Education FAQs

Credits

How can I find out if I am eligible for a credit?

Information can be found on the ATT website, here. You can apply for a credit, here.

What evidence do I need to provide to obtain the credit from Paper 2: Business Taxation & Accounting Principles?

Full details of all available credits can be found here. You can apply for a credit, here.

If I am eligible for a credit will I automatically receive it?

An application for a credit must be made and a fee paid. You will also need to provide evidence of the relevant qualifications.

I am an AAT student, what credit can I get?

Once you are a full member of AAT and have passed the Business Taxation computations module, you will be eligible for a credit in Paper 2: Business Taxation and Accounting Principles. Full details of all available credits can be found here. You can apply for a credit, here.

Do I have to register as an ATT student before I can apply for a credit?

No, you can apply for a credit at the same time as you apply to be a student, or if you wish you can for a credit after you have become a student.

Do I have to apply for credits before taking exams?

No, however, please note they are valid for three years from when you sit your first written paper. You must apply for your credit(s) before you enter for your final written paper(s).

Can I apply for a credit after failing an exam?

No, if you have attempted an ATT paper and failed it, you cannot retrospectively apply for a credit from that paper, even if you have the necessary qualifications.

Can I sit an exam while I am applying for credit from a different exam paper?

Yes.

How much does it cost?

Full details of all available credits can be found here, including the costs.

If I apply for a credit but it is not approved, do I get my money refunded?

Yes.

How long does it take to apply for a credit?

We will try to process your credit application within a week of receiving it, except in very busy periods when it may take a little longer (for example during the week of the exams).

Can I check the progress of my credit application?

You can email the Education Team at education [at] att.org.uk for queries regarding the status of an application.

Examinations

Where can I find past papers, examiners’ comments, suggested answers etc?

You can find past papers, examiners’ comments and suggested answers here.

What are the ATT exam dates?

Wednesday 3 and Thursday 4 May 2017

Tuesday 7 and Wednesday 8 November 2017

Tuesday 1 and Wednesday 2 May 2018

Tuesday 6 and Wednesday 7 November 2018

What is the cost of the exams?

You can find the current fees, here.

How do I book an exam?

You can book your written examinations online, here.

You can book your Computer Based Examinations online, here.

Where can I sit the ATT exams?

The exam venues for the written papers are Belfast, Birmingham, Edinburgh, Exeter, Guernsey, Isle of Man, Jersey, Leeds, London, Manchester, Newcastle upon Tyne, Newport, Reading and Southampton.

What are the examination entry deadlines for the May and November examination sittings?

The examination entry deadline for May is 28 February.

The examination entry deadline for November is 31 August.

If I miss the examination entry deadline, is there a late entry policy?

An application for late entry (for one month only after the closing date) is accepted on payment of an additional fee, currently £100.

When will I be told the exact location of the exam venue?

Approximately three weeks before the examination you will receive a candidate email with details of your candidate number and exact time and location of your venue.

Can I sit the ATT exams if I am an independent student and not currently employed?

You do not need to be employed to be an ATT student, but you will need to provide details of a reference such as a previous employer or someone who is a member of a professional accounting or legal body. Your reference is supporting your registration application and is not necessarily financing registration or examination costs.

How long are the exams?

Each written paper examination is three and a quarter hours in length. The first quarter of an hour is designated as reading time.

Each Computer Based Examination (CBE) is one hour in length.

What identification do I have to take to the exams with me?

Please bring signed photo identification in the form of a drivers licence or passport. The name on your photo identification should match the name we have on our records. If it does not, please contact the Education Team in advance of sitting an exam to avoid confusion on the day.

What do I have to use to write the exams?

A blue/black ballpoint pen.

You are not permitted to write in pencil or use gel pens.

Which Finance Act will be used for the May and November examinations?

The examinations will refer to the Finance Act of the previous year e.g. May and November 2017 will be based on Finance Act 2016.

How many exam attempts am I allowed?

You can sit a paper as many times as you wish.

For how long is a pass in a paper valid?

Exam passes are valid for 3 years.

What happens if I fail an exam more than once?

Nothing, you can book in for another exam the following sitting.

What happens if I don’t turn up for an exam?

You are marked as absent but it has no bearing on your student status. You need to re-apply and pay the fee by the closing date for the exam sitting you wish to sit.

