Study Time for the CMA Exam: How Many Hours Should You Study for the CMA Exam? (2023)

When discussing study time for the CMA exam, people often ask each other: How many hours should I study for the CMA exam? You want to pass the CMA exam, preferably on the first try, and that means studying properly. So, how long should one study for the CMA?

Study Time for the CMA Exam: How Many Study Hours Do I Need? 100? 200? 300?

The IMA recommends that you study at least 150 hours for each part of the exam (there are two parts). This is a total of 300 hours of study for both parts of the exam. This is of course a rough estimate as we all have very different backgrounds, experiences and, frankly, learning efficiency and effectiveness. So, how much does it take?vesselstudying for the CMA exam?

There is no magic number that guarantees you a pass. Again, we are all different. There are some guidelines to help you, but you must remember that it is also important to study effectively. What good is 80 hours of study if you're using outdated material, multitasking, or otherwise not absorbing the information?

To give you more helpful guidance, I've created the following estimates to help you stay on track.

1. I give80 sati170 sati
2. I give60 sati120 sati

"Minimum" refers to the time it takes to passGleim CMA Review System. This includes taking multiple choice quizzes, watching instructor videos, answering True/False questions, reading the textbook, and taking exams at the end.

"Definitely" refers to the above plus the answerallpractice questions inGleim CMA Test Bank, plus the time required to carefully consider explanations of incorrect answers.

The time you need to study also depends on your study program. How much do you study every day? Every week? If you studied 20 hours a week, you could prepare for both parts of the CMA exam in 3-4 months. Conversely, if you only study 10 hours a week, you can complete your studies in 6-8 months.

Studying 20 hours a week means almost 3 hours a day on average, while studying 10 hours a week means about an hour and a half a day on average.

If you need to prepare faster, you need to spend more time each day.

It may take you more or less time, depending on your background

If you are familiar with the concept, you may be able to spend less hours studying it. One of the best featuresGleim CMAis that the system identifies your weak areas. This means you can spend less time studying areas that cover concepts in which you have already demonstrated proficiency.

On the other hand, if these concepts are mostly new to you, you will need extra time to revise the topics. Additionally, you may want to answer more questions that cover your weak areas.

How to study for the CMA exam

First, it's important to know what you're working with. Take your time to understandCMA Exam, how is itscored, and what you need for onepassing score. For example, you need 360 points out of 500 to pass. This means you don't have to worry about the perfect result. So you don't have to keep repeating the same study unit until you get 100%.

Instead, a better tactic is to focus on the 80/20 rule. Aim to get at least 80% of the practice questions correct and then move on to the next section or topic. Don't get hung up on perfection when perfection isn't necessary (or practical) to pass the CMA exam.

Choosing the right study guides

Choosing the best study guide or course overview is key to your success and reducing your study time. The most important thing is to choose an overview course that suits your own education and learning style. I encourage you to:

  • Compare CMA Review Courses
  • Sign up for free trials with the ones you like
  • Get discounts for CMA reviews
  • Start studying

Always purchase the latest version of the course so you don't lose points for learning outdated material. It is absolutely worth paying the extra money to study the REAL topics. ICMA changes the syllabus every year and that is why there are new CMA study materials every year. CMA assessment providers match their material to the syllabus to ensure you are studying the correct material for your exam.

Make a study plan

After you have your study materials, it is important to make a study plan. If you approach it haphazardly, saying "I'll fit it in whenever", then you probably won't have enough time for the study you need to get through. Instead, you need to take it very seriously and block certain time periods for your study. If you use a review course like Gleim orWiley CMA, then you have the structure of what you are studying. Accordingly, if you use Gleim or Wiley, you will also have access to a useful curriculum that is perfectly matched to your curriculum. So to use the study planners for any course, all you need to do is enter the dates you cannot study and the estimated (or actual) dates.CMA Exam Date.

If your course does not include a study planner, you will need to create your own. In this case, you should note your study time in your schedule from Monday to Sunday. Whether it's 1 hour a day, 2 hours 3 days a week, or any other realistic number of hours a week, the point is to make a schedule and then commit to it.

