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Post Info TOPIC: Self-study Martial


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Self-study Martial


Hi Everyone,

I am a part-time teacher and want to do AAT Level 2. I have a lot of free time on my own, so I am thinking about doing self-study instead of going for a training provider. Could anyone give me some directions on what books I should get and what website I can use? Do I need to pay for the SAGE software to learn the software? Is SAGE a part of the exam? Why do I need to Join AAT's membership? If I don't join, Can I still sit for the examinations/assessments? I am not so sure how the system works and estimating if it's doable for me. I hope you can give me some advice.

Thank you for your help in advance!

Phoebe



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Hi Pheobe,

Before giving any advice, what are your long term goals? Is it to set up as a bookkeeper or work towards being an accountant. Do you intend to work for someone else or for yourself?

Someone else will need to take the Sage part of the question. I don't know whether Sage still do the trial versions of their software for learning it as like other software houses they are attempting to force everyone down the pay per month route (sounds like randsomware doesn;t it, lol).

Hope o talk soon,

Shaun.


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Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



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Hi Shaun,

Thank you for your prompt reply.

I have done some research about AAT and ICB. I plan to do AAT, and hopefully, I can find a job and see how it goes. In the long term, I would like to run my practice. I can apply for an exemption to move over to the ICB if I feel it's right for me to do so. I hope it's realistic enough to meet the natural world and not just my ideal dreams!!! :)

If I do self-study, I might miss one or two sessions if I don't have any training provider! I know I need to do Unit 1-Bookkeeping Transactions, Unit 2-Bookkeeping Controls, Unit 3-Computerised Accounting, Unit 4-Elements of Costing, Unit 5-Working Effectively in Finance. What learning materials will cover all these five units?

Shaun, Thank you so much for taking your time to answer all my questions.

Phoebe



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Hi Pheobe,

I'm ACCA rather than AAT but like yourself I self studied (although I was already experienced so bit of an advantage). ACCA is a lot more in depth but there are restrictions as to what you are allowed to do whilst being a member of the ACCA no matter which other body you are a member of and what they will allow you to do so transferring to something like ICB would require that you stepped down your ACCA membership. But, if you did the first nine ACCA papers then you are prepared for what its really like working as a bookkeeper whicvh is less about pure bookkeeping (That ends at trial balance) and more about being a cheaper accountant as you will find that clients want you to prepare reports and give advice.

There are a few publishers that produce materials for the AAT exams. You want both the study text and the question bank. But other things that they produce such as flash cards you could make yourself. In fact thats a really good idea to get some index cards in to put questions or mnemomics on one side with what you should know on the other... Keep it simile such as one side what is the accounting equation on one side and Capital = Assets - Liabilities on the other. Thats just a simple one to start you off. It's doubtful you would need to write that one down.

Publishing houses I recomend for AAT are Osbourne (written specifically for AAT), BPP or Kaplan (those publishers take their ACCA materials and throw half the book away).

Maybe as a cheaper starting point than going straight for AAT if you are not 100% sure what you are letting yourself in for would be ACCA-X where the study itself is free but you pay for the exams www.accaglobal.com/uk/en/student/tuition-study-options/different-tuition/acca-x-online-courses-from-acca.html

Also enrole for free for online lectures with Opentuition opentuition.com/acca/ the two that would be useful are ACCA and FIA. CIMA is really geared towards managemnt accountancy only.

I'm actually trying to guide you towards free materials so that you get a feel for whether this is as you expect it to be before shelling out a lot of money becoming properly qualified (MAAT, ACCA, etc.). Also, if you do ACCA-X and use open tuition ACCA materials there is no reason that you could not take the ICB exams then trade as a bookkeeper under them but with a higher level of knowledge.

I few years ago one of the guys on here, spam kebab was looking at doing AAT. I similarly advised him to study ACCA to pass AAT and he actually went on to become an tutor with an AAT tuition provider.

Hope that helps and even if you go a different route, there are a lot of free study materials in the above to get your teeth into.

Good luck with everything,

Shaun.



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Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.



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PhoebeY wrote:

Hi Everyone,

I am a part-time teacher


Hi Phoebe

Welcome to the forum (i thought all teachers were part time!)

Have a look at Osborne for the learning materials, you can purchase the books for each unit as you go, I used them when I self studied AAT many years ago, i think they still use Sage for the accounting software unit so you may need to purchase this or as Shaun says they may still do a trial version, if things are still the same then you need to be a student member of AAT to enable you to book the exams and sit them externally.

Good luck



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Doug

These are only my opinions of how I see things and therefore should not be taken as advice



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Hi Shaun,

Thank for the very useful info.

I have joined a course with edx but I found I can't do it as I have to stare at my laptop screen for hours. It's just too much for me. I need to get some books to study. Many thanks again.

Phoebe



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Hi Doug,

Thank you for your reply that's what I was looking for. So I need to join the membership of AAT to enable me to do the exams.

Many thanks

Phoebe



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Member

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PhoebeY wrote:

I can't do it as I have to stare at my laptop screen for hours. It's just too much for me.

Phoebe


How will that work when you get a job in this profession then. Huge %age of it is screen time. More so with impending making tax digital. You might need to factor that into your ambitions.



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Tax Agent makes a very good point Pheobe.

You can study from the books although more and more now the books com with online content as well. But when doing this for real your life will be living in front of screens. If you use a laptop for real work you need to attach it to a couple of big screens. I use a couple of 24 inch monitors and thats barely enough. You will have your accounting software open on one, Excel on the other. possibly several spreadsheets each with many tabs. Personally the only thing that I tend to have open on the laptop screen is email.

The hours can be very long. Generally 12+ hours and pretty much all of that will be sat in front of your screen(s)... On the bright side if this is for you then you won't notice the hours but rather you'll look up and think "When did it get dark outside?". Training companies may sell you on the idea that you can set your own hours and work around other commitments. What they actually mean is that this job becomes your life and by other commitments they actually mean interuptions from othr clients.

Touched on above is what I believe is the key skill to any role in finance. Excel. Lots of people think that they can use it but if one's idea of Excel expertise is being able to do a Vlookup (which you shouldn't use) then I would suggest studying courses by Leila Gharani. She's on Youtube but the better courses are on Udemy (try to set your target at less than 13.99 per course on Udemy and wait for the sales... There is a lot oof crap on there so stick to tutors that others advise. I like Leila Gharani, Malvern Analytics, Ian Littlejohn and Kyle Pew... In that order).

The main thing is though before taking the first step you should really think about what the role entails which is generally many, many hours sat in front of screens attemping to unravel the mess that clients have made.... And sometimes they can hide things really well.

You may be finding the double entry studies a bit soul destroying at the moment but they are important as the principle is that there are two parts to every transaction. Where the money comes from and where it goes to. Undertstanding that and how the movements relate to the fiancial stateents is fundamentally what you are learning. Once that is hard wired then things start to get more interesting and you can then start relating the record keeping to financial reporting standards and tax rules. It's a slow and difficult process where a lot of people fall out along the way. But, if you really take to it then no matter where your career takes you your studies will improve your prospects.

Good luck with your studies,

Shaun.



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Shaun

Responses are not meant as a substitute for professional advice. Answers are intended as outline only the advice of a qualified professional with access to all relevant information should be sought before acting on any response given.

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