10 points to help you prepare for your CA Foundation examination.
1. Prepare a Time-Table
You have heard this a zillion times right through your schooling days, yet making a time-table is the first thing you should do once you start preparing for CA Foundation. Keep your time-table simple and feasible, something that you can actually follow. Sometimes, out of enthusiasm students assign long hours of study in their time-table and are then not able to follow the same. Instead of wasting time every day wondering what to study or where to start, making a proper plan organises your studies and helps you in tracking your progress. So, go ahead make that time-table now!!
2. Set a priority list
If you come from non-math background where you have exposure to accounts and economics, your priority should be to develop math fundamentals and focus on math, statistics and logical reasoning. However, if you are from non-commerce background you need to prioritise accounts and economics, to understand core commerce subjects.
3. Identify high scoring areas
Generally, accounts and mercantile law are considered high scoring areas. Students from commerce background who already have a strong foundation in accountancy should ensure that they ace this section of the examination. Non-commerce students need to focus doubly on accounts because it is vital for your career as a CA and also because it is high scoring area of the examination.
4. Learn Calculator Tricks
ICAI allows students to use calculators because the focus is on understanding and not on calculation. In order to get the most and save time you should develop command over the calculator. This can be done by practicing frequently and learning short keys such as M+, M-, G etc. This will help you in developing speed and accuracy, and also in attempting more number of questions.
5. Question Selection
Although you should prepare every topic whole heartedly, it is wise to be selective while appearing in the examination. It is unrealistic to assume that you will attempt the whole 100 questions assigned in the examination paper. You must understand that wrong answers attract a negative mark of 0.25 and thus select questions based on your strength and preparation.
6. Revision Notes and mind-maps
Owing to the vastness of the course, it becomes difficult to revise everything in a day. For this purpose you should create short notes of key concepts, formula lists and mind maps. You should make notes to suit your style of reading and understanding. This will prove immensely helpful in last minute revisions.
7. Mock Exams before the Real Test
As the wise adage goes “the more you sweat in peace, the less you bleed in war”, you should take a number of mock test based on the actual paper pattern. This will help you in understanding time-management and analysing your preparation level. However, it is advisable to solve full-length mock test papers only after completion of the course. While the course is going on, you can take chapter/unit wise practice papers.
8. Focus on Presentation
In the new syllabus of CA-Foundation, two of the papers are objective while the other two are subjective. To score well in subjective papers, you will need to focus on how you present your answers. In professional exams such as the CA Exams presentation is almost as important as the content itself. For this you should practice writing and presenting answers and get them checked by your mentors.
9. Maintain Positivity
While preparing for you CA Foundation examination, you may develop self-doubt or feel demotivated. This could be because you are finding a subject tough or because of the influence of people around you. Don’t allow such negative emotions to develop. You must maintain positivity throughout your preparation and talk to your mentors/parents whenever you encounter any difficulty.
10. Revision in the last month
The vast syllabus of CA Foundation exam demands that students go through a detailed revision before the actual test. Ideally, you should complete the entire syllabus a month before the test day so as to give yourself a month for the purpose of revision. Revision should be done in two stages, first a thorough reading of the study material to recapture the concepts that you have studied earlier, followed by a quick reading of notes/formula sheets/mind maps. Take two to three mock tests during the revision phase.