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Benchmarking CIMA Qualifications

UK NARIC has recently completed a benchmarking exercise on behalf of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), to evaluate the entry level Certificate in Business Accounting and the three levels of the CIMA Professional Qualification, based on their updated syllabus to be offered from 2015, against the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF).

The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) is a global professional body offering training and qualifications in management accountancy and related subjects, focused on accounting for business. To summarise the structure of the Professional Qualification:

  • The first of the three levels is the operational level which leads to the CIMA Diploma in Management Accounting.
  • The second (management) level leads to the CIMA Advanced Diploma in Management Accounting
  • The third level, strategic, culminates in the award of the CGMA professional designation following successful assessment of practical experience. 

UK NARIC applied its well-established methodology firstly to review the CIMA qualifications in terms of their design and underpinning quality assurance processes and secondly to provide in-depth analysis of the CIMA learning outcomes against the QCF Level descriptors. The process aimed to determine the comparability of the CIMA qualification learning outcomes and assessed skills in terms of the level of knowledge and understanding, action and application and autonomy and accountability strands of the QCF descriptors.

Based on the results of the study, UK NARIC can confirm the following levels of comparability for the CIMA qualifications against the QCF: 

CIMA Qualification 

Comparability to the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF)

Certificate in Business Accounting

Considered comparable to QCF Level 4 standard

Diploma in Management Accounting

Considered comparable to QCF Level 5 standard

Advanced Diploma in Management Accounting

Considered comparable to QCF Level 6 standard

Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA)

Considered comparable to QCF Level 7 standard

The overall level of comparability of the CGMA designation can be summarised as follows:

CIMA Qualification 

Overall Comparability Statement

Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA)

Considered comparable to British Master’s degree standard

Commenting on behalf of UK NARIC, Lisa Collett, Head of Global Division said “The outcome of Master’s level comparability for the CGMA designation is testament to the overall rigour of the newly revised CIMA professional qualification. The results will be disseminated via our international networks, helping to ensure that both incoming and outgoing CIMA qualification holders continue to receive recognition at the appropriate level of achievement.”

Dr Noel Tagoe, Executive Director of Education for CIMA said that: “CIMA is very pleased with the independent evaluation of the level of our qualification by UK NARIC.  The qualification was based on rigorous research conducted with our stakeholders all over the world.  Our aim is to provide relevant and robust curriculum that produces confident and competent accounting professionals who contribute to the success of the organisations for which they work.”


17/11/2014 12:01:00
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