US CMA Course Details 2024: Duration, Fees & Eligibility

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      What is US CMA? Course Details, Duration, Syllabus, Fees, and Eligibility

      The Certified Management Accounting course, also known as the US CMA course is a prestigious certification with global acceptance. This course is speedily gaining popularity among students who are keen on making planning, budgeting, and forecasting decisions for their firms. The aim of this course is to mentor young leaders in effective, strategic decision-making to contribute to a company’s financial well-being. In this blog lets explore about what is US CMA course details.

      Through this course, the competency levels of US CMA professionals would enhance to be at par with the international benchmarks. This course provides scope for professional development and financial leadership.

      What is the US CMA?

      The CMA course has been divided into two parts covering a total of twelve competencies. Since the curriculum offers an amalgamation of four pillars of planning, management, analysis and strategy, and financial reporting, every level has topics from each of these pillars. 

      Administered by the Institute for Management Accountants, USA, its cutting-edge curriculum trains aspirants for global challenges. The minimum duration of the Certified Management Accounting course ranges from 6 to 12 months. This course includes two exams which can be taken three times a year, depending on your preparation.

      CMA Course Details 2024: Duration, Fees, Eligibility

      CMA Course Details 2024: Duration, Fees, Eligibility

      Who Gets a US CMA Certification?

      The US CMA (Certified Management Accountant) certification is pursued by professionals seeking to advance their careers in management accounting and financial management. This includes:

      Accountants: Professionals looking to deepen their expertise in management accounting and financial analysis.

      Financial Analysts: Individuals aiming to enhance their analytical skills and move into strategic financial management roles.

      Financial Controllers: Finance professionals who oversee accounting operations and want to validate their management accounting skills.

      Finance Managers: Managers responsible for planning, directing, and coordinating financial activities, seeking to improve their strategic decision-making capabilities.

      Business Managers and Executives: Those in leadership roles who need a comprehensive understanding of financial management to make informed strategic decisions.

      Consultants: Management and financial consultants who advise businesses on financial planning, analysis, and control.

      Aspiring CFOs: Individuals aiming to reach the Chief Financial Officer (CFO) position who need advanced skills in financial strategy and performance management.

      The US CMA certification is ideal for professionals committed to advancing their knowledge and careers in financial management and management accounting, providing them with the skills and recognition needed to excel in these fields.

      How US Certified Management Accountants (CMAs) Work?

      Here’s how you can benefit from taking up the US CMA course:

      • Industry needs: The US CMA course improves the employable skills of candidates through practical as well as technical aspects, thus helping to meet the skill requirement of industries.
      • Expert knowledge: Professionals gain knowledge in strategic decision-making, compliance, costing, accounting, and taxation.
      • High earning potential
      • Practical training ensures that the candidates can earn while they study
      • Encourages skill development for entrepreneurship
      • Opportunities to climb the highest ladders of professional growth

      The Function of a US CMA

      A CMA is majorly responsible for managerial accounting. They are the ones to provide the logical reasons behind the statistics, analyse project proposals and share their insights on creating future profits.

      What are the Core Strengths of the US CMA Profession?

      The US CMA profession has its foundation on the following core strengths:

      • Building cost-effectiveness
      • Business analytics and strategy
      • planning, budgeting and forecasting
      • Cost-benefit analysis
      • Enterprise governance
      • Effective regulatory landscape
      • Benchmarking
      • Financial management
      • Management control systems

      How To Earn A US CMA Certification

      Eligibility Criteria for the US CMA Course

      In order to take admission to the US CMA course, it is important to take heed of the eligibility criteria, which is as follows:
      • A candidate should have an HSC or a bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or university or IMA-approved professional certification.
      • In case of any non-accredited degrees, an independent agency such as the NACES or AICE can be appointed to evaluate the same.
      • If you don’t have an HSC or a bachelor’s degree, you still stand a chance to qualify for CMA with a professional certification approved by the IMA.

      What are the US CMA Course Requirements for Professionals

      As a finance professional, if you wish to attain a US CMA certification, here are some eligibility requirements that you will adhere to.

