Level 4 - Synoptic Help?!?

Really struggling with the Synoptic Exam for Level 4.

Sat this and got 53%.

My college refuse the teach the exam as apparently we 'should all already know the content' after sitting decision and control, financial statements and budgeting.

Could anyone please advise me on the areas to revise and how to pass this?

What areas am I best revising and concentrating on?

Also, there is absolutely no cost benefit analysis questions anywhere?! How an earth are we expected to pass this if there are no questions on this?

I feel I will never pass this exam :/

Any help is greatly appreciated :-)

Comments

  • amurrayamurray Feels At Home Posts: 207Registered, AATQB

    Really struggling with the Synoptic Exam for Level 4.

    Sat this and got 53%.

    My college refuse the teach the exam as apparently we 'should all already know the content' after sitting decision and control, financial statements and budgeting.

    Could anyone please advise me on the areas to revise and how to pass this?

    What areas am I best revising and concentrating on?

    Also, there is absolutely no cost benefit analysis questions anywhere?! How an earth are we expected to pass this if there are no questions on this?

    I feel I will never pass this exam :/

    Any help is greatly appreciated :-)

    Hi Emma, me again!.... just saw you made a post about the lovely Synoptic exam.... It took me 2 attempts, first time 60% and second time just recently I passed with 71%. I found it an extremely hard exam. I struggle on the written elements.

    The only thing I can really recommend is to practice as many mocks as you can, the AAT mocks on the AAT website. Also to really get to grips with the pre-release report. There was a document a fellow student made and posted online on a Facebook support group, I will try and locate and can send it to you.

    The student (cant remember her name actually), put together a word document of her two attempts at this exam, listing by question to explain what the examiner is looking for, and top tips! It was a really good read.

    Regarding the cost benefit analysis, I am sure I had a mock from my college with one in..... I'm sure it can be tested.

    Are you self-studying, or with a training provider or college Emma?

    AATQB, FIAB.
    *MAAT hopefully to follow soon!
    Emmalouise18
  • Rusty1985Rusty1985 Posts: 55Registered
    Hi Emma,

    As per the above, do as many mocks as possible. Concentrate more on the Internal Systems and Controls as the exam is based around this, yes have a flick through previous books but you dont need to re-read them word for word but there are sections to concentrate on. Your learning provider should advise you what specifically. If not, there are some good You Tube videos which are well worth a watch. Cost Benefit Analysis questions are frustrating (I had one).

    The cost benefit analysis is designed to show how much it will cost to implement the proposed changes, and these can be broken down into initial one-off costs and ongoing costs for the business. Once all of the costs have been identified and listed, the next step is to look at the benefits of implementing the system.

    It is easy to identify the value of financial benefits. An example of a financial benefit is time saved. If implementing a computerised accounts package means that the accounting entries will take a day less per week, we can attribute a precise saving to this. If, say, that an hourly rate for the accounts clerk is £20 per hour, a day is 7 hours, and 5 days per week are worked, each week we have saved £700.

    Some of the benefits can be qualitative, and it is more difficult to define exactly what financial benefit they will bring. For example, the computerised accounts package may mean that accurate reports can be generated more efficiently, giving management the information they require to streamline the sales processes, and this means more sales can be generated. To come up with a figure for this, you would need to estimate the amount of sales it could generate.

    The main objective of the cost benefit analysis is to show whether the costs outweigh the benefits, or the benefits outweigh the costs.

    If the costs outweigh the benefits, this is a clear indication that it would not be worthwhile implementing the proposed changes.
    amurray
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello,

    Thank you so much for your response.

    I will go through your above comment and try some Net present value questions as I've heard CBA is similar to his.

    During my Synoptic exam and the CBA question, there was a table to fill in but it wasn't clear on what to write in this table? I don't suppose you have any tips on this do you?

    Thank you very much
    amurray
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello amurray,

    Thank you for your response.

    I am currently going through the 2 AAT mocks online however I personally don't feel 2 mocks is enough. I've done them so many times that I memorise the answers now..

    I am self studying because my college have asked me to leave due to taking to many attempts at this exam. I clearly make their figures look bad..

    I have bought a BPP question bank, Kaplan book and also Osbourne textbook. None of these have a cost benefit analysis question in so it's so hard to know what the examiners want from you.

    There is a table in the cost benefit analysis question within the exam which I had no idea what to put.

    If you find that word document that student made, that would be greatly appreciated. :)
    amurray
  • amurrayamurray Feels At Home Posts: 207Registered, AATQB
    edited August 15
    Hi Emma,

    No worries at all.

    I found these 2 sets of materials (which I found on a Facebook study support group) really helpful. One of these was written by a previous student who sat the exam twice (first attempt with a pass rate of 74%, however the student then later wanted to achieve a higher pass mark and improved to 88%). IT was a great guide I found. The other document was a powerpoint of some helpful revision tips I found. See attached.

    The Osborne books are good, I have used these as extra revision materials aside from my distance providers materials. They also have an online section with online practice tests I believe, although I have never checked this out, but they may be helpful?

    Regarding your comment about your college asking you to leave, I think that is just outrageous..... Whatever happened to helping students pass, even if its not on the first attempt, or second, surely they have a responsibility to help you pass! - Will you consider self studying or will you look at a distance learning provider perhaps?

    Keep positive, you will get there - I know its frustrating though...I feel your pain :).
    AATQB, FIAB.
    *MAAT hopefully to follow soon!
    Emmalouise18
  • amurrayamurray Feels At Home Posts: 207Registered, AATQB
    edited August 15

    Hello,

    Thank you so much for your response.

