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AAT accountancy level 2 - anyone done this online??

(79 Posts)
fierydormouse Fri 17-Jan-20 22:35:48

Hello! Seeking advice and recommendations!

I am a SAHM but I would like to return to work now my son is at school, and after much thought, I believe an AAT level 2 qualification in accountancy would be a good next step for me.

I wanted to ask, has anyone studied for AAT with a distance/online provider and if so, which one? Would you recommend them? And how long did it take you to get the qualification? Did it work well to study online or do you think a classroom based course would be better?

(A little background...I'm 42 and I've had several years out of the workplace but in the (distant!) past had a few junior accounts/bookeeping roles, mostly in the public sector. I was pretty good at my job and I enjoyed the work, so it seems an obvious area to try and return to, and I think this qualification would really help).

I'd really appreciate any advice!
Many thanks. xx

OP’s posts: |
chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 09:11:43

I did AAT level 2 and 3 just by buying the Kaplan textbooks on Amazon and booking the exams myself. I would recommend this especially for level 2 as you might find it quite easy if you've done similar in the past. Just buy your AAT student membership and this will allow you to access practice exams. You can fly through it in six months or so. Opened a lot of doors for me.

chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 09:13:03

PS the difference in cost was unbelievable so I'm really glad I did it that way!

fierydormouse Sat 18-Jan-20 15:16:07

@chillichutneysarnie Thank you that sounds a really good idea! I will definitely look into that, as the saving would be well worth making!

OP’s posts: |
chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 15:25:29

No probs, I'm on level 4 now and still self studying. Today I went to buy another textbook on Amazon for £20, but thought I'd put the ISBN into eBay just in case a used one was available. Got it for £7! Not a lot to lose if you try it, seeing as exam fees aren't included in the expensive courses anyway. (They are about £70-85 each depending on level and your area).

NotYourTypicalNerd Sat 18-Jan-20 15:35:09

Can you do the exams online? I couldn't travel to do them and this is something I have wanted to do for a while.

foxyknoxy30 Sat 18-Jan-20 15:42:30

Is this qualification a UK recognised one?

Berthatydfil Sat 18-Jan-20 15:45:32

@foxyknoxy30 yes it is. It can lead to jobs in book keeping finance and admin. It can also provide entry to professional accountancy qualifications such as ACCA

ListeningQuietly Sat 18-Jan-20 15:48:54

AAT is a really really good qualification that is valued and trusted by the whole accountancy industry

LooseleafTea Sat 18-Jan-20 15:50:37

I did mine with Ideal Schools who were brilliant and always helped me fast with anything I needed help understanding . I loved it

chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 15:53:58

I don't think you can sit the exams at home, no.

attheendofeveryweekeachoneofus Sat 18-Jan-20 15:56:52

I’ve just finished Level 2. It’s piss easy IMO but I already worked in this area. Will see how Level 3 goes.

People will come on and say AAT isn’t worth the paper it’s written on (even though it is a recognised qualification) and to go straight to ACCA but I think AAT is an excellent way to ease yourself in relativity gently especially if you’ve not studied for a while and you get a qualification with each level rather than having to complete the whole of ACCA before you get a qualification. AAT is a great way to get a really firm grasp of double entry which I think is so important in these roles.

Absolutely go for it!! I see it listed on plenty of jobs as a desirable qualification.

We should should have an AAT support thread on here.

foxyknoxy30 Sat 18-Jan-20 16:00:23

Thanks for that,I work I'm banking but am thinking of changing to accountancy but am 46 so worried am too old 😞how would I go about starting would I go through their website and how would I book an exam online? Am in Scotland if that causes a problem to the exam centres? Sorry to derail

ListeningQuietly Sat 18-Jan-20 16:01:32

Anybody who tries to say AAT is not real should read this ....
www.ccab.org.uk/ChoosingAccountantTaxAdviserTips.php

attheendofeveryweekeachoneofus Sat 18-Jan-20 16:02:22

@foxyknoxy30 no issues with studying in Scotland whatsoever. There at exam centres in Glasgow - not sure where you are.

