acca qualification

List of Qualifications ACCA Provides

Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) is the global professional accounting body offering a wide range of qualifications. ACCA has been constantly updating itself and introducing industry-relevant qualifications which certainly adds milestones in the career of accounting and finance aspirants and professionals irrespective of their levels.

Here is the list of qualifications that ACCA offers:

1. ACCA qualification

The ACCA qualification is the main qualification that ACCA provides. It is one of the most sought-after qualifications in the UK and all over the world which provides the most up-to-date skills you need to become a finance and accounting professional. The qualification has its presence in over 180 countries and the demand for ACCAs only seems to be growing in the corporate world.

Entry requirement:   10 +2/ A levels or equivalent in any field.

Duration:  3-4 years on average.

Achieving the qualification:

Pass 13 papers and Practical Experience Requirement (PER) of 3 years. However, you make get exemptions based on the prior acca qualification.

The qualification is divided into 3 levels:

Applied Knowledge Level: 3 papers

Applied Skills Level: 6 papers

Strategic Professional Level: 4 papers

After completion of the applied skills level, students are eligible for the “Ethics & Professional Skills Module (EPSM)”. This module prepares the student for a professional level and also provides the student with an advanced diploma certification.

2. Foundation Level qualifications:

The Foundation-level consists of the following seven acca qualifications:

  1. ACCA Diploma in Financial and Management Accounting.
  2. ACCA Diploma in Financial and Management Accounting.
  3. ACCA Diploma in Accounting and Business.
  4. ACCA Certificate in Audit.
  5. ACCA Certificate in Taxation.
  6. ACCA Certificate in Financial Management.

Certified Accounting Technician (CAT) Qualification.

Also, you can get enrolled in Knowledge level once you complete the foundation level papers and continue the ACCA qualification normally.

After completion of the knowledge level, you can also get the diploma certificate by completing the online, interactive module – “Foundations in Professionalism”.

3.Certified Accounting Technician (CAT) Qualification

This is a technician-level  offered by ACCA qualification.

Achieving the qualification:

  • Complete the foundations level qualification & “Foundations on Professionalism” module.
  • Complete two additional specialist exams.

One year’s relevant practical experience in the accounting field.

 4. Oxford Brookes BSc Degree

ACCA students can use the knowledge and skills from their professional qualifications to gain a university bachelor’s degree from Oxford Brookes University.

Entry Requirement:

  • Registered ACCA Student and have opted-in to the BSc Degree Scheme.
  • Completed Applied Skills level.

Achieving the qualification:

  • Complete Applied Skills Level,
  • Pass the Oxford Brookes University Research & Analysis Project
  • Complete ACCA Ethics and Professional Skills Module (EPSM)

Duration:

Degree must be completed within 10 years of the earliest date of your first examination pass or the date of first ACCA exemption being granted, otherwise, the eligibility is withdrawn.

 5. University of London MSc in Professional Accountancy

The MSc in Professional Accountancy is the integrated master’s programme with ACCA at the professional level. The design of this master’s degree has been customized with pathways for ACCA students, affiliates, and members, providing them with a unique opportunity for career advancement.

Duration:

  • Complete the MSc in under a year or take longer( up to max. 5 years) if that’s more convenient.
  • Each module and the Strategic Financial Project are studied over a 22-week session, requiring an average of 12 hours of study per week.

Achieving the ACCA qualification:

  • PGCert: you must be a current ACCA student with passes in all Applied Knowledge and Applied Skills papers.
  • Pathway 1:you must be a current ACCA student with passes in all nine Applied Knowledge and Applied Skills papers and the two Strategic Professional Essentials (SBL and SBR).
  • Pathway 2:you must be a current ACCA Member or Affiliate, with passes in all nine Applied Knowledge and Applied Skills papers, the two Strategic Professional Essentials (SBL and SBR), and two Strategic Professional options from AFM, APM, ATX, and AAA.

In addition to ACCA essential professional papers, you need to study additional few modules to complete the MSc alongside ACCA qualification.

6. Oxford Brookes Global MBA

The Oxford Brookes Global MBA is a flexible MBA programme where you can choose to study online where you can choose to study your MBA online or during teaching weeks on campus or a mixture of both, all this without compromising on the quality.

