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F5

Decision trees
The addition of decision trees to the F5 syllabus is a relatively recent one. This article provides a step-by-step approach to decision trees, using a simple example to guide you through.

The learning rate and learning effect
The purpose of this article is to summarise the history of the learning curve effect and help candidates understand why it is important, as well as looking at what past learning curve questions have required of candidates and to clarify how future questions may go beyond this.

Throughput accounting and the theory of constraints – part 1
In the first of two articles, we look at the basic principles of the theory of constraints and throughput accounting.

Throughput accounting and the theory of constraints – part 2
A follow-up to the first part of this article featuring a discussion on the five focusing steps of the theory of constraints, with examples of how these steps might be applied in practice or in the exam. 

Transfer pricing
This article looks at stripping transfer pricing back to the basics and consider, first, why transfer pricing is important; secondly, the general principles that should be applied when setting a transfer price; and thirdly, an approach to tackle exam questions in this area, specifically the question from June 2014’s exam.

Environmental management accounting
Also available as a podcast on iTunes
Environmental management accounting is part of the F5 syllabus and requires students to describe the issues businesses face in managing environmental costs, and the different methods they may use to account for these. 

Decentralisation and the need for performance measurement
This article focuses on a classic performance measurement question, which involves a combination of financial and non-financial analysis.

Cost-volume-profit analysis
Cost-volume-profit analysis allows a business to find its break-even point.

Comparing budgeting techniques 
Also available as a podcast on iTunes
This article critically evaluates the two main methods for preparing budgets - the incremental approach and the zero-based approach.

Materials mix and yield variances
This article explains the theory behind mix and yield variances, and provides examples of how to use them in an exam.

Target costing and lifecycle costing
An explanation of target costing and lifecycle costing, with examples as to how and when you would use these costing techniques. 

Activity-based costing
ABC undoubtedly requires an organisation to spend time and effort investigating more fully what causes it to incur costs, and then to use that detailed information for costing purposes.  

Transfer pricing
Transfer prices are almost inevitably needed whenever a business is divided into more than one department or division.

Not-for-profit organisations – part 1
The first part of the article broadly describes the generic characteristics of not-for-profit organisations.

Not-for-profit organisations – part 2
The second part of the article takes a specific and deeper look at charities, which are one of the more important types of not-for-profit organisations.

The risks of uncertainty
Decisions, decisions – risk, probability and potential outcomes unravelled.

Interpreting financial data
How to interpret financial data. 

Linear programming 
A simple example to illustrate the decision-making technique of linear programming.

Study support videos

Answering narrative questions
Jo Ryan, a tutor from BPP, focuses on approaching narrative requirements, with an emphasis on the June 2015 exam.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

F5 revision webinar
Jamie Carrahar from BPP Professional Education looks at some of the key issues that have come up in previous F5 sittings, with a particular focus on transfer pricing, but also looking at F5 exam technique in more detail.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Break even and profit volume charts

Karl Ballard from Kaplan Financial takes a look at how to answer exam questions on break even and profit charts.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here (part 1 | part 2)

Decision-making techniques
Jo Ryan from BPP provides an overview of how to develop good exam technique when attempting questions on decision making for relevant costing.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Decision trees
Jo Ryan from BPP explains how to approach F5 exam questions on decision trees including a look at the definitions relevant to preparing decision trees, with reference to how to attempt Question 1 in the June 2013 exam.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Question 1 debrief
Karl Ballard from Kaplan Financial provides a question debrief for Question 1 of the June 2012 F5 exam, which covered short-term decision making, limiting factor analysis and non-financial factors in outsourcing.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Question 5 debrief
Karl Ballard from Kaplan Financial provides a question debrief for Question 5 of the June 2012 F5 exam, which covered performance measurement.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Transfer pricing
Karl Ballard from Kaplan Financial provides an explanation on how to answer F5 exam questions on transfer pricing.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here (part 1 | part 2)

Variances
Jo Ryan from BPP considers how to answer exam questions on variances by focusing on the F5 syllabus areas D2, D3, D4 and D5.
Cannot access Youtube? Watch it here

Advice for students retaking exams
This video is about turning your exam fail into a pass at your next attempt. It suggests ways to reflect on where you went wrong, how to draw up an effective study plan, and practising exam questions.

Syllabus updates

Changes to the ACCA Qualification skills module, Professional level and Foundations in 2016–17
This article explains the planned updates to the ACCA Qualification syllabuses taking place as part of the process of continuous syllabus refreshment and improvement.

Changes to the ACCA Qualification and Foundation level in 2015–16
This article explains the planned updates to the ACCA Qualification syllabuses taking place as part of the process of continuous syllabus refreshment and improvement.

Changes to the F5 syllabus (from June 2013): what they mean to you
A number of areas have been deleted from the F5 syllabus while other areas have been added to it. The purpose of this article is to remind students taking F5 what the exact changes are by listing them in detail and also to explain how the changes may affect future exams by clarifying the kind of requirements that may be asked and, where appropriate, comparing them to previous question requirements.

Exam technique

F5 examiner's approach
Advice on how to prepare for the exam, and the best ways to achieve success:

Multiple-choice questions
What you need to know about the multiple-choice questions (MCQs) in the paper-based exams for F4, F5, F7, F8 and F9 from December 2014.

Top tips for the F5 exam
This article outlines the key skills considered essential to passing F5.

Approaching written questions
This article identifies the reasons why sitting the F5 exam seems to cause such a problem for students.

F5 – A guide to using the examiner’s reports
Guidance to help you if you are taking the F5 exam for the first time as this takes you through how to use the examiner’s reports as part of your revision phase as directed by the self-study guides. This document will help you to understand how you should be using the examiner’s reports to make the best use of them.

F5 – A guide to reflection for retake students
Guidance to help you if you are retaking the F5 exam as this takes you through the process of reflection using the examiner’s reports as directed in the retake guides. This document will help you to understand how you should be using the examiner’s reports to make the best use of them.

Exam support resources

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Last updated: 22 Nov 2016