How many CBEs are available within the ACCA and CAT qualification and the FIA suite of awards?
All three knowledge module papers within the ACCA qualification are available by CBE, as well as by paper-based exam:
- F1 Accountant in Business
- F2 Management Accounting
- F3 Financial Accounting
New syllabus and study guides have been introduced for all ACCA Knowledge exams papers F1, F2 and F3. This is to accommodate for the following exams with common syllabuses:
- ACCA F1 and FAB
- ACCA F2 and FMA
- ACCA F3 and FFA
The first seven papers in the FIA suite of awards and the CAT qualification are also available in CBE format.
For more information on the Foundation Level qualifications, please see the Related Links in the top left of the page.
What are the main differences between computer-based exams and paper-based exams?
Questions in both formats of the exam are written to correspond with the syllabus and students should expect to see questions covering all aspects of the syllabus in both paper-based and computer-based exams.
In all cases, the computer-based version is automatically generated so that each candidate gets a different set of questions, whereas the written exam is made up of a pre-selected set of questions.
The structures of F1-F3, FAB, FMA and FFA will change in 2014. We are targeting the second half of February 2014 for these changes. Please check back regularly for updates on the confirmed launch date.
The table below compares current format computer-based exams with their paper-based equivalents:
|Paper||Paper-based format||Current CBE format
|Introductory certificate|| ||
|FA1||50 MCQ's||50 MCQ's
|MA1||50 MCQ's||50 MCQ's
|Intermediate certificate|| ||
|FA2||50 MCQ's||MCQ & other short objective-style questions
|MA2||50 MCQ's||MCQ & other short objective-style questions
|FAB (F1)||50 MCQ's||MCQ & other short objective-style questions
|FMA (F2)||50 MCQ's||MCQ & other short objective-style questions
|FFA (F3)||50 MCQ's||MCQ & other short objective-style questions
|Option Papers|| ||
|FAU||MCQ + 4 longer questions||N/A
|FTX||MCQ + 4 longer questions||N/A
|FFM||MCQ + 4 longer questions||N/A
When the changes are made to F1-F3, FAB, FMA and FFA, CBEs (and Paper exams taken in June 2014 or after) will be split into two sections as follows:
Objective Test Questions (OTs)
Multi Task Questions (MTQs)
|F1/FAB||16 x 1 mark questions|
30 X 2 mark questions
|6 x 4 mark questions
|35 X 2 mark questions||
3 x 10 mark questions
|F3/FFA||35 X 2 mark questions||
2 x 15 mark questions
- Objective Test Questions are traditional short questions, each relating to a single scenario.
- Multi-task questions (MTQs) contain a series of tasks which relate to one or more scenarios. These tasks can be made up of different question types – multiple choice, multiple response, multiple response matching, number entry, hotspots and gapfill questions.
How can I learn more about the changes being made to the exam formats?
All of the changes are outlined on the CBE Specimen and Related Resources page (link on the left hand side of the screen)
I am completing the ACCA qualification and wish to take computer-based exams. How does that affect any attempts at paper-based exams?
Papers F1, F2 and F3 are available by computer-based exams (CBE). You are eligible to sit a maximum of four papers in a six-month cycle, in any combination of computer-based and paper-based exams. The cycles are:
- 1 February to 31 July and
- 1 August to 31 January
If you wish to take computer-based exams, please indicate this on your exam entry for each session. You can then enter to sit the balance if your four exams at the paper-based session. For example, you can enter for F1 and F2 by CBE and then elect to sit F3 and one paper from F4 to F9 at the paper-based session.
I am registered on Foundations in Accountancy and wish to take computer-based exams. How does this affect my paper-based attempts?
All Foundations in Accountancy exams are available as computer-based exams, except the Options papers FAU (Foundations in Audit), FTX (Foundations in Taxation) and FFM (Foundations in Financial Management).
There are no restrictions on the number of papers you can attempt at each session as a Foundations in Accountancy student. If you are considering taking any of these exams by paper, please take into account your timetable restrictions.
How is it best to prepare for the ACCA qualification knowledge module exams?
Students should ensure that as part of their revision, they are familiar with the multiple choice style of questions as well as the wider range of objective question types if taking a computer-based exam.
It is recommended that students sit the relevant CBE Pilot exam.
Are section weightings for computer-based exams the same as for paper-based exams?
Both computer-based and paper-based exams have the same weightings for different syllabus areas. Weightings for each area have been given to reflect their relative size and importance.