      • To apply as a US CMA candidate you need a minimum work experience of at least two years in management accounting or financial management
      • It is beneficial for candidates to have their work experience as full-time employee. Part-time work experience counts at the rate of one year for every two years of experience.

      The US CMA Exam

      The US CMA (Certified Management Accountant) exam is designed to assess the expertise of candidates in management accounting and financial management. The exam is divided into two parts:

      Part 1: Financial Planning, Performance, and Analytics

        • Covers topics such as external financial reporting decisions, planning, budgeting, and forecasting, performance management, cost management, internal controls, and technology and analytics.

      Part 2: Strategic Financial Management

        • Covers financial statement analysis, corporate finance, decision analysis, risk management, investment decisions, and professional ethics.

      Each part includes 100 multiple-choice questions and two essay questions. Candidates have four hours to complete each part, with three hours for multiple-choice questions and one hour for essays. The exam is offered during three testing windows each year: January/February, May/June, and September/October.

      CFA Exam Fees and Pattern

      Though this section seems to be a mistake in the context of CMA, it provides a comparison for those interested in both certifications. The CFA (Chartered Financial Analyst) exam consists of three levels:

      Level I: Focuses on investment tools, ethical and professional standards, and basic concepts in asset valuation and portfolio management.

      Level II: Emphasizes asset valuation, applying investment tools and concepts in portfolio management, and complex financial analysis.

      Level III: Concentrates on portfolio management and wealth planning, including integrating and synthesizing concepts learned at Levels I and II.

      Each level includes multiple-choice questions, item set questions, and essay questions. Exam fees vary depending on the registration period and range from approximately $700 to $1,000 per level. Additional costs include curriculum materials and membership fees.

      US CMA Exam Admit Card

      The CMA exam admit card, also known as the authorization letter, is issued to candidates once they schedule their exam. This document includes important details such as the exam date, time, and location. Candidates must present the admit card along with a valid photo ID on the day of the exam to gain entry to the testing center.

      US CMA Exam Fees

      The CMA exam fees are comprised of several components:

      IMA Membership Fee: Candidates must become members of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), with fees varying based on membership type (professional, student, or academic).

      US CMA Entrance Fee: A one-time fee required to enter the CMA program, which includes access to the exam support package.

      Exam Fees: Fees for each part of the exam, which vary depending on the candidate’s membership type. Professional members generally pay higher exam fees compared to student or academic members.

      The total cost for the US CMA certification can range from $1,000 to $2,500, including all membership and exam fees.

      US CMA Exam Pattern

      The US CMA exam is structured to evaluate the knowledge and application of management accounting principles through two parts, each consisting of:

      Multiple-Choice Questions (MCQs): Each part has 100 MCQs that candidates must complete in three hours. These questions assess the candidate’s understanding of various topics and their ability to apply concepts to real-world scenarios.

      Essay Questions: Each part includes two essay questions, which candidates have one hour to complete. The essays require written responses and may include calculations, analysis, and explanations of concepts.

      Candidates must achieve a minimum score of 360 out of 500 in each part to pass the US CMA exam. The combination of multiple-choice and essay questions ensures that candidates have a comprehensive understanding of both theoretical and practical aspects of management accounting.

      US CMA Syllabus and Subjects

      Compared to other financial accreditations, achieving a US CMA degree requires lesser time and provides you with an in-depth understanding of several financial concepts. The coaching institute you choose for mastering this course also plays an important role for helping you gain professional skills and industry-relevant knowledge.

      The subject list for the entire course:

      Level One: Financial Planning, Performance and Analytics

      • External Financial Reporting Decisions (15%)
      • Planning, Budgeting and Forecasting (20%)
      • Performance Management (20%)
      • Cost Management (15%)
      • Internal Controls (15%)
      • Technology and Analytics (15%)

      Level Two: Strategic Financial Management

      • Financial Statement Analysis (20%)
      • Corporate Finance (20%)
      • Decision Analysis (25%)
      • Investment Decisions (10%)
      • Professional Ethics (15%)
      • Risk Management (10%)

       How To Enrol For The US CMA Course?

