You need to obtain conceptual clarity of the subject. For that you can start with the books, books should be used solely for understanding. The quality of your preparation depends highly on how much attention you have paid to the study material and the practice manual. For Audit, the marks awarded by ICAI go hand in hand with the adherence to the language used by the institute in its content.
The next step is to divide the subject into 4 parts. The first part comprises the first 4 chapters, which conceptually covers about 70% of the subject.
The second part consists of Vouching, verification, and Special Audits, which again is pretty scoring and easy.
The third one contains Company Audit, which is really scoring because the questions from this section are pretty direct.
The last and the final one, includes the SA’s, CARO, and the miscellaneous topics. SA’s cover about 20 to 25 marks of the paper, so it’s something which definitely shouldn’t be missed out on.
You have to plan a time – table and allocate time to each topic.
Well, you have to prepare your own short notes and draw the charts while reading the topics because this will help you to revise them again and again easily.
Don’t even dare to skip Standards on Auditing, the most important topic of the Audit paper.
Mark such topic and move on to another, later discuss it with some of your friend or mentor
ICAI is very strict on checking some topics like Verification and Vouching so do not depend much on these chapters as they are not much scoring.
Try to use the mnemonics to remember the name of Heading or the name of Standards of Auditing which are also useful in recalling them in Examination.
Study Plan/ ABC Analysis
Small and Easy
Difficult and Need more practice
Audit Sampling, Analytical Procedures, Audit Report, Audit of Banks, Audit Strategy, Audit Planning & Audit,
Audit in an Automated Environment, Audit of Different Entities, Nature, Objective, and Scope of Audit
SA 230, SA 330, SA 450, SA 505, SA 520, SA 610, SA 710, Risk Assessment and Internal Control,
Company Audit, Audit of Items of Financial Statement, Audit Documentation and Audit Evidence
2 times Revision only
Take 4 to 5 days to Revise
3 times Revision
Take 5 days and practice, focus more on questions
3 times Revision
8 days, solve maximum questions, 80% focus on solving questions only
2 Times Revision
Study 4 to 6 adjustments per day, Coverall in 6 to 8 days
From which chapter to start preparing
You can start with the Standards on Auditing as they cover 15-20 marks paper. They are easy and also scoring but you should always remember the name of Standards. Some important SA’s are SA 230, SA 330, SA 450, SA 505, SA 520, SA 610, SA 710.
Company Audit and Professional Ethics should be the top priority. This chapter is damn easy to read and retain and also very much scoring.
Special Audits related to Club, NGO, Partnership firms, Educational institutions, Hotels, Cinema Halls, hospitals, sole proprietors, etc.
Vouching and Verification of Cash, Depreciation, Tangible and Intangible Assets.
Risk Assessment and Internal Control covering Audit Trail, Audit Risk.
Preparation of Audit Report featuring with Audit techniques, Audit program, Audit Sampling, Continuous Audit, Letter of Engagement, Management Representation.
Inherent Limitations of Audit, Operational Audit, Detection of Fraud and Errors.
Audit Documentation and Audit Evidence covering SA 220 and 230.
More scoring part
Company Audit and Professional Ethics are most scoring.
Audit of Items of Financial Statement This is a vast chapter and anything can be asked from this chapter. If it is not possible to cover all the questions then cover at least 10-15 questions from this.
Audit of Different Type of Entities, Audit of Banks and Audit in Automated Environment
You can understand the concept of both the chapters and then do a question-based study.
Which questions to attempt first
There will be three types of questions- MCQs, Correct or Incorrect, and other descriptive questions. The MCQs will be of 30 marks which will include 20, 1 mark questions, and 5, 2 marks questions. The paper will also include Correct/Incorrect type questions of 14 marks. The rest of the questions will be descriptive type
Read the question paper properly in the allotted pre-15 minutes. Make sure which questions are you going to attempt. Generally, all papers have a specific format of 1st question as compulsory (20 marks), and the remaining 6 questions have a choice of solving any 5 answers (5*16= 80 Marks).