RandomlyChosenName Sat 18-Jan-20 16:06:36

I am also interested in studying AAT! Very interested in this thread as I was thinking of doing a course at the local college, but it costs over £1000 and the course doesn’t start until Sept.

@chillichutneysarnie Please can I ask a couple of questions about how you got on? Do you remember roughly how many hours studying you had to do a week to complete level 2 in 6 months? And also, how did you go about booking the exams yourself? How do you find a test centre or do you book through AAT? Are exams held regularly?

I am also in my 40s and looking to improve my career!

ListeningQuietly Sat 18-Jan-20 16:11:14

Randomly
A friend of mine did AAT in a year studying online after taking redundancy in her late 40's
she has now started a new career that gives her flexibility to work until she wants to stop.

Another friend is doing it while working and it will help set her up for better paid work.

AATs are essential to many businesses and it is a qualification that definitely opens doors

(I'm not an AAT, I did one of the CCAB exams but know how useful AATs are)

attheendofeveryweekeachoneofus Sat 18-Jan-20 16:18:10

Sorry I keep butting in here but I’d wholeheartedly recommend just buying the books for Level 2 and cracking on. That way you’re under no time pressure. You can book tne exams as and when. See how you get on then reassess for Level 3. YouTube has so many great videos that can help too but the books are more than enough. Don’t waste money on a course.

Hayls17 Sat 18-Jan-20 16:31:53

I did level 2 at night school last year, I’ve been wanting to do level 3 but couldn’t afford the fee on maternity leave, it hadn’t even occurred to me to just self study using the books! Thank you those that suggested it I’m definitely going to look into that.

WhenwillitsnowLondon Sat 18-Jan-20 16:35:00

Do it!

I was doing the AAT level 2 for free I'm the evenings and dropped out half way as I couldn't get any reliable childcare.

I'm a cleaner now sad

chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 16:39:36

@RandomlyChosenName yes I'll try to answer your questions:
1) I didn't study very much to be honest! I was commuting at the time and read the textbook a couple of evenings a week. I usually gave myself around 6 weeks per module but it depended when the exams fell. I crammed about a week before each exam. The beauty of it is you can take the exam whenever you're ready.
2) AAT website has a list of exam centres. Many of them will accept 'external students'. You book directly with the exam centre. I was able to do them at Kaplan in London and booked on their website.
3) It totally depends on the centre buy Kaplan had exams very regularly. I did all of mine on a Saturday but I'm sure many centres outside London won't offer that. The only one you will find less of is the synoptic (at the end of each level) - there are only certain weeks these are held as this exam is marked by a human.

I changed career aged 31 and it got me an entry level job quite quickly. I am progressing nicely in my career and moved up from entry level within 9months (when I completed level 3).

As a first step I would recommend a thorough look at the AAT website and the qualification specifications. Then buy a textbook - I found Kaplan ones had fewer mistakes in them than say BPP. If you are looking at level 2, buy 'Bookkeeping Transactions' study text first. If Level 3 then buy 'Advanced Bookkeeping' first.
If you are proceeding well with the content and practice questions in the textbook then you can pay the £120 or so for first year student membership of AAT. That will allow you to take practice exams on AAT website (an absolute must-do) and will allow you to book exams at any centre providing they accept you as an independent student.

Crabonastick Sat 18-Jan-20 16:42:41

Op I’m about to finish level 4 without going through a training provider! Honestly it’s worth a shot

chillichutneysarnie Sat 18-Jan-20 16:42:46

Oh and another tip, look at the free videos on YouTube that First Intuition have done.

winterbluues Sat 18-Jan-20 16:59:37

I was thinking about doing this via a course as I'm in the same situation as OP (sahm wanting to get back into work). Then realised I couldn't afford the course fees and counted myself out. So glad I read this thread and realised I dont even need the course just the books! Thanks to those who recommended it! I will for sure be starting it in the coming weeks.

RandomlyChosenName Sat 18-Jan-20 17:10:11

@chillichutneysarnie

Thank you so much!

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