    I will go through your above comment and try some Net present value questions as I've heard CBA is similar to his.

    During my Synoptic exam and the CBA question, there was a table to fill in but it wasn't clear on what to write in this table? I don't suppose you have any tips on this do you?

    Thank you very much

    Hi Emma,

    Sorry only just seen this. I am not entirely sure on the CBA question, are you a member on any of the Facebook AAT Study support groups, there may be something on there that is beneficial?

    Sorry my post is not much help!
    AATQB, FIAB.
    *MAAT hopefully to follow soon!
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello,

    No problem I will join some of the AAT study support groups and see how I get on.

    Thank you :)
    amurray
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello again,

    Thank you so much for those word documents. - I will have a look through these.

    I just want to pass it, I really aren't bothered whether I get 70% or 100% haha

    Thank you for the revision tips - I will check these out.

    Yes, it is outrageous isn't it.. they have said I have failed exam and not willing to cooperate.. its absolutely ridiculous! I put in so many hours revision but my college failed to teach the synoptic so there is no wonder I failed it.

    They didn't help or support me at all. Thankfully now I have found a new college to sit the exam at and are doing distant learning.

    Thank you so much for your help :)
    amurray
  • amurrayamurray Feels At Home Posts: 207Registered, AATQB

    Hello again,

    Thank you so much for those word documents. - I will have a look through these.

    I just want to pass it, I really aren't bothered whether I get 70% or 100% haha

    Thank you for the revision tips - I will check these out.

    Yes, it is outrageous isn't it.. they have said I have failed exam and not willing to cooperate.. its absolutely ridiculous! I put in so many hours revision but my college failed to teach the synoptic so there is no wonder I failed it.

    They didn't help or support me at all. Thankfully now I have found a new college to sit the exam at and are doing distant learning.

    Thank you so much for your help :)

    Hi Emma,

    I am glad you found the documents useful, I did also - so glad I came across them at that point in time.

    A pass is a pass, I was so pleased to have passed with 71%, I would have been happy enough with 70%!!

    Its great to hear that you now have a distance learning college who are supporting you now.
    AATQB, FIAB.
    *MAAT hopefully to follow soon!
  • c4n4riesc4n4ries Posts: 9Registered
    Hi Emma,

    I found a YouTube channel called LSBF (London School of Business and Finance) and they had at least 6 videos on just the AAT Level 4 Synoptic which are worth a look at. They go through some of the exam questions and show how they would answer them. I thought they were really useful when I was studying for my synoptic!

    Keep going - you will get there! :)
    chloewain_Emmalouise18
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Thank you so much everyone! I have the synoptic exam this Friday so fingers crossed! :)
  • bolingbrokebolingbroke Posts: 19Registered
    Hi Emma. I had my first try today. Thought it went well. My advise is to do as many practice exams as you can and keep in mind what answers might be similar with the company in the pre release material. Also question 5 is an easy 20 marks if you know your ratios so make sure your 100% with them.
  • AATSMAATSM Posts: 24Registered
    @bolingbroke Sounds like you have done well on your first try! Without discussing the content, would you say it was easier/harder than what you were expecting? I have mine tomorrow morning.
  • bolingbrokebolingbroke Posts: 19Registered
    A bit easier but I expected it to be horrible. Good luck tomorrow,
    AATSM
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello everyone,

    Last weeks Synoptic exam was ok. I knew more than I did the first time so fingers crossed.

    I had an IT error though mid way though the exam, which froze my screen however the clock was still ticking. The invidulator submitted a report to AAT for this so AAT take into consideration.

    I got a cost benefit analysis question which was fine, I knew exactly what to put however it asked for the answer in a table. Each box would only allow me to write 3-4 words in. Therefore my answer was very limited. I am very annoyed as I studied extremely hard for this exam, and knew the answer to this but couldn't write all the detail on where my calculations are from etc.

    Did anyone else get this?

    It was probably as hard as I expected. Better than the first attempt though as that was all new to me.

  • MCB1986MCB1986 Posts: 5Registered
    Hi Emma,

    I had a CBA for Task 6 and found the table very limiting. I knew it could be tested but couldn't find any practice questions on it! Very frustrating.
    I did don't feel very confident about the exam but keeping my fingers crossed!

    Its such a pain when something happens to your computer, it really puts you off. I really hope you are successful this time round.
    Emmalouise18
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    Hello,

    I've spoken to a-lot of other students who had this issue with the CBA table. So glad it wasn't just me.

    I spent to much time revising for this exam. I found 1 CBA question in the BPP Question bank book so I literally practiced that every single day.

    It was very off putting and knocked my confidence. I had an incident report submitted so we will see.

    I don't care if I get 70%, just want to pass and have rid of Level 4 haha

    Hope you pass it also! :)
  • Pian32Pian32 Posts: 68Registered
    Just waiting on my result for this now. Felt fairly happy in the exam but not sure if I used the unfamiliar tables correctly.
    AAT Level 4, MAAT
  • AATSMAATSM Posts: 24Registered
    @Pian32 I’m just waiting on my result now too. This is my final exam for AAT so fingers crossed. I want to set up another discussion on results day to see how everyone got on!
  • Emmalouise18Emmalouise18 Posts: 41Registered
    I PASSED THE SYNOPTIC WITH 77%!

    Thank you ALL so so much for your help/advice and guidance!

    I have completed AAT and awaiting my certificate :)

    Wishing you all the best and hope you all get the results you want :)
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