Exam progression rules

We have four exam cycles a year for both CBE and paper-based exams. Students are allowed to take a maximum of 4 exams during each exam cycle across a maximum of 8 distinct exams over the course of a calendar year. These can be any combination of computer-based and paper-based exams.

Exam cycles

For the four sessions in 2016 and all future sessions they'll be:

  • March session: 1 Jan - 31 March
  • June session: 1 April - 30 June
  • September session: 1 July - 30 September
  • December session: 1 Oct - 31 December

These sessions are in line with the exemption closing dates.

On-demand CBE

On-demand Computer Based Exams (CBEs) are available for the first seven papers within the foundation-level qualifications and the Applied Knowledge EXAMS and the Corporate and Business Law (LW-ENG) and (LW-GLO) exams of the ACCA qualification. Please remember that you must be registered with ACCA prior to being entered for on-demand CBEs.

Modular order

Exams must be taken in modular order for the ACCA Qualification, however you can attempt the papers within each module in any order. These rules are in place to guide students on an appropriate path through the ACCA Qualification. Ultimately they help students progress through our exams, as they ensure that students build on their learning and are taking the most appropriate exams based on where they are on their student journey.

The modular order for the ACCA Qualification is:

  • Applied Knowledge exams
  • Applied Skills exams
  • Strategic Professional (Essentials and and Options)

If your exam allows you to enter for exams across modules, please remember that you must enter for outstanding exams in your current module if you wish to enter to sit papers in the next module. For example should you have passed exams AB to AA of the Applied Knowledge and Applied Skills exams, if you wish to sit SBL you must also enter for FM at the same exam booking.

You can find full guidance on what exams you can take in upcoming sessions by using our exam planner.