Entry requirement:

  • Be an ACCA member (ACCA students and affiliates are not eligible)
  • Have a minimum of three years’ professional/managerial work experience.

Duration: 2.5 years (approx.)

 7. Certificate in Digital Innovation for Finance (CertDIF)

The ACCA Certificate in Digital Innovation for Finance is aimed at accountancy, finance, business and advisory professionals who wish to develop their knowledge, skills and awareness of Innovations in digital technology and its impact on the finance professional. It focuses on merging technologies, future disruptors and digital transformation.

Entry requirement: No prior knowledge is required.

Duration: 20 hours

8. Certificate in International Financial Reporting (CertIFR)

It is designed for professional accountants and auditors qualified in their national accounting standards who need to update their skills to meet the challenges involved in adopting and implementing IFRS in their workplace. An educational or vocational background in financial reporting is recommended before starting the Cert IFR. This course also benefits ACCA members who gained their qualifications before the introduction of IFRS. For ACCA members whose qualifications are already based on IFRS, the Cert IFR is an opportunity to update their IFRS knowledge for recent IASB publications.

Achieving the certification:

Completion of one online multiple-choice assessment.

Eligibility: No prior knowledge required, however, an educational or vocational background in financial reporting is recommended before starting the Cert IFR

Duration: Average of 20 hours.

9. Diploma in International Financial Reporting. (DipIFR)

The course is designed to develop your knowledge and understanding of International Financial Reporting Standards. It attempts to explain the IASB’s Conceptual Framework for Financial Reporting and make candidates able to apply relevant financial reporting standards, disclosures and prepare group financial statements.

Eligibility:

Professional accountants and auditors working in practice and industry and qualified in national accounting standards are eligible to take the acca qualification.

Practitioners not yet qualified, but who can verify at least one of the following are also eligible:

  • Membership of an Accountancy Professional body
  • A relevant degree qualifying 4 exemptions (Applied knowledge level and Law paper) plus two years of relevant work experience.
  • Three years of relevant work experience

 10. ACCA Affiliate: ACCA Diploma in Financial Management, DipFM (or Certified Diploma in  Accounting & Finance)

This certification has been designed to develop knowledge and understanding of the way organizations finance their operations, planning and controlling cash, optimizing the use of working capital, and allocating resources to capital expenditure projects.

Entry requirement:

The minimum entry requirement for the DipFM is a recognized degree, higher national certificate/diploma, or a non-accounting professional qualification (for example a law qualification).

If you do not hold any of these qualifications, you may be admitted to the program based on your work experience. In such a situation you would need:

  • An employer’s reference stating that the DipFM would be relevant to your work; or
  • If you are self-employed, a reference from an accountant, solicitor or bank manager

Achieving the certification:

Completion of exam and project-based Assessment Modules.

Duration: There is no time limit to completing the Diploma.

11. Certificate in International Auditing (CertIA)

The certification is designed for professional accountants and auditors working in an audit or seeking to make a move into audit practice. It benefits ACCA members who qualified before the clarified ISAs were introduced on for members who wish to ensure that their audit knowledge is up to date with all the relevant IAASB publications.

Eligibility: No prior knowledge required, however, an educational or vocational background in auditing is recommended before commencing CertIA.

Achieving the qualification: Completion of an online multiple-choice assessment

Duration: Average of 25 hours.

12. Certificate in International Public Sector

The qualification is designed for professional accountants and auditors qualified in national accounting standards or International Financial Reporting Standards.

The module is written as an introduction to IPSAS, on the assumption that the reader knows a reasonable or has sufficient experience of accounting and financial reporting.

Eligibility:No prior knowledge required, however, an educational or vocational background in accounting and financial reporting is recommended.

Achieving the qualification:

Completion of an online multiple-choice assessment.

Duration: Average of 20 hours.

13. Certificate in Public Financial Management (Cert PFM)

It has been prepared for new entrants to the public sector, staff with practical experience but without formal professional qualifications or professional accountants moving into the public sector from the corporate sector or professional practice.

Eligibility: No prior knowledge required, however, an educational or vocational background in the relevant finance field is recommended.

Achieving the qualification:

Completion of an online multiple-choice assessment.

Duration: Average of 40 hours.

