Are there any algorithms used by the rank holders to secure a rank or do they have a secret formula on the road to success?
Have you ever wondered what goes behind the making of a rank holder?
Thousands of students take the CA Intermediate examinations every year to pursue their dreams of becoming a Chartered Accountant. While everyone wants to pass the examinations, there are some students who wish to secure a rank in it. They meticulously prepare the syllabus and execute their strategies well. Are you also on the lookout to secure a rank in the prestigious CA Intermediate examination? We’ve got you covered.
Criteria for securing a rank
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) lays out the criteria for securing a rank in CA Intermediate examinations. The meritorious students are awarded a rank on the basis of aggregate marks scored by the candidate in both the groups on All India basis. The candidates need to fulfill the below-mentioned criteria:
(i) Minimum 55% marks: A minimum of 55% marks must be obtained in aggregate of both the groups combined
(ii) One sitting: The candidates should have passed the examinations in one sitting
(iii) No exemption: The candidates must not have availed exemption in any paper
There are no criteria to award ranks beyond the 50th rank.
To fulfill the criteria for securing a rank, a well-thought strategy is required. We know you want to get a rank too. It is time we decode the formula for you. Stay tuned!
1. Study for 10-12 hours on a daily basis
Consistency is the key to success!
To achieve something great in life, you must be willing to sacrifice less important things. Greatness demands your dedication, perseverance, and consistency. You must devote 10-12 hours of effective studies on a daily basis. It does not matter how many hours you study, but the effective studying hours at the end of the day. Your consistency will take you through this prestigious exam.
2. Plan your work and work your plan
The popular quote by Benjamin Franklin reads “If you fail to plan, you are planning to fail.” The rank holders make a proper plan which includes subject wise details, time frame,
number of revisions, etc. and then they stick to it. They achieve their targets because they
prioritize their work. You must plan your work and work your plan in order to succeed in life.
3. No selective study
Remember this throughout your journey to become a CA. Do not engage in selective studies
if you really want to become a rank holder or pass the examination. There is no trend
analysis here. Any topic can be asked in the examination, especially after the introduction of
the Multiple Choice Questions (MCQs). The MCQs are very specific and if you choose to skip
any topic, you might end up losing marks. Therefore, study the entire syllabus at least once
without skipping any topic.
Most of the students fail to practice the subjects thereby resulting in bad time management
and careless mistakes in the examinations. The practical subjects need to be practiced a lot
so as to maintain a good speed in the examinations. Make sure you practice well to score
good marks in the examinations.
5. Conceptual clarity
A grave mistake generally committed by the students while preparing for the examinations
is to ignore the concepts and instead focus on the number of questions they solve. Let us
break the shell for you. In order to perform well in the examinations, conceptual clarity is
the key. ICAI asks tricky questions where conceptual clarity plays a major role. The grip
you hold on your concepts is the game-changer here. This is what distinguishes the rank
holders from the other students. You must remember the concepts and revise them
regularly and also a day before the exams.
6. Make a concept register for practical subjects
To prepare for the examination, it is very crucial to consolidate your study material in one
place. This helps you to go through the entire syllabus in the 1.5 days gap before every
exam. For this, we suggest you to make a concept register wherein all the concepts and
formulas from the entire syllabus can be noted. It is extremely important to flip through the
entire syllabus one day before the exam, and hence one must not lose sight of that one day
which plays a very important role in deciding your fate. Prepare this well to avoid last-minute
7. Make voice clips for theoretical subjects
It is a human tendency to retain more when we hear the same matter over and over again.
This is why we suggest you make your own voice clips chapter wise for all the theoretical
subjects. Use the keywords while making it so that they fit in your mind and reap the
desired results. These voice clips can be used while traveling, dining and essentially during
your free hours. The importance of this should not be undermined. It has been tried and
tested by various students who improved their results over time by using this simple yet
8. ABC analysis
While reading the topics for the first time, divide the topics into A,B & C category wherein
category A denotes the most important topics which are to be revised a day before the
examinations; category B denotes the topics which are less important and need to be
revised only once; category C denotes the topics which are easiest and are not required to
be referred to after the first reading. This helps you break down the entire syllabus into
small chunks starting from most important to least important.
