Search

Key exam updates

The 2019 Professional Qualification continues to bridge the skills gap of newly qualified finance professionals worldwide, meeting the employability needs of both business and people. As the part of the 2019 Professional Qualification and its continued roll out, we will update this page with key updates and FAQs which will ensure you are able to continue your studies without disruption.

Objective Test Results from November 2019

Whilst we begin to deliver exam results for the 2019 Professional Qualification in November, for an interim period exam results information will look a little different. You will receive one of the following grades:
- pass
- fail

- marginal fail (an indication of closeness to passing)
- proficient/not proficient (sectional feedback)

You won’t immediately be provided with a scaled score mark.*

We feel it is best to share your result straight away with you, rather than having to wait several months as we build the data set needed to give you a statistically verified scaled score mark.* Providing results straight away will allow you to make decisions on your next steps and move swiftly through the Professional Qualification towards earning your CGMA designation.

Once we build a data set robust enough to be able to offer a fair scaled score mark, we will begin publishing scores for exams going forward.

*Your result will be determined using an assessment industry standard methodology to ensure they are fair, rigorous and robust.

Objective Test FAQs

How will I find out about my objective test exam result?

Your result will be available in the usual way. You will receive a provisional result (pass/fail) at the test centre immediately after you have finished your exam. Within 48hrs, your confirmed pass/marginal fail/fail result with sectional feedback will be available via your MYCIMA account.

Why won’t I receive a scaled score as part of exam results from November 2019?

With the introduction of the new syllabus, we now need to gather sufficient results from the new exams to be able to produce scaled scores and accurately report on the outcomes of the exams. Until then we will provide confirmation of your performance as pass/marginal fail/fail result and you will not receive a percentage score. This will still enable you to make decision on next steps and move forward with your studies

Do I need a result with a percentage score to move forward with my exams?

No. The information we provide (pass/marginal fail/fail result) is sufficient for you to make a decision on next steps and move swiftly towards completing your CIMA Professional Qualification. We feel it is more important that you receive your result in a timely manner than having to wait for a sufficient cohort of students to sit the exam before being able to receive a scaled score result.

What is a marginal fail?

After your exam we will provide a pass, a marginal fail or fail result. A marginal fail identifies candidates who failed their exam by 5% margin of the passing standard. Our research shows that students who put effort into their preparation and marginally failed an exam have a 90% chance of passing if they re-sit the exam within 3-4 weeks.

Will the passing standard change?

No. The passing standard is based on the level of skill required for a role within an organisation as set out in the blueprints. This has not changed with the introduction of the 2019 syllabus, although some of the syllabus content examined has changed. The passing standard is determined using an assessment industry accepted method and we will continue to publish the overall annual pass rates for objective test exams on our website every quarter.

Updates to Case Study exams from February 2020

-          You can sit case studies over a three day window. These are based on the most popular days our students sit exams

-          The same pre-seen material will be used over two exam windows (May and August/ November and February)

-          There will be a one off pre-seen used for the first Case Study exam sitting window in February 2020

-          For the final case study re-sit under the 2015 Syllabus, the same pre-seen material will be used from the case study exam taking place in November 2019

Case Study FAQs

What is changing with the case study exam?

The format and length of case study exam remains the same but there are some practical changes you should be aware of:

 

  • The first 2019 CIMA Professional Qualification case study exams will take place on Wednesdays, Thursdays and Fridays only from February 2020 onwards.
  • We have introduced exam blueprints to help you know what is examinable in the case study exams.
  • We will share pre-seen material over two exam sessions (May and August, November and February).
  • Your results will provide improved sectional feedback via MYCIMA account.
  • Post exam support material will be withdrawn as we will be sharing pre-seen materials over two exam sittings. They will be available after the 2nd exam sitting of each pre-seen.

Do I need to do anything differently?

Not really. There is new content in the 2019 syllabus and blueprint, which you should be fully up-to-date with, but other than that the case study exam is still the same length, format and has pre-seen material. We will continue to issue your results six weeks after the exam, this includes a pass/fail grade with a scaled score and sectional feedback.

On what days will I be able to sit my Case Study exam?

The first 2019 CIMA Professional Qualification case study exams will be in February 2020. Exams can be booked on a Wednesday, Thursday or Friday as follows:

  • Operation level exams: 2nd full week of the month
  • Management level exams: 3rd full week of the month
  • Strategic level exams: 4th full week of the month

For more detail please see the exam timetable

 

Why are you using the November 2019 pre-seen materials for resits in February 2020?

We want to give students who failed the November 2019 case study exam one more chance to pass their exam under the 2015 syllabus. By using the same pre-seen material students can continue to develop their skills and competencies without the added distraction of learning about another simulated organisation.

 

Will I be able to reuse my pre-seen materials for any scheduled resits?

No, the pre-seen materials are used for specific exams only. One pre-seen will be used for the May and August exams, and another for the November and February exams.

Will reusing pre-seen material put resitting students at an advantage?

No, we develop several exams based on the same pre-seen material and each exam is different. You can expect each exam to cover the core activities as set out in the blueprint. While it is possible that core activities examined in the first session could be examined again in a different scenario, it will not put students resitting their exam at an advantage.

What are the changes being made to the format of case study exam results?

You have told us that the current sectional feedback is hard to interpret and act on, so we have changed the way we deliver this to you. We have updated the result format so you can easily identify the areas in the exam where you performed well and critically, should you have failed, where you underperformed – these insights will assist in preparation for your next exam or resit. The overall pass/fail grade and the passing score of 80 (or above) will remain the same.

Exemption fees

As part of our commitment to fairness and inclusivity, as of 1 August 2019, CIMA has removed exemption fees for all new students to ensure that, together, we grow a diverse, dynamic and future-ready profession with you at the heart of it.

I applied for my exemptions at any time before 1 January 2019 so have had to pay for them. What about me?

For exemptions applications submitted on any date before 31 July 2019, there will be no refunds and the fee will remain payable if not already paid. This is because the exemptions have already been awarded to your account before the change in policy, therefore are still payable if not already paid. If you would like more information please see our exemptions policy.

I applied for my exemptions between 1 January 2019 and 31 August 2019 and claimed them so had to pay for them. What will you do for me?

It’s not possible for us to refund exemption fees already paid. However, if you schedule and sit an exam between 1 August –31 December 2019, we will credit your account with the difference between the old exam price and new exam price in place from 1 August 2019. This credit can be used towards your 2020 subscription payment.

For example, under tier 1 the old price for an Objective Test was £95. From 1 August 2019 under tier 1 an Objective Test costs £110. Therefore, if you schedule and sit your Objective Test between 1 August and 31 December 2019, you will receive £15 credit on your CIMA account.

I understand I will get credit. When will this be applied to my account?

Your credit will be applied automatically to your account in line with the subscription cycle opening later in 2019.  These credits can be used to pay towards the 2020 student, exams complete or member subscription.

I entered/want to enter the CIMA Professional Qualification through a pathway/gateway. Does this policy change affect me?

Gateway and experiential programmes are standalone products with separate value propositions and are therefore priced differently to the standard CIMA Professional Qualification entry route.

In many cases, this affords individuals with very favourable entry points in to the CIMA Qualification along with access to structured learning/exam preparation and other benefits not available to standard entry students.

£0 exemption fees are not applicable for students entering via the following Gateway and experiential/educational programmes:
• CFO programmes 
• CSEP programme 
• CPP programme 
• A Star programme 
• Tutor/Academic programmes 
• Masters and Professional Gateway programmes
 
Only students coming through the standard CIMA Qualification entry routes are affected by the removal of exemption fees.