All you need to know about the Company Secretary course

TheCareerHub, 5th December, 2020



The Company Secretary (CS) is one of the most sought after courses offered by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India (ICSI). This is a common position in most organizations across different industries. Therefore, it is a preferred career option for many students who possess good business acumen.

The course is divided into three stages
  1. Foundation Programme
  2. Executive Programme
  3. Professional Programme
However, there are specific eligibility criteria for each of these stages as below.
  • Students who have completed 10+2 will have to undergo all three stages of the CS programme. It can be pursued by students of all streams except Fine Arts.
  • Graduate-level students get a waiver from the Foundation programme and can directly go for the Executive programme followed by the Professional programme.
  • Executive programmes can be pursued by students of all streams except Fine Arts, and Professional Programme can only be sought after clearing the Executive level.

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Some of the key other aspects of the CS course are as follows:
1. Duration: 

The duration of each programme is 1 year, but it varies based on the time it takes you to clear all the papers spread across modules. There is a timeline for completing Executive and Professional programmes from the date of registration, but it can be extended subject to specific guidelines.

2. Course Design:

Foundation Programme

4 papers

Executive Programme

8 papers divided into two modules

Professional Programme

9 papers divided into three modules

3. Frequency of Examination:

The registration is open throughout the year, but the examination is conducted twice a year, in June and December.

4. Course Fees:

The fees range between INR 4500 to 12500 depending on the programme and the candidate's academic background. The standard cost per module is INR 1200. A late fee is applicable if you miss the due date for registration.

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5. Passing threshold:

To give either of the programmes, a candidate must secure 40% in each paper or 50% in aggregate of all the documents.

6. Subjects Covered:

The course is quite extensive when it comes to the topics taught in this course. Some of them include

  • Business Environment and Law
  • Business Economics
  • Business Management, Ethics and Entrepreneurship
  • Fundamentals of Accounting and Auditing
  • Securities Laws and Capital Markets
  • Financial and Strategic Management
  • Advanced Company Law and Practice
  • Advanced Tax Laws and Practice

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7. Practical Training:

Students enrolled in Executive and Professional Programmes are also expected to undergo multi-year practical training. Earlier it was divided into many bits. But as per the modified structure, you can choose from any of these options –

  • 3 years after registering for the Executive Programme
  • 2 years after passing the Executive Programme
  • 1 year after passing the Professional Programme
8. Complementary Courses: 

Students who pursue CS often combine it with other courses like LLB or Chartered Accountant (C.A) to give them an edge in the job market. The Chartered Accountant course enables students pursuing CS to directly start at the Intermediate level, given the standard curriculums at the foundation level.

9. Career Specialization:

The core responsibility of a Company Secretary is to comply with the statutory filing procedures on a monthly, quarterly and annual basis as per the rules laid by regulatory and government bodies.

However, you can choose to build your speciality once you enter the job market like Corporate Governance, Legal document review and regulatory compliance.

10. Global Demand:

The career prospects for a Company Secretary are very bright, even at an international level. There is a good demand for qualified and experienced CS professionals in countries like the U.S.A, U.K, Canada, Australia, Dubai and South Africa.

Overall, we can conclude that the course is well designed and covers all the critical aspects of the business, which are crucial to a company secretary's success. It is undoubtedly a good career choice for students who have a knack for law and numbers.

Some of the wise steps you can take before enrolling on this demanding course are
  • Get complete information on the services offered by the Institute to member students like the placement.
  • Get a Career counselling done to understand your interests and Aptitude better
  • Contact the alumni students to get a comprehensive review.

Apart from that candidate will have to develop good attention to detail, tact and the art of effective communication to deal with different types of people. The level of success you attain as a fresher also depends on whether or not you have cleared all the programmes in one attempt.

So, if you think you have what it takes to become a Company Secretary, what are you waiting for? Get yourself registered and get cracking.


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