14. Certificate in Business valuations

The course is designed to help you understand how to apply the principles of business valuation. Primarily the course is aimed at people who already have a professional accountancy qualification and will to develop their skills in Business Valuations. No prior knowledge is required, however, an educational or vocational background in the relevant finance field is recommended. The certification can be gained after the successful completion of an online multiple-choice assessment.

15. Advanced Diploma in Finance and Business (Russian)

It is equivalent to the ACCA Advanced Diploma in Accounting and Business.  It provides an opportunity for native-speaking students based in 12 countries to develop a broad financial and practical skillset, achieving an internationally recognized accountancy qualification benchmarked at a Bachelor’s degree.

Eligibility:

Students must hold qualifications that would exempt them from the Applied Knowledge exams of the ACCA Qualification to be accepted onto this qualification.

Achieving the qualification:

Complete Up to 6 papers, depending on exemptions plus Professional Ethics Module.

Duration: 18 months on average.

Foundations in Professionalism

What have we been up to in this lockdown?

Have you been feeling like you haven’t been unproductive? Well, here is a certificate from ACCA that you could obtain, FREE of cost.

If you don’t already know, completion of foundations exams (F1, F2 and F3) is equivalent to Diploma in Accounting and Business. That is to say, you can get your diploma certificate after FIA by completing a short module called Foundations in Professionalism (FiP).

The good news is you can also finish the FiP before completing all FIA level exams and you will still be awarded the FiP certificate after you clear those exams later.

Your certificate will look like this:

What exactly is FiP?

FiP is an online and interactive module that helps to develop your understanding of what it means to act professionally and ethically as a professional.

It also gives a good taste of the Ethics and Professional Skills module, which is compulsory to get ACCA membership.

It is composed of self-study texts followed by self –review tests.

There is no time limit, you can complete it in smaller chunks in multiple sittings.

Case study is interactive, i.e. like a game. The answer you chose leads to the next step with further details and so on. And if the conclusion is wrong, it will redirect you to step 1 of the question, until you get the answer right.

Finally, you will be awarded the FiP certificate when you score 50% or more in the final test. You can reattempt the test as many times as it takes to pass.

The module is structured as follows:

  • Introduction
  • Professionalism
  • Law and regulation
  • Professional ethics
  • Personal effectiveness at work
  • Personal values
  • Case Study
  • Objective test

Here’s how to access the module:

  1. Log in to myacca.
  2. Click on the “My qualification” tab.
  3. Scroll down the page. In the “Ethics” section, you will find a link to the Foundations in Professionalism module.

Key tip: Copy the text from every chapter onto a word file for reference because you can’t access the module during the final exam but you will be allowed to refer to other resources on and off the web. You may also want to copy your answers of the final exam for you may have to retake the test.

Check your eligibility and learn more about the course HERE: Foundations in Professionalism.

How to choose the best ACCA college in Nepal?

Many of us battle to pick a correct career path after 10+2. This is generally because until high school we don’t generally think about our career/interests and even if we did, with so many choices available we get unsure about ourselves. Once the high school studies are over, we start planning on what we want to do with our career. This is a big life decision as the college degree helps decide what we do in our life. Thus, it is important to consider the qualification that is relevant, well-recognized globally and in high demand which empowers you with 21st-century skills.

One of the worthy choices accessible is to become a Professional Accountant with ACCA (The world’s most forward-looking professional accounting bodies in the world).

The ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is a global professional body providing profoundly respected and valued international qualification in accountancy, finance and business. ACCA is the largest and fastest-growing international accountancy body, with over 486,000 students and 200,000 members in 179 countries. The qualification is so much lucrative because the skill sets it offers through the highly relevant and updated syllabus is in growing global demand which equally applies to Nepal. In other words, there is a huge scope of ACCA in Nepal and abroad.

Now if you have chosen or thought of pursuing ACCA as a career, you will inherently have confusion on choosing the right college.

So how do you choose the ideal college for you with many options available?

Here is the important list of things you should consider as your criteria for choosing the ACCA college in Nepal to complete your professional studies and shape a beautiful career in accountancy and finance.

Is the College in Nepal approved by relevant Authorities?

