Home >Education >News >ICAI IPCC 2017: Here’s what CA toppers say on exam preparation

New Delhi: The Institute of Chartered Accountancy in India (ICAI) recently declared the result of the Integrated Professional Competitive (IPCC) exam held in May this year. Top scorers of the exam, Gaurav Sarawagi, Ronak Rajendra Jain and Hasan Mohammad Ibrahim Iqbal Usama share tips on exam preparation that enabled them to score well in the test.

The key to doing well, according to Sarawagi who ranked first in the exam, is spending at least eight hours on self-study every day. He adds that while eight hours of self-study apart from hours at coaching are sufficient initially, one should scale up the preparation in the last three months by devoting at least 10 hours to study.

Jain, who ranked second, concurs, “Coaching is essential because certain concepts in the costing paper are related to other disciplines such as Information Technology and may not be easy to crack for an average commerce student." Further, mock tests conducted by the centres help one learn about time and stress management. For those who may not enrol in coaching classes, Sarawagi suggests downloading mock papers from the Internet in order to understand the process of writing the exam.

All three suggest that it is important to streamline the preparation process as the syllabus can be expansive. “It is extremely important to re-read material and convert it into short notes that can be revised at the last minute," suggests Usama. An expansive syllabus requires organised and planned study with short notes being the first step in this direction, he elaborates. Jain suggests that aspirants must aim at compressing a single page’s information into a few lines as that helps in filtering irrelevant material.

The seven papers comprise subjects such as law and audit where theoretical concepts dominate as against subjects like accounting and taxation where problem-solving is tested. “For practical subjects, it is essential to aim for conceptual clarity and avoid solving lengthy problems as sometimes that can be very time-consuming," says Usama. For subjects like law, one must focus on memorising while for practical subjects, understanding the varied applications of a concept is essential, adds Jain.

While writing the test, Sarawagi warns against stating direct answers and skipping the steps. “Every step in solving a problem should be clearly stated as writing just the answer can lead to deduction in marks," he says.

While passing the exam is not difficult, gaining a high score requires consistent, planned and smart study, concludes Jain.

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