Rank: 7, Batch: May 2016
Place: Vadodara, Gujarat
I decided to enter CA field after joining Std XII, I had interests in field of accountancy and finance and for exploring professional opportunities in it, CA was the best choice I had. I got AIR 7 in May 2016 Finals and I was also AIR 3 in May 2013 IPCC Exams.
My first reaction
The day of result was really a memorable one, since 8 in the morning I had result page open with constant refreshing; there were mixed emotions of nervousness and excitement of what would happen.
At around 1 pm the wait was over and I clicked on merit link before the results one as I had my aim for being into merit list. I typed my Roll number and after a long wait of 3-4 seconds the link responded and there it was “Rank 7”. I was overwhelmed with joy and didn’t even bother seeing subject wise marks after it. It is a very good feeling seeing successful outcome of your constant dedication and efforts, I can’t describe in words on how it felt but it was definitely the best day of my life so far.
The credit for the success goes to : 1) My Parents – who always gave motivation and support during the study tenure, they take care of all our needs and make sure that we have our whole focus on preparations, 2) My elder sister who being a recently qualified CA was a constant source of inspiration and a guide on how to prepare and 3) All the teachers, seniors and bosses in articleship firm whose teachings and mentorship made me expand my knowledge and grow professionally.
I did my articleship from K.C.Mehta & Co. Vadodara which is a large sized firm. I had worked in Direct Taxation, Statutory audit and Internal audit departments during my tenure.
I would say that articleship is very important for gaining firsthand practical knowledge of how our field works, but as far as academics are concerned I won’t consider it to be very helpful except to some extent in subjects and fields you have directly worked for during articleship like Audit and taxation. Apart from it, what we study for CA final has to be prepared separately as they are very different from the learning in articleship.
I was fortunate to get 7 month preparation leave and I had taken coaching for 5 subjects that were FR, SFM, AMA, ISCA and IDT, others I did by self study. Joining coaching is more apt for practical subjects wherein one needs conceptual clarity as far as theories are concerned I feel self study is a better choice as eventually you need to read and revise by yourself at end.
Self study is enough for others too but one needs to be able to maintain his punctuality and regular studies along with the work pressure of office for that, this is where coaching helps in a great way. Further it takes much less time to absorb new concepts from a experienced and skilled teacher than by reading ourselves.
A. Study schedule
I had aimed 1 full study of entire syllabus by end of January 2016 and then went through 2 rounds of revision till 10 days to exam.
I had made a plan dividing my daily schedule into practical and theory subjects as doing only theory makes it very monotonous and tiring. I am not a morning person and find waking early in morning a tough task, therefore I used to study till late till around 2 am.
B. Strong and Weak subjects (How did I prepare them?)
My strong subjects were AMA and SFM, they were the subjects I never felt burdened for, I could keep on solving sums and learning new concepts for as long as I wanted to. If I see my subject wise allocation they usually didn’t get so much attention as others. I used to aim to do more and more practice in them.
I found myself weaker in Law and Audit, I used to find reading and trying to remember so much of theory a very complex task. While preparing for them, I first aimed to complete parts like Company Act 2013 in law, SA and Ethics in Audit which are very highly asked. I knew that to get a rank I needed to do well in all the subjects and made sure that I prepared them well slowly and steadily.
Eventually as it turned out, in both law and Audit I got marks in range of 70-80 and I am very happy with that.
Books and e-sources
- FR, SFM, AMA : Study Material, Practice Manual, past 4-5 Years’ RTP
- Corporate and Allied laws : Munish Bhandari’s main book and run through of PM
- Advanced Auditing and Professional Ethics : Pankaj Garg
- ISCA : Class notes
- DT : Vinod Gupta Modules
- IDT : Yogendra Bangar
I would highly recommend PM and past RTP, they should be the main focus as they are the very base for the exam questions, in practicals subjects many a times there are same type questions in exam, further they help to understand the presentation requirements expected from us in examinations.
No I didn’t attend mock tests, I used to time and practice sums for practical chapters by myself at home.
Mock test are necessary for getting used to pattern and timely completion of paper but if one is confident about this part then taking the mock test and just going thorough new questions (if any) is enough.
Rank and preparation
I had 3rd Rank in IPCC and thus pressure of expectations was way too high to get a rank again in Finals. Yes I was preparing for the rank but I made sure that for me the process remained more important than the end result, I tried to ignore all the pressure and kept on working hard on doing the best I could.
I plan to start my career into corporate world aiming to be a successful person in crucial senior management positions over the long term.
Not specifically preparing for the ICAI Campus as I already got selected off campus and will be joining shortly. Earlier I updated myself with latest developments in form of Ind AS, GST, IFC etc., apart from it I read more about current affairs and economics through internet and newspapers like economic times.
More importantly I worked hard to improve my communication skills for the interview processes like GDs and interviews. I attended ICAI’s 4 weeks residential programme at Centre of Excellence, Hyderabad after exams which helped me in a great way for it.
Advice to fellow students
Yes, CA exams are tough and there are no shortcuts to being successful, there were days when even I felt that this is too much to do but you need to keep working hard for what you dream for as – “As going gets tough, the tough gets going”.
Remember that you are doing this for yourself, it is for your career and future, you can make thousands of excuses to others for not doing good but you can’t fool yourself on it.
I think only passing should not be an aim, everyone has potential of doing much better and you shall stretch for it. Being through the job search and interview processes after results, I surely can say that if you are a rank holder the kind of opportunities you get increases a lot. There are companies with great work profile who invite rank holders only to apply.
One more thing I would like to emphasize here that don’t get carried away by unnecessary things like pass percentages, it is not the percentage which decides whether you pass or fail but it is your being pass or fall which determines the pass percentages.
All the best !!