The first and foremost criteria to consider is whether the College has been approved by relevant authorities in Nepal. Prior, the Ministry of Education used to grant such approval but now, it comes under the authority of the provincial government to grant these approvals. This approval guarantees you that the college is genuine and can be relied upon since there have been cases in the past where colleges have been shut down by authorities leaving hundreds of students stranded. This approval also assures you that the college has been registered and paying applicable taxes to the government. You can demand the respective college for the approval letter just for your solace. Here is a snapshot of how the approval looks like:

Is the College a registered tuition provider approved by ACCA for Nepal?

The second most criteria to consider is whether the college is a registered tuition provider approved by ACCA. Various institutes have been running ACCA courses in Nepal without legitimate approval from ACCA. They have been operating merely without proper physical infrastructure and reasonable assurance about the quality of education. The list of colleges approved by ACCA can be found on the ACCA website

Physical Infrastructure

The physical infrastructure of a college plays a pivotal role in the learning and development process. The colleges need to have a better physical infrastructure with advanced libraries, parking areas, computer lab, digitally equipped classrooms to provide a state-of-art learning environment. You must look at the classroom learning environment as this is where you will spend most of the time at the college. Make sure the learning environment is good and common spaces and study areas are adequate. The best way to find out is to take a college tour during your visit and reach out to college officials with any follow-up questions.

Pass rates

Pass rates are one of the most important indicators of how good an ACCA College and high pass rate assure the good quality of education. You may make an enquiry about previous pass rates for different ACCA papers with the college along with official evidence substantiating the same. Further, you may compare the pass rates of the college with Global pass rates from the official website of ACCA.
Alternatively, the number of Nepal rank holders and World Rank Holders produced by different colleges for various ACCA papers can be looked at to get an idea about the quality of learning. It is preferable to look at the current statistics since the more recent the rank holders are produced, the more relevant it is to identify the best college to study ACCA.
If the college fails to provide a clear representation of ‘global vs college’ pass rates or have the pass rates below the global pass rate, you should seriously reconsider the college

Management Team

The role of management starts from the first time you enter the college, i.e. when you step in to know more about the course or for admission procedures. A good management team gives you correct and proper information right from the initial stage. Do not believe in whatever you have been told, so it is best to equip yourself with enough and right information. More information about the course can be accessed here.
Apart from the information given to you, research about the Management Team of the college and enquire about the focal point of contact and if they are qualified enough to give you a proper guidance about the course and support. In a professional course, the Management Team plays an important role in guidance about how to progress with your studies and the career.

The College Faculty Team

Does the college have highly qualified Tutors, or do the Tutors seem to be amateurs?
To make sure you are getting the best possible education, you need to study with highly educated teachers that not only have experience teaching but also real-world skills. Please check the profile and teaching experience of the teachers. Sometimes it is best to get suggestions from a student who is already studying at a particular college. Also, enquire about the depth of the team and if the specialist teachers are teaching a particular paper. Avoid colleges where a number of subjects are taught by some individuals without actually being a specialist.

Learning environment and support

Learning environment, be it infrastructure wise or support from the Management and the team of Faculties plays an important role in the overall progress of an ACCA student. As said earlier, see it for yourself if the college has adequate infrastructure like a library, study areas, availability of tutors outside the classrooms, digital support and sound space to give students a college-like experience rather than an institute. Empirically speaking, there is a direct relationship between college infrastructure and educational performance. Therefore, you should seriously consider the support and learning environment. Get advice from seniors on support from the management and tutors on overall progression.

Fee structure and payment options

Unless you already have a large savings fund, the cost is probably an important metric for you. Some prospective students may look at pricier college, but for others, it’s important to choose a qualitative yet affordable college. It’s very important that you enquire about the total cost of the course and understand it very well. There are two components to the total cost of the course, one payment to the college as Course Fees and other the payment to ACCA as exam fees, registration costs, subscription fees etc.
You must not be fooled by colleges claiming our Fees are the lowest as sometimes they do not clearly explain to you the cost-related. They often hide the subscription fees paid to ACCA which brings down the total cost of the course by almost Rs 50,000. Also, check the payment options available, bulk fees at once (aka package-based payment) will tie you down to the same college if you are not satisfied with their quality of teaching. ACCA is a very flexible course, it is advisable to pay on instalments (paper-based payment) for the papers you are going to study so just in case if you are not satisfied you can move to a different institution without any hassle.

