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CIMA - Diploma in Management Accounting - Operational Level

Course Information

  • Course Code: EC353
  • Duration: 52 weeks x 3 hours
  • Price: £2050.00
  • Times: 18:00-21:00
  • Delivery Type: PT

Start Dates

  • Tuesday, 03 November 2020

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The Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA) is the world’s leading, and largest, professional body of management accountants.  Their unique blend of management accounting, financial accounting and business-focused subjects produces competent and confident Chartered Graduate Management Accountants (CGMAs) who can lead their organisations to sustainable success.  CIMA ensures that you’re studying the most relevant qualification for a career in finance and business and they are with you every step of the way as you work towards gaining the globally recognised CGMA designation.

The Professional Qualifications focus on employability – bridging the skills gaps of newly qualified finance professionals worldwide, meeting the needs of both business and people.  The syllabus is truly competency based, enabling you to develop the skills employers are really looking for, including technical, finance and business skills as well as people and leadership skills. Our industry leading assessments test your application of knowledge in real world business situations.

Passing all CIMA exams is a demonstration to employers that you not only have the knowledge, but also the competencies and skills of a Chartered Global Management Accountant (CGMA). Passing the CIMA Diploma in Management Accounting - Operational Level is the first part of this process before you progress to higher levels to become fully qualified.

Why come to Blackburn College?

  • Teacher trained and sector specific qualified tutors
  • Purpose built facilities
  • Class sizes that allow you to discuss topics with your peers and gain quality time with your tutors
  • Renowned for providing an excellent student experience with an emphasis on pastoral care throughout
  • Excellent library facilities
  • Pay NO VAT. You wil find our fees could be up to 20% cheaper than private training providers.

Why this level?

The Operational Level is the first level of the Professional Qualification suite and consists of three computer-based Objective Tests and one Case Study exam.  The Operational level covers the implementation of strategy, as well as reporting on the implementation of strategy.  

What will I study?

This course is the first level of the CIMA Professional Qualification and consists of three subject areas and a case study module.

You will learn how to:

  • Prepare financial statements
  • Provide management accounting information
  • Use appropriate tools for decision making through a broad understanding of business

After successfully completing this level, you will receive the CIMA Diploma in Management Accounting - Operational Level (CIMA Dip MA).

Modules include: 

Organisational Management

This module focuses on the structuring of organisations. It covers the structure and principles underpinning the operational functions of the organisation, their efficient management and effective interaction in enabling the organisation to achieve its strategic objectives. It lays the foundation for gaining further insight into both the immediate operating environment and long-term strategic future of organisations.

Each module is divided into a number of broad syllabus topics - all topics will be examined. Topics covered in this module include:

  • Introduction to Organisations
  • Managing the Finance Function
  • Managing Technology and Information
  • Operations Management
  • Marketing
  • Managing Human Resources 

Management Accounting

Management Accounting stresses the importance of costs and the drivers of costs in the production, analysis and use of information for decision making in organisations. You will covers budgeting as a means of short-term planning to execute the strategy of organisations. In addition this module provides competencies on how to analyse information on costs, volumes and prices to take short-term decisions on products and services and to develop an understanding on the impact of risk to these decisions.

Each module is divided into a number of broad syllabus topics - all topics will be examined. Topics covered in this module include:

  • Cost Accounting Systems
  • Budgeting
  • Short-term decision making
  • Dealing with risk and uncertainty


Financial Reporting and Taxation

Financial Reporting and Taxation covers the regulation and preparation of financial statements and how the information contained in them can be used. It provides the competencies required to produce financial statements for both individual entities and groups using appropriate international financial reporting standards. It also gives insight into how to effectively source and manage cash and working capital, which are essential for both the survival and success of organisations. The final part focuses on the basic principles and application of business taxation. The competencies gained from this module form the basis for developing further insights into producing and analysing complex group accounts and formulating and implementing financial strategy.  

Each module is divided into a number of broad syllabus topics - all topics will be examined. Topics covered in this module include:

  • Regulatory Environment for Financial Reporting and Corporate Governance
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting
  • Management of Working Capital, Cash and Sources of Short-term Finance
  • Fundamentals on Business Taxation 

Operational Case Study

In the Operational Case Study exam, your role will be that of a Finance Officer.  The Case Study module is  a virtual business role play. Therefore, you will need to understand yourrole within the scenario you are presented with and demonstrate your knowledge and skills learnt from the other modules in the syllabus.

We’re including the following, free of charge:

  • All study texts
  • Revision cards
  • Exam kits                                                            
    • (worth over £250)


  • Career Advice & Guidance
    • In order to help students progress in their chosen finance career, we have enlisted the skills of Rachel Mitson, an experienced professional offering specialised industry knowledge from working with a variety of business’ across the North West.   Rachel will use her extensive experience of the accounting and finance industries to offer advice and guidance to all candidates on our CIMA programme.
    • She will actively support students with resourceful information, advice and techniques gathered during her 15 years’ experience in the recruitment industry in order to best develop their career. 
    • Rachel has an excellent working knowledge of all the relevant finance qualifications and is well placed to advise students on their future development within their chosen role.


Entry Requirements

Entry requirements

To attend this course, you must have one of the following qualifications:

  • Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA) Certificate in Business Accounting
  • Degree in Business or Accounting
  • Association Accounting Technicians Diploma - Level 4

Evidence of previous qualification must be provided with your application for you to be accepted onto the course.


As regards working experience, CIMA do not have requirements by year of study, but once studying you will need to gain as many of the criteria as possible stated at the link below, throughout your studies at this level and through the full professional tier of qualifications:

If English is not your first language, evidence of achieving one of the following English Language qualifications within the last two years is also required: IELTS Academic Module with an overall score of 6.5 (each component pass mark must be 6.0 or above), or Cambridge Certificate of Advanced English (grade B or above is required). CIM will consider other equivalent alternatives.


How will I be assessed?

For the three main modules you will be assessed by a 90 minute computer-based examination test which will be held at Pearson VUE Centre rather than on campus at Blackburn College. There are test centres in Bolton, Salford and Manchester. You will be responsible for your organisation of travel to a test centre. 

These tests are comprised of a range of items including short multiple choice questions, number entry questions, drag and drop questions and other formats. 

The Case Study Examination is also a computer-based test. This lasts 3 hours. The Case Study test is used to test a variety of skills including research and analysis, how to present information, persuasion and communication skills. Case Study exams reflect a real life business scenario, comprising a series of time bound tasks set for students to complete based on pre-seen material.

What can I do next?

It is our intention to offer  the next CIMA Level (Advanced Diploma) following completion of the Operational Level.

After successfully completing this level however, you will receive the CIMA Diploma in Management Accounting - Operational Level and be able to use the following desigatory letters after your name (CIMA Dip MA). You may choose to use this qualification to increase your chance of promotion or move into an Accounting role. Typical roles that students studying the CIMA Diploma go on to achieve include Junior Financial Accountants and Junior Management Accountants.


For more information

For more information about this course, contact our specialist team on 01254 29 25 00 or email

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