ATT Qualification - opinions please

Natsmomma
Natsmomma Registered Posts: 39 ? ? ?
Hi everyone

I have been an MIP for 18 months after 15 years as an AAT and CIMA part-qual accountant in industry. I have a good basic knowledge of personal and business taxation and am learning more every day. I check everything I am uncertain of with HMRC before proceeding.

However I am wondering if the ATT qualification would be a sensible move for the future of myself and my business.

Does anyone have any first hand knowledge of it and can advise me, please?

Many thanks

Comments

  • peaman
    peaman Registered Posts: 123 ? ? ?
    I took the ATT exams a few years back. The subjects that you study for ATT are considerably more useful to an accountant in practice than AAT (I cannot comment on CIMA).

    I think it would be a sensible move for you to take the ATT exams, especially as most of your experience has been in industry.

    You could reasonably expect to complete them in a year, or two at the most.

    I took my time and took one paper every 6mths and completed it in 2 years. There was 4 papers, three hours long when I took them, but I understand that there are less written papers now and more online multiple choice questions now.

    And, I believe the dreaded 'Practice Administration & Ethics' paper has gone.

    Good luck!
  • JJH1969
    JJH1969 Registered Posts: 110 ? ? ?
    Definitely, I am AAT and CIMA qualified but have been studying ATT since becoming a member in practice and it has been invaluable. I too have taken one exam each 6 months. Waiting for Business Compliance results next week. I have found the law paper the most difficult to date.
    Regards
  • jamesm96
    jamesm96 Registered Posts: 523
    And, I believe the dreaded 'Practice Administration & Ethics' paper has gone.

    Straight from the ATT website: "Following the November 2011 examination, Paper 7 (Practice Administration & Ethics) will be replaced by two E-Assessments; one in Law and one in Professional Responsibilities & Ethics. The administration (i.e. tax) part of the Paper 7 syllabus will instead be tested in the individual tax papers to the extent that it is relevant to each paper."

    I must admit, I'd be fairly interested in the ATT myself; I'm a PQ ACA. I haven't taken the Advanced Stage of the ACA yet as I've got two small children as well as some other responsibilities which result in insufficient time to study for the three final papers as well as earn a living.

    How are you all studying for ATT? Courses or self-study?
  • peaman
    peaman Registered Posts: 123 ? ? ?
    The practice administration & ethics written paper was famous for being an absolute stinker. People complained that it was too difficult, and the pass rate was much lower for this paper, than the others. So, they got rid of the written paper and made e-assessments (much easier).

    Yes, and they put a little bit of admin in each of the other papers.

    I haven't heard so much swearing whilst leaving an exam hall than when walking out of the Practice Admin & Ethics paper!
  • Natsmomma
    Natsmomma Registered Posts: 39 ? ? ?
    This is great, thank you to all those who have replied.

    The words invaluable and definitely from your posts have made the decision for me, so I will explore the options for studying. I am thinking distance learning and perhaps some revision courses might be my best option. Does anyone have any experience of these?

    BPP covered all of my AAT studies and I was pretty happy with them, am thinking I might go back to them for ATT too.

    Thanks again
  • peaman
    peaman Registered Posts: 123 ? ? ?
    I took the exams with BPP, distance learning. Didn't bother with any revision courses.

    BPP sent revision booklets and study cards etc, and I downloaded as many past papers (and answers) as possible.

    I seem to remember taking one practice exam for each paper and sending it to BPP for marking.
  • JJH1969
    JJH1969 Registered Posts: 110 ? ? ?
    I used Tolley distance learning for personal tax & Law e-assessment but did Business Compliance by working through the BPP text book. I did a BPP revision course for personal tax but there werent any in my area for business compliance. I am currently studying Business Tax & Accounting principles out of the BPP text book but as Ive studied all the elements before this is mainly revision. Use all the past papers on the ATT website too!
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    ATT is bloomin' brilliant.

    I've passed my 3 tax modules and the amount of knowledge I've gained is invaluable.

    It's knowing what I know now that makes me refer to the AAT tax modules as a "beginners guide to tax" as it really does only scratch the surface and I can't believe I ever used to practice without knowing what the ATT has taught me. It ought to be essential!
    Ellis
  • Natsmomma
    Natsmomma Registered Posts: 39 ? ? ?
    Monsoon wrote: »
    ATT is bloomin' brilliant.