When making your study plan, it's always best to take the time to study and prepare, rather than trying to cram it in at the last minute. Cramming is not only stressful, but is not a good strategy for this type of exam. Preparing for the CMA exam is not just about memorizing facts. Rather, it's about knowing the information so you can make a decision based on a real-life scenario that could happen in a business environment. This is called an application-based test, so memorizing the questions won't help you in the actual exam.

Simulation of real tests

Another great way to get the most out of your study and preparation time is to practice with real exam questions. The mock exams and mock test questions included in the review courses will help you with this. You also want to simulate the environment you will be in when you take the actual test.

Try to practice in an environment similar to the actual exam. For example:

  • Practice the questions online (because the exam itself is fully computerized)
  • Study in a quiet, secluded workspace. It can be your office, a quiet room at home or a library.

Use your downtime

When considering study tips and how much time you need to study for the CMA, it's also important to make good use of your downtime. In the months you study for the exam, the CMA will be your life. Most studio courses are digital, so you can access them from your phone or tablet and study almost anywhere with a WiFi or data connection.

This is a great opportunity to use your waiting time in waiting rooms, on the bus ride or anywhere else you find yourself with some free time. This does not need to be included in your study time allocation as mentioned above, but it will go a long way in familiarizing you with the material.

To build upon the instructions above, I have compiled them50 Tips for the CMA Examto help you study for the CMA. I have combined over 10 years of study into this guide for you. You can use these tips to get the most out of your study time.

My 8 Ways to Reduce Study Time for the CMA Exam

Another great way to cut down on your CMA study hours is to make sure you study in the most efficient and effective way possible. To get the most out of your study time (and reduce your overall study time), you should:

1. Break the habit of multitasking

Research has shown that multitasking doesn't work. Period. It may be okay to study and multitask if one of the tasks is mundane or passive (eg washing the dishes or watching your child sleep), but you can only expect a 50% performance level at best . Since you value your time, you should try to focus 100% on your studies because you don't want to learn things more than once if you don't have to.

A better alternative is to completely reduce your day-to-day tasks by delegating and outsourcing (eg hire a temporary assistant or babysitter). If not possible, at least focus on one task more to reduce the cost of task switching.

2. Create shorter study sessions

It is better to study in shorter intervals (eg watching 15-minute videos or going through practice questions for no more than half an hour). Why; Because your brain just can't handle too much information at once.

It's also easier to force yourself to focus for a shorter period of time, increasing the effectiveness of your study sessions.

3. Rest for your body and mind

Between these short study sessions, let your body and mind rest. Choose a quiet place and do something that will give you peace. You could get up and do some jumping jacks or run in place to burn off excess energy and help your body release the stress of studying.

4. Make your own cards

If the cards were not included in yourCMA Review Course, you can make your own in any format. This is a proven method of learning because it works.

I have readers who would go so far as to write down all the terms or formulas, throw away the paper, and rewrite - repeatedly. This is an extreme case, but it shows you how important it is to get concepts into your head through writing.

If this is too much for you, I suggest that you at least do your own marking and notes in the margins of the textbook. This helps a lot with retention versus passively reading the book over and over again.

5. Use new technological tools for learning

I personally prefer a good old notebook, but you can consider making good use of today's technology at the same time. Most CMA assessment courses include apps or are compatible with mobile devices.

6. Test your knowledge

Passive learning is ineffective. Instead, you should constantly apply your new knowledge by testing yourself. Stick to this rule: never skip a few practice questions at the end of each chapter, even if you're not sure you'll get them right. Accuracy is not important. The quiz is a way to reinforce what you just learned.

7. Take the mock exam in a simulated environment

Don't take a mock test at Starbucks - it's more live than a Prometric test center.

The ideal location would be one that looks a lot like a testing center — a quiet room with rows of workstations. If not, any quiet place with people, like a library, would be a good choice.

8. Stay positive!

Keep telling yourself: it will be over when the exam is over. You can do it!

On exam day, try to imagine a successful person with strong problem-solving skills remaining composed in a difficult situation. This simple trick works wonders for exam success.

If you have additional questions that you don't see answered here in this post, please leave me a comment. I want to help you understand CMA study time and get the most out of your study time. If I left anything out, please let me know.

Good luck!

