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By ACCA student blogger Yani Shi

I came to the UK to study e-finance at the University of Liverpool in my third year. I studied for first two years of my course in China and am studying the last two years in the UK. I began to study ACCA in my first year of university.

My favourite part of studying in the UK is that I have enough extra-curricular time to make my own study plan, and to study ACCA. This is very different from studying in China.

As there is plenty of free time around lectures, time management is very important for both studying my university courses and ACCA. Sometimes, it’s hard to know how to prioritise, especially when I am facing a flood of seemingly-urgent tasks. I have had to learn to manage my time between the two.

In order to study effectively and efficiently, I adopt a common but effective time management approach. I make clear and detailed goals both in the short term (next week) and in the long term (next term). This the first step to effective time management.

The language

ACCA exams require good English reading and writing skills, which I found challenging. But I am really interested in accounting and want to acheive the ACCA Qualification because of its good international reputation, so I persevered. It’s a good opportunity for me to improve my English.

My English has already improved a lot after coming to the UK, so I can overcome any language obstacles more easily. I am able to understand ACCA knowledge in depth now and can express myself clearly in exams because my English skills have improved.        

Although studying in the UK is quite helpful for my ACCA studies, I miss some aspects of studying ACCA in China. When I was in China, I studied with an ACCA tuition provider. The papers are taught in both Chinese and English, so it was easy and quick for me to understand as it’s my first language. What’s more, as there are many Chinese students studying together, we discussed questions more conveniently.

The future of my career

In September I finished my master’s studies at Lancaster University. Before I came to the UK, I thought it would be good for my finance career to work in the UK before coming back to China. But I changed my mind after graduating. I’ve decided to come back to China to begin my career because the Chinese economy has grown quickly in recent years, so there is a great need for talent in the financial services sector. Therefore it is very good opportunity for me. I can use my professional knowledge, as well as my knowledge about both foreign and Chinese culture/markets to pursue a successful career. 

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by ACCA student blogger Yani Shi

Why did I decide to do the degree?

The Oxford Brookes’ BSc degree in Applied Accounting was exciting news to me when I found out about it. It meant getting a bachelor degree from a university with a great reputation at the same time as studying ACCA. All I needed to do was complete a research project as well as my ACCA exams – and I would enhance my employability.

How to opt in to this programme?

Remember, if you want to opt in to the BSc degree, you need to register with Oxford Brookes University (OBU) before you take the Fundamentals papers F7, F8 and F9 in the ACCA Qualification. You can do this easily by using myACCA.  Also you need to pass all nine Fundamentals level papers and complete the ACCA Professional Ethics module by the Research and Analysis Project (RAP) submission dates.

Research and Analysis Project (RAP)

You need to find a project mentor to support you in preparing your RAP (this is very important!). They will need to confirm to OBU that he or she has been your Project Mentor and that your RAP is all your own work.

When you write your RAP you will have three meetings with your Project Mentor and get feedback from them on your progression. I found the meetings to provide a valuable opportunity to develop my personal skills including questioning, listening and giving a presentation. Learning these types of skills will also give you something to talk about in the ‘Skills and Learning Statement’ bit of your RAP too!

When you pick your RAP topic, there’s a variety to choose from. So whatever you are interested in or you excel at, you can find a topic that suits you most.

If you’d like to find out more, there’s a very detailed guide available in the Information Pack on the ACCA website.

My research and analysis project

I chose Business and Financial Performance of Intel Corp as my research topic, as I’m interested in this topic and good at financial performance analysis. Intel Corp was my own choice, as I felt it’s worth studying how they’ve maintained their competitive edge for such a long time.

The most challenging part of the RAP for me was how to organise the structure. As this is the first time I’ve written such a long and comprehensive report, I got a little lost when the project started. However, my project mentor was very helpful in helping me get organised and write an outline.

It took me about two months to complete the RAP, but that’s because I also study other university courses – so someone else could probably finish it much more quickly.

Hope this information is helpful – good luck with your studies!