ACCA vs CIMA – Which is Better?

ACCA vs CIMA – Learn The Difference. Most of us are always looking for salary hikes, don’t look at this article with raised eyebrows, I accept I am one of them but my argument is salary hikes never come in easy. Rings true? Either it is on the successful slogging of your year or a long awaited promotion otherwise however hard you try to plead with your boss; you are always shown the door. Well then let’s talk about career prospects than can surely give a boost to your salary as well as your designation in your office.

ACCA exam and CIMA certification are courses that can enhance your career prospects but before making a hush hush decision, let us understand the key differences between the two so that you can make the right decision to take your ambitions further.

In this article, we will discuss about the following –

  1. ACCA vs CIMA Infographics
  2. What is Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)?
  3. What is Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)?
  4. ACCA vs CIMA Exam Requirements
  5. Why pursue ACCA?
  6. Why pursue CIMA?

ACCA vs CIMA Infographics

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Lets understand the difference between these two streams with the help of this ACCA vs CIMA Infographics.

ACCA vs CIMA infographics

What is ACCA?

The ACCA or the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants is a body that recognizes the qualification of a CA. ACCA is a global body based in Glasgow UK which works in the interest of the public to ensure that the chartered accountants work according to the principles formed by the association and ensures that the regulations set are properly followed. The ACCA offers the certification in chartered accountancy and the exam known as ACCA is most recognized in the commonwealth countries. ACCA provided qualification is recognized in more than 100 countries worldwide, which includes a series of partnerships with local accountancy bodies in many locations.

What is CIMA?

The CIMA, also known as the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) provides a master’s degree in management accountancy and related subjects for accountants working in the industry. The CIMA is a UK based body with membership of accountants in the majority making it the largest accounting body and highly reputed in the world. The CIMA is responsible for the regulation of the activities of its members to ensure that the code set is followed and discipline is maintained by the professionals in meting out their client’s work expectations. The body is forever striving to promote education through new techniques and makes constant efforts to disseminate the new practices by the various means possible to ensure that development is never hindered.

ACCA vs CIMA Exam Requirements

The ACCA offers a total of 16 courses; you need to give 14 papers which are divided in the following format, 9 papers of the Fundamental Level and 5 papers of the Professional Level.

The question papers are divided into three patterns of questions, objective type, longer type and case studies.

The CIMA is divided into four levels and each level aims to train the student towards a complete knowledge of the business and provides practical skills that would give an edge to the candidate in professional world.

There are a total of 12 exams to achieve the CIMA certificate, nine multiple-choice objective tests (three per level), and three case studies (one per level).

A candidate is required to pass all the examination to become an ACCA affiliate and in addition to that they need to have three years working experience in the field to become an active ACCA member. Students are asked to attain three years of professional experience in order to achieve the prestigious CIMA membership.
The ACCA exam is held twice in a year in December and June. Examinations are held twice yearly in May and November.
The candidate has to be a high school pass out to appear for the examination. In case of a higher degree the candidate can request for exemption from papers they have already studied for at the fundamental level. Graduates in any discipline from a recognized university are qualified to do the CIMA course. Exemptions can be given for certain exams in Business Accounting and CIMA Professional Qualification, if the candidate holds a relevant degree or qualification.

Why Pursue ACCA?

ACCA certificate holders are recognized all around the world and its qualification is recognized by employers and appreciated by students who have passed out ACCA as they are known for their quality and excellence, making it easy for employers to rely on their ability and knowledge while hiring them. ACCA has a wider spectrum and is known for its flexibility. It provides a general outlook on all the core accounting skills making you an all-rounder. The program does not require you to choose your area of specialization from the beginning and gives a breather to those who are still tasting the waters. ACCA is a great certification program for those who want to test the options at hand and work in the different industries before they decide to choose their area of specialization.

Why Pursue CIMA?

CIMA is a specialist management accounting qualification, a perfect course for those who are focused about their choice and area of work. CIMA works best for candidates who have a keen interest in the world of business and management. It has a good overlap with business practice, so it’s an excellent starting point for a career in that sphere. The CIMA certificate provides a wide range of career options both in and outside the finance industry. With its greater emphasis on strategic business skills, a CIMA qualification widens your career options, in and outside of finance. CIMA is the only Accountancy body that focuses primarily on business needs.

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