How to Prepare for CS Examinations- Top Tips for Success [Must Read]



1. Understanding the pattern and syllabus
2. Conceptual Clarity
3. Time- Table
4. Self-Study
5. Scanner
6. Selection of Books
7. Avoiding Distractions

Every year young students who are full of energy, zeal and enthusiasm join professional courses like Company Secretary (CS) in a desire to become professionals and succeed in their career and life. The Institute of Company Secretaries of India, Statutory body under an Act of Parliament conducts the exams for Foundation, Executive and Professional levels of the course in June and December every year. These exams are tough in nature with a very reserved passing percentage, therefore, most of the students are not able to make through. In order to succeed in Exams, one must know   How to Prepare for the CS Exams'?


If you ask teachers, seniors or passed out students or even your fellow students regarding the preparation for CS Exams; each person will have different strategies, schedules and pattern of studying and preparing for the exams which best suits them to derive out the result that they desired. Well, then listen to all, understand what will be the best for you and make such pattern of study that would help you in preparing for your exams in such manner that will lead you to the ultimate target of cracking CS Exams and make you a qualified Professional!!

 Everyone studies hard and in a thorough manner but to score those perfect marks and cover up that large syllabus the following tips will prove to be helpful and useful:

  • Understanding the pattern and syllabus

Dear Students, before you start preparing for your CS Examination; the in-depth study of what actually you are going to prepare is required. Familiarise with what are your subjects and the topics as per the stage you are preparing for. Each level has different groups and their respective subjects and syllabus. To pass in an individual subject you need to secure minimum 40% marks, however, for passing a level/programme or a module in a level/programme an aggregate of 50% marks is mandatory. If you are appearing in Foundation Programme the following will be the subjects:  

Foundation Programme

  1. Business Environment and Law
  1. Business Management, Ethics and Entrepreneurship
  1. Business Economics
  1. Fundamentals of Accounting and Auditing

Subjects for Executive Programme are as follows:

Module 1

  1. Jurisprudence, Interpretation and General Laws
  1. Company Law
  1. Setting up of Business Entities and Closure
  1. Tax Laws

Module 2

  1. Corporate & Management Accounting
  1. Securities Laws & Capital Markets
  1. Economic, Business and Commercial Laws
  1. Financial and Strategic Management

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Subjects for Professional Programme are as follows:

Module 1

  1. Governance, Risk Management, Compliances and Ethics
  1. Advanced Tax Laws
  1. Drafting, Pleading and Appearances

Module 2

  1. Secretarial Audit, Compliance Management and Due Diligence
  1. Corporate Restructuring, Insolvency, Liquidation and Winding -up
  1. Resolution of Corporate Disputes, Non Compliance and Remedies

Module 3

  1. Corporate Funding & Listing in Stock Exchanges
  1. Multidisciplinary Cases Studies
  1. One Elective Paper
  • Conceptual Clarity

To do preparation for your CS Examinations fundamental and conceptual clarity should be the centre of focus. Detailed study of each topic and subject is the need of the hour. Prioritize the preparation of difficult topics first. Such topics consume a lot of time so taking up them first will give them ample time. Wipe off your weaknesses and have hold of the topic by understanding the fundamentals and converting them into your strength. This will surely gear up your confidence!

  • Time- Table

Make time- table for yourself. Allot adequate amount of time to each subject. Time table should be planned according to the date sheet of exams. Preparation of each subject should be time-bound and one should try to complete within the allotted time period. So time management should be such that each subject and the whole course are completed timely. Dilatoriness of studies shall be avoided.

Preparation should be started at least three months before the examination days. The whole course should be revised at least two times before the examination. One or maximum two subjects should be picked up for doing preparation at a time and if you are taking two subjects then try and choose one theory subject and another subject shall be the practical one. That helps in refreshing the mind.

  • Self-Study

Doing self- study is always considered great. Putting your mind in self-study always proves to make you conceptually flawless. The study should be on regular basis. Devoting a minimum of three to four hours daily to the preparation is necessary. Solve atleast one revision test paper every day.

Apart from what you learn at coaching centres (this is always optional), students shall give utmost importance to self-study which eventually assists in cracking the nuts of exams. Self – study takes in a lot of hard-work but increases your retention power and will concise the syllabus. Nothing in this world can replace hard work.

  • Scanner

Scanner primarily is a book which summarizes previous year’s examination papers. Therefore, through this book, the analysis of the set pattern which is followed in the previous year’s examinations can be done and you get to know the repeatedly asked questions. With the help of scanner you can shortlist the topics which carry more weightage of marks and need more attention. Once students come to know the frequently asked topics and questions students are must prepare these topics very well. It also helps to understand the requirements of an examiner i.e. what they expect in an particular answer.

