Monday, 16 January 2012

Top 8 Easily Avoidable Mistakes - CMA Case Exam

Very often marks are lost due to silly mistakes. In the CMA Case Exam every mark counts so I compiled a few reminders to help you avoid losing marks on the top 8 easily avoidable mistakes:
  1. Don’t  skip over any area - cover each area to grab marks in as many places as possible by using an outline. To avoid forgetting a section of the case report, the moment the exam starts, type out an outline with ALL the relevant headings (Constraints, KSF, KRF, Key Stakeholder Preferences, Financing Available, etc.) into SecureExam. Now all you need to worry about is filling the headings with content and you will have on-screen prompts for all that you need to complete. 
  2. State all of your assumptions - and I mean ALL of them. When in doubt, state your assumption. I recommend that for every appendix you include a section titled 'assumptions', that will be your reminder and will prompt you to list and state your assumptions.
  3. Avoid being biased - After writing out all the pros and cons, review them to make sure that you do not have any alternatives where there is a big discrepancy between the number of pros and cons (i.e. 8 pros and 2 cons). If you find that you do have an unbalanced analysis, go back to your situational analysis and to the info on the alternative and review to either identify additional cons or pros or verify that you included appropriate ones and remove if necessary to ensure that the final product has a balance between pros and cons.
  4. Address the right audience - write the report to the right audience. You are not writing it to your CMA moderator or to the CMA marker. The case will specify who you are  writing as and who to (usually your audience is the board of directors but not always)
  5. Check your appendix references - include references to the right appendices in the body of your report. Do not make the mistake of directing the marker to the wrong appendix.
  6. Do not waste time on that you will not use in the case - you will not get any marks for appendices that were never used/referenced within the body of your report.
  7. If you identify an issue, make sure to resolve it -  in addressing any of the issues, don’t just say that the issue “needs to be resolved” or “further investigated” 
  8. Use proper names for management in the report - do not use first or last names only, do not misspell names and remember to capitalize properly. i.e. Do not refer to ‘John Zerga’ as ‘john’ or ‘zerga’ or 'Zorga', rather use proper naming such as 'Mr. Zerga' or 'John Zerga'
Do you have any other examples of silly mistakes that can be easily avoided?

Image: ningmilo /

1 comment:

  1. Take a minute to run spell checker and do a quick run from top to bottom of your report to clean up formating.

    I have a sticky space bar and my words can get stuck together ... a lot. I lost marks on the last assignment for this.

    I also had inconsistent formatting for titles and subheadings that the marker picked up on.

    Easy marks lost.


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