Hi guys,

For those who are on the road to CIMA, or, those who have completed the qualification -

my question is as follows -

We are eligible to claim exemptions from the initial five CIMA papers. AAT does not cover a large section of what is contained within those five certificate papers, therefore is it a 'smarter' move to study the certificate papers, even though the exemptions are there?

Or would you just buy the study texts for the certificate papers?

Ultimately, I guess I'm trying to ascertain whether operational level, and above, can be completed without the CIMA 'base' knowledge ingrained.

Thank you.

Best Answer


  • BU982T
    BU982T Registered Posts: 40
    Personally, I would just buy the books and fill in any gaps. For example, I plan on starting ACCA next year, but I have purchased the texts for F1 - F3 to ensure I have no gaps in my knowledge and it will serve as a refresher as well. Of course, as you mention there is a large section that it isn't covered, it may not be the same as with ACCA, but I would still take the exemptions and study anything I don't know without the added pressure of having to deal with exams.
  • south59
    south59 Registered Posts: 22
    Hi Guys.

    Thanks for your responses.

    That is interesting, to know that you've found no issues having not studied the certificate papers.

    Essentially my thoughts were based upon having had a skim through the like of economics, together with the law paper.

    Thoughts of, I haven't covered these during my AAT days.

    Maybe I'll pull the trigger on CIMA, it was between CIMA or CIOT, having ATT already.

    Two entirely different qualifications - yet the apex of the charter is calling.

  • south59
    south59 Registered Posts: 22
    Lelouch if you don't mind me asking-

    How long did it take you to complete level 4? And how long to complete your first operational level exam?

    I'm just trying to ascertain a sort of time line of study needed.

    Is it wrong of me to assume that a unit of CIMA is likely to take 2 - 3 times as long to complete than it would a AAT unit?

    It is understood there is a major difference, together with the CIMA study materials been written in a more grown up way, shall we say?

    Comparing apples with oranges comes to mind, yet I'm just trying to sense a form of baseline.

  • Lelouch
    Lelouch Registered Posts: 35
    Hi @south59,

    It took me about 8-9 months to finish level 4 and around 2 months for my first operational exam, enterprise operations (it was the driest of subjects). I have recently started financial operations which is a lot more interesting, but the book is huge!

    You are bang on describing the cima study materials, its not as spoon fed as the AAT resources. I would say 2 months per exam (at this level) would be enough, but having only sat one I am hardly the expert.

    It may be worth adding yourself to CIMA mailing list as sometimes they offer free/discounted membership.

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