Hello, I’m Gaby Lahoud. I am a CMA, PMP, and a CFA, and have been a CMA instructor for 10 years in addition to more than 15 years of international professional experience in accounting, finance, and management. This is the second video in our series. Today, I will talk to you about the CMA study plan for an efficient learning experience. I’ll cover mapping a studying schedule, approaching challenging topics, and summarizing your knowledge. Remember the four basic conditions that we mentioned in the previous video. They should stay in effect as you move through your program. Now, let’s get to the key tips on how to study for the exam. First, set an exam date so you can have a start and an end time for your studying schedule. This is one of the most critical steps in your strategy. Without setting an exam date, you cannot plan an efficient schedule for your study and practice. Instead, you will keep postponing your exam from one window to the other, since you will always be caught up with work and life, thus never feeling the urge to finish the program within the due date since you don’t have one. Second, set a systematic study plan to ensure covering all topics before four weeks of the exam. The CMA program is not an impossible mission to accomplish, but it does cover a great many topics and concepts. Your plan should be structured to keep room so that you can practice what you have been studying. All your hard work will be in vain if you don’t practice, practice, practice. Third, stick to your time schedule. Weekends, holidays, and days off should be dedicated only to studying long intervals of time in an organized manner throughout the day with breaks every four hours. So, you start training your mind to sit for four hours straight in preparation for the real exam. Fourth, make sure you understand all concepts, but don’t stress over a topic if it was a challenge at first. Some topics may not be fully explained for you because they are focused on in later sections, or they are part of a bigger picture. So, when you face a challenging concept as you study, just put a mark on it and move on. Just try to cover as many topics as you can throughout your first reading. As you finish a full topic, go back and revisit those challenging concepts and see if the concept is easier to digest. If it is still a challenge, wait until you solve some problems on this topic. Sometimes, practice will clarify the concept by linking it to an example. If the topic is still a challenge, you can do some more research online, ask a professional, or simply ask your instructor (if you are attending a live CMA class). Fifth, if you are planning to use a financial calculator on the exam day, especially for Part 2, buy any of the calculators allowed for the CMA exam. Make sure you go to the IMA website and check the list of allowed calculators, such as Texas Instrument BA II Plus, HP12C, or HP12C Platinum or others. Do all your calculations on this specific calculator so that you can familiarize yourself with it and master its functions. Sixth, you should have a formula sheet that is handwritten and updated as you study for every topic. It should only include formulas without much information or summarized info. You should go over this sheet every day in the early morning before you go to work or start your day. Just read it, it won’t take more than 10 minutes. This will enhance your visual memory and imprint the formulas into your unconscious. Seventh, prepare a concise summary of every topic that you cover, stating major flow of information in the way you understood it. So, you go over them at every stage of your revision. The summary could be in graphical forms, points and arrows stated in the way your brain processed it, etc. The added value of this summary is to act as a trigger of all the detailed information that supports the general idea you just read. It acts like a flash card or reference that supports the flow of information as you move throughout the program. Stay tuned for another session on how to efficiently structure your study.