To become a Certified Management Accountant, you will take the CMA exam. This is a rigorous test that requires a lot of prep. Once you put in all the time and effort in preparing for the test, you await your results based on published CMA exam dates. Truth be told, sometimes the wait is the hardest part.
The CMA exam is a complex test. CMA exam dates relate to when your CMA exam score will be released. Keep in mind as you wait that, while the multiple-choice questions are machine-graded, essay parts of the CMA exam are manually graded.
Want to know when you will get your CMA score? Read on to learn about CMA exam release dates and what you should be doing while you wait.
CMA Exam Score Release Dates for 2021
CMA exam release dates for 2021 relate to your testing month. Keep in mind that all CMA exam score dates are estimates. I’ll add in the results that have dropped so far this year to help you wrap your mind around the typical timeline.
|Testing month||Predicted score release dates|
|January 2021||March 15|
|February 2021||April 12|
|April 2021||June 11|
|May 2021||July 12|
|June 2021||August 11|
|July 2021||September 13|
|August 2021||October 12|
|September 2021||November 11|
|October 2021||December 13|
How long do I have to take the exam?
Once you’ve registered and paid the CMA exam entrance fee, you will have three years to take and complete both CMA Part 1 and CMA Part 2. These are 36 critical months to check all your boxes to study and prepare for the CMA Exam.
How long does it take to get my CMA exam results?
As you can see, it typically takes over a month (around 42 days) to get your CMA score. The IMA explains that you will get your CMA exam score an estimated six weeks after the last day of your test month.
How will I get my exam results?
When you register for the CMA exam, you will set up an account with the Institutes of Management Accountants. This online profile is where you will login to get your digital CMA exam results along with an email sent to your inbox the day results are published. They will also come a couple of weeks later in paper form via USPS.
Am I responsible for any other CMA requirements?
Additional CMA requirements—beyond taking and passing the CMA exam—are experience-related. You will need to complete all CMA certification requirements and you have seven years to do it.
CMA Exam Results
When you log in to your IMA profile to find your CMA exam results, here’s what you need to remember:
- 75% of your score comes from the multiple-choice questions
- 25% of your score comes from the written essay
If you made it to the essay section, you know that you scored at least 50% on the multiple-choice questions.
That said, the final score of your CMA exam can be released up to six weeks after the month you took the exam. It’s likely the multiple choice questions are scored automatically as you take the test. However, every essay is graded personally by ICMA staff. This is a lot of arduous work, so you cannot expect immediate results.
Technically, you could score anywhere from 0 to 500 on the CMA exam. A minimum passing score is 360.
Want to learn more about the two parts of the CMA exam?
CMA Performance Report
In addition to getting your CMA exam scores a few weeks after your test, you will get a performance report. This comes 14 days after the exam scores are released. The CMA exam performance report will come if you didn’t pass the exam. Your performance will be ranked as satisfactory, marginal, or unsatisfactory. This can help you prepare to try again.
CMA Exam Dates
When you get your CMA exam score depends on when you take your test. If you have a tight timeline or just want to get your ducks in a row, be sure that you know when you are scheduling your CMA exam. CMA exam dates are available in three windows.
- January through February
CMA exam dates in this window in 2021 are January 1, 2021 – February 28, 2021
- April* through June
CMA exam dates in this window in 2021 are April 1, 2021-July 31, 2021
- September through October
CMA exam dates in this window in 2021 are August 1, 2021-October 31, 2021
To schedule your CMA exam in one of these windows, you need to pay your fee and secure a spot.
If you already reserved a date, but need to switch plans, you can reschedule a CMA exam for free by contacting Prometric 31 days or more in advance. If there’s an emergency and you need to reschedule closer to your exam date, there’s a $50 fee.
Special Note: COVID-19 and the CMA exam score release dates
Because of the COVID-19 pandemic, CMA testing had some disruptions since 2020. As of this writing, most Prometric centers reopened with some health and safety protocol. If you have any questions about a scheduled CMA exam, you can get updates on Prometric’s COVID-19 updates page.
For more insight into how the pandemic is impacting the CMA, read about how to formulate your COVID-19 action plan.
Waiting For CMA Exam Results
If you just finished one part of the CMA exam, you’re ready to start studying for the second part. Even while you wait for your score, you can dive back into test prep and make sure you’re ready to dominate the second part.
If you’ve just finished both parts of the CMA exam, it’s time to relax. You read that right. There aren’t additional steps you can take to move your CMA certification along until you know whether you have passed the CMA exam or not. If you committed yourself to study for the CMA exam, now is the time to take a break. Life will go on and the CMA exam results are out of your hands.
CMA Exam: Best Time to Study
As you prepare for the CMA exam, you’ll want to align with best practices for a CMA study schedule. This may include buying an instructor-led CMA course or going the self-study route. There are pros and cons to each. It’s most important that you give yourself the right amount of time to prepare for the CMA exam. I recommend that you start a review course program and then book your CMA exam when you are about halfway through. This could optimize test readiness and ensure that you have enough time to access an available testing window and study hard.
If you come up to your CMA exam testing window too soon and realize you need more time, you can reschedule in the same testing window for a fee.
Start Your Exam Prep Today
Your journey to becoming a CMA starts with dedicated test preparation. You have a lot of great online options to support your journey. Various platforms are optimized for different learning styles and have unique tools. You will want to buy a course that has the right mix of resources that appeal to you as a learner, fit your timeline and work within your budget.
Read our dedicated comparison page, pitching the four best CMA review courses against each other to help you pick the best one for your needs.