DECODING THE SUBJECT

The ACCA Financial Reporting or ACCA FR course helps you develop the knowledge and skills in understanding and applying accounting standards and the theoretical framework in the preparation of financial statements of entities, including groups, and how to analyze and interpret those financial statements using ratios (Ratio Analysis). Here, you will actually learn about Statement of Financial Position (Balance Sheet), Statement of Profit or Loss and Other Comprehensive Income, Statement of Cash Flows, Statement of Changes in Equity and Disclosure Notes to accounts using International Accounting Standards (IAS) and International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).

ACCA Financial Reporting is one of the most interesting and scoring ACCA papers. Being an exam in the skills level, ACCA FR can be attempted during any of the four exam sessions throughout the year – March, June, September, or December.

acca fr pathway

ACCA FR SYLLABUS

A. The conceptual and regulatory framework for financial reporting
  • A conceptual and regulatory framework
  • Conceptual framework: Measurement
B. Accounting for transactions in financial statements
  • Tangible non-current assets
  • Intangible assets
  • Impairment of assets
  • Non-current assets held for sale and discontinued operations
  • Agriculture and Inventory
  • Financial assets and financial liabilities
  • Foreign currency
  • Revenue
  • Leases
  • Taxation
  • Earnings per share
  • IAS 37 and IAS 10
C. Analyzing and interpreting the financial statements of single entities and groups
  • Interpretation of financial statements (Ratio Analysis)
D. Preparation of single entity financial statements
  • Introduction to published accounts
  • Published financial statements
  • Statement of cash flows
acca fm study guideE. Preparation of consolidated financial statements
  • Principles of consolidated financial statements
  • Consolidated statement of financial position
  • Consolidated statement of profit or loss
  • Associates
  • Group disposals

ACCA FR Syllabus

Hack: For this paper, it is important to understand and be able to apply all the different standards so you should ideally start first with Part B: Accounting for transactions in financial statements -> then Part D: Preparation of single entity financial statements, solve all the questions from the Exam Kit using the knowledge gained in Part B. You can later begin with Part E: Preparation of consolidated financial statements, spend enough time to do this part well.

After you complete Part D and Part E you can go ahead solving Part C: Analyzing and interpreting the financial statements of single entities and groups.  It is only after you know how to prepare financial Statements you shall be able to analyze and interpret them well, so it is suggested to leave Part C for almost at the end. Part A: The conceptual and regulatory framework for financial reporting is purely a theory topic that you can go through at the end.

ACCA FR PAPER PATTERN

The 100-marks ACCA FR exam paper has been designed to ensure that all the different areas of the syllabus are covered adequately. Following are the various sections and question types that you can expect-

ACCA Financial Reporting (100 Marks)
Section A (30 marks) Section B (30 marks) Section C (40 marks)
15 OTQ’s * 2 marks each 3 case studies * 5 OTQ’s in each case study * 2 marks each 2 Constructed response questions * 20 marks each

Hack: Solve all questions from the Practice Kit to ensure different styles of questions are covered. To pass with flying colors, the practice kit should be solved a minimum of 2-3 times. However, your preparation should ensure that enough time is devoted to Part C (Ratio Analysis) and Part E (Consolidated Financial Statements) as they have a very high probability of featuring in the examination.

You are expected to score 50/100 to pass to crack this examination. This is easily manageable with a clear understanding of the concepts, good practice of the questions, and a positive attitude. The pass rates of ACCA FR paper across the globe are roughly between 45%-55% for most attempts.

acca fr passing trends

SOURCES OF CONTENT

You need to primarily refer to these two content sources for your preparations –

  • The Study Text – for conceptual understanding
  • The Practice/Exam Kit – for practice questions

There are only two ACCA-approved content providers that you should consider, namely, Kaplan Publishing and BPP Learning Media. Apart from this, you can also refer to the technical articles published by ACCA on different topics. You can use this link to refer to the articles-