Solve the questions which you can answer the best first. Never solve extra questions because as per the new rule of ICAI, the examiner won't even bother checking the extra questions attempted by a student.
Double-check if the question number is written properly. Kindly mention the subpart of the question as well. The silliest way to get a zero for an answer is writing the correct answer for a wrong question.
Do not write incomplete answers. Even if you don't know the exact answer, try to make it a complete answer. What I mean here is do not leave the sentence incomplete. This is more of a psychological hack. Incomplete answers catch the attention of the examiner easily. You never know an incorrect but a complete answer may fetch you full marks.
Attempt all the questions. Even ICAI has suggested the same funda. Remember that six average answers would fetch you more marks than five perfect answers.
You will be granted marks based on your conclusion besides other things which must be appropriate. Writing irrelevant or unnecessary things can frustrate the examiner so write your answer point to point.
Support your conclusion like auditor should give a qualified report or adverse report or unqualified report as per your opinion.
And yes writing the correct answer is not sufficient to gain marks in CA papers. Besides writing the correct answer you have to present it properly. The answer must be given in a sequence as demanded by ICAI.
- Start with Company Audit I & II friends…. this chapter cover around 30 marks. As this covers 30 marks so read every topic in it.
- Special Audits – Club Audit, Educational Institution, Hotel, Cinema Hall, Advantages of audit of accounts of the partnership firm.
- Verification: Cash, Depreciation, Contingent liability, Subsequent Events ( SA 560 ), Cut-off Procedures, Personal Exp. of Directors & Analytical Review ( SA 500 ). Do this chapter and vouching in last. The best book for doing this is Practice Manual.
- Internal Control – Audit Risk, Audit Trail, EDP Auditing Approach n another related topic to EDP.
- Preparation of Audit – Audit Techniques, Audit Programme, Audit Sampling (SA 530), Continuous Audit, Letter of Engagement, Management Representation.
- Chapter– Audit Evidence & Methods of obtaining it, Compliance & Substantive Procedures, Going Concern Assumption, Joint Auditors ( SA 299 ), Principles governing audit, SA 200, Types of Error (especially Commission & Casting ), Operational Audit, Detection of Fraud & errors, Audit Engagement Letter, Inherent limitations of Audit.
- Important SAs
Preparing for Chartered Accountant exams is not a child's play, you need to give up on a lot of things to achieve that prefix 'CA'. And even after knowing this; you've decided that you want to be a successful Chartered accountant. Then no one can distract you from your goal. Determination, focus, and passion are the most important aspects one needs to have for an unthinkable goal like this.
Advanced auditing and professional ethics is the most complex subject according to most of the students. But instead, if you understand it properly and follow the right steps while studying it; it can be handled efficiently. Keep taking a few breaks in between the preparations; otherwise "all work no play makes Jack a dull boy".
Auditing is an important subject and tricky too. Most of the time, it is the reason for a student's failure in final exams. Stay focused and keep practicing with web mock test series or online ca test series available. If you have your articles experience; it will be really beneficial for you as in this subject they expect you to attempt the paper practically by analyzing the problem as an auditor.
- Professional ethics.
- The company audit also covered AS too.
- Audit report.
- Audit of banks.
- Audit under fiscal laws.
- Special audit assignment.
- Audit under CIS.
- Risk assessment and internal control.
- Audit of a general insurance company.
- Special audit assignments.
While preparing for the CA final advanced auditing and professional ethics, there are certain points you need to keep in mind.
- You can always start with the easiest and most interesting topics like professional ethics, company audit, or audit report. As it will boost your confidence and you'll be able to focus more on difficult and complex topics like SA.
- Never ignore SA, it covers most of the part in paper 3. There are no provable questions in SA. No one can predict, which question is the most important and which is not. So rather not gamble with this topic because it has the power to sink your ship real bad.
