ACCA Examiners Guidance

ACCA Study Advice

Understanding the ACCA Examiners report can be beneficial for students who have failed their latest ACCA but it can also be used a preventive measure and analysed before taking any ACCA exam to make sure you don’t fall into the same pitfalls as other students.

ACCA Examiners Report

After each exam sitting the ACCA will release an examiners report for every paper in the qualification. So you will see four examiners report each year per paper.

The document is around four pages long contains two main areas:

  • General comments about exam.
  • Specific comments addressing each question in the same and highlighting the common mistakes made and things that were done well.

It’s a free resource that is provided by the ACCA and the constructive feedback should be taken on board and will go some way into helping you pass your next ACCA exam.

General Comments

The general comments will go through how the exam was structured and what types of questions the students could expect.

Below is an extract of the general comments made by the ACCA examiner for the F5 Performance Management paper that was sat in June 2016.

In general, performance on Section A of the exam was significantly better than on Section B.

It is a good idea to do this section of the paper first to build your confidence before tackling the written questions. Make sure that you do not spend more than the allotted time on this section of the paper. It is better to move on and then come back at the end if you have time.

These general tips and comments should be noted by students who will be taking the exam next time and it’s a good idea to print out or open a copy of the exam paper in question so you can align the exam paper against the examiners report.

Specific Comments

To pass the ACCA examinations, it’s beneficial to really understand why previous students went wrong and not make the same mistakes. The specific comments section on the exam report is a great to do this.

The example below shows the F5 Performance Management paper from June 2016 and addresses question 1 on section b.

Section B Question One

This was a variance question examining the area of sales planning and operational variances (market size and market share). Part (a) was calculative and part (b) was discursive.

This question was poorly answered. For part (a) it was necessary to first of all work out the revised sales quantities and the standard contributions for both products. This probably wouldn’t have been a huge problem but many candidates didn’t appear to know that these variances are a breakdown of the sales volume variance and instead worked out planning and operational variances for price. Others, that did know this, used actual contribution rather than standard contribution.

As you can see, the examiner points out that this question was poorly answered by many students and gives the reasons why students made mistake on the variance question.

By going back to the question paper, answering the question yourself and then aligning it with the examiners report you will be in a good position to pass similar questions when sitting the exam yourself.

You can find the examiners guides on the ACCA  F5 Performance Management paper here. And the full list of examiners reports can be found under each paper on the ACCA website.

F3: Financial Accounting

ACCA F3 Exam Tips

The F3 Financial Accounting gives ACCA students their first look at financial reporting, ratio analysis and also some basic consolidated accounting.

The idea of the Financial Accounting paper is develop and understand the underlying principles, concepts and regulations relating to financial accounting and double entry bookkeeping.

ACCA F3 Resources

  • Technical articles on F3: Financial Accounting can be found here.
  • Self-study guides for the F3: Financial Accounting paper can be found here.
  • Printable ACCA study texts from Astranti for the F3 paper can be found here.

Free Online ACCA Study Texts

Free ACCA study materials

Astranti offer their members free copies of ALL ACCA study texts and you can pickup your copy of the F3 study text here.

It’s a great way to learn and supplement your existing ACCA study materials

 F3 Mock Exams

The ACCA offer some free mock exams or specimen papers that will give you the feel of what to expect on exam day. Please see the links below for a collection of F3 mock exams.

F3 Specimen Papers: from the ACCA.

Computer based practice tests: from the ACCA.

F3 Full online exam

ACCA exam marking and feedback

How to pass the ACCA F3 exam

Achieving the 50% pass mark needed for the F3 Financial Accounting paper can be a tricky task, but if you have the right preparation and enough exam practice then passing the exam is well within reach.

Here is a video below from BPP on how to approach the exam and what to expect on exam day:

There is also an excellent video here from the ACCA that is part of their examiner interview series on the examiners recommendation on how to approach the F3 paper.

ACCA Master Classes

As well as the online and printable versions of the ACCA study text, Astranti also run ACCA master classes for all levels of the qualification.

You can sign up for the  ACCA Live Online Masterclasses here.

Here is what you can expect from the Astranti masterclass:

  • The specialist ACCA tutor will guide you through the most examinable topics.
  • There is a specific focus on difficult past questions ensuring you are ready for whatever the exam has in store.
  • It will include how to improve your exam technique, which can score you those all important extra marks in the exam.
  • Interactive questions and answers session with the tutor.

In total you will get over 10 hours of tuition spread over the course of two days (if you attending the master class live) and they are a great tool for students who are revising for their next ACCA exam and want to achieve a pass first time.