For further reading

  • CMA Exam Preparation Tips
  • CMA Exam Score
  • Gleim v. Wiley CMA


Study Time for the CMA Exam: How Many Hours Should You Study for the CMA Exam? ›

On average, Part 1 requires 170 study hours, which you can cover in 10-13 weeks, and Part 2 takes 130 hours and 8-11 weeks. We recommend that candidates study a minimum of 12 hours each week. You can use these estimates to build a study plan that works with your schedule.

How many months to prepare for CMA exam? ›

In general, your CMA preparation should amount to 90 or more hours of studying per exam. Depending on how long you can study per day, this can take anywhere from seven weeks to three months. But these are just general estimates. Some people might need to study for longer over a several-month period.

How should I study for the CMA exam? ›

CMA Exam study tips
  1. Use a CMA Exam prep course. Using the best CMA Exam prep will make your CMA study journey much easier and increase your chances of passing on your first attempt. ...
  2. Decide which part you're taking first. ...
  3. Build a realistic study plan. ...
  4. Create a productive study environment.

Can you pass the CMA in 6 months? ›

12 hours per week study plan

On average, candidates can pass both parts of the CMA exam in just over 6 months using this schedule. If you have a bit more time to study, consider increasing your study hours per week.

How many hours is the CMA exam? ›

How much time do I have to take the CMA Exam? There are three hours to answer multiple-choice CMA Exam questions and one hour to complete the essays, totaling four hours for each part of the exam.

What is the pass rate for the CMA exam? ›

CMA Passing Rate Compared to Other Accounting Certification Exams. You might be surprised the learn that when compared to other accounting certification exams, the CMA pass rates are among the lowest, coming in at around 50%. The Certified Public Accountant (CPA) exam is similar, with a 54% pass rate.

Is it hard to pass the CMA exam? ›

Based on the CMA Exam pass rate, the IMA (Institute of Management Accountants) says less than 50% of candidates pass both parts on their first attempt. With pass rates as low as 45% for Part One and 45% for Part Two of the CMA examination, it is evident that the exam is extremely difficult.

How many hours a day should I study for CMA? ›

Average CMA study time for most candidates

On average, Part 1 requires 170 study hours, which you can cover in 10-13 weeks, and Part 2 takes 130 hours and 8-11 weeks. We recommend that candidates study a minimum of 12 hours each week.

How to pass CMA exam on first try? ›

Here Are My Top 10 Tips for Passing the CMA Exam on Your Very First Try!
  1. Learn Your Study Style. ...
  2. Don't Just Buy a Review Course – Use It. ...
  3. Give Your Brain a Break. ...
  4. Get a Study Buddy. ...
  5. Simulate the Exam Experience. ...
  6. Make the Multiple Choice Section Work For You. ...
  7. Dominate the Essay Section. ...
  8. Focus on Your Health.

How many times can you take CMA exam? ›

How many times can I take the exam? Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam are allowed three exam attempts. Candidates recertifying by exam are allowed three attempts. Each attempt will require a new exam application and fee.

How many times can you fail CMA? ›

How Many Times Can You Fail the CMA Exam? The short answer: as many times as it takes. There are no limits to how many times a single candidate can take the CMA exam.

Can US CMA be completed in 3 months? ›

The CMA USA certification can be finished within 6-12 months. You will have three years to complete if you are a student.

What is the minimum passing score CMA? ›

The CMA exam score is a scaled score between 0-500, 500 being a perfect score and 360 being the minimum passing score. Parts 1 and 2 of the CMA exam are split between multiple-choice questions (MCQs) and essay questions.

Is CMA exam harder than CPA? ›

CPA vs CMA Exam Difficulty

Even so, the CMA exam has a slightly lower pass rate, at roughly 45% passing the two parts, collectively, while half (~50%) or better pass each section of the CPA exam. All CMA candidates have three years to pass both parts of the exam.

How many questions can you miss on the CMA exam? ›

There is one way to know immediately that you failed the CMA exam. If you answer less than 50% of the multiple-choice questions wrong, you will not be allowed to proceed to the essay portion of the test. However, if you do but still receive less than a total of 360 points, you will have failed.

How long does it take to make a CMA? ›

How long does it take to get your CMA certification? According to the IMA, passing the CMA Exam typically takes “12-18 months to complete both parts, on average,” and has a "worldwide pass rate" of 45% across parts 1 and 2 of the CMA Exam. The IMA also recommends studying approximately 150-170 hours per exam section.