What happens if I turn up to an exam, but do not finish the exam?

Your script will be marked based on what you have written and you will receive a result reflecting this.

If I finish all the exam questions early, can I leave the exam hall?

You may leave 45 minutes after the exam has started. (but you may not leave in the final 10 minutes of the examination.)

If I formally cancel any exam application, am I automatically entered for that exam in the next exam sitting?

You will only be automatically entered if we have confirmed to you that your entry was carried forward.

Can I defer my exams?

You can find detailed information on withdrawing from the written exams and deferrals, here.

I feel unwell before/during the exam, what should I do?

You should contact us in writing as soon as possible and makes this known to an invigilator or the Presiding Officer at the exam venue so they can make a report to Head Office.

How do I apply for extra time and/or alternative arrangements for my exams?

You can apply and find further details regarding extra time and/or alternative arrangements, here.

Can I use a calculator in the exams?

Yes, you are allowed to bring into the examination hall a noiseless, cordless pocket calculator which may be programmable but which may not have a printout or graphic/word display facility in any language.

Can I change my exam venue (after I have applied for the exam)?

Yes, up to the closing date if you really need to.

How can I get my exam results?

Pass lists are posted on the ATT website at 8:30am on the morning of the results day. Result emails are then sent with the marks you achieved. If you have been successful in completing the examination requirements for membership you will receive a hard copy of your results letter in the post together with a letter from our Membership Team. Results are usually published eleven weeks after the exam.

What are the criteria for gaining a Distinction in the ATT examinations?

The Association does not disclose the Distinction criteria other than candidates must meet an exceptional level of performance in a paper in order to be awarded a Distinction.

If I fail an exam, can I get it re-marked?

We do not have a re-mark facility but rather a recheck option where the addition of marks and administrative procedures are checked again. You can apply and find further details, here.

If I fail an exam, can I get feedback on why I failed?

We are unable to provide feedback on individual examination performance. You can, however, find examiners' comments and suggested answers, here.

Can I have my original answer script back?

Scripts remain the property of the Association and will not be returned to any candidate under any circumstances.

Syllabus FAQs

Does the ATT syllabus change and if so when?

The Syllabus is updated on an annual basis in line with the Finance Act. The same Finance Act is examined for every May and November sitting.

Which Finance Act will be used for the May and November examinations?

The examinations will refer to the Finance Act of the previous year e.g. May and November 2017 will be based on Finance Act 2016.

Where can I find the ATT syllabus and past papers?

The syllabus can be found here.

Past papers can be found here.

Can I sit the exams in any order?

You can sit the exams in any order you wish, however, you may only take one option paper at a sitting.

Can I bring books or publications into the exam and if so which ones?

You may bring one of the following:

  1. Tolley’s Yellow Tax Handbooks and Tolley’s Orange Tax Handbook and the Tolley publication ‘Customs Duties Handbook’ OR
  2. CCH Red Books and Green Book including the Index volume and CCH Purple Handbook (Customs and Duties) OR
  3. HMSO copies of taxing statutes

All students may also bring in the Tolley’s Customs and Excise Duties Handbooks.

You may take any edition of the books in, or may mix and match (for example, taking Part 1a 2015-16 and Part 1b 2014-15), but may NOT take multiple copies of the same volume (for example, Part 1a 2014-15 and Part 1a 2013-14).

The owner’s name, corrections of the text (e.g. official incorporating of errata, updating of the retail price index) on the relevant pages are permitted.

You may underline, side-line and highlight the permitted books.

You are NOT permitted to bring:

  • The CCH Editions Limited VAT Handbook and Tax Handbook
  • Dictionaries in any language
  • Other printed or manuscript paper or books

You are NOT allowed to annotate, use ‘post-it’ notes, tag or fold pages in the permitted books.

 

Can I use learning materials from previous years?

You can but you will not be studying from the material that will be examined and that may disadvantage you. We do not preclude you from doing this.

Where do I buy ATT learning materials?

You can buy the Essential Law, Essential Accounting and Professional Responsibilities & Ethics manuals from our online shop.

Other materials can be purchased from your course provider.

Can you provide full details of courses, publications and bibliographies?

No, the Association is the examining body for the ATT examinations and does not administrate courses or provide course materials. You can download a list of course providers here.