- Accounting standards are another important topic. This one covers the practical questions in the paper. So while preparing and even while attempting the paper you need to write the practical answer. Practice more and more with the icai web test series for better understanding.
- Always focus on concepts, the questions will not be specific. They will be totally based on concept, so while studying get your concepts clear and it will be really helpful for you in the exam.
- Attempt all the easy questions first and then go for the difficult ones. This way you'll have enough time to answer the compulsory questions after understanding them properly.
- If you mention applicable engagement quality control standards or accounting standards or sections in this paper wherever required; you can secure good marks.
- In the case of study-based questions, divide your answers into two parts. First, state the fact of the case and then secondly mention the relevant concept for that case and then go with the conclusion. This way your study-based questions will be handled perfectly. Also, practice with ca final mock test papers to understand them properly.
- This is a vast subject so it will better and easier to split it into two parts. One should consist of all the major high-scoring topics and others should be the minor ones. This way you'll be able to complete the entire syllabus easily.
- Remember presentation is the key. And as they say, the first impression is the last. No matter how correct your answers are but they have to be neat and presentable too. Structure your answers, highlight the important points, and giving the headlines to different sections to create a good impression.
- While attempting the questions in professional ethics, it will be better if you adhere to the format given in the practice manual. The first and the last portions of the answer should contain the part, schedule, and clauses. Include the applicability and justification of each clause in the main paragraphs.
- Keep practicing with the ca online test series for better results and improvements. Make notes while preparing, they will be really helpful at the time of revision.
Along with all these tips, do take care of your health too.
So stay healthy and focused, nothing can stop you from reaching your goal. Good luck!
Common Mistakes / Tips
The audit is an exam which needs a higher level of knowledge and presentation skill. Instead of writing in layman’s language include keywords in your answer. Include the technical keywords which are being used by the ICAI in the Study Material, RTPs, MTPs, and Suggested Answers. Learn the keywords and impress the paper checker and score good marks in Audit.
But this is not something that cannot be learned or improved. And how can you improve this and score good marks in Audit? Practice.“Awareness precedes change”. Acknowledge the problem and practice it till you achieve perfection. Give mock tests, write answers and see where you are lacking. Don’t just give one Mock Test, give as many as you can and see yourself improve with each one of them. There are plenty of CAtestseries available online, get those and improve your presentation skill.
Whether you should answer in points or not depends on the question that is being asked. If the question asks for ‘Explain’, ‘Describe’, and ‘Analyze’, then avoid writing in points. Instead, write in para-points. An example of para points in this post. But if the question asks for ‘Advantage/Disadvantage’, ‘Process’, or ‘Limitations’, then you should go for points. Even when you’re writing in points don’t forget to give an introductory paragraph and then continue with your points. Each of the answers must start from a new page. Avoid writing answers on the same page.
Underline the keywords and important points. This highlights the point you are trying to make and helps the paper checker to look in the right direction. Which, in turn, helps you score good marks.
Use CAPS. If there is a keyword you want to put special emphasis on, put it in capital letters. This makes the paper checker realize that you know what you are talking about, saves time to search for the keywords, and increases your marks.
Write all the parts of a single question together, in the same place.
Many of the students blame the ICAI for giving lower marks one of the reasons behind such is not covering the amendments. ICAI tends to give an important weightage over the amendments to keep their students amended. That’s why always go through the amendments twice.
Do not write any unnecessary things in your paper to fill in copies. This is CA paper, not B.Com where you will get marks for filling the pages. The answer must be relevant and to the point supported by the Proper Presentation.
MCQs play a major role in conceptual clarity. And with the onset of the new paper pattern, practicing them becomes even more important. It is not just going to help you with scoring good marks in the law exam but will also help in providing conceptual clarity. MCQs help you with even the minutest of details.
Never forgot to Attempt Test Papers before your exams
Motivation: “The days that break you are the days that make you”.
Ok Thanks, Best of luck