We are back with the 2nd issue of ACCA Singapore’s Exams Digest. In this issue, we will focus on revision for the papers F7, F8 and F9. Based on the most recent (June 2016) exam, we have put together bite-sized information to supplement your revision, which includes examiner’s reports, lecturers’ tips, and revision resources.
Apart from these resources, we would like to remind you that there are also quarterly Masterclasses you can attend face-to-face or online to polish up on your exam-taking techniques.
We are committed to help you succeed for the upcoming examinations, whether you are a self-study student or a student with an ALP.
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Summary of Examiner’s Report
Section A questions are intended to examine the syllabus broadly and so candidates need to be competent in all areas of the F7 syllabus, rather than rely on trying to pass by just revising bits of the syllabus.
Section B covered the main syllabus areas of consolidated financial statements (extracts), ratio calculation and analysis and the preparation of single entity’s financial statements.
Sample Section A MCQ topics included:
- Accounting concepts
- Concept of comparability
- Effect on profit or loss on treatment of lease
In Section B, the first question tested on the calculation of extracts for goodwill, retained earnings and non-controlling interest, where most candidates did well and some even gained full marks. However, a number of candidates produced a full consolidated statement of financial position which was not asked for and this could be a waste of time during the exam. Question Two consisted of a short 3 mark section on the calculation of ROCE based on continuing operations as well as calculation of four ratios. The last question was on the familiar and seemingly popular topic of the preparation of the financial statements of a single entity from a trial balance with several adjustments. There were four parts to this question:
- a statement profit or loss and other comprehensive income,
- a statement of changes in equity
- a statement of financial position,
- meaning and usefulness of diluted earnings per share figures
More study resources for F7
Get all that you need to know about the F7 paper here.
Summary of Examiner’s Report
Section A consisted of MCQs that covered a broad range of syllabus topics and candidates managed to attempt all of the questions. Future candidates should aim to revise all areas, rather than attempting to question spot.
Section B had six written questions which tested candidates on:
- Audit framework and regulation
Candidates are to plan their time carefully and list only the required number of issues, as one mark was available for each well-explained issue. Candidates are also to use clear presentation for their answers. In the June exams, most used a two-column format; the first column to identify and explain the issue and the second column to give a recommendation to improve the issue.
- Planning and risk management
As noted in previous Examiner’s Reports a fundamental factor in planning and assessing the risks of an audit of an entity is an assessment of audit risk, and this remains a highly examinable area. Audit risk questions typically require a number of audit risks to be identified (½ marks each), explained (½ marks each) and an auditor’s response to each risk (1 mark each). Performance in the audit risk question in June 2016, as in many previous exams continues to be mixed.
- Internal control
This area of the syllabus requires both an ability to describe and evaluate internal controls techniques and audit tests, and, also an ability to make appropriate recommendations. Internal controls questions remain a highly examinable area and in common with prior sittings, performance in the internal control question in June 2016 was mixed. Internal control questions typically require internal control deficiencies to be identified (½ marks each), explained (½ marks each), a relevant recommendation to address the control (1 mark), and, often a test of control the external auditor would perform to assess whether each of these controls, if implemented, is operating correctly (1 mark).
- Audit evidence
A key requirement of this part of the syllabus is an ability to describe relevant audit procedures for a particular class of transactions or event. Most candidates were unable to tailor their knowledge of general substantive procedures to the specific issues in the question requirements, or provided test of controls rather than substantive procedures or provided vague tests. As addressed in previous Examiner’s Reports candidates must strive to understand substantive procedures. Learning a generic list of tests will not translate to exam success – procedures must be tailored to the specific requirements of the question.
- Review and reporting
Performance was disappointing for the procedures to address each accounting issue. Many of the procedures were impractical or too vague such as “obtaining written representations from management”. Performance on the impact on the auditor’s report was satisfactory, most candidates were able to identify for each issue whether a modification was required and, if so, the type of modification required.
Insights from our ACCA tutor in Singapore
More study resources for F8
Get all that you need to know about the F8 paper here.
Summary of Examiner’s Report
Almost all candidates attempted all questions in Section A, which consisted of 12 objective test questions for a total of 40 marks. Candidates must study the entire syllabus and will not be successful in the examination if they seek to ‘question spot’ in a few selected syllabus areas.
For Section B, do make sure the question requirement is being addressed. For example, if the question requirement is for a discussion, very few marks are likely to be awarded for a brief list. Similarly, if the question requirement is to calculate, very few marks are likely to be given to a discussion, or an explanation of how to carry out the required calculation.
The following topics were tested in the June 2016 exam:
- Working capital management
- Business valuation
- Risk management
- Business Finance
- Investment appraisal
More study resources for F9
Get all that you need to know about the F9 paper here.
Stay tuned for more …..