ISACA CRISC Exam: What to Expect

  • ISACA CRISC exam
  • Published by: André Hammer on Feb 01, 2024

Are you thinking about taking the ISACA CRISC exam? If yes, it's important to know what to expect beforehand. The CRISC exam tests your knowledge and skills in IT risk management and information systems control. It covers various topics, including risk identification, assessment, control monitoring, and reporting. Understanding these expectations can help you prepare effectively and improve your chances of success.

This article will give you a detailed overview of what to expect when taking the CRISC exam.

Certification Overview

To be eligible for the CRISC certification exam, candidates need at least three years of work experience in IT risk management and information system control within the past ten years. They should also have experience in the tasks outlined in the CRISC practice areas.

To prepare effectively for the exam, individuals can use online review courses, practice tests, questionnaires, and study groups. It's also helpful to gain hands-on experience and use relevant resources like books and reference materials.

Exam Requirements

To sit for the CRISC certification exam, candidates must meet specific eligibility criteria. As of June 2015, the ISACA requires candidates to have at least 3 years of work experience in three of the five CRISC domains. This experience can be from various professional areas such as IT, business, and management.

Additionally, candidates must meet the 3 E's - Education, Exam, and Experience - to qualify for the exam. This means they must have completed one of the qualifications: a bachelor's or equivalent degree, or at least 120 college semester credit hours in approved areas.

The exam itself consists of 150 multiple choice questions, covering topics like IT risk identification, assessment, evaluation, and risk response and monitoring.

However, the most important part of the exam is ensuring eligibility and acquiring the necessary experience to demonstrate competency and proficiency in the field.

Understanding the Components of the CRISC Exam

Domain 1: IT Risk Identification

There are effective ways to identify and assess IT risks in an organization. These methods include:

  1. Conducting risk assessment workshops.
  2. Interviewing key stakeholders.
  3. Reviewing historical data and industry standards.

These techniques provide a complete picture of potential threats and vulnerabilities. To gauge the impact and likelihood of IT risks on business objectives, one can use risk matrices and data-driven analysis. This helps in prioritizing and quantifying risks, ensuring resources are allocated accordingly.

Identifying risks is crucial for managing them effectively in the IT environment. It forms the basis for creating risk response strategies and control activities. This helps in mitigating IT risks and aligning with the organization's goals.

Developing a thorough understanding of potential threats enables organizations to address emerging risks proactively and bolster their resilience against technological challenges.

Domain 2: IT Risk Assessment

To assess IT risks in an organization, you should consider the potential impact and likelihood of IT events, vulnerabilities, and threats. This should take into account business objectives and requirements.

Identifying and evaluating IT risks in a business environment can be done using different methods. These include risk and control self-assessments, workshops, surveys, and interviews with key stakeholders. It also involves using risk assessment software tools.

The effectiveness of IT risk assessment processes can be measured and improved through performance metrics, feedback from stakeholders, benchmarking against industry standards, and continuous monitoring and reassessment.

Domain 3: Risk Response and Mitigation

Organizations can effectively respond to and mitigate IT risks by implementing a robust risk management framework within Domain 3: Risk Response and Mitigation. This involves:

  • Identifying potential risks
  • Assessing their potential impact
  • Developing comprehensive strategies to address them

By employing techniques such as risk avoidance, risk reduction, risk sharing, or risk acceptance, organizations can proactively mitigate potential IT risks and minimize their impact.

CRISC professionals play a vital role in this process by:

  • Contributing to the development and implementation of risk response and mitigation measures
  • Leveraging their expertise to assess the organization's risk appetite
  • Identifying potential vulnerabilities
  • Recommending suitable risk response strategies

Additionally, CRISC professionals collaborate with cross-functional teams to ensure that risk mitigation measures align with the organization's overall business objectives and regulatory requirements.

Domain 4: Risk and Control Monitoring and Reporting

Effective monitoring and reporting are crucial for managing IT risk and control. They help organisations proactively identify and address potential threats and vulnerabilities.