The only publications produced by the Association are the “Essential Law for Tax Practitioners”, "Professional Responsibilities and Ethics for Tax Practitioners" and “Essential Accounting for Tax Practitioners” manuals. These can be purchased through our website, here.

Computer Based Examinations

When can I sit a Computer Based Examination (CBE)?

To book a CBE you must be a currently registered ATT student who has been issued with a student registration number by the Association. If your registration as a student has expired you must re-register before you will be able to make a booking.

Subject to availability and opening hours you will be able to take the CBEs at a time of your choosing. Smaller test centres may have reduced opening hours. Some weekend and early evening appointments will be available at certain centres.

In order to complete the ATT exams and be eligible for membership you must hold, or be entitled to hold, three valid Certificates of Competency from written Papers 1 to 6 (including the two compulsory papers - Personal Taxation and Business Taxation & Accounting Principles) and have passed the ATT CBEs in Professional Responsibilities & Ethics and Law (or hold or be entitled to hold a valid Certificate of Competency from the old Practice Administration & Ethics paper). You can sit the CBEs before, in between, or after your written tax papers.

Can I sit a mock of the CBEs?

Yes, here for Law and here for Professional Responsibilities & Ethics.

The mock CBEs last for 30 minutes and you will need to correctly answer 15 or more out of the 25 questions set in order to pass.

These questions have been withdrawn from the live bank of questions and chosen to give you the same spread of topics as you will face in the real exam. These will give you the best indication of whether or not you are ready to sit the examination. Try to attempt the examination without your learning materials and see if you can score 15 out of 25 in the permitted time.

The mock examinations are made available to you solely for the purpose of assessing your proficiency level and the mark you achieve will not be recorded. You are expressly prohibited from publishing, reproducing or transmitting this examination, in whole or in part, without the express written permission of the Association of Taxation Technicians.

Can I claim a credit for a CBE?

A credit in the Computer Based Examination in Law is available to those who have passed the examination requirements to become a UK Solicitor or UK Barrister (LPC or equivalent). If you wish to apply for a credit for the Computer Based Examination in Law, please refer to this information.

I am planning on transferring to the CTA qualification, do I need to complete the CBEs first?

Yes, you must complete the ATT qualification, which includes the CBEs, before you can transfer over to the CTA qualification.

What fee do I need to pay to take a CBE?

Each attempt at a CBE will cost £80. This fee is non-refundable.

Can I reschedule my appointment?

Yes, you may do so via the reschedule option on the online booking system (up to 24 hours prior to your examination), although this will incur a charge if the request to reschedule is submitted less than 30 days before the original appointment date.

  • If the request is made more than 29 days before original appointment date - no charge.
  • If the request is made between 5 and 29 days of original appointment date - £15 charge per CBE rescheduled.
  • If the request is made less than 5 days before original appointment date - £30 charge per CBE rescheduled.

You cannot reschedule one part of a back-to-back examination, as they are booked as one, they can only be rescheduled as one examination, not two.

Please note that CBE fees are non-refundable if you choose to cancel your appointment.

Should you fail to present yourself at the test centre for your appointment without rescheduling then the fee paid is forfeit. A new booking must be made and the test fee paid in full again should you subsequently want to attempt the CBE concerned.

What am I required to bring to the test centre?

You must bring one piece of a current official photographic ID containing your signature e.g. passport, photocard driving licence. The name should match the name you registered with to become an ATT student. Failure to provide this will result in entry to the test centre being refused and forfeiture of your test fee. This rule will be strictly enforced.

If you do not have permissible ID documents you should contact the ATT Education Team before booking a CBE appointment.

What happens during the test appointment?

You should aim to arrive at the test centre at least 15 minutes before the start time of the CBE in order to complete the check-in and identification process. Lockers are provided for you to secure your belongings as only the required ID documents may be taken into the testing suite. The CBEs are closed-book exams; you are not permitted to use any textbooks, legislation or notes. You will be shown to your allocated workstation by the invigilator.

You must not bring any personal/unauthorised items into the testing room. Such items include but are not limited to: outwear, hats, food, drinks, purses, briefcases, notebooks, pagers, watches, cellular telephones, recording devices, and photographic equipment.

If you need access to an item stored in the test centre during a break such as food or medicine, you must inform the Test Centre Administrator (TCA) before you retrieve the item. You are not permitted to bring your own issues into the test room, if you require tissues please ask your TCA who will happily provide these to you.

