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Tips and Strategies for CA-CPT Exam

Guest , Last updated: 09 August 2012  

The CA-CPT exam conducted by the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) declared on July 19, 2012 the result of their exam conducted in June 2012. It is considered one of the toughest competitive exams in India. The total number of candidates who appeared for the exam was 1,49,348. Only 37.56% of the total students passed the exam.

I regularly visit caclubindia.com for time to time exam updates, CA course queries, Counselling and Topper’s Interviews. Its tips and strategies for CA Exam helped me immensely and kept me motivated.

Different Levels of Chartered Accountancy Course -

A. Common Proficiency Test (CPT)

B. Integrated Professional Competence Course (IPCC)

C. Final Course.


Important information:

1. Total marks for CPT exam are 200 and total duration of the exam is 4 hours. A break of 2 hours is given in between two sessions

2. You must score at least 50%, i.e. if you score 100 or more, you will pass CPT

3. If you pass CPT once, you don’t have to take the CPT exam again. You are now eligible for the next stage of the exam – IPCE (or IPCC as students prefer to call it that: Integrated Professional Competence Course)

4. Subjects for CPT are: (a) Accounts, (b) Economics, (c) Mercantile Law, (d) Maths

5. Questions for CPT will be in multiple choice questions (MCQ) format

6. Each question carries one mark

7. There is negative marking, i.e. for every incorrect answer one-fourth of your marks will be deducted

8. There are two media of examination: English and Hindi if the candidate opts for paper-pencil mode of examination

9. If the candidate opts for online examination, the medium of Exam is only English

10. CPT is conducted every year twice (in paper-pencil mode) – June and December

11. You need not score any minimum marks in any individual subject. Your overall score should be 100 or more

Eligibility for CPT:

1. You should have passed your 12th (10+2) or Senior Secondary Exam. You can also apply if you are awaiting your result

2. Your age or percentage doesn’t matter. You can join a CA programme after your 12th or graduation

Exam pattern:

CPT exam is held in two sessions of two (2) hours each. A break of two hours is given between sessions:

Session 1: a. Fundamentals of Accounting (60 marks) and b. Mercantile Law (40 marks)

Session 2: a. General Economics (50 marks) and b. Quantitative Aptitude (50 marks)

If you want to appear for the June exam, you can register with ICAI before 1st of April, and for the December exam before 1st of October


1. Only passing marks are required. Marks and rank obtained in CPT are not considered for the next stage – IPCE

2. You need not have a maths background. If you are not good in maths, you can score more in other subjects and less in maths. Remember, final goal is to score 100 or above

3. Practice is the key to success in CPT, practice daily as many questions as possible

4. Subjects that are considered scoring in CPT are: (a) Accounts, (b) Mercantile Law and (c) Macro Economics portion of Economics

5. For practice at home, try solving questions of a topic immediately after reading theory

6. Practice with as many model and sample question papers as possible

Strategy in the examination hall:

1. Read all the instructions carefully

2. In the examination hall, for section 1, you should solve Mercantile Law questions first

3. Next, solve Accounts questions

4. Competition is tough, try solving the maximum number of questions

5. Even if you are confident that the first option in the question is correct, read all the options before answering the question

6. Even if you are confident that the first option in the question is 100% correct, check if “all of the above” option is given below or not

7. If the question asks about which one is NOT CORRECT, check if “none of the above” option is given below or not

8. Be extra careful on very easy and easy questions. Sometimes, these questions are tricky. Many students mark wrong answers for easy questions and regret later

9. Use elimination method for those questions whose answers you don’t know directly. Eliminate those options which can’t be right, and then choose your answer from the remaining options

10. Leave those questions about which you are not confident at all, remember there is negative marking. Don’t bring your score down by attempting questions whose answers you don’t know at all

11. Where in doubt, always consider your first guess or the answer that came in your mind first as the right answer

12. Always recheck your answers after attempting all the questions

By Mohammad Ilias (Successful in CA-CPT June 2012 Exam)

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