CA IPCC Exam Weights, Study Plan, Tips, Pass Rates, Fees

CA IPCC Exam Exam Weights, Study Plan, Tips, Pass Rates, Fees – If you have already appeared and cleared your CPT, then you are very well aware about ICAI or Institute (as students like to call it). For those who are not aware, ICAI stands Institute of Chartered Accountants of India. It is the whole and soul of the Chartered Accountancy course in India. It helps students with all activities which examinations, trainings, seminars, articleship, etc.

In this article, we discuss the CA IPCC Exam in detail –

About CA IPCC Exam

Exam CA IPCC Exam
Pre-Requisites – Direct Route Direct Entry Route –
Graduate/Post Graduate with aggregate marks in commerce of more than 55% or for others is more than 60%
Cleared Intermediate of either “Institute of Cost Accountants” or Company Secretary
Pre-Requisites – CPT Exam Pass the Common Prociency Test (CPT). Can be taken after 10+2 years of education
IPCC Exam Structure There are 7 subjects in all and they are divided into two groups of 4 and 3 subjects respectively.
Core Areas Paper 1: Accounting (100 marks)
Paper 2: Business Laws, Ethics and Communication (100 marks)
Paper 3: Cost Accounting and Financial Management (100 marks)
Paper 4: Taxation (100 marks)
Paper 5: Advance Accounting (100 marks)
Paper 6: Auditing & Assurance (100 marks)
Paper 7: Information Technology and Strategic Management (100 marks)
IPCC Exam Dates CA IPCC exam is conducted twice in an year (May and November)
Study material for IPCC Exam Institute itself designs the course curriculum and publishes the subject modules (books)
CA IPCC Pass percentage Less than 10%
CA IPCC Official Website


CA IPCC Exam Pre Requisites

As per the rules laid out by the Institute, the following are the various routes available for appearing the IPCC Exam.

IPCCAs mentioned noted above there are three ways of entry. To finally appear for the examination, the following steps needs to be followed:

  1. First and foremost, if you meet any of the above criteria, enroll yourself for Group I or Group II or for both Groups of Intermediate (IPC) Course.
  2. Attend the Orientation Programme (duration: 1 week) which is organized by the Institute itself.
  3. Complete Information Technology Training (ITT) – 100 hours
  4. Completion of 8 months of study from the enrollment date to the first day of the month in which examination is to be held.
  5. Over and above this, you also need to register for Practical Training of three years. Of these three years, you need to complete of 9 months of training prior to appearing the examination. This point is applicable only to students who opt for Graduates / Post Graduates who opt for Direct Entry Route. 

IPCC Exam Structure

There are 7 subjects in all and they are divided into two groups of 4 and 3 subjects respectively. The purpose of forming Groups is that students can opt for appearing any one of the two groups or both groups together as per their convenience.

Minimum passing marks required in each subject 40. Easy isn’t it?

But since this is the Chartered Accountancy course which we are talking about? So how can things so simple.

The twist here is that your individual subjects do matter but when you clear the entire group. And in order to clear a group, a minimum of 200 marks in group 1 and 150 marks in group 2 is required.

If the above has demoralized you then here is the good news – if you get 60 marks in any of the subject then even though you might not clear the sectional cut-off, you are exempted from appearing this subject in your next attempts.

Let us understand this with the following example:

Example 1 Example 2 Example 3
Paper 1 40 55 55
Paper 2 42 55 55
Paper 3 43 61 56
Paper 4 40 34 40
Total Marks 165 205 206
Individual Subject Pass Fail Pass
Sectional Cut-Off (200) Fail Pass Pass
Overall Result Fail Fail Pass

CA IPCC Exam Dates

CA IPCC exams are held twice in a year – May and November. They begin in the first week of these months and the time table is issued by the Institute well in advance.

IPCC Curriculum with some useful tips

Paper 1: Accounting (100 marks)

As the course itself is known as Chartered Accountancy, Accounting plays an important role in the curriculum. The syllabus concentrates on Company Accounts with reference to various Accounting Standards. It will also help to understand the complications of Financial Statements.

Useful Tip:
  • The best way to deal with this subject is practice as many questions as possible. Make a habit of solving solutions using pen and paper.
  • Many students read the solution and try to visually understand it. This is also important. But you cannot stop after understanding.
  • What needs to be done after is that you solve the question and arrive at the final solution yourself.
  • This will help you realize how much you have actually understood.

Paper 2: Business Laws, Ethics and Communication (100 marks)        

This subject is divided into the following sub-parts:

Part A – Business Laws (30 marks)

Some important Acts which are relevant for a prospective Chartered Accountant form a part of this subject. The Indian Contract Act, 1982 has the maximum weightage in this section.

Part B – Company Laws (30 marks)

This section focuses completely on The Companies Act, 2013. Various relevant sections which relate to the basics about a Company, Accounting, Auditing, Taxation, etc. are be covered.

Part C – Ethics (20 marks)

The Institute wants its students to understand the importance of ethics and inculcate ethical behavior early on. This section gives an overview of ethical environment, workplace ethics, threats towards ethical behavior, etc.

Part D – Communication (20 marks)

This covers the basics of business communication (written and verbal) such emails, drafting letters, group dynamics, etc.

Useful Tip:
  • With four different sub-parts of this subject, it is easier to score well in this subject.
  • Ethics and Communications do sound easy but do not take them lightly.
  • In fact capitalize on them and try to secure 60 plus marks so that clearing the group becomes easier.