You are advised not to take valuable belongings with you to the test centre as neither Prometric nor the ATT will be liable for any loss of or damage to your possessions.

Any clothing or jewellery items must be stored in your locker.

Please read the full Testing Centre Regulations prior to attending your exam.

What is the format of the CBEs? What kind of questions will be set?

Each CBE lasts for one hour and is made up of 50 multiple choice questions, where you are asked to identify the correct response from a choice of four, and multiple response questions, where you are asked to identify several correct responses from a choice of up to six. All questions have the same value towards your overall mark.

Each CBE is preceded by a short non-timed, non-scored tutorial in order for you to familiarise yourself with the computer testing environment.

To pass a CBE you will need to correctly answer 30 out of the 50 questions set.

What do I need to study to pass the CBEs?

For Professional Responsibilities & Ethics:

Professional Responsibilities and Ethics for Tax Practitioners - Second Edition. The syllabus provided in this manual will be valid for examinations until 28 February 2017.

Please note that the new Third Edition of the manual Professional Responsibilities and Ethics for Tax Practitioners is now available to buy here. The syllabus provided in this manual will be valid for examinations after 1 March 2017.

For Law:

Essential Law for Tax Practitioners – Fourth Edition. The syllabus provided in this manual will be valid for examinations after 1 March 2018.

A free supplement is available if you intend to sit the CBE according to Scots Law.

Where do I go to sit the CBEs?

The ATT deliver the CBEs in conjunction with Prometric, a leading worldwide provider of computer based testing services. Prometric have a number of test centres located throughout the UK; you may view details of these via the ATT portal on Prometric's website. All CBEs must be sat at Prometric centres in order to ensure consistent test conditions for all candidates.

How do I book a CBE?

You must book via the ATT website. A link to the online booking facility is here (you will be redirected to the Prometric site to make your booking). You will need your student registration number, a valid email address and a debit or credit card (American Express is not accepted) in order to make a booking.

Important - if you need to sit the Law CBE according to Scots Law you must contact us in order for this option to be made available to you.

Why am I receiving an error message when I attempt to log-in to the Prometric site?

Please ensure that you have entered your student registration number and the first four letters of your surname into the boxes provided, with no spaces before or after them. Also ensure that you have not entered all of the letters of your surname in capitals. Where possible, please use Internet Explorer to view the Prometric website and clear your browsing history and cookies before you attempt to log-in. If you are still experiencing technical issues, please contact the Education Team via email: education [at] att.org.uk or telephone: 0844 251 0830 or +44 (0)20 7340 0551.

Can both CBEs be sat at the same time?

Yes, it will be possible to book an appointment to take both tests. This can be done by selecting a '-to-' appointment via the online booking facility (both CBEs are still marked and graded separately). Should you choose to do this then the Professional Responsibilities & Ethics CBE will take place first, followed by an optional ten minute break before the Law CBE begins. It is not possible to change the running order of the two CBEs. You are also unable to split this booking into separate entries, this examination can only be rescheduled as a whole.

How do I obtain a receipt for the payment I made to Prometric for the CBE/s?

You may print a receipt or have one emailed to you, through the Prometric website. To obtain a receipt select the "Confirm my test" icon provided on the right-hand side of the Prometric ATT welcome page. You will then be prompted to enter your 16-digit CBE booking confirmation number which begins with 8800 (do not enter the hash symbol) and the first four letters of your surname. You can then choose to select the option of printing your receipt from the webpage or requesting for the receipt to be emailed to you.

The ATT cannot issue receipts for this transaction, as the payment is processed through the Prometric billing system and website.

I have lost my confirmation email and do not know my 16-digit booking confirmation number, can it be resent?

You can obtain your booking confirmation number through contacting Prometric on this number: 0800 592 873.

What provision is made if my personal circumstances mean that I need longer than one hour to complete a CBE?

You should inform the ATT Education Team before booking the CBEs and will be required to complete an application form, which you can download here.

The form will need to be completed and returned to the ATT with evidence of your condition supplied by a medical practitioner or other appropriate documentation (e.g. if you are dyslexic an Educational Psychologist’s report).

The ATT will then contact you to inform you of the extra time and any other alternative arrangements that you will be allowed. You may then book your CBE by phone with an Education Team member – the additional time will be added when you sit your CBE.