      • Visit the IMA website and register as a member
      • Pay for the membership
      • Register for the US CMA exam at IMA’s online store
      • You can also register by calling  800-638-4427 or (201) 573-9000
      • Make sure to keep your card details ready as you begin with the procedure
      • After you register, you need to get an authorization for the US CMA exam
      • Schedule your test appointment through Prometric
      • If you fail to do so, you may lose the fees you paid for the exam
      • Once you’ve received your confirmation, it’s time to look for the best coaching

      US CMA Job Roles

      The US Certified Management Accounting course (US CMA) opens up a plethora of opportunities, both in industry and academia. Their demand exists not only in the private sector, but also in the government, banking and finance, education, and research sectors, developmental agencies, services, as well as the public utility sector. Some of the job opportunities for US CMAs include:

      • Financial Management
      • Financial/Business Analyst
      • Cost Accountant
      • Financial Controller
      • Financial Risk Manager
      • Professors in Accounting and Finance
      • Recovery Consultant
      • Cost Accountant
      • Corporate Controller
      • Chief Operating Officer

      These opportunities will bring forth career growth, social reputation, and high earnings. The freshers are employed by regulators as well as reputed companies with an average pay of around $85,000 per year. The top recruiters in the latest US CMA campus placement drive included Accenture, ITC, Vedanta, Philips, Deloitte, KPMG, GST Suvidha among others. The earnings as CMA increase with experience and skill set development.

      US CMA Salaries Around the World

       A US CMA is not only supposed to be a strategic thinker but also a strategic planner who manages the financial data of the company and guides the company on the basis of it. This kind of skill set is highly demanded by several corporations and innovative startups today. And they are willing to pay a handsome salary for it.

      There are two different types of US CMA courses available, one that’s relevant to India and one that’s accepted globally. The Cost & Management Accounting course is an India specific course while the US Certified Management Accounting course is a US-based course that’s accepted globally.

      Wondering how much US CMAs earn across countries? Here’s a glimpse into US CMA salaries in Philippines, Canada and the US. 

      Country Salary (as per US Dollars)











      CA vs. US CMA: Which is Better?

      The US CMA and CA courses are preferred by candidates entering the field of finance. Chartered Accountants (CA) are responsible for any organization’s core accounting job. They have comprehensive knowledge of auditing, accounting, and taxation. On the other hand, US Certified Management Accountants (US CMA) are responsible for maintaining the balance between resources at disposal of the organization and their expenditures. They have comprehensive knowledge concerning financial and cost management. 

      The CA course, on average, takes 4.5 years including the mandatory practical training while the US CMA course takes a minimum of 6 to 12 months. Lately, the US CMA course has gained popularity; however, both courses provide ample opportunities.’

      Which is Better, US CMA or ACCA?

      Both the courses are in demand and are recognized globally. However, the choice depends on personal preferences. US CMA is a better choice for those working in the U.S. However, ACCA is the more desired choice for Commonwealth nations like the UK. 


      US Certified Management Accountant (US CMA) is a credential awarded by the Institute for Management Accountants, USA. This global certification is open to all students who have completed their 10+2 or the high school equivalent. If you are interested in pursuing a career in accounting, check out our US Certified Management Accountant (CMA) course.

      FAQs on CMA

      What is the US CMA course for?

      Anyone with a keen interest in the strategic side of accounting is a good candidate for pursuing US CMA. This course is specifically designed to strategically plan the accounting procedures before the actual execution.

      What is US CMA in salary?

      US CMA professionals earn up to 9 LPA on an average. At Zell, we place our students at the top firms so that they can secure a higher salary package.

      Is US CMA better than CA?

      The CA course, on average, takes 4.5 years including the mandatory practical training while the US CMA course takes a minimum of 6 to 12 months. Lately, the US CMA course has gained popularity; however, both courses provide ample opportunities.

      Who is eligible for US CMA?

      A candidate should have a bachelor’s degree from a recognized college or university or IMA-approved professional certification. In case of any non-accredited degrees, an independent agency such as the NACES or AICE can be appointed to evaluate the same. If you don’t have a bachelor’s degree, you still stand a chance to qualify for US CMA with a professional certification approved by the ICMA.


      Anant Bengani, brings expertise as a Chartered Accountant and a leading figure in finance and accounting education. He’s dedicated to empowering learners with the finest financial knowledge and skills.

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