So, you’ve finished the AAT Professional Diploma in Accounting. What, you may be asking yourself, is your next step? For many, the Level 4 qualification and the subsequent AAT memberships provide all the practical knowledge and experience needed to begin a career in accounting. Others, however, may see AAT as a stepping stone on the path to achieving full Chartered Accountant status. Today we’ll discuss the career path students might take to get from AAT to the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) Professional Qualification.

What is CIMA?

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) is a professional awarding body that combines accounting, finance and management in its qualifications. With a CIMA qualification, you’ll be able to work across a broad range of business roles.

Entry Requirements for CIMA

If you’re just leaving school or have an undergraduate degree, you begin by studying the CIMA Certificate in Business Accounting and then move onto the CIMA Professional Qualification. There are no formal entry requirements for the Certificate in Business Accounting course. If, however, you want to move onto the CIMA Professional Qualification straight away, you’ll need an MBA or Master’s degree in Accounting, or an AAT Professional Diploma in Accounting (Level 4).

CIMA Professional Qualification

The CIMA Professional Qualification is globally recognised as a sign of excellence in accounting and business. Once completed, graduates of the programme are awarded the Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA) designation.

Gaining the qualification takes around four years and is split into three learning levels: operational, management, and strategic. Students of CIMA will take a total of twelve examinations.

Operational Level

The operational level involves focusing on short-term implementation of strategy and reporting.

Management Level

The management level looks at how strategy is developed at senior levels and communicated to lower levels. The focus moves from short-term, to mid-term.

Strategic Level

The strategic level focuses on long-term thinking through strategic decisions and how to create an environment where those decisions can be implemented.

Interested in becoming a CIMA chartered accountant? Find a path that suits you by contacting Aspiring Accountants today.


Please enter your comment!
Please enter your name here

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.