Tuesday, 3 May 2016

Must know tips from the examiners

What better advice can you receive than from the examiners themselves? After all not only do they write the ACCA exam, they also mark it!

I recently attended a conference in London where examiners fed back on the performance of accountancy students. It's a great shame that you were not all in the audience with me as they gave some great advice on how students can perform better in the exams. Despite the fact you weren't there, the good news is that the ACCA Examiners' Reports are issued after every sitting. They contain nuggets of information that are essential reading for students.

It was interesting in the conference that the examiners were disappointed that many students did not take the time to read their ACCA reports - as the same problems were coming up time and time again!

Here are the key points from ACCA P4 and P5. ACCA P6 and P7 will follow over the next few days. 

P4 Exam Tips

Feedback from previous exams:
  • Poor time management - incomplete and rushed answers
  • Poor structuring - over use bullet points, incomplete sentences and not discussion based
  • Answers not giving a balanced approach using both numerical and discursive parts
  • Inability to perform calculations
  • Not reading the requirements of the question properly - therefore answering the question incorrectly
  • Some students failed to show sufficient knowledge of the syllabus
  • Learn to manage the volume of information given in each question - do this through practise questions and past papers
  • Identify the key requirements of the question - identify key words
  • Ensure calculations are clear and easy for the examiner to follow
  • Read the question carefully
  • Plan your answer
  • Ensure you have sufficient knowledge of all syllabus areas - anything can be tested!
  • Select optional questions wisely - based on your own knowledge
P5 Exam Tips

Feedback from previous exams:
  • Heavy reliance on memorised pre-learned theory - analysis is required
  • Failure to answer all requirements of the questions - incomplete answers
  • Question weren't read properly - incorrect answers
  • Lack of knowledge was demonstrated on some questions
  • Look through past exam reports and articles on ACCA - take advantage of this resource
  • Application and analysis is required - go beyond explaining theory
  • Ensure you answer the question asked
  • Look back at what you learnt for the F5 exam - ensure you refresh your memory
  • Practise past exam questions

For full analysis of the most recent ACCA Examiner's Report go to the following links:
Remember, keep an eye out for ACCA P6 tips in the next blog post.

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