ICSI CSEET 2021 Important Chapters and Topics

What is CSEET?

 “ICSI CSEET is the qualifying entrance test for registration to the CS Executive Programme” conducted by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India. This test is conducted 4 times in a year, mostly in the months of January, May, July & November. It’s a national level examination. The language of the examination is English and the purpose of conducting this exam is to train and certify the candidates who aspire to become Company Secretaries.

Eligibility Criteria

A candidate should check the eligibility criteria before applying for CSEET. For being eligible, the candidate needs to meet the minimum criteria of qualification laid down by the Institute of Company Secretaries of India.

  • A candidate passed / appearing in the Senior Secondary (10+2) Examination or equivalent thereto is eligible to appear in the CSEET.
  • All Graduates/ Post Graduates who were hitherto eligible for registration directly to CS Executive Programme, are also required to pass the CSEET to become eligible for registration to Executive Programme.
  • Candidates of Indian Nationality can only apply for this test and candidates from foreign nationality are not eligible for the same.
  • Candidates below the age of 17 years are also not eligible for appearing in the test.

But there are some exemptions for appearing in CSEET

  • Candidates who have passed CS Foundation Programme are exempted from CSEET without any payment of exemption fee.
  • Candidates who have passed the Final Examination of The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI) and/or The Institute of Cost Accountants of India (ICMAI) are exempted from CSEET 
  • The Institute of Company Secretaries of India has released an official notification dated 23rd June 2021 regarding exemption from clearing CSEET module. It means that certain categories of students are now exempted from appearing in CSEET which also enables them to take direct admission in CS Executive programme.

Eligibility for Exemption

Category A

Graduates having minimum 50% marks in any discipline of any recognized university or any other Institution of India or abroad recognized as equivalent thereto by the council.

Category B

Post Graduates in any discipline of any recognized University or any other Institution in India or abroad recognized as equivalent thereto by the Council.

This exemption notification has been released by the Institute during its various decisions taken vide its 277th meeting held on 19th June 2021.

Conditions for availing Exemption

The students falling in any of the above category can apply for exemption from appearing in CSEET i.e. CS Executive Entrance Test examination, however the student has to pay the requisite fees for availing such exemption.

Applicability of this notification

The above revised admission criteria and exemption notification shall be effective from 20th June 2021.

Format of CSEET Exam

Prior to the notifications released during current FY,  the CSEET was to be conducted including following-

  • Computer based test of 120 minutes consisting of various questions 
  • Viva Voce of 15 mins on Presentation and Communication Skills

But with the fresh notifications released during 2021, the requirement of Viva Voce has been done away with. 

The new break up for computer based CSEET in MCQ pattern of 120 minutes would be as under

Sr. No.SubjectsNo. Of questionsMarks
1.Business Communication3550
2. Legal Aptitude and Logical Reasoning3550
3. Economic and Business Environment3550
4.Current Affairs, Presentation and Communication Skills3550

Passing Criteria

Candidates are required to secure a minimum of 40% marks in each part, i.e., Paper- 1, Paper -2, Paper -3 and Paper -4 separately as the case may be, and 50% marks in aggregate of all parts put together for passing the Test . There will be no negative marking for wrong answers. The minimum CS Executive Entrance Test percentage to be scored is 50%.


Business CommunicationEssentials of Good EnglishCommunicationBusiness Correspondence
Legal Aptitude and Logical ReasoningConstitution of India
Indian Contract Act & Law of Torts
Elements of Company Secretaries Legislation
Elements of Company law
Logical Reasoning
Verbal Reasoning
Non verbal Reasoning
Economic and Business EnvironmentBasics of Demand and Supply
Forms of Market Competition
National Income Accounting and related concepts
Indian Union Budget
Indian Financial Markets
Indian Economy
Indian Economy
Business Environment
Key Government Institutions
Current Affairs and Presentation and Communication SkillsCurrent Affairs of National and International Significance
Presentation skills
Written Communication Skills
Oral Communication Skills

But are we really prepared to crack this exam?

This exam is one of the most important exams for entering into this course of such a prestigious Institute of India. Hence this requires adequate preparation, learning and planning. The students are required to plan the study in such a manner that the goal can be achieved and they should be able to crack this in the 1st attempt itself.