You can contact the Education team via email: education [at] att.org.uk or by telephone on 0844 251 0830 or +44 (0)20 7340 0551.

All Prometric test centres have step-free access for wheelchair users.

I have a medical condition, are they any special facilities available at the centres?

The Prometric test centres ensure that a disabled candidate will find a friendly and comfortable environment in which to take their exam. Below is a partial list of the available testing accommodations:

Extra time
Reader/Recorder
Separate rooms
Sign language interpreter

Please contact us before you book your examination, should you require any of the above accommodations.

If you require additional time for the examinations, please refer to the above information.

What happens if I am late for my appointment?

You should still present yourself at the test centre as it is possible that you may still be able to sit your CBE should a vacant test slot be available. However, if you are late for your appointment and the centre has no available slots then you will be unable to sit the CBE and will forfeit your fee.

You should aim to arrive at the centre at least 15 minutes prior to the appointment time in order to allow time for the compulsory identity checks before the CBE is due to start.

Are there contact details for the test centres?

No - please direct all enquiries to the ATT Education Team by email at
education [at] att.org.uk or by telephone on 0844 251 0830 or +44 (0)20 7340 0551.

How do I find my way to the CBE centre I have chosen?

You will be provided with the address of and directions to the test centre when you book your appointment.

Is there parking available at the centres?

Parking is not generally available at the test centres - it is suggested that you park in a nearby public car park or travel to the centre by public transport.

Will I be disturbed by other candidates entering and leaving the test area?

Each workstation in the test area is partitioned and the room itself supervised by an invigilator. As far as practical, incidental noise levels are kept to a minimum and ear defenders are available.

What happens if I need to leave the workstation during the CBE?

If you need to use the lavatory or take any medication during the CBE you should raise your hand to alert the invigilator. You may leave the test area temporarily but the allowed time for the test will continue to elapse while you are away. Please note you cannot bring anything for consumption - food, drink or medication - into the testing area. Any medication should be taken before the test starts or by leaving the test area during the CBE.

What measures are in place to prevent cheating during the CBEs?

Prometric test centres are monitored by experienced invigilators supplemented with video recordings of the test area. The test area is constantly monitored while candidates are working. If you believe you have witnessed any malpractice on the part of another candidate then you are encouraged to report this, in confidence, to an invigilator who will investigate and report to the ATT.

What clothing do you advise I wear?

Whatever you feel comfortable working in. Please be aware that the centres are air conditioned and therefore you may wish to bring an extra layer of clothing to put on should you find it too cool for your comfort.

Will I be asked to remove any items of clothing or jewellery?

You will be asked to remove your watch and leave it in the secure locker allocated to you. There is a countdown clock on the screen during the test to enable you to monitor your progress. You may also be asked to remove items that could cause a distraction to other candidates, such as bangles. If you attend the examination with a scarf (or similar outwear) you must keep this on your person during the examination.

What security checks are carried out prior to entry to the test area?

As well as checking your ID documents you will be screened in a similar manner to airport security. This may involve the use of a metal detector, emptying pockets and asking you to roll up your sleeves and trouser legs. Whilst these measures may seem intrusive they are an essential part of the process to ensure secure delivery of tests to all candidates and prevent the theft of intellectual property. Please note, candidates with implanted medical devices are excused from the metal detector, however pregnant women will be required to undertake this security measure.

When and how will I be notified of my result?

You will be issued with your result at the centre directly after the conclusion of the CBE in the form of a printed document. The ATT is unable to provide a copy of the results sheet or provide a breakdown of your results.

If I am unsuccessful in a CBE, how quickly can I rebook an appointment?

Please allow at least 24 hours and up to 72 hours before attempting to book a re-sit in order for your result to be processed fully. You will not be able to book a resit of a given exam until this processing period has elapsed.

Is there any limit to the number of attempts permitted to pass the CBEs?

No. However, your passes in the CBEs will be valid for nine sittings and you must be a registered active student in order to sit these exams. If your student registration has expired, then you will need to re-register prior to booking.

What can I do if I am not satisfied with my experience of the CBEs?

In the first instance you should contact ATT Education Team by email at education [at] att.org.uk or by telephone on 0844 251 0830 or +44 (0)20 7340 0551. You must do so within 21 working days of sitting the CBE concerned.

Staff at the test centre will not be able to provide any feed on the content of the CBEs or your results.