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College Grad with CGA Question!

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  • Jul 4th, 2012 1:01 pm
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[OP]
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Jul 2, 2012
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College Grad with CGA Question!

I just graduated from Cambrian College with a Business Admin-Accounting diploma. I want to pursue CGA because I want more, I dont want to be just a bookkeeper/Accountant.
I know many people that have aced every single course and are now moving on to University to get their CA or CGA. The thing is I calculated how many transfer credits I will actually get and it is 6 classes (that I have a B or higher) that are matched with the courses on CGA. Which really only gives me 3 CGA transfer credits because sometimes 1 CGA course has 2 or 3 transfer credits. Also there are many CGA courses that I will have 1 B in and than I will have a C in ... which ultimately cancels out the transfer credit entirely.

Not to write a novel here, but basically in college I would score good marks in my accounting classes, but would strive for a C in all other classes, unlike those over achievers. Not that there is anything wrong with them, but I consider myself to be somewhere between and under and over achiever. I am a smart person and I also love accounting. Some accounting topics take me longer to understand, as it can get quite difficult.

My question is basically, to other CGA's, is that do I fit the profile of becoming a CGA. To actually go through the courses online, because I know I learn better in actual classes. I can also self teach myself with dedication. Do you have to be an over achiever to become a CGA? I calculated it would take me approx 4.5 years, which is fine by me.

Thanks guys.
9 replies
Deal Fanatic
Sep 23, 2007
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1150 upvotes
I personally don't find the CGA material to be hard. CGA is quite lazy and if you study their past exams, you really shouldn't fail their courses. I strongly believe anyone can do it if they simply try.

I don't think there's a "profile" for being a CGA. CGAs are a diverse group of people. The hardest part of the CGA program is usually not the coursework, but gaining the right experience level. It takes a bit of luck. For example, if you currently have an entry level job, and if there's no chance for promotion, you need to jump ship. If you're fresh out of school and looking for full time work, that's even harder. Your first accounting job is usually the hardest to land.

The CGA program is designed so that you are working full time while studying part time. I think studying 5 hours a week is sufficient for any CGA course. But keep in mind that taking so many courses through CGA is expensive. In addition to the course fees, you have to pay an annual membership fee even if you are not designated yet. Right now it's almost $900/year. If I were you, I'd explore other ways to obtain more credits to transfer. Since a degree is an exit requirement, you might as well go to university (I know...it makes your college years like a waste of time).
Deal Addict
Nov 22, 2004
1467 posts
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+1 to what BananaHunter said...and if you do consider the degree option, you could potentially look into CMA, which (I think) is about as expensive as CGA but takes less time to complete (~3 years including the prerequisite Accelerated Program), because instead of taking individual courses, you're in preset program. CGA does offer more flexibility though since you take 1~2 courses at a time.
[OP]
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Jul 2, 2012
527 posts
11 upvotes
BananaHunter wrote: I personally don't find the CGA material to be hard. CGA is quite lazy and if you study their past exams, you really shouldn't fail their courses. I strongly believe anyone can do it if they simply try.

I don't think there's a "profile" for being a CGA. CGAs are a diverse group of people. The hardest part of the CGA program is usually not the coursework, but gaining the right experience level. It takes a bit of luck. For example, if you currently have an entry level job, and if there's no chance for promotion, you need to jump ship. If you're fresh out of school and looking for full time work, that's even harder. Your first accounting job is usually the hardest to land.

The CGA program is designed so that you are working full time while studying part time. I think studying 5 hours a week is sufficient for any CGA course. But keep in mind that taking so many courses through CGA is expensive. In addition to the course fees, you have to pay an annual membership fee even if you are not designated yet. Right now it's almost $900/year. If I were you, I'd explore other ways to obtain more credits to transfer. Since a degree is an exit requirement, you might as well go to university (I know...it makes your college years like a waste of time).
Hey thanks for the reply. And yes I just graduated and have sent out 10 resumes and only one responded :( ..I have to give it more time I guess, Im also trying to find ways to network. I always thought there was a profile, when I think of CGA I think "super smart" even though I am smart I am not a genius, if that makes sense.

Anyways I cant go to University because my GPA is 2.8 :( and I could redo a couple of college classes but I think I am done with going back to my college, I want to move on!!! If I could go to University I definitely would!!!! The money isnt an issue when it comes to CGA, as long as I am working..I can save up each year for my education costs.

Thanks for you input!! I plan on taking 1 course per semester (4 a year) and I calculated that I need to take 16 courses...so the math is it will take me about 4 years..which is ok even though some people finish it in 2.5-3.

I have been looking at the CGA past exams, and I noticed that a lot of what I had trouble with in College is in these exams LOL ie. HFT investments, hedging(we didnt learn that) call and put options, convertible bonds...LOL Investments is not my strong point

You say it isnt hard!!! So I guess that depends on the person...do they have really good learning materials??? I learn better in class, but I can also learn in other ways too! I remember sometimes I would miss a week of class (Big Mistake in College) and I would literally self teach myself all of the material and score 70% on the test. So I dont think I should have too much of a problem.