How do I know if I passed the CMA exam? ›

Performance Reports are sent via email by Prometric on behalf of ICMA. They are emailed approximately 14 days after exam results become available. Candidates who do not pass will receive a report that indicates their performance on each of the key topic areas on the exam.

What score do you need to pass the CCMA exam? ›

What Score Do You Need to Pass the CCMA Exam? NHA exams are scored using a scaled score method. The scaled score for the CCMA exam considers the exam's difficulty and weights the questions accordingly. The scaled scores range from 200 to 500, and the passing scaled score is 390 or higher.

What is the difference between a CMA and a CPA? ›

Certified Public Accountants (CPAs) and Certified Management Accountants (CMAs) are both certified accountants and more highly regarded than non-licensed accountants. On a basic level, a CPA is responsible for taxes and audits, while a CMA is in charge of management accounting.

Can I pass us CMA without coaching? ›

Yes! You can. You might have asked this question multiple times and got different versions of answers from various resources. Here are few factors to keep in mind before going forward whether to do a self-study or assisted learning.

How long does it take to study for the are? ›

If you're just getting started on your architecture licensure journey, it's a great time to plan out what order you'll take each division of the ARE 5.0. In terms of the time needed to prepare, you should expect to spend three months and 50 to 55 hours studying for each exam division.

Do you need 150 credits to sit for CMA exam? ›

Do You Need 150 Credits to Sit for CPA Exam in California? No. You just need to have a bachelor's degree and complete 24 semester hours in accounting courses and 24 semester hours in business-related courses.

How many hours should I study for CPA? ›

Studying for the CPA Exam

We recommend that you spend approximately 150 hours studying for the Financial section, 120 hours studying for the Regulation section, 90 hours studying for the Auditing section and 90 hours studying for the Business section. Here are tips for stress while studying for the CPA Exam.

How many hours a week do accounting majors study? ›

As a major, accounting is far from being boring as it requires a great deal of study time. Weekly, accounting majors typically study for 16 to 17 hours per week. As a career, accounting can be tedious unless challenging tasks in the workplace come into being or interesting jobs are taken on by accounting majors.

Can you take the CMA exam without doing a program? ›

While you can't take the Certified Medical Assistant (CMA) exam without completing an accredited program, you can take the Certified Clinical Medical Assistant (CCMA), Registered Medical Assistant (RMA), and National Certified Medical Assistant (NCMA) exams without going to school.

Can I take CMA exam online? ›

CMA Exam Dates Quick Facts

Starting January 18, 2022, remote testing is now available for the CMA exam. The CMA exam can be taken in-person at a Prometric testing center or remotely using Prometric's ProProctor service. If needed, you can easily reschedule your exam through the Prometric website.

Can you use a calculator on the CMA exam? ›

You are allowed to bring a calculator to the CMA exam. The following calculators are approved: A basic six-function electronic calculator that is not programmable and does not include any type of tape.

Is 45 too old to be a medical assistant? ›

So, where do you start? Careers in the healthcare industry are ideal for people of all ages—and they come with a list of benefits. If you're searching for an opportunity that offers rewarding work, fast training, and security, there is no better job than that of a medical assistant (also called an MA).

How many tests are there for CMA? ›

The CMA exam is a two-part exam. Each part tests different topics, but they have the same structure. Each part of the CMA exam is four hours long and has 100 multiple choice questions and 2 essay scenarios.

Which test is harder RMA or CMA? ›

Many medical assistants who have taken both exams state that the RMA exam is slightly easier than the CMA exam. The RMA exam costs $120. If you need to re-take the RMA exam, you must wait 45 days to try again and submit an examination retake form. The RMA certification is good for three years.

What is the highest score on the AAMA CMA exam? ›

The score is based on the number of correct responses on the exam. The scale ranges from 200-800, with a minimum passing score of 430. The AAMA conducts a study approximately every three years to establish the standard level of competency.

How often does the CMA exam change? ›

every few years

What is the salary of CMA in USA? ›

CMA in the US: Salary by Experience
ExperienceAverage Salary in USD
Entry-level CMA (1-3 years)$79,534
Senior Level CMA (8+ years)$141,356
Dec 19, 2022

Which CMA is best? ›

The US CMA course is the top qualification in the subject of accounting and management, and it is offered by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA) in almost 150 countries. The Institute of Cost Accountants of India oversees the CMA program in India.