  • Selection of Books

Study can be done from any books available i.e. either from the study material provided by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India, bare acts or any other book related to the subject preferably recommended by the Institute. Guideline answers books which are provided from the institute are also relevant. Try to study in a smart manner by understanding which chapters and topics are related and take note of them while studying. Making your own notes, underlining and highlighting the relevant topics will save time during revision in examination days. Try to memorize the sections, cases, and facts related so that they can be quoted in the examination.

  • Avoiding Distractions

Keep yourself motivated and away from interferences such as social media, mobiles etc and try to maintain your focus throughout. But also remember not to compromise in your sleeping hours. It aids in retaining attention on your aim and also maintains your health. Eat well, Sleep well and study well!

Now-a-days apart from the traditional book studies, there are many other options which are available to students to enhance their information, knowledge and command over the subjects. Students can always avail the help of various coaching centres which are available to them. There are options like online coaching, offline coaching and other search engines like Google, yahoo etc. through which the students can remain updated and expand their space of knowledge. Through online coaching centres and internet students can always remain updated about a specific topic and also they can have a large amount of information for free and without much wastage of time.

While preparing for your examination students shall also keep in view the things that they should avoid doing so that their morale doesn’t go down and their studies don’t get hampered. The following points should be kept in mind that students should devoid:

  • Majority of subjects in CS Course are theoretical. So if you think that mugging up the topic and reproducing the same in the examination will help; then stop. Mugging can never be fruitful and it will be just wastage of time .It may create confusion for you during the exam. Instead, you should always understand the basics and pay attention to the concepts and then memorize the topic.
  • Abstain from doing selective study. Choosing one some topics for preparation and leaving some can be a risky choice. All topics and subjects are equally significant and they shall be studied at-least once.
  • If a student is appearing for the second time in the examination he/she should not be thinking about the mistakes that were made during the previous examination. That will reduce your belief in yourself; rather one should learn from those mistakes and try not to repeat those in the next examination.
  • Students get misguided by the rumours and myths related to syllabus and dates of examination very easily. Please don’t get carried away with any information and always cross check it with the institute. You can also very easily visit the website of Institute of Company Secretaries of India and cross check that information from there. The website of the Institute of Company Secretaries of India is
  • Don’t become panic-stricken before the examinations. Try to relax your mind through meditation, yoga, walk or any other extra-curricular activities of your own choice. Have credence in yourself. Hard-work always pays.
  • Students should be very cautious about their health; especially just before the examination days and therefore, try not to pursue anything that may affect your health conditions such as taking too much stress, not having proper and peaceful sleep, eating unhealthy etc.

Apart from what you do in the process of getting ready for the war i.e. examination it is also very crucial as to what you do in those three hours when the question paper is in front of you. Some students get this panic attacks and because of no reason they just black out. They may have done their preparation in a very appropriate manner but they just get frightened in the examination hall and the result is that they are not able to give in their best shots. So there are some steps which you should follow in examination hall as well:

  • Always try and stay calm, relaxed, and attentive. If you get nervous just before the exam then circumvent last minute revision. Meditate for a minute or two before the examination starts. That will help in making you feel comfortable and provide peace to your mind.
  • Once the question paper has been provided to you, read the instructions and question paper very meticulously.
  • Answer those question first which you know perfectly and are confident of. That will boost up your faith and also save time for those question which you don’t know properly or find difficult to answer.
  • Read difficult questions again and again and try to recapitulate the topic and answer the question. Leaving questions unattended shall be abstained.
  • Refrain from wasting too much time on a particular question. Time management shall be done in such a manner that all the question paper is attended and finished in allotted time.
  • Try to write in good and clear hand writing. Avoid over writing and cutting. Highlight and underline the topics that are important and main in the answer and which you want the examiner to read.
  • Answer in detail wherever it is required and divide the answer into various paragraphs. You can divide it into three parts also like introduction, body and conclusion.
  • Use legal terms and language while answering. Mention section numbers and sub section wherever it is needed. In case related questions references of cases, the facts and judgements shall be given.
  • A steady speed and self belief shall be maintained throughout the exam.

Above mentioned are such do’s and don’ts which if followed genuinely by students will make the preparation and clearing of CS Examination easy to a large extent. It would definitely take you a step closer in fulfilling your dream of becoming a qualified Company Secretary. Your preparation to appear in the exams and the outcome are no doubt co-related! More rigorous and sincere you are towards your studies and preparation more is the probability of positive results.

Every student can plan a strategy and schedule as per whatever they might think suits them. What eventually will matter is the positive result which will come out of a planned and strategized study and that will assist in taking the best out of you to transform you in a triumphant and proficient professional which will shape up the entire life of you. So select and draft a plan which will be most apt to help you in your Preparation of Exams.

How to Prepare for CS Executive Exam || How to Prepare for CS Foundation Exam || CS Foundation Syllabus || How to Prepare for CS Executive Exam in One Month || How to Prepare for CS Professional Exam in One Month

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