How to Pass ACCA First Time – 5 Tips Every ACCA Student Must Follow

“How to Pass ACCA First Time” is a term often searched over internet by aspiring ACCA students. We have garnered some useful ACCA Exam Tips from ACCA place winners that will help you Pass ACCA First Time.


ACCA is acronym for Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, the largest independent global body for Professional Accountants. Without any exaggeration ACCA is one of the finest professional qualification available in business and finance studies.

Congrats for being on board towards becoming a professional accountant. The career in accountancy and finance has lucrative job prospects and that is the reason why ACCA is getting crowded with new students every passing day.

Pass ACCA First Time Tips

Although a large number of students appear in each exam sitting but only a few lucky ones manage to succeed especially at the Professional Level. The examination is tough but not hard to get through. It’s quite disappointing to see many well prepared candidates having thorough knowledge of the syllabus often fail to attain a pass mark following a poor exam technique.

If you are to pass, than on the exam day an expression of a thorough understanding to technical aspects, good exam technique and excellent presentation skills are required. We have garnered some useful exam tips after interviewing ACCA Place Winners which highlight the key skills demanded by ACCA markers and how to avoid mistakes on the exam day. The following valuable exam tips if followed properly will help you achieve a pass mark in your exams.

ACCA Exams are tough, here are a few tips to help you Pass ACCA First Time.

1. Know your Stuff

Tips Pass ACCA

Passing ACCA First Time

A large majority of candidates who pass the examination are well prepared. By saying “well prepared” I mean having through understanding of technical issues and the ability to apply that knowledge to real life scenarios. Cramming and rote learning is strictly prohibited; all you need is to develop sound concepts.

Don’t wait for the results, start preparing for the exam on the day following the end of your examination session.

When preparing for the exams, always use an up to date study material and it is highly advised to take tuition from an ACCA approved learning partner. Beware don’t rely too heavily over text books and revision kits as there are certain questions for which study material can not produce answers but conceptual understanding can.

Don’t spot questions, please complete the entire syllabus and revise as much as you could. My best strategy to pass acca first time would be; complete the entire syllabus at least 60 days before the exam date and than revise it at least 3-4 times before sitting the final exam.

Read examiner guidance, examiner feedback, examiner approach and past exam paper analysis. Try to read technical articles available on the ACCA website and try learning them to get a feel of what examiner wants from you.

2. Practice under exam conditions

Pass ACCA Exams First Time

Practice as many questions as you could under strict timed conditions. It is surprising to see many candidates sitting the final exams lack proper exam practice for the annual exam being their first three hour exam attempt. Don’t go for passing the exams just try to develop as much skills as you could. Try to get internships and training contracts from accountancy and audit firms to complement the theory and skills learned in your classroom.

Practice all the past examination papers; don’t leave a single one out of last seven exam attempts. Practice all the questions in BPP and Kaplan Revision Kits; don’t leave a single concept as it may cause you a loss of mark converting a pass into fail. Practice as much as you could to pass acca first time, if I were you, I would develop my hobbies in surfing internet reading financial editorials and newspapers. It is highly advised for all students to take at least three mock examinations under exam conditions before the exam day. Attempting the mock examination will highlight your deficiencies and will help you develop a sound exam technique. Remember don’t make excuses for being left with no time to practice, as without proper practice your efforts will go nowhere.

3. Exam Technique

Pass ACCA First Time

Technical knowledge is essential but it is insufficient to get through the exams. A poor exam technique often leads to a failure for well prepared candidates which is quite discouraging.

During the exam always concentrate on time management; a large majority of candidates spend too much time on a single question leaving no time for others. I would suggest you to allocate time not on a single mark but a collection like I would at best give a maximum 20 minutes for getting 12 marks.

Always leave time for revision, when doing computational tasks don’t aggregate totals until you have finished the entire question as there is a high possibility that you may have overlooked something. Recheck calculations and reconcile it with the synopsis you have in your mind regarding the answer.

Always complete the entire syllabus, don’t waste time in getting marks for tough aspects as it is better to move on and than return on the question when you are finished with rest of the paper. Keep calm and cool, remember clock is your mentor during the exams follow it to complete the entire paper.

4- Presentation

ACCA First Time Pass

Presentation is very essential.

Imagine you are an executive in a big corporate group, would you hire someone who produces reports that lack communication and presentation skills?.

ACCA Affiliates and Members are professionals; once you graduate out of the qualification everybody expects professional skills and behavior on your side. If you lack professional skills it will end up discrediting the whole profession, this means you need to impress the marker of your capability on being a Professional Accountant.

For presentation skills, in the exam always start a new question or new part on a new sheet of paper, write slowly but sensibly, don’t stuff your answer booklet with irrelevant aspects, your writing must be legible to the examiner. Leave alternate lines when writing the answers so that your exam looks good, use proper headings and sub headings, when doing computational aspects remember your Performa should be clean and tidy. In real life you will have to prepare financial statements, reports and other documents in a Professional Manner within the time constraints on which users will base their economic decisions. Think like an accountant giving advice to a client which is examiner. At Professional level stage examiner gives around 8-10 marks only for Professionalism.

Try to use proper vocabulary, communicate effectively and precisely and remember examiner wants a verdict so a including a conclusion seems a viable idea at Professional Stage.

5- Be Brave

Pass ACCA First Time Tips

I have seen this with many of my fellow students who take too much exam pressure and ultimately end up doing silly mistakes. Try to be strong psychologically, sleep well on the night before the exam day, don’t open books on the exam day morning, keep calm and cool to pass acca first time.

On the other hand don’t take these exams easy, on the examination day make sure you reach the examination center at least 45 minutes before the exam commences, settle down, make yourself acquainted to the exam hall and calm down.

When you get the exam paper make sure you read it thoroughly in the 15 minutes planning time. Pay attention to the verbs used in the question, even if you have no idea about a question try to write down something which is better than doing nothing. You GPA must not drop below 50% which means you have to attempt each and every part of a question and for this you need to attempt and complete 100% of the examination questions. Forget about the exam once you leave the examination hall.


I hope these tips are sufficient enough to help you Pass ACCA. Remember only practice and concepts will help you sail down towards pass marks. Best of Luck for passing your ACCA Exams and getting a nice career ahead.

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