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CIMA Exam Details, levels

CIMA Exam Details, levels

CIMA Exam Details – The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) qualification is one of the most globally-recognised and sought-after business accreditations. When registering CIMA you should bear in mind the timing of the CIMA exams. They are held twice per year, in May and November. If you plan to take your first exam in May, you must register by 31 January. If you plan to take your first exam in November, you must register by 31 July.

CIMA Exam Levels

The syllabus is also divided into three levels of achievement. You will progress from the operational level to the management level and finally to the strategic level.

At each level you study subjects across the three pillars.The three pillars represent specific areas of knowledge. The content of each pillar develops as you move up the qualification.The three pillars are interlinked to provide a coherent body of knowledge that will equip you with the competencies you require.

  • Enterprise pillar : The enterprise pillar deals with the formulation of strategy and its effective implementation. It emphasises how change management, project management, relationship management and the structuring of organisations can help you to successfully implement strategy.
  • Performance pillar : The performance pillar uses the tools and techniques of management accounting and risk management to ensure that strategy is realistic and to monitor its implementation.It explains how to use your understanding of costs to construct budgets, make decisions about prices and capital expenditure, manage costs and manage performance. It develops your ability to progressively identify, classify, evaluate and manage risk.
  • Financial pillar : The financial pillar focuses on the financial accounting and reporting obligations of the organisation. This includes an understanding of the regulatory framework and external reporting requirements – and the ability to construct and evaluate complex financial statements to show the financial position and performance of the organisation. The fundamentals of business tax are covered, as are the tax implications of financing decisions. The financial pillar also looks at formulating financial strategy. It is linked to the formulation of organisational strategy in the enterprise pillar and assessing risk in the performance pillar. The subjects in each learning pillar are designed to be sequential – from operational to strategic level. It will encourage a progressive development of your knowledge, techniques and skills.

At each level you study subjects across the three pillars.

The Operational level

The operational level has a short-term focus. It covers the implementation of strategy, as well as reporting on the implementation of strategy.  This level contains 3 subjects.

  • Organisational Management (E1)
  • Management Accounting (P1)
  • Financial Reporting and Taxation (F1)

The Management level

The management level has a medium-term focus. It translates the strategy decided at higher levels, and communicates it to lower levels for implementation. It monitors and reports on the implementation of strategy, and ensures corrective action is taken when required. This level contains 3 subjects.

  • Project and relationship Management (E2)
  • Advanced management Accounting (P2)
  • Advanced Financial Reporting (F2)

The Strategic level

The strategic level has a long term focus. It concentrates on making strategic decisions and providing the context in which those decisions will be implemented. This level contains 3 subjects.

  • Strategic management
  • Risk management
  • Financial Strategy

Case Study

The Case Study exams involve a range of tasks based around parts of the syllabus from all three papers at that level. Key features of these case study exams include:

  • The exam questions will be based on pre-seen material
  • New unseen material will be provided during the assessment and will involve a series of practical tasks to simulate the workplace e.g. responding to an email from the finance director or analysing the response to a change by a competitor
  • There are no calculations in the Case Study exams, but you will be required to analyse and comment on financial information
  • You must complete all 3 papers at a level before you can take the case study, and will not be allowed to sit any of the next level exams until you have completed the Case Study at the lower level. For example the Operational Case Study must be completed before exams P2, E2 and F2 can be attempted
  • You can sit the exam during 4 set periods each year (February, May, August and November)
  • The Case Study is a computer based assessment at a Pearson Vue Study Centre
  • The pass mark is 60%

Recommended Read : Complete Details of CIMA Exam Syllabus and Subjects

CIMA Exam Details



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