Learning Resources

Majority of the learning resources for an ACCA course is accessible from its official website. Many colleges provide you with just ‘Textbook and Revision Kit (Question bank) as the learning resource, which is often insufficient to pass your ACCA exams. You should enquire with the college the range of learning resources they provide to student, apart from Text-Book and Revision Kit. You should choose the college provide students with purchased exam-style simulation tests, important slides, notes and access to books of various publications without any additional charge. The more access to learning resources and learning support it is easier for you to pass your exams.

Employability and placements

If you worry about finding a job when you finish your ACCA or consider getting work experience as the course demands, i.e. 3 years of relevant work experience to qualify as a professional accountant you should consider the college you choose for your studies. A good college is where you are exposed to a great network of employers and professionals (Friends, Seniors or Tutors). You should consider the choices you have and choose the best among them to get support and relevant experience as early in your career.

Some of the colleges in Nepal have a great pool of employers connected as partners and have signed MOUs with. These colleges have excellent job placement programs, assisting their students in making the transition from student to employee, and helping them find jobs after graduation. They go as far as providing campus placement and employability skills programs. These are the colleges you must choose because they do not only limit to giving quality education but also give you the best chance of progressing with your career

Apart from these, you could also enquire about financial aid, reputation, extra-curricular activities and location. You can check the college websites and other social media handles for various information. However, the above-mentioned factors are vital and you should carefully enquire, visit and compare them before you make your final college decision.

ACCA Journey with SEED

My ACCA Journey with SEED | ACCA in Nepal

I had just completed my Foundations module of ACCA when the buzz of a new ACCA College in Nepal was everywhere over the internet and among friends, which assembled a dynamic team of acclaimed tutors and management. So I joined and started my ACCA journey with SEED, the promising learning provider,  and have recently completed my skills level from here.

I find that Seed has a healthy environment where students can flourish. The vibe has only gotten better with more people. Everyone is friendly and celebratory at all times. A culture has formed to help each other out, without unhealthy competition. The library is my favorite space for group study and conversations. Seed has truly given a close-to-university experience that we students of professional courses rarely get to have. We have fun. It especially feels like I’m in college again when they sit us down for surprise mock tests.

The tutors have been doing a phenomenal job and been nothing but uplifting. It amazes me how gracefully they disseminate their knowledge from their years of experience to us. I specifically learned how interesting and simplified they’ve made lectures when I was absent for a few days and had to cover some topics. I grasp better hold of the subject matter by listening; so I love it when they induce class discussions. It is admirable how they focus first on understanding as a key to pass exams. Besides, the tutors always commend me on having done a good job, no matter how small or big. Outside the teaching hours too, they have acted as constructive critiques and career coaches time and again, in showing me opportunities for growth as well as letting me know of my weaknesses and ways to improve. 

I’ve experienced first-hand that Seed management cares. They take regular reviews and immediately act upon suggestions. They innovate on new ways to help us students; I have benefitted a great deal from advanced Excel training and employability skills sessions. 
I have the advantage of living nearby the college, so I would spend a lot of time at the Seed library, or in empty classrooms, or on the rooftop tables with big fancy umbrellas. That’s where I get to talk to everyone and that’s how I get acquainted with such interesting and inspiring people. I found my clan of like-minded ambitious peers. It has played a vital role in shaping my persona.

This was also where I learned that my opinion matters too, juniors would look up to me. I became cautious of the impression they make of me to be taken seriously at least, even if I couldn’t be exemplary. That realization was a leap towards behaving professionally that will be expected of us as qualified ACCAs. And then I was chosen to host the first episode of the Seed show. Anant Sir had found a good use for my talkative nature and it was a good boost for my confidence. 

I can say I’ve gained more from Seed than I bargained for. Not only has SEED been grooming me to be a competent accountant, but also maturity about life is happening here. I’m especially thankful for Seed playing its part in the series of coincidences that led me to this composed place I am in today, opening doors for so much there is to achieve further. I look forward to the classes to resume and to grow with SEED.

Asmita Thapa
ACCA Finalist at Seed Financial Academy

5 Myths that stop you from Pursuing ACCA

So, you came across an exciting professional degree- ACCA. You sat in front of your laptop and did some research, talked with people who are pursuing or have already passed it. Their response is positive. With its global recognition, it’s flexibility, the interesting syllabus and diverse career opportunities, this qualification just seems to fit your career objectives.

