Frequently Asked Questions
The Institute of Management Accountants (IMA)
You can take the exam during the one of the following three testing windows:
- January / February
- May / June
- September / October
Exams are administered through the worldwide network of Prometric Testing Centers and are available in accordance with local customs. There are many locations throughout the U.S. and internationally. Locate a testing center.
You first need to enroll in the CMA program by paying the CMA entrance fee for a specific testing window. You can do this on the IMA website. You must sit for the exam in the window you specify when you pay your fee.
You can only take each exam once in a testing window. If you fail a part, you must wait until the next testing window. You cannot take an exam part more than three times in a 12-month period.
No. You may schedule each exam part separately, and in the order of your preference.
You have three years to pass both parts of the exam, beginning with the date you enter into the CMA program. If you don't pass both within three years, credit for the part passed will expire, and you will have to retake the exam.
Depending on experience, you should expect to invest between 120-160 hours of total study time.
Each exam is graded on a 500 point scale, and a candidate must achieve a score of 360 or more in order to pass.
Both exam parts have 100 multiple choice questions, followed by two 30-minute essay questions. You must answer at least 50% of the multiple choice questions correctly within a 3-hour period in order to move on to essay questions. Once you complete the multiple choice section you cannot go back.
Less than half of all CMA candidates pass the exam.
The IMA has a certification entrance fee, and an Exam fee for each part. The amount of each fee depends on your membership type—Professional, Student, or Academic. For professional members, the Entrance Fee is $240, and the Exam Fee is $395 per part.
Approximately six weeks from the end of your exam month.
Experience in positions that require regular judgments employing the principles of management accounting and financial management. Some examples include preparation of financial statements, financial planning & analysis, auditing, budget preparation & reporting, forecasting, company investment decision making, costing analysis, and risk evaluation.