Following methodology is suggested for achieving the passing criteria and cracking the exam

  1. Understanding the CSEET Syllabus
  2. Making a Study Plan
  3. Journals and CSEET Bulleteins released by ICSI
  4. Books
  5. Attending Classes
  6. Giving Mock Tests periodically
  7. Self Practice

Books which can be referred

Considering this exam to be highly competitive and on a national level, every student must prepare to qualify the same. ICSI has not exclusively recommended any of the reference books for preparing the examination and scoring excellent marks subject wise. Although this is not an exhaustive list, students can definitely score good marks by referring to these study books.

For instance

  • For preparing the questions w.r.t Company Law, students can refer books from Taxmann publishers
  • Even they can also find really good Multiple Choice Questions on Company Law from this publisher
  • The conceptual understanding regarding Business Communication can be made from the ICSI study material only
  • For understanding Business and Commercial laws, students can refer books of CS Anoop Jain 
  • For updating the knowledge w.r.t. current affairs, any periodicals, newspapers or journals can serve the purpose

Although students can also refer to some of the previous year question papers for preparing well in the exam and consequently they can also prepare along with the speed and meeting the timeline requirement of clearing the exam.

Paper wise Important Topics and Coverage

PaperTopicImportant Parts to be Covered
Business CommunicationEssentials of Good EnglishEnglish Grammar and its usage-Noun, Pronouns, Verbs, Adjectives, Adverbs, Prepositions, Conjunctions, Interjection, Voice, Articles, Tenses, Prefix and Suffix, Punctuations etc.Enriching Vocabulary-Choice of words, Synonyms and Antonyms• Common errors in English• Words with multiple meaning• One word substitution• Words frequently mis-spelt• Homophones• Idioms and phrases• Proverbs• Abbreviations• Para jumbles• Sentence completion• Sentence arrangement• Sentence correction• Foreign words and phrases commonly used• Comprehension of passage and art of Summarizing
CommunicationConcept of Communication, Meaning and Significance ofGood CommunicationBusiness Communication- Principles and ProcessMeans of Communication- Written, Oral, Visual, AudiovisualChoice of Modes of CommunicationCommunication Networks- Vertical, Circuit, Chain, Wheel, StarCommonly used Mediums of Digital Communication- Email,SMS, Voice mail, Multimedia, Teleconferencing, MobilePhone Conversation, Video Conferencing etc.Listening Skills-Types, Purpose, Steps to EffectiveListening, Barriers to Effective Listening and Ways to overcome the BarriersBarriers to Effective Communication and Ways to overcome the Barriers
Business CorrespondenceBusiness Letters – Its Essentials, Parts, Types, SalutationsPositive Messages, Negative Messages and PersuasiveMessagesBusiness Reports, Inter and Intra-departmentalCommunication- Office Orders, Office Circulars,Memorandum, Office Notes, Management InformationSystem (MIS)Concept of Web, Internet and E-correspondenceIntranet- Benefit and PurposeEmail – Features, Procedure to Write a Formal Email, EmailEtiquettesEssential Elements of Email- Subject line, Formal Greeting,Target Audience (Reader), Clarity and Conciseness, FormalClosing, Proof reading, FeedbackAdvantages and Disadvantages of Email
Common Business TerminologiesTerms defined under various Laws, Rules and Regulations including Financial and Non-Financial terms and expressions.
Legal Aptitude and Logical ReasoningIndian ConstitutionPreamble• Citizenship• Fundamental Rights and Fundamental Duties• Directive Principles of State Policy• State under Constitution• President and GovernorsCouncil of Ministers and Prime Minister•Lok Sabha, Rajya Sabha and Legislative Assembly,Legislative Council• Supreme Court and High Courts• Landmark Amendment in Constitution• List of subjects-Centre, State and Concurrent
Elements of General Laws (Indian Contract Act and Law of Torts)
Law of ContractLaw of TortsOffer, Acceptance, Consideration andCompetency to Contract.AgreementTypes of Contract: Void, Voidable, UnenforceablePerformance of ContractFrustration of ContractQuasi ContractBreach of Contract and RemediesBasics of TortsSpecific DefensesNuisance and NegligenceStrict, Absolute and Vicarious LiabilityTrespassMalicious Prosecution
Elements of Company Secretaries LegislationMeaning and Nature of Company• Types of Companies• Incorporation of a Company• Types of capital• Board of Directors -(Concept, Appointment andRemoval of Directors)• Board Meetings & Shareholders MeetingsCorporate Social Responsibility• Business Ethics• Ethical Dilemma