Paper 3: Cost Accounting and Financial Management (100 marks)

This subject is divided into the following sub-parts:

Part A – Cost Accounting (50 marks)

This subject is about accounting and control of costs. People generally have a misconception that Cost Accounting will be applicable to a factory type of an environment. However, this is not the case. The concepts of Cost Accounting can also be applied to Service Industry.

Part B – Financial Management (50 marks)

In a very layman language, this subject is concerned with the planning and controlling organization’s resources. It helps to understand the difference between wealth maximization and profit maximization. Accounting is done after the transactions take place, but financial management plays a very important role towards to the future of the organisation

Useful Tip:
  • It is not a theory based subject and needless to say, concept based understanding is a must.
  • Solving previous year’s question papers will give you a good hold about the subject.

Paper 4: Taxation (100 marks)

A prospective Chartered Accountant should have in-depth knowledge about the latest tax laws in a country. The subject is divided into the following parts to cover the most important Direct & Indirect Taxes applicable in India.

  • Part A – Income Tax (50 marks)
  • Part B – Service Tax (25 marks)
  • Part C – VAT (25 marks)
Useful Tip:
  • It is utmost important to check which Financial Year (Assessment Year) does the syllabus pertain to.
  • Syllabus for May & November examinations might pertain to different Financial Years.
  • Secondly, it is also good to stay updated about the latest case laws. They do appear in the examination as case study questions.

The three subjects which form a part of Group 2 are as follows:

Paper 5: Advance Accounting (100 marks)

As you have seen, the first subject of Group 2 is also accounting. Company Accounts plays a role in this subject as well. However, this subject also gives weightage to Financial Statements of Insurance Companies & Banking Companies.

Useful Tip:
  • As mentioned earlier, solving is important for Accounting.
  • What you also need to understand is that your final solution may be wrong may but the steps involved in solving the question also carry weightage.
  • So do not jump to the final solution. All detailed working should form a part of your answer.

Paper 6: Auditing & Assurance (100 marks)

Accounting and Auditing are two sides of the same coin. If accounting is the heart of the Chartered Accountancy course then Auditing is the soul of the course. In simple words, auditing is the process of ensuring the completeness and accuracy of Financial Accounts.

Useful Tip:
  • Try and think that you are the owner of a multi-national company who want the accounts, processes, etc. in your company should be perfect.
  • And you will yourself conduct audit of the company.
  • Now with this perspective in mid, most of the concepts of the subject will seem to be logic and easy to understand / remember.

Paper 7: Information Technology and Strategic Management (100 marks)

Part A – Information Technology (50 marks)

With the advent of technology, the accounting and auditing profession has undergone changes as well. Information Technology is introduced to understand the integration between IT and Accounting.

Part B – Strategic Management (50 marks)

Accounting function has always taken a backseat when it comes to strategic business decisions but the role of a Chartered Accountant is evolving and this subject gives a fair idea about the role of management in strategic decisions.

Useful Tip:
  • IT will have a lot of jargon. Be sure to use the jargon well in the exams to score some extra marks. Case studies in Strategic Management exam are interesting.
  • Try and visualize things in a real life scenario before answering the questions.
  • Apply logic as far as possible.

CA IPCC Study material

The institute itself designs the course curriculum and publishes the subject modules (books). These are the best source of information and knowledge. They are very extensive and cover every topic in detail.

The volume is huge, students find it rather difficult to keep revising from modules. Making personal notes is a good way to revise and brush up concepts during and before exams.

Apart from the modules, Institute also has the following material readily available on their websites and can also be available in hard copy from their listed centers:

  1. Previous year exam papers along with suggested answers
  2. Revision Test papers (It is advisable to go through these test papers thoroughly. They are available separately for each exam and the latest two RTPs should be referred at the least)
  3. PowerPoint presentations and webcasts are also available for many topics

Also note, other reference books are available in market. Many students prefer these publications rather than the modules.

CA IPCC Decision making – Group 1 or Group 2 or Both?

As already mentioned above, Institute has given you the liberty to choose the groups as per the convenience of the students. This decision is a tough one and following pointers might help you decide:

  1. The most important advantage of giving both the groups together is the group totals are added up while considering the sectional passing cut-offs. This means that if you clear the individual subjects in both groups and receive 210 in group 1 and 140 in group 2, you will still pass the exam because you meet the overall cut-off of 350 marks.
  1. There is always an overall amongst subjects. If you study the entire curriculum in one go, you understand the holistic point of view and it helps in conceptual understanding.
  1. The syllabus is not rocket science but it is definitely vast and there are many things to understand and retain. One reading does not suffice. So people with good retention power can opt for both the groups together.
  1. Availability of time is also a key factor to be considered. People who are working may not get sufficient time to concentrate on studies and can opt for individual group
  1. There is no restriction on giving any back-to-back attempts. If you give a particular group in May, you do not have to wait for years before appearing for the next group. It is just a matter of 6 months. There is a lot of flexibility available here which can be leveraged easily.

CA IPCC Exam Pass Percentages

It is a known fact that clearing CA exams are not easy. The pass percentages are lower than 10% in these exams. But this should not demotivate you from choosing this career path. There may be 90% people who do not clear, but there are 10% who do and that is what matters.

The good part about the CA course is that it is very cheap when compared to other courses. Monetarily not much is at stake. You obviously invest time and efforts but in the end it is worth it.

IPCC Exam Updates

The Institute keeps posting updates about the course, registration timelines, exam dates, etc on its website very frequently. It is advisable to visit the website regularly and stay updated.

ICAI website –

Lastly, constant and persistent efforts are going to help you crack the exam. So all the best and keep at it.

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