The Institute of Certified Management Accountants (ICMA), the certification division of IMA® (Institute of Management Accountants), announced today the pass rates for the first testing window (January-February 2020) of the revised CMA (Certified Management Accountant) exam content specification outline, as well as a change in the English language testing window schedule for 2020.
Of a pool of more than 5,000 Part 1 and Part 2 English language exam parts taken during the first testing window under the new curriculum, ICMA announced a worldwide pass rate of 45 percent on both Part 1 and Part 2. For Part 1, this represents an increase from the 35 percent pass rate that candidates have been averaging over the last several years and is in line with the average of 45 percent for Part 2. In January, ICMA introduced the revised two-part CMA 2020 curriculum. The most significant change was in Part 1, where ICMA added new content covering technology and analytics. The Part 2 changes included greater emphasis on ethics and strategic decision-making.
“Results from the first testing window show that CMA candidates are embracing the new exam material and are well prepared for taking the exam,” said ICMA Senior Vice President Dennis Whitney, CMA. “Although you cannot project these results to the future testing windows, it is encouraging to see that candidates have studied hard and review course publishers and providers have prepared our candidates well. Updates to the CMA exam reflect the findings of a periodic Job Analysis Study in which content is matched against the changing on-the-job skills needed by management accountants. Given the dramatic circumstances in the global economy and job markets, professionals need to keep pace and upskill to remain relevant in the workforce.”
For many accounting and finance professionals, the unfortunate effects of COVID-19 have resulted in many uncertainties, affecting CMA candidates’ plans for preparing and taking the CMA exam. In the interest of offering greater flexibility, ICMA has extended the May-June 2020 testing window to July 31 and will begin the September-October 2020 window on August 1. According to Whitney, many Prometric testing centers in the U.S. and around the world have resumed operations, with most expected to be open by the end of May or early June.
“The health and safety of everyone is ICMA’s priority,” said Whitney. “Many CMA candidates are making use of online study options and using stay-at-home time as an opportunity to prepare for the exam. We’re pleased that Prometric testing centers have made modifications to their facilities to ensure a safe test-taking experience.”
“It is extremely encouraging to see the great results that candidates have achieved on the revised CMA exam material,” said Hanadi Khalife, senior director of MEA and India operations at IMA, “As we navigate through uncertain times, the new curriculum, which places an increased focus on technology, analytics and strategic decision making, will help professionals remain competitive in today’s challenging job market.”
“While many professionals are working remotely, it is imperative they continue learning and upskilling while keeping track of increasingly complex accounting practices globally. Individuals can take advantage of a variety of online resources that IMA provides to overcome the challenges of the current situation, whilst gaining the skills and understanding of what a role in management accountancy entails today,” she added.