CMA in USA 2024: Requirements, Benefits, Scope, Syllabus

Meridean Overseas
Meridean Overseas

Updated On 12 December 2023 & Read Time 9 minutes



Do you aspire to pursue any certification course in USA that is highly valued regarding career opportunities? Wait, let us introduce you to CMA. The pursuit of the Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation in the United States offers international students a pathway to excellence in management accounting and financial management.


As a globally recognised credential awarded by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA), the CMA opens doors to a myriad of opportunities in the dynamic and competitive world of finance.


So, if you are also interested in pursuing a CMA in USA, then read this blog till the end.


In this context, the blog explains the advantages, eligibility criteria, and potential career paths that make pursuing CMA in USA a compelling choice for international students seeking to advance their careers.


US CMA Course Details

The Certified Management Accountant (CMA) designation in the United States is a prestigious credential awarded by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). This globally recognised certification is designed for professionals seeking to advance their careers in management accounting and financial management.


The CMA exam consists of two parts. Each part of the exam can be completed somewhere between 12-18 months, and on average, students can complete the whole course in 3 years.  Moreover, the exam is conducted 3 times a year, i.e., in May/June, September/October, and January/February. Additionally, his course also has a high passing percentage, which is nearly 50% globally.


US CMA Syllabus

The CMA exam is a rigorous two-part examination that evaluates candidates' knowledge and skills in various areas of management accounting. Part 1 focuses on financial reporting, planning, performance, and control, while Part 2 delves into financial decision making. Successful completion of both parts is required to earn the CMA designation.


In the CMA test, you’ll have 4 hours to complete 100 MCQ questions and 30 minutes to write two essays. Furthermore, the CMA USA syllabus is divided into 12 different sections covering both halves of the course. Now, let’s discuss the syllabus of USA CMA.


Financial Planning, Performance and Analytics

The first section of the US CMA exam consists of 100 multiple-choice questions and two essay-style questions. It is graded on a scale of 0 to 500, with a minimum score of 360 required to qualify for CMA in USA.

Part 1: Financial Planning, Performance and Analytics


Technology and Analysis


Internal Controls


Cost Management


Performance Management 


Planning, Budgeting and Forecasting 


External Financial Reporting Decisions 


Read More:- Study in USA


Strategic Financial Management

The second section of the CMA in USA exam pattern is similar to the first. You have 100 MCQs and two 30-minute essay questions. You must obtain 360 points out of a possible 500 points. As a result, 50% of the MCQ questions must be answered correctly.

Part 2: Strategic Financial Management


Financial Statement Analysis 


Corporate Finance


Decision Analysis


Risk Management


Investment Decisions 


Professional Ethics


Advantages of Studying CMA in USA

Studying for the CMA in USA can offer several advantages for international students, which are mentioned below.

  • CMA is a versatile degree that accepts candidates from a wide range of specialisations. This course is open to candidates with a minimum of two years of work experience and a bachelor's degree program in engineering, business administration, economics, accounting, or finance.

  • Studying in the USA provides excellent networking opportunities. The CMA program often connects students with professionals and organisations in the field of management accounting, allowing international students to build a strong professional network that extends beyond borders.

  • Another benefit of CMA USA is that it can be completed in 12 to 18 months. The CMA test is given three times a year, allowing students adequate opportunities to complete their course on time: January and February, May and June, and September and October.

  • The CMA designation is globally recognised, and earning it in the USA adds an extra layer of credibility. The USA is home to many multinational corporations, and holding a CMA from an American institution can enhance your profile on an international scale.

  • Obtaining the CMA opens doors to a wide range of career opportunities. Many global corporations value the CMA designation, and the USA's dynamic business environment provides a platform for international students to launch successful careers in management accounting with greater pay scale than the rest of the world.


CMA USA Eligibility Criteria

To pursue the CMA in USA as an international student, you need to meet certain eligibility criteria set by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). The requirements typically include the following things:

  • A bachelor's degree from an accredited college or university is usually required. The degree can be in any discipline, not necessarily accounting or finance.

  • You must have relevant work experience in the field of management accounting or financial management. The usual requirement is two continuous years of professional experience. However, candidates with a master's degree may be eligible for an exemption from one year of experience.

  • It is generally required to become a member of the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA). Membership provides access to study resources, networking opportunities, and support throughout the CMA program.

