Prepare to Pass your ACCA exams: Week 6 – Maintaining Motivation

Well the exam entry deadline’s here (29th October 2018) so if you are reading this blog, then the chances are you have decided to enter for the December 2018 sitting for your exam.

With 5 weeks of exam preparation remaining, in this blog I want to help you stay focused on your goal as I know that often, at this stage, study fatigue can kick in.

So let’s think about what motivates you to study.

Motivation is the reason for your actions and your willingness to achieve your goals.

I just want you to pause for a moment and consider what have already done in terms of the financial, emotional and time commitments you have already made:


  • You have invested finally by paying the ACCA registration fee and the annual subscription.
  • You have bought a course and paid the course fee
  • You have entered for the exam at a cost of £108 or £190 (UK rates) depending on the level of the exam


  • You have set yourself the goal of becoming a qualified Chartered Certified Accountant because of all the prospects and rewards that it offers
  • You have told friends, family, your employer and colleagues of your plans and raised their expectations of you


  • You have spent many hours studying so far sacrificing time with friends and family and often missing out on fun activities in order to have the time to learn the subject,

Goodness when you tally it all up, you can see that studying for the ACCA exams requires time and effort!

I assure you it is worth it.

Remember my bullet point “… all the prospects and rewards that it offers”?  A good idea to help you keep motivated is to have a visual reminder of what you hope to achieve by qualifying. For example, if you want to earn lots of money then have a picture of the nice car or house you’ll be able to buy. Or visualise yourself doing the job you want whether it’s as CFO of an interesting company or as Finance Director of a worthwhile charity – the ACCA can help you get there.

It’s also useful to build in mini-rewards as you study.  If you have a favourite TV show, then give yourself a study break to watch an episode.  If you really love playing sports, then arrange a game with a friend for the weekend. These little treats will make you feel energised and happier, making the next bout of study seem more manageable which will help you stay on track.

But motivation depends on whether you are a carrot or stick type person.

So far, I have highlighted all the benefits of studying and that’s because I like the “carrot” reward at the end.

Some people are motivated by avoiding pain i.e. “stick” people. If you are one of those then let’s just consider what happens if you don’t study enough.

You will fail.

If that sounds harsh then let’s remind ourselves that in September 2018 only 37% of the students who sat Audit and Assurance passed.  That means nearly 2/3rd of those who had made those financial, emotional and time commitments felt the pain of having to pay for another exam, tell people they failed and needing to set aside more time to study again.

Work out what motivates you and use that to help you over the last few weeks.

Again, I assure you it is worth it.

Caron Betts

Posted October 29, 2018