Is us CMA very difficult? ›

The US CMA Exam is considered as hardest as it tests the intellectual limits of an individual. The average passing rate for both sections is 45%, which implies less than half of the candidates taking the test rate will pass. Qualifying for any exam requires preparation and so this.

What is CMA average? ›

According to PayScale, the average salary for a CMA is $65k a year (or $28 an hour). Entry level or early career CMAs can expect to make around $49k each year.

What is the minimum qualification for US CMA? ›

Eligibility Criteria (US CMA Course):

Anyone who has completed a Bachelor's degree in any discipline from an Accredited College or University or pursuing his / her degree is eligible for the US CMA certification.

Is CMA worth it after CPA? ›

As a CPA, you can make 10-15% more than non-certified accountants. And according to the IMA, CMAs earn 58% more in median total compensation than non-CMAs. So, with these extra earnings, both the CPA and the CMA pay for themselves. And you can make even more annually when you put these certifications together.

Is the CMA worth it if you have the CPA? ›

Searle says the CMA certification provides a very large advantage in the job market. There are jobs that require either a CPA or CMA designation, he says. CMAs are exceptional when it comes to supervising teams, managing projects, and making high-level business decisions.

Which is better CPA CFA or CMA? ›

It is because these certifications offer great careers in different paths. CFA is for those who want to pursue a career as a Financial Analyst, CMA is for those who want a Management Accounting career, and CPA is for those who want to build a career in Accounting and Finance.

How many essay questions are there in CMA exam? ›

The essay portion of the CMA exam comprises 25% of the total exam time, or one hour, for each exam part. Both exam parts include two essay problems/scenarios, and each can have five to seven questions associated with it. Candidates are given 30 minutes to respond to each essay problem/scenario.

How do I get a quick CMA? ›

Create a Quick CMA
  1. First, search for comparables using Quick Search.
  2. In the search results, select the properties that you want to use as comparables.
  3. Click the CMA button on the search results page. ...
  4. On the CMA Type page, click Quick CMA. ...
  5. Use the Finish tab to choose display and detail options for the CMA.
Jan 25, 2021

What is the CMA for accountants? ›

People with a certified management accountant (CMA) certification can work in corporate financial accounting and strategic management. Professionals may choose the CMA pathway because it covers different topics than the certified public accountant (CPA) certification.

Is CMA Part 2 easier? ›

Similar to Part 1 of the Certified Management Accounting exam, CMA Part 2 has a less-than-ideal pass rate. The average CMA pass rate for part 2 is just 45%, which means more than half of the candidates who sit for this exam will have to retake it.

How long does it take to get CMA results? ›

CMA Exam Results

Approximately six weeks from the end of the month in which you've taken your test, we will email your exam results to you and post in your personal MyIMA transcript.

How many attempts are allowed in US CMA? ›

There are no limits to how many times a single candidate can take the CMA exam. However, there is a time limit for the CMA certification cost. Once the CMA entrance fee is paid, candidates have three years to pass both parts of the exam.

What is the first step in completing a CMA? ›

The Rule Of Three

The first step for an agent preparing a CMA is to find three homes that have sold recently (within the past 6 months at most, but preferably 3 months). These three homes should be as similar and located as closely together as possible.

Is CMA harder than CPA? ›

CPA vs CMA Exam Difficulty

Even so, the CMA exam has a slightly lower pass rate, at roughly 45% passing the two parts, collectively, while half (~50%) or better pass each section of the CPA exam. All CMA candidates have three years to pass both parts of the exam.

How many times can you fail the CMA exam? ›

How many times can I take the exam? Initial candidates for the CMA (AAMA) Exam are allowed three exam attempts. Candidates recertifying by exam are allowed three attempts. Each attempt will require a new exam application and fee.

Is the CMA accounting worth it? ›

The CMA credential can provide opportunities for career advancement, higher earnings potential, and greater job satisfaction. For those considering a career in management accounting, pursuing the CMA designation is an excellent way to gain the skills and experience needed to succeed in this exciting field.


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