Legal ReasoningLegal Fundamentals and Terms• Legal Problems – Reading and understanding a case• Legal Terminology and Maxims• Legal Reasoning-(a) Reasoning by Analogy(b) Inductive and Deductive Reasoning• Questions of Fact (or factual issues)• Questions of Law (or legal issues)• Landmark Judgments of Supreme Court and High Court• Reading Comprehension
Logical ReasoningCalendars• Cause and Effect Reasoning• Clocks• Coding and Decoding• Deriving Conclusion from Passages• Drawing Inference• Number Test• Sequence and Series• Statement and Assumptions
Verbal ReasoningAlphabet Test• Alpha Numeric Sequence Puzzle• Analogy• Assertion and Reason• Blood Relations• Decision Making• Inserting Missing Characters• Logical Sequence Test• Logical Venn Diagram• Number, Ranking and Time Sequence Test• Syllogism• Truth Tellers and Liars
Non-Verbal ReasoningAnalytical Reasoning• Classification• Completion of Incomplete Pattern• Figure Matrix• Grouping of Identical Figures• Mirror Image• Rule Detection• Numeric and Alphabet Series
Economic and Business EnvironmentBasics of Demand and Supply and Forms of Market CompetitionTheory of Demand and SupplyEquilibrium PriceElasticity of Demand and Supply and other relatedconceptsIncrease and Decrease in Demand and Expansionand Contraction of DemandForms of Market Competition- Monopoly, Duopoly,Oligopoly, Perfect Competition and MonopolisticCompetition
National Income Accounting and Related ConceptsMeaning and methods to compute National Income• Key variables of National Income (GNP, GDP, NNP,NDP etc.)
Indian Union BudgetKey terminologies / heads covered under the budgetRevenue and Capital BudgetMajor components of Revenue and Capital BudgetMeaning of Fiscal DeficitComponents/ Variables covered under Fiscal Deficit
Indian Financial MarketsOverview of Indian Financial EcosystemKey facets of Indian financial systemGrowth of Financial InstitutionsPublic and private sector banksIndustrial Finance Corporation of India, SmallIndustries Development Bank of IndiaRegional Rural BanksCooperative BanksNon-Banking Finance CompaniesBasics of Capital Market: Types of Shares andDebenturesFinancial assistance scenario for Small and MediumEnterprises and Start-Ups.
Indian EconomyPrimary (Agriculture and allied activities)Secondary (Manufacturing)Tertiary (Services):Current scenario of agriculture and allied activities in IndiaAgricultural and Industrial Policies of IndiaCurrent scenario of services sector in IndiaBalance of PaymentsComponents of Balance of PaymentsFavorable and Unfavorable Balance of TradeForeign Investments in India- Types and Flows
Entrepreneurship ScenarioGovernment initiatives to foster entrepreneurshipNeed for entrepreneurship in IndiaBottlenecks in entrepreneurial growth
Business EnvironmentOverview of Business EnvironmentFeatures and factors influencing business environmentTypes of environment: Economic environment,Socio-cultural environment, Political environment,Legal and Technological environmentEase of Doing Business Index by World Bank forIndia and Department for Promotion of Industry andInternal Trade (DPIIT) for States
Key Government InstitutionsBasic awareness about various institutions and regulatory bodies in India such as NITI Aayog, MCA, SEBI, RBI, IBBI, CCI, NCLT/NCLAT etc
Current Affairs and Presentation and Communication SkillsCurrent AffairsCurrent affairs of national and internationalimportance relating to:• International bodies (ASEAN, BRICS, SAARC, G-20,BIMSTEC, etc.)• Organizations like, RBI, NABARD, CCI, IBBI, IMF,OECD, ADB, World Bank, etc.• Summits and conferences• Current development in Banking and Finance(digital banking, govt. initiatives, financialinclusion, etc.)• Current development in stock markets• Recent important judgments passed by SupremeCourt and High Courts of India, Tribunals• Current affairs related to CS Institute/Professionand regulatory bodies• Current updates on environment, bio-diversity,climate change and sustainable development• Latest developments in science and technology,IT, Computers and Space science• Business personalities and leaders• Committees and appointments• Art and culture• Books and their authors• Awards and honours• Sports• Current political scenario• Initiatives/ schemes of the government• Language and national symbolsGovernance and ethics• International diplomacy
Listening SkillsQuestions based on audio clips– Monologue– Dialogue• Grammar Test• Vocabulary Test
Written Communication SkillsWriting on a given topic• Correcting a given paragraph• Short Note writing• Essay writing• Precis writing
Oral Communication SkillsCandidates are expected to:– Answer a question– Speak on a given topic– Explain the given term
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