ACCA (the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) announced a new agreement with Pearson VUE for the provision of computer based testing (CBT) across ACCA’s Fundamentals Skills Level (F5-F9) exams.
F5-F9 exams will start the transition to CBT towards the end of 2016, with students initially having the choice of CBT or paper exams. ACCA has agreed with learning providers and employers that any changes being introduced across the ACCA Qualification will be phased, ensuring they, and students, have time to adapt to the changes.
Pearson VUE’s experience in delivering CBT is renowned worldwide and is therefore the ideal partner for ACCA in terms of providing a secure and robust exam offering. Additionally the agreement enables ACCA to customise its computer based exams (CBEs) to ensure the continued rigour for which ACCA is known. The F5-F9 exams will continue to have the longer questions in exams that test a student’s ability to apply their knowledge. For these question types there will continue to be expert human-marking.
Helen Brand OBE, chief executive of ACCA, said: “ACCA first introduced CBT for the Fundamental Knowledge exams in 1998 and this agreement with Pearson VUE represents the next stage in ACCA’s transition, ensuring the ACCA Qualification remains relevant to today’s business environment.”
Bob Whelan, managing director of Pearson VUE, said: “This exciting new partnership will allow ACCA to realise its global digital ambitions and deliver assessments which reflect the real-life experience of modern day accounting professionals.”
As part of the new assessments for F5-F9, ACCA will be able to test students’ knowledge and skills in a way that more accurately reflects real-life workplace scenarios and activities. ACCA has an established approach to exam development, assessing students on both their knowledge and the application of that knowledge. This approach to exam development and the continued focus on rigour and application makes ACCA a first choice qualification for employers worldwide.
ACCA selected Pearson VUE to deliver its CBT exam programme because it offers a complete solution including test development tools, a registration and scheduling platform, test centre management tools and a full reporting service. Pearson VUE is providing its ExamDeveloper software to enable ACCA to write new content for the exams. This includes the authoring of advanced question types that test higher order skills and abilities and are more relevant to the accountancy sector.
Pearson VUE is also providing its test centre management applications to allow ACCA to manage the delivery of tests through its own network of test centres. This includes Pearson VUE’s Athena test driver where test papers are fully encrypted up to the point of delivery, improving security.
F5-F9 exams will be available during scheduled windows in March, June, September and December. Practice tests will also be offered to students, providing students with detailed contextual feedback to provide the best preparation for the exams.