Again thanks for your input!!!
[OP]
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Jul 2, 2012
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Clueless Fox wrote: +1 to what BananaHunter said...and if you do consider the degree option, you could potentially look into CMA, which (I think) is about as expensive as CGA but takes less time to complete (~3 years including the prerequisite Accelerated Program), because instead of taking individual courses, you're in preset program. CGA does offer more flexibility though since you take 1~2 courses at a time.
Hey! I actually thought of CMA, but the one that stood out was CGA. I hated my management accounting courses...I just worked at an industry where they used a lot of Management accounting and the Controller of the company was a CMA. I have a love hate relationship with cost accounting, I like it but I dont think I am the type of person to analyze financial records, budget and make major decisions. Although I would love to in the future become an accounting manager or the "head" accountant if that makes any sense. Thanks for your reply
Newbie
May 1, 2012
94 posts
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MARKHAM
krissypoo27 wrote: Hey thanks for the reply. And yes I just graduated and have sent out 10 resumes and only one responded :( ..I have to give it more time I guess, Im also trying to find ways to network. I always thought there was a profile, when I think of CGA I think "super smart" even though I am smart I am not a genius, if that makes sense.

Anyways I cant go to University because my GPA is 2.8 :( and I could redo a couple of college classes but I think I am done with going back to my college, I want to move on!!! If I could go to University I definitely would!!!! The money isnt an issue when it comes to CGA, as long as I am working..I can save up each year for my education costs.

Thanks for you input!! I plan on taking 1 course per semester (4 a year) and I calculated that I need to take 16 courses...so the math is it will take me about 4 years..which is ok even though some people finish it in 2.5-3.

I have been looking at the CGA past exams, and I noticed that a lot of what I had trouble with in College is in these exams LOL ie. HFT investments, hedging(we didnt learn that) call and put options, convertible bonds...LOL Investments is not my strong point

You say it isnt hard!!! So I guess that depends on the person...do they have really good learning materials??? I learn better in class, but I can also learn in other ways too! I remember sometimes I would miss a week of class (Big Mistake in College) and I would literally self teach myself all of the material and score 70% on the test. So I dont think I should have too much of a problem.

Again thanks for your input!!!
You will need to go to university eventually anyways, as CGA requires you to have a degree as an exit requirement. It is better to just go to university, complete the required courses and then transfer it to CGA. If you take the courses through CGA and THEN go back to university to complete a random degree, the cost + time to finally get the designation here is enormous I would think. (4 years CGA courses + 4 year degree?)

Have you tried calling the universities to see what your options are at possibly transferring / enrolling there as a mature student maybe?
[OP]
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Jul 2, 2012
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firedragon14 wrote: You will need to go to university eventually anyways, as CGA requires you to have a degree as an exit requirement. It is better to just go to university, complete the required courses and then transfer it to CGA. If you take the courses through CGA and THEN go back to university to complete a random degree, the cost + time to finally get the designation here is enormous I would think. (4 years CGA courses + 4 year degree?)

Have you tried calling the universities to see what your options are at possibly transferring / enrolling there as a mature student maybe?
What do you mean? I never read this in the website, or even when the sponsor came to speak with us at my College. I have to get a degree to get the CGA? I thought it was just transfer credits, take the 4 levels, gain work experience for 2 years and than take the test afterwards.

Are we talking about Ontario CGA? Also I would have to talk to Laurantian but as far as I know you need a high GPA to get in there, but I will definitely talk to them.
[OP]
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Jul 2, 2012
527 posts
11 upvotes
firedragon14 wrote: You will need to go to university eventually anyways, as CGA requires you to have a degree as an exit requirement. It is better to just go to university, complete the required courses and then transfer it to CGA. If you take the courses through CGA and THEN go back to university to complete a random degree, the cost + time to finally get the designation here is enormous I would think. (4 years CGA courses + 4 year degree?)

Have you tried calling the universities to see what your options are at possibly transferring / enrolling there as a mature student maybe?
Also going to University to complete the required courses doesnt satisfy their degree element does it???? Or is it the same thing.. AHH Im confused.
[OP]
Sr. Member
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Jul 2, 2012
527 posts
11 upvotes
firedragon14 wrote: You will need to go to university eventually anyways, as CGA requires you to have a degree as an exit requirement. It is better to just go to university, complete the required courses and then transfer it to CGA. If you take the courses through CGA and THEN go back to university to complete a random degree, the cost + time to finally get the designation here is enormous I would think. (4 years CGA courses + 4 year degree?)

Have you tried calling the universities to see what your options are at possibly transferring / enrolling there as a mature student maybe?
So I am realizing now that my College diploma is pretty much useless when it comes to becoming a CGA. I have looked at the University website and I could have taken the 4 year HB Comm program which probably would have landed me into level 3 of the CGA courses. So now my only option is to basically either take the 4 year program (more schooling) and more OSAP money to get the CGA, OR get into CGA and while Im in level 3 take the 2 year online program at Laurantian. Which will take 6 years!!! Never realized all of this but thanks for making me see. I have a big decision on my hands, I shoulda just went to University in the first place...talk about lack of information ... its too late now!!

Thanks all
Deal Addict
Mar 24, 2009
2085 posts
79 upvotes
Toronto
Not trying to be a downer, but I think someone should set you on the right path. You aren't smart.

Compared to an average designated accountant, the average college student is way below par. Scoring 70% after missing only a week of college class is also below par if you studied.

My point is that you should get rid of your attitude and work harder rather than just using excuses like "i don't want to work crazy hard like those overachievers...blah blah blah." Wake up - among accounting students, you are an UNDERACHIEVER, not "somewhere between."

Either work hard in school to make up for lack of school smarts or do something else (trades, etc).

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