9. Work on your weaknesses
After reading the subjects for the first time, we can gauge our weaknesses. Note the
weaknesses and start working on them. If it’s a practical subject, keep practicing until you’re
confident, however, if it’s a theoretical subject, keep revising it daily and hear your voice
clips. Focus more on the concepts and the increase in the number of revisions. You’ll be good
Once you’ve worked on the entire syllabus, work on your presentation skills. Make sure you
do the following:
Draw the margins
Start every question and subpart on a different page
Write the question number or the subpart at the center of the page
Avoid long paragraphs in theory papers. Try answering in points.
Mention case laws and sections wherever necessary
Leave a line after every paragraph
Draw lines at the end of every answer, if time permits
A good presentation can help you fetch 10-15 additional marks. This is a make or breakpoint.
11. Revise your syllabus at least 3-4 times (1-7-14-21 Rule)
Your number of revisions determine the knowledge you carry to the examination hall. The
more you revise, the more you’ll be well equipped to take the examination. To make it
simple for you, let us tell you a rule which will help you to be absolutely thorough with the
subjects. It’s called the 1-7-14-21 rule. According to this rule, when you study a topic, you
must revise it on the next day, followed by a revision on the 7th, 14th and 21st day. This helps
the mind retain the data for long intervals of time. The purpose is not to complete the
syllabus only, but to retain it till the exams and then deliver. When a student follows this
approach, he revises the syllabus 4 times during his first reading only thereby increasing his
retention. Since the syllabus is extremely vast, we suggest this approach for multiple
12. Mock Tests
It is necessary for all the students to evaluate their performance. The mock tests conducted
by ICAI are a must if you’re serious about passing the examination. Get yourself enrolled for
mock test series conducted by ICAI. This will help you analyze your strengths and
weaknesses. It will also help you to improve your time management skills.
13. Study Material, Practice Manual and Revision Test Papers (RTP)
ICAI strongly recommends the students to study from their study material, practice manuals, and revision test papers in order to get good grades in the exams. However, most students
do not focus on this. It has been seen that around 40-60% of the questions are asked from
the material stated above. It is of utmost importance to read and practice them properly.
Leave no stone unturned!
14. Time Management
Good time management helps you accomplish the goals faster. Track your activities right
from the time you wake up till the time you head to sleep. Cut the unproductive activities.
Make sure you study for 10-12 hours and sleep for at least 6 hours daily. Turn off your
phone while studying. Try to stay away from social media during your preparations. They
drain your energy and you would want to save it for your goals that truly matter.
15. Short Breaks
In order to concentrate more, try not to study for long hours. It reduces efficiency and
boredom follows. In order to study for 10-12 hours daily, you must learn to take short
breaks. You can study for 2 hours and take a break of 10 minutes. That'll keep you active
during the entire study period.
16. Patience is the key
Throughout your preparation, there will be times when you want to give up the most. It is
during those times that you must learn to stay patient. Take a break if required for a day or
two, but then put your shoes back on with greater zeal to run and win the game for you,
your family and your loved ones. Success is right around the corner. Do not give up!
The preparation period can be tiresome. Make sure you have a mentor who you can fall to in
your low times. It can be your teacher, friend, parent, senior, past rank holders or any other
loved one. They are the ones who’ll push you and guide you to the correct path. Their words
of wisdom and experience can keep you going through the tough times. Stay positive!
No matter what you do in life, health is the most important thing. If you chose to ignore it,
sooner or later you will perish. Make an exercising regimen for yourself. Indulge in simplest
forms of physical activities such as walking, running or yoga. Breathe in the fresh air and soak in
the golden sun. Practice meditation. It helps calm the mind, improves memory and
rejuvenates you. You have to be physically fit in order to deliver your best mentally. Make
sure you exercise for 30-40 minutes daily.
19. Proper Sleep
Good sleep has innumerable benefits, especially for a student. It keeps you healthy and
reduces stress levels. It improves memory and makes you more alert. Make sure you
sleep at the same time daily for at least 6 hours.
20. Believe in yourself
Lastly, believe in your dream, even more, when no one else does. Believe in the dream you’ve
always dreamt for yourself. Have an unquenchable thirst for growth. Fall, dust yourself off
and then get back up again and run for the dream you’ve promised yourself.
We’ve decoded the mantra to secure a rank in the CA Intermediate for you. Nothing is
impossible. Behind every successful person is his sheer determination, hard work and his
obsession to reach the top. Your failures are the biggest teachers. Learn from them.
Celebrate your positives and work on your weaknesses. It’s your mental toughness that’ll
guide you out of difficult times!
See you at the other end of the road where the All India ranks await you!