You may be exempt from certain exams in the CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting and CIMA Professional Qualification if you hold a relevant degree or qualification.

A step by step guide

To apply for exemptions you must:

1. Register as a CIMA student

You can only apply for exemptions once you have registered as a CIMA student.

Register with CIMA

2. Search for your qualification on our database

Our exemption search allows you to find out if your qualification makes you eligible for any exemptions.

Search the database

Can’t find your qualification in the database? You may still be eligible for exemptions.

My degree or qualification isn't in the database

3. Send us your documents

To verify you are eligible for exemptions you’ll need to send us copies of your highest level educational certificates and transcripts. These must include details of the subjects you studied and the marks you achieved. Send your documents to and remember to include your contact ID.

Read about submitting your documents in the exemptions policy.

4. Await confirmation we have received your documents

We will email you confirmation of receiving your documents within 72 hours of receiving them. 

If you’ve faxed your documents to us and don't receive confirmation in 72 hours, please assume we have not received your fax and resend your documentation.

We do not send confirmation of receipts at weekends or on bank holidays, so please factor in this time when waiting to hear from us and resending documents.

5. Accept or decline your exemptions

You have the opportunity to accept or decline any exemptions you have been granted.You need to be sure that you are familiar with the material covered in the exams you are exempt from and you could pass that exam if you took it. Material covered in the early stages of the CIMA qualification is built on in the later stages.

Accepting your exemptions

To accept your exemptions, pay your exemption fees within eight weeks of receiving your exemptions.

Declining exemptions

If you wish to decline any exemptions, you will need to email within eight weeks of receiving confirmation of your exemptions.

If you decline an exemption and then fail that exam you will not be able to reclaim the exemption.

The exams you are exempt from will vary depending on the degree or qualification you hold.

Exemptions are awarded at CIMA’s discretion.

Who is eligible for exam exemptions?

You may qualify for exemptions if you:

  • Are a graduate with a qualification listed in our database of CIMA accredited programmes.
  • Are a graduate of a degree programme that is related to the CIMA syllabus.
  • Are an Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT) student or member.
  • Have an MBA or a Master's in Accounting.
  • Are a member or passed finalist of ICWAI or ICMAB, or a member of ICMAP.
  • Are studying or have completed a relevant qualification with another professional body.

You can search for your qualification in our exemptions database. If your degree or qualification is not listed, you may still be eligible for exemptions.

Search the exemptions database
My degree isn't in the database

How much do exemptions cost?

CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting (per subject) GBP56
Operational and management level objective tests (per subject) GBP73
Operational and management level case study exams (per exam) GBP120
Strategic level objective tests (per subject) GBP120

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