  • The IMA's Statement of Ethical Professional Practice must be followed.

  • International students are often required to demonstrate proficiency in the English language through proficiency tests such as TOEFL or IELTS.


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US CMA Course Fee

To appear for the exam, you must first become an IMA member and pay a one-time entrance fee. Because the exam is divided into two sections, you will have to pay the US CMA course fees at least twice. If you fail a section of the exam, you will have to pay the price again to retake it. Below is the USA CMA fee structure.

For Professional Members


CMA Entrance Fee ( Nonrefundable)

280 USD 

Exam Fee

460 USD

For Student/ Academic Members


CMA Entrance Fee

210 USD 

Exam Fee

345  USD  

Scholarships to Study CMA in USA

Despite academic capabilities, many students fail to study CMA in USA due to financial restrictions. A CMA scholarship allows students to complete their CMA course for free or provides financial assistance to cover course expenses. Below are a few scholarships that you can avail of if you are planning to study CMA in USA.

  • CMA Scholarship Program

  • IMA Century Scholarship Award

  • IMA Doctoral Scholars Program


CMA USA Job Opportunities

Studying CMA in USA opens up diverse and promising career opportunities for international students. Here are some potential career paths and opportunities that you can choose after studying CMA in USA:

Job Roles

Average Salaries

Management Accountant/Controller

126,000 USD per year

Financial Manager/Director

1,58,000 USD per year

Corporate Treasurer


Risk Manager



83,500 USD per year

Budget Analyst

75,000 USD per year

Cost Accountant

75,000 USD per year

Top Companies for CMAs in USA

Here, we have listed some of the best companies in USA where you can apply after pursuing a CMA in USA.

  • KPMG

  • Deloitte

  • EY

  • PwC

  • Genpact

  • Barclays

  • JP Morgan Chase

  • Accenture

  • MasterCard

  • MaxLife Insurance

  • InterTrust

  • Knowcraft Analytics

  • Morgan Stanley

  • Cognizant

  • Grant Thornton

  • HP



In conclusion, embarking on the journey of CMA in USA as an international student is a strategic investment in one's professional future. The global recognition, quality education, and diverse learning environment provided by American institutions, coupled with the comprehensive curriculum of the CMA program, position individuals for success in various financial roles. As CMA professionals, they become adept at navigating complex financial landscapes, contributing strategically to organisations, and enjoying a spectrum of career opportunities both domestically and internationally.


The CMA designation not only signifies a commitment to excellence but also opens doors to a fulfilling and impactful career in management accounting. For international students with aspirations for professional growth and global influence, pursuing the CMA in USA is an investment that pays dividends throughout their careers.


We hope now you are clear about all the details related to CMA in USA. If you still have any doubts, then we encourage you to have a word with our team of expert counsellors at Meridean Overseas Education Consultants (MOEC). If you are unable to travel to our offices, we offer online counselling services via our website. Our dedicated counsellors will provide you with the best guidance regarding your application to study abroad. Apart from this, our expert counsellors will also provide assistance in the visa process for your successful study abroad journey. Don't hesitate to contact us at or call us at 1800-1230-00011.



Q: What are the requirements to pursue CMA in the USA in 2024?

A: To pursue CMA in USA in 2024, you typically need a bachelor's degree from an accredited institution or an equivalent qualification. Additionally, you must have two years of professional experience in management accounting or financial management. It's also important to pass the two-part CMA exam administered by the Institute of Management Accountants (IMA).


Q: What are the benefits of obtaining a CMA certification in the USA?

A: Obtaining a CMA certification in the USA can provide several benefits. Firstly, it enhances your professional credibility and demonstrates your expertise in management accounting and financial management. It can also open up better job opportunities and career advancement prospects, as CMAs are highly sought after by employers. Additionally, CMAs often earn higher salaries compared to non-certified professionals in similar roles.


Q: How long does it take to complete the CMA program in the USA in 2024?

A: The duration to complete the CMA program in the USA can vary depending on individual circumstances. On average, it takes candidates around 12 to 18 months to complete the program. This includes meeting the educational and experience requirements, studying for the exam, and passing both parts of the CMA exam. However, the timeline can be flexible, allowing candidates to study at their own pace and balance their professional commitments.

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