Download our curated express notes for ACCA FR here

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STUDYING METHODOLOGY

  1. Start with the study text go through all the concepts. Later, try solving questions from the Practice Kit to get more clarity and deeper understanding of how to apply the concepts.
  2. As discussed, give enough priority to topics such as Ratio Analysis and Consolidated Financial Statements.
  3. A common mistake students make is that they focus only on the formulas and calculations in Ratio Analysis, but remember, writing the analysis (analytical part) is worth more marks than the calculation. Make sure with the calculations you also focus on how to write the analysis well.
  4. Note that there is a very high probability that one question out of the two constructed response questions of Section C is from Ratio Analysis (Interpretation of Financial Statements).
  5. Part E: Consolidated Financial statements of your syllabus can feature in all of the sections in the examination. With clear concept understanding and good practice, this can be a very scoring area of the paper.
  6. Part D: Preparation of single entity financial statements can also be one of the section C questions, do not try to ignore this area. Solve all questions from the Practice Kit
  7. Yes, FR is a practical paper however there are still few theory questions asked in the examination. With solving practical questions, spend some time on the theory topics as well. If you ignore theory questions you will lose out on easy marks!
  8. You may be asked to prepare financial statements in the exam, so very important to learn the formats well and practice a good number of questions using basic excel.
  9. When solving the constructed response questions from the practice kit, along with the solution it is useful to go through the key answer tips, tutor’s top tips, tutorial notes, and examiner’s comments.
  10. Also, you can use the constructed response ‘blank workspace’ provided by the ACCA to practice few questions after logging in to the Practise Platform to get a hold of the CBE environment. You can follow through this link.

HOW TO PLAN ACCA FR MOCK EXAMS

Attempting enough mock exams are a must! Going without solving mocks is like a soldier without a weapon.

The examination is now conducted using the CBE platform, it is truly important to write at least 2-3 mocks to get a good idea of how the final examination would be and to get used to the CBE environment.

You can log in to the ACCA ‘Practice Platform’ for solving mocks using the following link.

Hack: One day before the examination, invest all your time in revising what you have studied so far. Do not try to study any new concept or solve any new problem. Skim through the study text and practice kit to focus on memorizing the important concepts, theory topics, and formulas if required.

THINGS TO REMEMBER WHILE WRITING THE EXAM

After months of all the efforts and hard work you would’ve put into the preparation for this exam, it is equally important to ace your exam. Here are some things to remember-

  1. Time Management: It is important to complete the paper on time. Remember, Time Management is the key to a success! Section C of your paper can be very time consuming so make sure that you complete Section A and B as quickly as possible and give enough time to Section C

Time Management during the exam:

PAPER FR TOTAL
Section A 15 OTQ’s * 2.67 mins 40 minutes
Section B 15 case study OTQ’s * 2.67 mins 40 minutes
Section C 2 questions * 45 mins each 90 minutes
Final check 10 minutes
TOTAL 180 minutes
  1. Do not stress or panic during the exam, stay calm write all you know. If you freak out, it is possible that you mess with other straightforward, manageable, and scoring questions.
  2. Do not leave any question unattempted
    • For your OTQ’s there is always a 25% probability to get the answer right, place your bet and mark the option you believe is the closest to the answer.
    • For constructed response questions there is no negative marking. So, based on your understanding of the concepts make sure you form an answer to every question asked.
  3. Be prepared to find a different and new style of questions (especially in Ratio Analysis), with patience and linking to the concepts of your syllabus you should be able to tackle them well.
  4. Better to start with Section A first, then Section B, and lastly Section C, i.e. FOLLOW THE ORDER!!! Do not spend too much time finding answers to questions you are not able to crack. Section C: make sure for the numerical questions you show the workings along with the solution wherever needed. For theoretical questions write enough to earn marks. One healthy and valid point is worth 1 mark.

EXAMINER’S EXPECTATIONS

The ACCA publishes an Examiner’s Report for every attempt which gives an insight into the marking process, the common mistakes that students make during the exams, and other useful techniques to do well in your examination. You must go through the Examiner’s Reports to understand what the examiner is expecting from you. It will help you understand how students have failed to tackle different questions and how they could have performed better. It’s like learning from someone else’s mistakes. You can follow through this link to refer to a few of the examiner’s reports published by the ACCA

All the best 😊

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Summary of all links

Technical articles published by ACCA

ACCA FR express notes

Blank workspace provided by the ACCA

ACCA Practice Platform

Examiner’s reports published by the ACCA

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