-house review, thereby assisting the company in better and informed decision making.

Mentioned herewith are some of the advantages of pursuing the CMA course:


Just like other accounting certification courses, CMA course is considered as one of the most reliable courses due to its global recognition in several countries including the USA.

Income prospective

CMA is one of the high paying professions and the employers often reserve CMA for a high paying position. In a recent survey it was found that a CMA earns approximately 120% more than any other uncertified professional..

Greater job opportunities

A CMA has more job opportunities as they are considered more versatile as compared to any other professional.

Advancement in career

Employers mostly consider professionals who have both leadership and administrative skills for high-level posts. CMA program trains the students in strategic planning in decision making and budgeting, which are of utmost importance for a high level job.

How many times can one take the CMA Exam?

In case of failure to clear the exam in the first attempt, one may reappear for this exam in the subsequent test schedule. This exam can be given for maximum three times in one year. In order to get a certification, one must pass both the levels of the exam within these 3 years.

Course Summary

Course Details: CMA (US)
Duration 9- 12 months
Eligibility 12’th pass/ Graduates
Batches Admission open
Recognition Globally acclaimed 150+ countries
Board Institute of Management Accountants (IMA)
Employment opportunities after completion of course
  • Corporate Finance
  • Risk Management
  • Financial Statement Analysis
  • Professional Ethics
  • Decision Analysis
  • Investment Decisions
Course pass rate 40%

CMA with SISF?

CMA (US) teaching program offered by SISF, provides students an opportunity to become certified professionals in the accounting and finance industry. We provide both theoretical as well as practical knowledge in the accounting, management and finance thereby up- skilling the students and making them future ready. Unlike other international professional courses, CMA (US) convoys with your university teaching, and can be cleared in two parts within a time frame of less than 12 months. So, hurry up and join us now. For further details click here.