    I've passed my 3 tax modules and the amount of knowledge I've gained is invaluable.

    Thanks Monsoon, I think you've now given me the push I needed as I value your opinion. How have you studied? Distance learning or tutored?
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
    Cheapest option is distance learning with Tolleys/kaplan.

    Kaplan online is very good, that's what I done.

    It is alot harder than AAT, but managable.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    Neither - I work in tax and it makes sense for me so I just bought the BPP/TQT text books and learned from those.

    Good luck - it's well worth doing!
  • Hollysan
    Hollysan Registered Posts: 68 ? ? ?
    Thumbs up for ATT from me as well. I started distance learning in February (after the tax deadline :001_smile:). I am taking it slowly through necessity because it's so hard to find time. I bought the distance learning modules for Papers 2&4 from Tolleys and think they are excellent. My plan is to study for but not take Paper 2 (Business Tax) and take the exemption - so I get the learning but not the exam stress! Then I will take Paper 4 in November - Corporate Tax. The Tolleys system with 2&4 together is great because there is so much common ground between the two. I plan to take Personal Tax next May and maybe VAT in November, if I can bear to do more!

    I agree with Jenny, it's invaluable for a MIP because it's in such depth. Definitely a good decision, Natsmomma, you will benefit from it - I've learned so much already, it's helping me every day in my work. Not looking forward to Law and Ethics though!

    Hollysan
  • Dean
    Dean Registered Posts: 646
    The practice administration & ethics written paper was famous for being an absolute stinker. People complained that it was too difficult, and the pass rate was much lower for this paper, than the others. So, they got rid of the written paper and made e-assessments (much easier).

    Yeah I'm still bitter about this too! Don't get me started on the exemption....

    Regards

    Dean
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    The e-assessments aren't easy. Just saying...

    (really must book mine :( )
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
    Study options is personal. After doing AAT, ACCA and now ATT I don't like text books. For me it's dry and boring. I would rather learn from people for the tuition stage and obviously plenty of Q practice at the revision stage.

    Txt books are very dry and full of loads of info that is not essential for passing the exam, however course notes are usually pretty good but not a complete reference for study. For me learning from people is in between and perfect.

    Kaplan provide this online which is great from a time and practial perspective.
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
    Incidentally I received my ATT results last night. 73 for personal tax and 70 for Adv Corporate tax :)

    Very happy, time to book the e assessments. Mentally it feels like they should be easy so i need to be careful not to underestimate them as Monsoon suggested.
  • Natsmomma
    Natsmomma Registered Posts: 39 ? ? ?
    stevo5678 wrote: »
    Incidentally I received my ATT results last night. 73 for personal tax and 70 for Adv Corporate tax :)

    Yay, well done you!

    Might be coming back to you for some tips when I get that far! Thanks for the advice on Kaplan - it looks to be a good option.
  • JJH1969
    JJH1969 Registered Posts: 110 ? ? ?
    No the e-assessments arent easy - just taken my law one and it was the hardest exam I have ever done! ATT results analysis came out this week and there is only a 50% pass rate on the law e-assessment and 68% on the ethics!
  • T.C.
    T.C. Registered, Tutor Posts: 1,448
    I studied ATT many years ago, but due to work commitments never got to do the final exam. I would, however, recommend it for the course content - invaluable - even without the final qualification!
  • Dean
    Dean Registered Posts: 646
    Congratulations stevo :thumbup1:

    Regards

    Dean
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
    Thanks guys, just glad with the pass. Always a relief to know that the hard work has paid off!
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    Congrats Stevo, that's brilliant!

    I have gotten a consistent 69% in all my ATT exams - strange but true :)
  • stevo5678
    stevo5678 Registered Posts: 325
    Monsoon wrote: »
    Congrats Stevo, that's brilliant!

    I have gotten a consistent 69% in all my ATT exams - strange but true :)

    That's very impressive since you went completely distance learning.
  • Monsoon
    Monsoon FMAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant Posts: 4,071 ? ? ?
    Thanks Stevo, never thought about it that way :)

    Edit: not distance learning: all self taught from a textbook only!
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