The AAT Accountancy Qualification

The AAT Accountancy Qualification consists of three qualifications over three levels - introductory, intermediate and advanced.

Foundation Certificate in Accounting - Level 2

The Foundation Certificate in Accounting is where you'll get to develop your skills in finance administration: double-entry bookkeeping, basic costing principles and purchase, sales and general ledgers.

It's ideal if you're new to finance or you're looking to brush up on your basic knowledge and skills.

Learning Hours: 210

Bookkeeping Transactions
  • Understanding financial transactions within a bookkeeping system
  • Process customer transactions
  • Process supplier transactions
  • Process receipts and payments
  • Process transactions through the ledgers to the trial balance
Bookkeeping Controls
  • Understand payment methods
  • Understand controls in a bookkeeping system
  • Use control accounts
  • Use the journal
  • Reconcile a bank statement with the cash book
Elements of Costing
  • Understand the cost recording system within an organisation
  • Use cost recording techniques
  • Provide information on actual and budgeted costs and income
Using Accounting Software
  • Set up accounting software
  • Process sales and purchases transactions
  • Process bank and cash transactions
  • Perform period end routine tasks
  • Produce reports
Synoptic Assessment: Work Effectively in Finance
  • Understand the finance function within an organisation
  • Use personal skills development in finance
  • Produce work effectively
  • Understand corporate social responsibility (CSR), ethics and sustainability within organisations

We recommend sitting Processing Bookkeeping Transactions before Control Accounts, Journals, and the Banking Systems.

Advanced Diploma in Accounting - Level 3

At the Advanced Diploma in Accounting level, you'll master more complex financial processes, including final accounts for sole traders and partnerships, reports and returns and professional ethics.

It's ideal if you have some accountancy experience or training.

Learning Hours: 305

On successful completion you will be awarded the Advanced Diploma in Accounting - Level 3.

Advanced Bookkeeping
  • Apply the principles of advanced double-entry bookkeeping
  • Implement procedures for the acquisition and disposal of non-current assets
  • Prepare and record depreciation calculations
  • Record period end adjustments
  • Produce and extend the trial balance
Final Accounts Preparation
  • Distinguish between the financial recording and reporting requirements of different types of organisation
  • Explain the need for final accounts and the accounting and ethical principles underlying their preparation
  • Prepare accounting records from incomplete information
  • Produce accounts for sole traders
  • Produce accounts for partnerships
  • Recognise the key differences between preparing accounts for a limited company and a sole trader
Management Accounting: Costings
  • Understand the purpose and use of management accounting within an organisation
  • Apply techniques required for dealing with costs
  • Apportion costs according to organisational requirements
  • Analyse and review deviations from budget and report these to management
  • Apply management accounting techniques to support decision making
Indirect Tax
  • Understand and apply VAT legislation requirements
  • Accurately complete VAT returns and submit them in a timely manner
  • Understand the implications for the business of errors, omissions and late filing and payment
  • Report VAT-related information within the organisation in accordance with regulatory and organisational requirement
Synoptic Assessment: Ethics for Accountants
  • Understand the need to act ethically
  • Understand the relevance to the accountant’s work of the ethical code for professional accountants
  • Recognise how to act ethically in an accounting role
  • Identify action to take in relation to unethical behaviour or illegal acts
Synoptic Assessment: Spreadsheets for Accounting
  • Design and structure appropriate spreadsheets to meet customer needs
  • Use spreadsheet software to record, format and organise data
  • Use relevant tools to manipulate and analyse data
  • Use software tools to verify accuracy and protect data
  • Use tools and techniques to prepare and report accounting information

We recommend completing Accounts Preparation before Prepare Final Accounts for Sole Traders and Partnerships.

Professional Diploma in Accounting - Level 4 Mandatory Units

The Professional Diploma level covers financial team leader skills, including financial statements for limited companies, complex management accounting tasks, management skills and specialist learning areas. It's perfect if you progressed through Levels 2 and 3, or are at a more advanced stage in your career and want a qualification to give you the confidence and proof that you have the skills to do the job.

Learning Hours: 380

You need to take all four mandatory papers and then choose two of the five optional ones which allow you to specialise in areas from tax to auditing and credit control.

On successful completion of Levels 3 and 4 you will be awarded the AAT Accountancy Qualification. With proof of one year past relevant work experience you'll be able to apply to become a full member of AAT and use the letters MAAT after your name.

Financial Statements of Limited Companies
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the reporting frameworks and ethical principles that underpin financial reporting
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the key features of a published set of financial statements
  • Draft statutory financial statements for a limited company
  • Draft consolidated financial statements
  • Interpret financial statements using ratio analysis
Management Accounting: Budgeting
  • Prepare forecasts of income and expenditure
  • Prepare budgets
  • Demonstrate how budgeting can improve organisational performance
  • Report budgetary information to management in a clear and appropriate format
Management Accounting: Decision and Control
  • Analyse a range of costing techniques to support the management accounting function of an organisation
  • Calculate and use standard costing to improve performance
  • Demonstrate a range of statistical techniques to analyse business information
  • Use appropriate financial and non-financial performance techniques to aid decision making
  • Evaluate a range of cost management techniques to enhance value and aid decision making
Synoptic Assessment: Accounting Systems and Controls
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the role and responsibilities of the accounting function within an organisation
  • Evaluate internal control systems
  • Evaluate an organisation’s accounting system and underpinning procedures
  • Analyse recommendations made to improve an organisation’s accounting system

Professional Diploma in Accounting - Level 4 Optional units

In addition to the mandatory papers, you must also take two optional papers.

Personal Tax
  • Analyse the theories, principles and rules that underpin taxation systems
  • Calculate a UK taxpayer’s total income
  • Calculate income tax and National Insurance (NI) contributions payable by a UK taxpayer
  • Account for capital gains tax
  • Discuss the basics of inheritance tax
Business Tax
  • Complete tax returns for sole traders and partnerships and prepare supporting tax computations
  • Complete tax returns for limited companies and prepare supporting tax computations
  • Provide advice on the UK’s tax regime and its impact on sole traders, partnerships and limited companies
  • Advise business clients on tax reliefs, and their responsibilities and their agent’s responsibilities in reporting taxation to HMRC
  • Prepare tax computations for the sale of capital assets
Credit Management
  • Analyse relevant legislation and contract law that has an impact on the credit control environment
  • Critically analyse information from a variety of sources to assess credit risk and grant credit in compliance with organisational policies and procedures
  • Evaluate a range of techniques to collect debts
  • Critically evaluate credit control in line with organisational policies and procedures
  • Present advice and recommendations to management on the credit control system
Cash and Treasury Management
  • Use statistical techniques and financial information to prepare forecasts of cash receipts and payments
  • Prepare cash budgets and monitor cash flows within the organisation
  • Evaluate the principles of cash management within the context of regulation and government monetary policies
  • Evaluate ways of raising finance in accordance with organisational requirements
  • Evaluate ways of investing surplus funds within organisational policies
External Auditing
  • Demonstrate an understanding of the principles of auditing
  • Demonstrate the importance of professional ethics
  • Evaluate the audited entity's system of internal control
  • Evaluate audit procedures for obtaining audit evidence
  • Evaluate the planning process
  • Evaluate audit procedures


Please note – BPP cannot exempt you from either Level 2 or Level 3 of the AAT qualification. We can only advise you which level is the most appropriate start point for you. Students with basic accounts knowledge and experience can exempt themselves from Level 2 if they wish. To determine the best level to start at simply complete the AAT online skills check here.

We accept no responsibility for any student denied full membership of the AAT.