CMA Exam Changes 2020

by CMA Knowledge Base

CMA exam is changing from January 2020. In this blog post I will highlight following key points:

  • Why CMA exam is changing in 2020?
  • Key Changes to Expect
  • CMA 2020: New Exam Structure and Content
  • FAQs – CMA Exam Changes 2020

Why CMA exam is changing in 2020?

ICMA® (Institute of Certified Management Accountants) is dedicated to ensuring the relevance of CMA program and maintaining the CMA as the preeminent management accounting certification in the world. We all know that management accounting profession is changing. Artificial Intelligence, Robotic Process Automation, and Blockchain are changing how accountants work and demanding new skills of management accountants.

ICMA (Institute of Certified Management Accountants) which is certification division of IMA (Institute of Management Accountants) is dedicated to ensuring that CMAs have the skills that are needed today and in the future. Main reason CMA exam is changing in 2020 is “Relevance”. ICMA & IMA want to ensure the relevance of the CMA.

ICMA recently undertook a comprehensive job analysis study to ensure that topics on the CMA (Certified Management Accountant) exam continue to be current, relevant and valid. In this study management accountants throughout the world. Changes are made in the CMA exam in the light of that research study.

Key Changes to Expect

What is not changing? CMA exam will continue to be two-part exam, with 100 Multiple-choice questions and two essay sections.

Changes in CMA Exam Part 1: The biggest changes will be in CMA Part 1 exam. In Part 1 a new section or content area called “Technology and Analytics”. So, what exactly is this new content? First of all, this section of the exam will be divided into four different sub categories: Information Systems, Data Governance, Technology-Enabled Finance Transformation and data analytics. This will be 15% of Part I.

New Title: Financial Planning, Performance, and Analytics
New Content: Technology and Analytics, Integrated Reporting
Deleted Content: Internal Auditing

Changes in CMA Exam Part 2: There are not so significant changes in CMA Part 2 exam. Ethics will be increased and more emphasized. New sub section is added on Business Analytics, which covers moral philosophies and ethical business decision making. Decisions Analysis section is also emphasized.

New Title: Strategic Financial Management
New Content: Business Ethics, Sustainability and Social Responsibility
Deleted Content: Off-Balance Sheet Financing, Bankruptcy, Tax Implications of Transfer Pricing

CMA 2020: New Exam Structure and Content

Part 1: Financial Planning, Performance, and Analytics

15%Cost Management
15%Internal Controls
15%Technology and Analytics
15%External Financial Reporting Decisions
20%Planning, Budgeting, and Forecasting
20%Performance Management

Part 2: Strategic Financial Management

10%Risk Management
10%Investment Decisions
15%Professional Ethics
20%Financial Statement Analysis
20%Corporate Finance
25%Decision Analysis

FAQs – CMA Exam Changes 2020

Q: When Apex Institute will start classes as per new syllabus in Dubai & Abu Dhabi?
A: Apex Institute will start classes as per new syllabus from September/October 2019.

Q: What is the last testing window when I can take the current exam content?
A: September / October 2019

Q: When will the updated exam be offered?
A: January 1, 2020

Q: Will the exams be offered during specific testing windows?
A: Yes, for the English language exam, both Parts 1 and 2 will be given during the following three testing window periods:

January and February
May and June
September and October

Q:  How long will I have to complete the updated CMA program?
A: Candidates must complete the CMA program within three years from the date you purchase the CMA entrance fee. If you do not successfully complete both parts within three years of entering the certification program, the passed part will expire.

Q: I already passed CMA Part 1. Do I have to give Part 1 again as per new changes?
A: No. Any CMA exam passed before December 31, 2019 will remain pass.



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