The students of the Chartered Accountancy course have taken a good decision in their career path. It is possibly the best time to enter into the profession with the current economic development in our country coupled with the importance given to compliance under different laws, corporate governance and incentives given by the Government to attract foreign investments. The Government is taking steps to improve the ease of doing business in India, without compromising the safety requirements to prevent the anti-national activities.
Selection of the course
The students opting for this course or the parents/ well-wishers counselling them to join the course, should have in mind that the student must take the decision voluntarily with a very positive approach.
It is proved that the right attitude is very important and any initiative executed with passion will always be successful. Any sort of compulsion or forcing the student to take a decision in this regard will tend to be ineffective.
The students who perform well in academics in School and College enter the profession with an assumption that with the same level of preparation and understanding their performance would be good in the CA course.
But they should understand the expectation level for the Chartered Accountancy course is much higher and be conscious of the fact that additional efforts are required to succeed in the exams.
It is here that the parents and other members at home have a crucial role to play by guiding their children to put in the extra effort required.
Emphasis on Self Study and Evaluation
Up to School and College education there is a system of monitoring the performance of students by way of periodical test and interaction with parents / guardians.
From this situation of controlled regime, once the student registers for the CA course there is no such monitoring system.
It depends on the self-discipline and preparation of the student. It is important that the student should evaluate his progress in execution of the office work as well as preparation for the exams either by himself or by friends and take effective steps to increase the focus and concentration to the extent required.
It is in this context, taking a model exam will be helpful. The observations and comments of the examiners in the model exam should be taken seriously so that the mistakes committed in the model exams are corrected.
Challenges of present day student
It is generally observed that the students who opt for the Chartered Accountancy course are above average and with a determination to work hard and complete the course at an early date.
However, the current environment in which the students have to prepare for their exams is very challenging. Current challenges and possible solutions are highlighted in this article
If one conducts a survey of the reading habits at the School or College level, it will be noticed that the time allotted for reading of general books and also the success stories of great persons is very less.
The student who has been successful up to the College level is unable to accept and deal with the set-back in life. Any negative result, invariably creates an adverse impact on the preparation for the exams.
Developing a reading habit of success stories will strengthen the student to deal appropriately with failures / set-backs and bounce back with increased energy levels to handle the situation
Writing Skills in CA Exams
It is also noticed that when students work in an office, they invariably use the computers and key in the word document or financial statements and in the process, their writing skills are not developed to the required extent.
It is important to note that during the professional exams, we have to write for 3 hours and there is no system of using computers in the exams.
The students should be conscious of this fact and make it a practice to write at least 3 to 4 pages everyday and they could select something on the subject to write, so that in the process they could remember the contents of the subject.
In the current competitive environment it is not sufficient if the students know the subject, they should also develop the ability to explain the various aspects of a particular topic to a group of students / members.
A special effort is required to make use of any opportunity to make presentations in various forums and in the process develop their ability to communicate to a larger audience.
The Chartered Accountancy course extends the facility of undergoing practical training simultaneously with preparation for the exams.
Many students decide on the firm to do articles with the objective of getting a good exposure on different aspects of our profession. While deciding on the firm, the commuting time from residence has to be kept in mind.
Assuming the commuting time is long, then efforts must be taken to make effective use of the travelling time by taking small books on the subject or a mobile with good connectivity, where we have subject oriented lectures downloaded.
The present day student has to battle with many distractions viz; Mobile, Net, Social Media and messages on Whatsapp, which keep coming on a regular basis.
A very genuine effort must be taken as an exercise, to stay away from these gadgets during the preparation time. While the student is seriously preparing for the exams, an SMS about certain happenings in the country would definitely distract him/her, thereby the concentration and continuity will be lost.
During the pre-mobile days, students who attend lectures would recall the points discussed in the class either while returning home or immediately after reaching home. They will also share such important points and events in the class with family members and naturally they remember the important points.
Today, we observe that the moment the students leave their classes, they look at the mobile phones, where so many messages are received.
The time which they allot for re-capitulation of the series of points discussed in the class is very limited and consequently the retention of those points are not to the desired level.
There is a tendency to postpone the commencement of preparation for the exam till the date of commencement of study leave. This is not a desirable practice.
Considering the volume of the subjects and level of expectation the student has to start preparation immediately after joining for articles.
Perhaps the student could start preparing subjects viz., Accounting, Cost Accounting in the initial year and thereafter start the other subjects because of the volatile nature of the subjects.
Each student has to do a self-evaluation to understand the subjects which requires additional attention and accordingly allot more time for such subjects. Normally students would like to read subjects in which they are strong and concentrate less on other subjects which require more attention which should be avoided.
Working as an article trainee in a good office having an effective blend of work will definitely contribute for the success of the student.
In order to maximize the benefits of such practical training, capturing the experience in the form of work diary at regular intervals will enable the student to remember the crucial points of completing a particular assignment.
This experience will definitely help the student in answering questions in the examination on related issues associated with such type of transactions.
Preparation for theory subjects
Students spend considerable time in reading a particular topic of a subject. Students must adopt a method to evaluate the understanding of the topic and ability to recapitulate the entire topic without omitting any of the crucial points.
The student should take notes in his own hand writing and with the help of these notes narrate the contents of the topic. The notes prepared in such a manner will also be useful for revising the subject the day before the exams.
Preparation for Accounting & Costing
In subjects like Accounting and Costing, students have to work out many problems to understand the concepts and also to increase their speed of identifying and writing the solutions in order to enable them to complete the paper within the time allotted.
Invariably, the student will not have time to work out solutions for a problem more than once and at the same time he/she should remember the crucial aspects of the problem which was tested in the question.
There will be many common features in problems and at the same time there will be a unique or exceptional point tested in each problem. T
hese special points have to be captured in a box after the solution for the problem. The student should refer to the points in the box to remember such intricate issues which may be tested in the exam.
Preparedness for the exam
Once the student is eligible to take the exam he/ she submits an application. Closer to the date of the exams the student realizes that the preparation is not adequate and opts to appear only for one group as against the original plan of appearing for both groups.
Before proceeding on study leave the student must have completed reading all the subjects at least once and the leave period should be utilized for consolidating the knowledge on the subjects and also understanding intricate issues.
The student should not decide to take the exams merely on the eligibility criteria. The exam should not be taken as a trial ground. One should evaluate the state of preparedness before submitting the application.
The above suggestions if implemented effectively in a sustained manner will definitely help the student not only to complete the course but will also enable him /her to deal with practical challenges in professional career more effectively.
Enjoy your preparations for the exams and you will be crowned with success. Good Luck and welcome to join the profession at the earliest