CMA and CIA Exam Advice – Making Quick Educated Guesses

Last week, we talked about how it is important to answer every question on the CMA and CIA exams, even if you have to guess. One of the reasons for this is because there is no penalty for an incorrect answer.

However, rather than just randomly guessing, sometimes you can quickly narrow your choices down to three or even only two possible answers. Having a 33% or 50% chance of getting the answer correct is better than 25%! Some words to keep in mind as you make a quick educated guess are:

  • All
  • Always
  • Never
  • None
  • $0

While it is possible that such “extreme” words can be in the correct answer, you can often quickly confirm or eliminate these choices. For example, even if you don’t know what situations a particular principle applies to, you might know that choices with “always” or “never” are incorrect. On the other hand, there are some situations where $0 might automatically be the correct answer.

When you are taking the exam, keeping these “extreme” words in mind may help you quickly make an educated guess. However, even if you have no idea which answer is correct, choose an answer on every question. It is better to have a 25% chance of being correct than a 0% chance!