You think of pursuing it, but meanwhile, you start hearing about widespread myths and misconceptions about the ACCA qualification from different people and sources. You can’t escape it and now having second thoughts on whether you should pursue ACCA or not. We are inherently more susceptible to negative reviews than positive.
 
So, are these talks and fallacies that discourage you to finally land on your dream qualification and career real? Well, let’s find out.

Now that I have cleared all of my skills level exams, shortly worked in an audit-firm and contracted for internship in the capital market field, I can look back to say, ‘Yes, I made the right choice’. ACCA is in alignment with my career goals, opened the doors for endless possibilities in the broad arena of accounting, auditing, finance, and whatnot.
Based on my experience and knowledge, I have attempted to bust 5 of those myths that stop students from pursuing ACCA with actual reality to make it clear for you to decide.

MYTH #1
Since its UK-based degree, I will struggle to find Job in Nepal after ACCA. 
Or, I will have to settle or move abroad after completion.

REALITY: There is a huge scope of ACCA in Nepal. Many ACCA affiliates and members are working as mid and top-level managers with an attractive profile and salary in the big reputed organizations including the public service or government sector. The world becoming increasingly global makes ACCA even more lucrative qualification to pursue and the scope for ACCAs only seem to be going up. The fact that ACCA is UK-based Chartered Accountancy only opens the opportunities in abroad without hampering the scope and opportunity here in Nepal.

MYTH #2
ACCA is expensive. 

REALITY: Fees of studying ACCA in Nepal ranges anywhere between 4-6 lakhs which is cheaper than other qualification like BBA and almost equal to other Chartered Accountancy qualification. On top of that, some colleges will even provide you with a scholarship. Honestly, the tuition fee is very affordable for one of the leading financial courses around the world. It’s more like an investment than an expense. Once you are qualified as ACCA, the payback of the amount one spends on pursing it is in around 1 year and the career growth is infinite. In short, it’s a worthy investment. 

Myth#3
ACCA is an extremely tough course and I cannot pass it. 
Or, I need to study 14-16 hours daily to pass it.

REALITY: If you plan everything from the beginning, give few hours daily and use the resources wisely, it’s not that difficult at all. However, you cannot expect to pass by studying a night or a week before the exam. It becomes tough because people work hard in the wrong direction and are less aware of all the study resources, exam-style and examiner’s expectations. Small continuous effort and a good approach are all it takes.

Myth #4 
ACCA is all about numbers. The profession is boring with no social life and friends

REALITY: This is not true. ACCA is a lot more than just numbers viz; analysis, client relationship, decision-making, implementing various strategic decisions, teamwork, presentations, going to various organizations for audit etc.
ACCA is anything but boring. The job roles are self-actualizing and since you have a lot of career options to choose from once you qualify, you can dive in the field that excites you. Furthermore, you can always have a good balance of personal and professional life. Also, with the increased network, you will never run short of friends. 

Myth #5
I need management/commerce high-school degree to pursue ACCA.
Or, I am a Science or student from another stream, so, it is not for me.

REALITY: There is no specific high school degree requirement to pursue ACCA. You can be from management, science or any other stream and still pursue it.
Since the course structure starts from the foundation level, you will learn from the very basics ,therefore, no matter which stream you chose in +2, you will not face any difficulty at all.

Apart from these, some might say there are no good colleges. That’s again not true. There are some of the best ACCA colleges in Nepal with astonishing achievements like world rank 1st.

These myths are floating around on unreasonable grounds and make students reluctant to apply and land on their dream qualification. Don’t let these myths stop you from achieving your dream.

Ujjwal Ghimire

How Easy Is Passing Acca Exams – An Honest Review

How Easy Is Passing ACCA Exams? – An Honest Review

How Easy Is Passing ACCA Exams? – An Honest Review

“In order to fail, you will have to lose 50 marks. Do you realize how hard it is to make mistakes worth 50 marks?” – Ujjaal Shiwakoti Sir, Faculty for PM paper at Seed Financial Academy

Like every other exam, the ACCA exam is time-bound, and you will be tested on unseen questions from a fixed syllabus. So I think it is safe to say that passing ACCA exams is just as easy as any other exam you’ve given so far, entirely depending upon your level of preparation and understanding.  Maybe, it depends even on the exam questions, but REMEMBER: ACCA WANTS ITS STUDENTS TO PASS, and has done everything possible on its end to ensure that the students do pass.

