Complete Beginner’s Guide to ACCA Exams

Updated on May 15, 2024
Article byWallstreetmojo Team
Edited byAshish Kumar Srivastav
Reviewed byDheeraj Vaidya, CFA, FRM

ACCA Exam Tips

Take a look at our in-depth details on the program, criteria, exam format, fees, and strategies for ACCA qualification. This comprehensive guide will help you get a grip and a clear understanding of the course. I hope this helps you make an informed decision. The following is the structure of the article:

ACCA Exam syllabus

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Why ACCA is one for Accountants?

  • ACCA as a qualification is growing rapidly across the globe, with opportunities for students and members in more than 170 countries.
  • This certification assures the employers that you are eligible in all aspects of a business.
  • It gives you better job prospects and growth in higher senior management.
  • It is the largest and fastest-growing global accountancy body with more than 320,000 members and students from different parts of the world.
  • Most importantly, it gives you personal satisfaction while acquiring business skills.

Did you know that these criteria of the ACCA certification give you strong reasons to acquire it even if you have to invest a good amount of money and time? But, does it also involve alot of sacrifices?

About ACCA Qualification

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants is a competent and leading global accounting body. This qualification gives you recognition as an employee who can help in all aspects of a business. A Chartered Certified Accountant is protected legally as anyone who claims to be a chartered certified accountant has to be a member of ACCA.

  • Roles: Banker, Consultant, Auditor, Taxation, and Law professionals.
  • Exam Structure: ACCA consists of 14 written English examinations and relevant business experience. Each part has four exams that normally take about 2 to 3 years to clear; however, the maximum time to clear ACCA is ten years.
  • Exam dates: These exams are held twice a year, in June and December.
  • Eligibility: While registering in different countries, the eligibility criteria also changes. The candidate needs to have relevant experience to have this certification.

ACCA Qualification Completion Criteria

The ACCA qualification is divided into two parts.

  • The first part is Fundamentals subdivided into a ‘knowledge module’ and a ‘skill module.’ The knowledge module has three papers, whereas the skills module has six.
  • The second part is the Professionals, divided into the ‘essentials module’ and the ‘options module.’ The essentials module has three papers, and the options have four out of which the candidate has to choose any two.
  • The candidate has to clear all 14 papers. They can choose as many papers as they want to clear in one part; a maximum of 4 papers can appear in one part.
  • Normally, aspirants can cover the course in 2 to 3 years; however, the association gives the candidates ten years to complete the certification.
  • To enroll for this certification, you must have a minimum work experience of three years in relevant fields. ACCA believes in relating the bookish knowledge to practical knowledge and applying it accordingly.

Why Pursue ACCA?  

  1. ACCA gives you better employment prospects and displays your ability in all aspects of the business.
  2. It gives you the designation of a chartered certified accountant, a legal term that only ACCA members can obtain.
  3. ACCA opens your doors to a senior management position as it assures the employers of your efficiency and performance.
  4. It is evident that you have the skills and abilities employers look for in the banking, auditing, consulting, law, and taxation professions.
  5. Besides gaining professional knowledge in finance and accounting, the candidate also acquires an organization’s valuable management and strategic skills.
  6. Along with the theory, this certification also believes in employing them in practical life.
  7. International accounting and auditing standards are the basis of this certification.

ACCA Exam Format and Syllabus

ACCA ExamACCA Part I Exam (fundamental level)ACCA Part II exam (professional level)
Focus onAccountant in Business, Management Accounting, Financial Accounting, Corporate, and Business Law, Performance Management, Taxation, Financial Reporting, Auditing and Assurance, Financial Management.Governance Risk and Ethics, Corporate Reporting, Business Analysis, Advanced Financial Management, Advanced Performance Management, Advanced Taxation, Advance Audit, and Assurance
Exam FormatWritten examWritten exam
Pass percentage50% marks in all subjects50% marks in all subjects
DurationVaries for each paperVaries for each paper

ACCA Part I exam (Fundamental level)

This part has nine papers to attend or appear; it includes commerce basics like accounting and management.

  • ACCA part 1 exam focuses on accounting in total, including business, management, and financial. The focus includes corporate and business laws, performance management, taxation, financial reporting, auditing assurance, and financial management.
  • Unlike other modern online examinations, this exam is a written exam as it tests the candidate’s ability.
  • To clear each part of the examination, the candidate needs 50% marks.
  • The duration of each examination differs.

ACCA Part II exam (Professional level)

To clear this level, you need to appear for five papers, out of which three papers are essential ones, whereas the last two levels are options that you can choose from.

  • ACCA part II focuses on ethics and governance risk, business analysis and corporate reporting, advanced financial management, performance management, auditing and assurance, and taxation.
  • Unlike other modern online examinations, this exam is a written exam as it tests the candidate’s ability.
  • To clear each part of the examination, the candidate needs 50% marks.
  • The duration of each examination differs.

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ACCA Qualification Fees

Besides the registration fee for ACCA, you need to pay a specific fee to appear for the exam. We can help you understand the examination fee structure better with the notes below.

Exam LevelExam PeriodExam Entry Fee
Knowledge  F1, F2, F3Early£72
Skills  F4, F5, F6, F7, F8, F9Early£93
Professional  P1, P2, P3 and also any 2 from  P4, P5, P6, P7Early£110

The chart above is self-explanatory. However, as you can notice, you have to make sure that you enroll for your examinations on time to avoid the late fee charge, which is pretty high, close to £100 to £200.

Above all, the study material and at-home audios are free after enrolling for ACCA examinations.

The pass percentage for ACCA Exams

Because the next examination secession was due in June 2016, let us give you the pass percentage rate for June 2015 ACCA examination.

ACCA Qualification

Fact source: ACCA Global

ACCA Exam Strategies

Remember, there is only pure and original hard work in any professional exam. If you want to get the right degree, you must work extremely hard with utmost dedication. Listed below are a few tips that can help you get there sooner.

  1. Before studying for a professional course like ACCA, you need to plan. First of all, decide how many papers you would like to clear in a single sitting, how to study and manage your time.
  2. You need to know what you are studying and how. Hence, it is extremely important to know the syllabus and structure of ACCA certification.
  3. Understand the examiners’ approach. You need to know what the examiner is expecting in the answers.
  4. Study only from the approved text or study material of ACCA. They have a defined and planned syllabus that they want you to study and understand.
  5. Have a daily set target of studying. It will help you better understand and complete your portion on time.
  6. Instead of memorizing, understand the concepts and logic behind what you are asked to study. This will help you explain yourself better while answering.
  7. If you are stuck somewhere or are unable to understand something, you can refer to the audio and video tutorials and take help of the matter available.
  8. Solve as many practice papers as possible to better understand your position. Don’t forget to solve the previous examination papers too.
  9. Check examiner’s reports published on websites and look for their marking schemes and strategies; you will understand how much you need to focus on what part of the portion.
  10. Analyze exam papers, examiners’ interviews, and technical parts of the material and revise accordingly. Revision is important as it will help you recollect everything you have studied.

While you put all your efforts into studying well, do not forget to control yourself. Don’t panic, and make sure you take enough rest before taking the examination.

This has been a guide to ACCA Exams. Here we discuss the ACCA exam, why you should pursue it, its fees, structure, passing strategies, tips, tricks, etc. You may also have a look at the following articles –

Reader Interactions


  1. Christel Pierce says

    Yes I would also like to know the ACCA exam dates for this year 2017. I hope you will update this very soon. Thanks in advance

  2. Noely Carson says

    Very useful article. I also wanted to know the ACCA exam dates and registration process for year 2017. Please if you can update this info and let me know. Thanks again

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