A comprehensive framework for risk and control monitoring should include regular risk assessments, continuous control testing, and real-time monitoring of security incidents.

To align with industry standards and best practices, organisations can implement frameworks such as COBIT or ISO 27001, conduct regular audits to assess compliance, and stay updated on emerging risk management trends.

By following these practices, organisations can improve their ability to detect and respond to risks promptly, enhancing their overall risk management capabilities.

Exam Requirements for CRISC Certification

Eligibility Criteria

To obtain the CRISC certification, candidates must meet specific eligibility criteria. This includes having at least three years of work experience in IT risk management and information systems control. The experience should cover various CRISC domains, such as IT risk identification, assessment, and response.

Candidates should also have a good understanding of the relationship between information technology and business, cybersecurity, and enterprise risk management. The work experience should be within the ten-year period preceding the application date or five years after passing CRISC.

To ensure eligibility, candidates should review the details on the ISACA website. It's important to verify the relevance of your role and gather proper documentation for the application.

No additional exams are required for CRISC certification, apart from passing the official CRISC exam, which covers a range of IT risk management topics.

Experience Requirements

Candidates taking the ISACA CRISC exam need three years of work experience in at least three of the five exam domains. The experience should be in risk management and information systems control roles. They can show this experience by sharing their job responsibilities, descriptions, or other professional certifications. Educational background, like relevant coursework or degrees, can also be highlighted. This info is reviewed as part of the exam application process.

Preparation Strategies for Obtaining the CRISC Certification

When preparing for the CRISC certification exam, candidates should use study materials like official ISACA review manuals, practice questions, and online forums. These resources provide practical examples and general guidance to enhance understanding of complex concepts covered in the exam.

Effective time management is crucial. Candidates should create a study schedule, set aside dedicated time for exam preparation, and seek support from colleagues or family members to maintain work-life-study balance. Flexibility is important to accommodate unexpected commitments or responsibilities.

Staying organised and disciplined can maximise preparation efforts while keeping a calm and positive mindset.

Key takeaways

The ISACA CRISC exam is a tough test. It evaluates a candidate's knowledge and skills in managing and overseeing information security and risk.

The exam covers different domains like risk identification, assessment, response, and monitoring. It's a four-hour exam with 150 multiple choice questions. To pass, candidates need at least 450 out of 800.

Preparation is key. Candidates should study the official CRISC materials and take practice tests to get familiar with the format and types of questions.

Readynez offers a 3-day CRISC Course and Certification Program, providing you with all the learning and support you need to successfully prepare for the exam and certification. The CRISC course, and all our other ISACA courses, are also included in our unique Unlimited Security Training offer, where you can attend the CRISC and 60+ other Security courses for just €249 per month, the most flexible and affordable way to get your Security Certifications.

Please reach out to us with any questions or if you would like a chat about your opportunity with the CRISC certification and how you best achieve it. 


What are the eligibility requirements to take the ISACA CRISC exam?

To take the ISACA CRISC exam, individuals must have a minimum of three years of cumulative work experience in the domains of risk management and information systems control. This may include experience in risk identification, assessment, and evaluation, as well as response and monitoring activities.

What is the format of the ISACA CRISC exam?

The ISACA CRISC exam consists of multiple-choice questions, with a total of 150 questions. The exam duration is four hours. Example: "The format of the CRISC exam includes multiple-choice questions and a four-hour time limit."

What topics are covered in the ISACA CRISC exam?

The ISACA CRISC exam covers topics such as risk identification, assessment, response, control monitoring, and reporting. It also includes areas like IT governance, information systems control, and assurance.

How long is the ISACA CRISC exam?

The ISACA CRISC exam is a four-hour long exam consisting of 150 multiple-choice questions.

What score is needed to pass the ISACA CRISC exam?

The passing score for the ISACA CRISC exam is 450 on a scale of 200-800. For example, if a candidate obtains a score of 600, they would pass the exam.

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