When you start studying for a professional qualification exam, there will always be many questions and doubts in your mind, like if the qualification is easy and whether it will pay back in the long run. The biggest question of all is how difficult it is to pass.
ACCA, being a professional accountancy body with a global presence in 179 countries, you can expect the exams designed to be challenging even for the most accomplished students. ACCA exams are divided into three tiers; fundamental level, skills level, and applied skills level – and each level has an increased level of difficulty.
There are a lot of factors that determine the difficulty level of the ACCA qualification for a student:
1. Academic background
Your previous academic or professional qualifications are likely to have some bearing on how difficult you find ACCA. Students from non-accounting backgrounds may initially find ACCA to be confusing. On the other hand, students who pursue ACCA after a bachelor’s degree in accounting and finance may claim that ACCA qualification is not very challenging.
There is also a question of whether you like accounting and finance. As is the case with almost everything in life, you are likely to do better in your chosen field if you like what you’re studying. Similarly, ACCA is expected to be easier for you if you genuinely want to do it and hold an interest in accounting and finance.
“People who fail to plan, plan to fail” is something we’ve all heard numerous times. No matter at what stage in life you choose to pursue the ACCA qualification, excellent planning is the key to success. Almost every student draws out a plan when preparing for exams. However, the success of that plan lies in how realistic it is and how motivated the student is to follow through with the plan.
Exam planning is a skill that many learn over time. How difficult a student finds it to pass the ACCA exams will largely depend on the kind of planner they have in place. A realistic planner followed diligently will likely improve the student’s chances of nailing every exam.
3. Commitment and perseverance
Do you have a full-time job? Are you a working mother? Many unique circumstances like these will influence the difficulty level of the ACCA qualification. A full-time student has many more hours to dedicate to their studies than a working professional.
Another critical factor in completing the ACCA qualification is perseverance. Pass rates for advanced skill level exams range between 30% to 50%, implying high exam failure. Dusting your dress and getting up after a failure in ACCA exams is crucial to getting the ACCA certification.
4. Tuition Provider
While many students choose to self-study for ACCA exams, a more significant number look for good tuition providers. The reason for choosing to take tuition for ACCA exams is simple. Students aim to improve their chances of passing their exams by learning from professional tutors who have years of experience teaching ACCA subjects.
Even among the tuition providers available for ACCA tuition, there is a marked distinction between tuition providers who are ACCA approved and those who are not. ACCA-approved tuition providers also have silver, gold, and platinum categories. Gold ACCA-approved learning partners are generally accepted as the best tuition providers.
5. Exam day performance
The exam day and the execution of learned knowledge play an essential role in determining the difficulty of an ACCA exam. Going into the exam centre with confidence and keeping your nerves intact significantly influences your chances of passing the exam. Even if you’re fully prepared but get nervous after going through the exam paper, these chances of passing can be significantly affected.
Many students fail ACCA exams because they do not answer all the exam questions. For any exam, but for ACCA exams, in particular, you should always plan before the exam in which order you will answer the questions. Then your focus should be on getting as close as possible to answering 100% of the questions. This is a tried and tested technique that will help you pass the ACCA exams.
So is passing ACCA exams difficult?
It would be unfair if someone classifies ACCA as a difficult or impossible qualification to get. You’d be surprised by the number of people you would come across who hold entirely different opinions on the same ACCA exams. ACCA is as difficult or as easy as you want it to be. If you have a plan, focus, and firm resolution to get the ACCA certification, it is unlikely that ACCA will be difficult for you.