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Chartered Institute of Management Accountants(CIMA)

CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting

The CIMA certificate in Business Accounting is ideal for people who are new to the world of business qualifications because it offers a solid grounding in the basics of Management accounting, financial accounting and business. It is also the entry route to the CIMA Training Professional Qualification.

Entry to the CIMA CBA is open to all. Regardless of your financial knowledge or education background. However, if you have studied a relevant qualification at university you may be eligible for exemptions from one or more subjects.

There are five subjects at the certificate level that you must successfully complete.

Paper C01 – Fundamentals of Management Accounting
Paper C02 – Fundamentals of Financial Accounting
Paper C03 – Fundamentals of Business Maths
Paper C04 – Fundamentals of Business Economics
Paper C05 – Fundamentals of Ethics, Corporate Governance and Business Law

The performance is tested by computer based assessment (CBA), which offers three main benefits;

you can be assessed at your nearest CBA centre whenever you’re ready, your results and feedback
are available immediately and if you need to, you can re-sit at any time and place that suits you. The assessments can also be taken in any order at anytime and in any combination to suit your needs.

Operational level

The three papers at this level are:
E1: Enterprise Operations
P1: Performance Operations
F1: Financial Operations

The E1: enterprise operations paper addresses several functional areas of business, and introduces candidates to the economic, social and political contexts of international business.
Learning requirements for the sections dealing with information systems, operations, marketing and managing human capital will alert students to major developments, and tools and techniques.

This paper deals with tools and techniques that generate information needed to evaluate and control present and projected performance. Both budgeting and project appraisal emphasize the critical importance of optimizing cash flow. The final section of the paper continues this theme from the perspective of managing working capital.

This paper’s core objectives are preparation of full financial statements for a single company and the principal consolidated financial statements for a simple group.
Coverage of a wide range of international standards is implicit in these objectives. The understanding the regulatory and ethical context of financial reporting is vital.
Principles of taxation are included.


Students who pass all three operational level papers will be awarded the CIMA diploma in management accounting.

Management Level

The three papers at this level are:

E2: Enterprise Management
P2: Performance Management
F3: Financial Management


E2 moves towards an holistic, integrated view of management across an organisation.
Building on important concepts in strategic management, this paper develops tools and techniques for identifying key types of competitive environments. Project management skills and tools are also addressed.
The paper also introduces the skills and tools needed to work with, manage and develop teams. This includes both the legal aspects of managing individuals, as well as the softer elements of negotiation and leadership skills.


F2 extends to more advanced topics in financial accounting (preparation of full consolidated financial statements and issues of principle in accounting standards dealing with more complex areas) and to developments in external reporting.


The main focus of paper P2 is the application of information in the management processes of decision making and control to optimise performance.The first two sections deal with the key contributors to operational performance: revenue and costs.

The role of control in monitoring and improving performance comes to the fore in the final two sections, which deal with principles and practices in the use of responsibility centres and budgeting.

Strategic Level

The 3 subjects at this level are :

E3: Enterprise Strategy
P3: Peformance Strategy
F3: Financial Strategy


Paper E3 continues the integration of skills across functions, but concentrates on developing the knowledge and skills used in designing and implementing strategy. Strategy is developed in a context. Understanding how an organisation’s external environment and stakeholders affect strategy development is important. This paper requires application of tools to assist in the evaluation of the performance implications of a given strategy.


Management strategies covered extend to financial instruments, and more general strategies of risk identification and management. With the growing importance of new sources of risk, the paper pays particular attention to risks arising from governance, ethical and social/environmental issues.


F3 deals with key elements in designing and managing the organisation’s financial strategy – in the context of contributing to achieving the organisation’s objectives and within its external constraints. The features and implications of the full range of major financing instruments are covered. A broad range of types of investment decision is also covered. It is recognised throughout that such decisions need to take account of broader strategic issues as well the financial analysis.


Certificate Level – 5 Papers – Online Examination – Anytime
Operational, Management & Strategic Level – 3 Papers each level – Written Examination – In the month of May & November

CIMA CBA – GBP 49 per paper
Operational Level & Management Level – GBP 83 per paper
Strategic Level – GBP 89 per paper

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