Rank: 48, Batch: May 2015
My first reaction
It was a feeling of mixed emotions running through my mind. While there was happiness about the achievement, the past few years also flashed through in my mind and the efforts, sacrifice and hard work that I put in to achieve this and finally there it was.
The credit for my success firstly goes to my parents of course. After that, I would never forget the immense contribution of my firm to my results and how my experience during my internship has actually helped me achieve this feat.
I have done my internship with a member firm of KPMG in Hyderabad. The exposure and the experience I have gained has immensely helped me prepare and succeed in the examinations. While it is cliche that working with a Big4 would leave you with very little time for yourself and not leave you time to study, it is also true that CA Final exams held off late are held in a manner to test your internship experience and experience with good internship firms do help immensely in your examinations.
A coaching institute would only save you time and guide in your preparation. A student can perform equally well by self studying as well. However, joining a coaching institute reduces your time and effort to some extent. Having said that, coaching institute alone wouldn’t sufficiently prepare you to give you the confidence to take on the exams. You need to put in good amount of efforts practicing and revising the syllabus multiple number of times.
I’m not a person who can stick to a study schedule, so I wouldn’t prepare one for myself. I would study for as long as my mood would let me and I am in the flow of things to grasp them. There would be no point forcing yourself to study beyond a certain point because after that you end up just reading and not learning. However, it is important to set yourself targets for the next three to four days, next week, month, etc.
Strong and weak subjects (How did you prepared them?):
I was weak at ISCA and Indirect taxes, primarily for the fact that they aren’t much in sight while we do our internship. So the strategy for these subjects were to take them head on and prepare and revise them enough to strike them off the weak list. Strategizing well and working more on your weak subjects ensures that they no longer remain your weakness and you would probably end up scoring the highest in your weak subjects just like I did.
Books and e-sources
Choosing the best book becomes very difficult for many people. But they have to realise that the it is not the book that counts but your work on it. Every author would want to sell his book well and so would ensure that he has the important elements in his book and that he makes it easy for students. So it doesn’t matter which book you go with but as long as you have taken care to prepare well from them, it would suffice.
Mock tests are necessary just to give you the feel and environment of the examination. It would be difficult for anyone to enter an exam hall after three years (after IPCC) and start off writing at a good pace. So, more than the questions that are asked in the mock tests, I think they are necessary to get used to the pace and environment of an examination.
Rank and preparation
Yes, I was always preparing aiming for a rank. I was also a ranker at the IPCC level, so this time too, the goal wasn’t different. It does get difficult to keep the flow going for months together. But the motivation to hit a rank acts as a stick keeping you going. Also, it is very necessary to keep taking break for a day or so as your productivity and efficiency declines after a certain point of time.
I wish to enhance my knowledge and skills further by joining a corporate and eventually entering into a core finance profile. SO the immediate plan is to join a corporate to build on my knowledge further.
Yes, I am. I think the ICAI campus is a wonderful initiative taken by ICAI for the freshly qualified Chartered Accountants. They get a platform to explore themselves and their capabilities and decide whats right for them, which in most cases they are confused.
Advice to fellow students
There has to be sheer determination and hard work on your part. The curriculum is not tough but is challenging. I think the mindset of the students towards the curriculum should change and they shouldn’t take it with the attitude of it being vast, tough or torturous. It is one curriculum which helps you build patience and character.
Also, we find many times that students try and make fun of the institute or curriculum or their internship firms. It is to be remembered that the institute is the source of your learning and makes you a thorough professional. Probably without the institute, you wouldn’t be here. Just like your mother, it nurtures and builds you as a person and forms the source of your livelihood. If you can’t respect your own institute/ firm, I don’t think you can go a very long way in your lives. More than being having a good score sheet, it is important to be a good person.