ACCA, being UK-based, certainly has a difference in teaching-learning-examining approach than what we have been familiar with up to our +2 level in Nepal. (Those from A-levels know a taste of it already.)

In ACCA, the pass marks are 50.

The Foundation and Skills level exams are computer based, and the Professional level is in the process of being upgraded to CBE too, so one has to know their way around using computers and especially spreadsheets.

Here, rot-learning won’t take you far; deep understanding and analytical ability is absolutely necessary.

There is no question bank from which literally ALL questions are adapted into the finals as in +2, i.e. there are no fixed questions, so NO chance of successful question spotting.

No marks are awarded for lengthy answers that is not exactly the question’s requirement; only the weight of the content matters NOT the volume.

But there are ways one can make the most of ACCA’s examining approach and crack the exams, let’s find out what.

PREPARATION IS THE KEY:

One has to have technical knowledge of the content as well as be prepared to tackle the exam.

For knowledge, the best way is to get yourself ACCA prescribed text-books and exam kits from an Approved Content Provider (Kaplan or BPP), take tuitions from the best tutors in town in Approved Learning Providers such as our Seed Financial Academy, explore the vast pool of resources ACCA has on its website (technical articles, past exam questions, examiner’s reports, prepare to pass guide) or even research on key matters from the internet.

For deeper understanding, one should know the “why” behind every step. One should know what the practical examples could be, and one should be able to link the topics in the same paper or from carried forward knowledge of other papers.

Question practice from past questions and exam kit is A MUST. (I cannot emphasize this enough!)

Follow up closely with the tutor’s pace, don’t leave any topic for last minute cramming. When the exam is one week away, you should be revising and revisiting topics about which you have already learnt in depth.

Practice solving long questions in the constructive response practice area of ACCA website, which is a simulation of actual exam’s answer-sheet screen. You must not solve on paper first then transfer it to the spreadsheet, you must be able to solve using the spreadsheet.

EXAM TECHNIQUE

In the exam, depending on your confidence, plan whether you want to tackle the MCQs first or the constructive response question. Take a moment to plan the structure (of table or workings) before every answer.

Read the requirement of the question TWICE and plan an answer exactly to-the-point.

Poor time management during the exam is the major reason for failing. So practicing long questions under timer and taking the mock tests can help. Don’t get stuck in one question for too long. We have 1.8 minutes per mark. (3hrs/100marks= 3*60/100= 1.8 minutes per mark). Too long is more than 2 minutes for a mark, if you can’t solve it, flag it and move onto another question. Come back to it during review.

NEVER leave any question blank if you have time. Make a format or at least try. You may gain some marks from step marking.

EXPLOIT ACCA’S EXAMINING APPROACH

Every paper of Foundation and Skills module contain entirely or partly of MCQ style questions, with no negative marking. Many of those require direct application of knowledge and thus offer easy marks.

In the constructive response questions, ACCA does step marking, which means you will be awarded marks for correct steps even though your answer is not entirely correct. To identify easy marks, practice using the marking scheme at the end of every answer in kit.

Computer-Based Examinations (CBE) is a boon for the examinee. The answers can be well-structured and well-presented. Calculations become faster and more accurate using spreadsheet formulae. Flagging and navigation tools allow marking doubtful answers and going back to them at one click that makes reviewing answers easier.

EXAM PLANNING

ACCA offers 4 exam sittings in a year. Learning providers provide flexible sessions according to the exam sittings. You can choose to appear one paper in 3 months or two (or three if you dare) in 6 months.

Make sure you choose matching subjects. For example, PM and AA both with low global pass rates, is not a good combination for one sitting. Similarly, FR and FM exams are always on consecutive days, so make sure you are prepared enough that you can revise for FM. Also, ensure you are mentally prepared to handle the stress that may arise due to a bad FR exam, so that you don’t underperform in your FM exam on the next day. 

Booking FR in the morning shift and FM in the evening shift of the next day will buy you some more crucial time to revise.  This is especially useful to job holders and interns, who have little exam leave.

THE BOTTOM LINE IS: Passing ACCA exams is not that difficult if you put dedicated and smart efforts into preparation.

Asmita Thapa, Strategic Professional Level Student at Seed Financial Academy