Since, this is my first article, Let me clear that the article is based on my personal experience while undergoing CA Course. I entered through direct entry after my TY BCom exams. And the interesting part during my college years was, I only studied during the examination days (i.e. one day before exams).
On friends demand and to help fellow aspirants. First of all let me make it clear, I cleared above two courses in my fourth attempt. So, I am not stating that clearing the exams are easy and that I have achieved any great feat. I hope this article will help my friends and fellow aspirants who find it difficult to clear CA exams even after multiple attempts when they have less time to study.
For IPCC Nov 15 Exams, I had got 15 days of study leave while doing my articleship. Earlier I had given 3 attempts for both the groups and failed to clear. I failed miserably in my first attempt with below 200 marks both group, 2nd attempt got 300+ marks and third attempt below 300.
The reason for my failure was basically my attitude and approach towards study. I had lost grip on studies as there was huge gap of 4 years (From HSC 2010 to IPCC 2014). So this was the main reason why I was finding IPCC difficult.
When I gave my third attempt , I realised that IPCC is in altogether different league as compared to TY Bcom exams. After results of third attempt I did analysis of my past performance and identified my strengths and weaknesses in each individual subjects. So, I decided to do crash course of subjects in which I was weak, as I was unable to bring even 40 marks (Cost/ FM). I completed the same before my 15 days leave, so Cost/FM – one paper was almost revised and I used to do practice of the same every Sunday.
15 Days of Study Leave
I was not at all confident that I could clear Both groups in 15 days. So, first day went on getting my mentality and mindset right, that I should atleast try to give one group. So in the, I decided to study for Group I and simultaneously practiced Advanced accounts of Group II. As I was pretty sure that I can attempt theory papers of group 2 (IT/SM and Audit) with limited study as i had base of earlier 3 attempts.
I personally used to read lot of articles on how to clear IPCC, there I came to know that you need to score atleast one exemption in any subject in either of the groups. So, I targeted exemption in Paper 1- Accounting. I prepared for the same very thoroughly in the last 4 days completely. And small chapters of practical subjects were revised by me earlier, so didn’t spend extra time on it during 15 days leave period.
I cleared my IPCC in 15 days as I was pretty sure if I strengthen my weakness, I will clear. So, the crash course helped me to overcome the 40 marks hurdle in Paper 2- Cost/Fm and I got exemption in Accounting as planned. Got 205 in grp 1 and 145 in grp 2.
How to utilise your time when you have less days to study
How to study?
This question is subjective. I am no one to force you to follow my methods, so I will suggest stick to your basics as you used to study during your school days. I did that. Old habits die hard.
Going to library is also subjective, I personally didn’t liked to go to library as it made me nervous by seeing serious faces. So I used to study at home. I can only say if you can’t study alone study with someone who is serious. My friend Mayank helped me with some practical subjects, as we used to practice together. This helped me to revise quickly as compared to doing it alone.
Number of leaves for study, is again subjective and may differ person to person on his grasping and studying pattern.
One thing I can tell you all to do is, make a habit of writing in each subject. This was the main reason for me not clearing the exams in 1 or 2 attempts.. As after my HSC I hardly wrote anything except for the board and final exams of FY,SY and TY. Thereafter, I entered CA through direct entry after TYBcom. I used to highlight points while reading but never write it on paper. I started writing from 4th attempt that’s why I cleared.
CA Final – Group II
For my CA Final group II, I had 10 days to prepare before exams. Let me clear again, this was my 4th attempt. I was hoping to clear my both groups in my third attempt only, I failed to clear group 2 by 11 marks twice (2nd and 3rd attempt), by aggregate. So, my base and concepts were pretty clear.
Strategy used to study in 10 days
As I wrote, I am not time table following person, I study when I am in mood to study. The thing is when I am in mood i can complete reading/revising chapter three time faster from regular times. So, the productivity ratio is very high as compared to others. After I cleared, some people referred me as “ROBOT”, they were telling me “tera koi setting hai kya ICAI ke saath” and all such shocking things as they study for long hours in library and still are unable to clear.
I had a plan in my mind which I implemented in 10 days. It was pretty simple, as I wrote if you want to clear any group, you need to target one exemption in any subject. And my ISCA was pretty good. So i revised ISCA for most of the days and also practiced AMA as cost is my weakness. Basically, I didn’t want to fail in AMA and lose my chances of passing from first paper. For, Direct Tax and IDT, one day each was given from 10 days, before the 1.5 days of exam. As I was from Tax background firm, I was pretty sure that If I attempt 100% in exams, then I can get 40 marks easily. Hence, never consider your articleship and practical experience waste. That helps in such times.
So, I thought if I got near to 120 marks in first two papers, there is definitely light of hope to clear the group. With this attitude/approach I gave all my papers. My first two papers were great, but Direct tax was a bit tricky, as many international taxation sums and amendments were, and I had not revised international taxation and just had gone through amendments. Besides that, my firm didn’t practiced international taxation. When I first read the paper 15 minutes earlier, I was just thinking of 40 marks and started writing what I know well first and then what I didn’t know I attempted. I wrote full paper, as I knew, if I attempt 100% I will definitely get 40 marks.
Similarly, I studied IDT before exams and attempted 100 % paper. Since, these two are practical subjects you can apply your practical knowledge and correlate same with questions asked.
To disclose, I got 45 in AMA,64 in ISCA (as planned), 55 in DT (not planned, even I am surprised) and 44 in IDT (as planned). I will personally say, it’s a miracle, and thanks to Almighty God, Parents, Friends, Relatives and every person who wished for me.
I hope this article will help majority of aspirants to crack future upcoming exams. This article is exclusive for failures like me as “failure is simply an opportunity to begin again, but more intelligently”. And I am built from failures.
Just stay in the race, one day will come when you will win.