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Current CIMA students can now choose a new method of study and assessment to earn their Professional Qualification

What are the similarities between the self-study route and the CGMA Finance Leadership Program (FLP) route to the CIMA Professional Qualification (PQ)?

Both routes are founded on the same syllabus and teach the same competencies to prepare finance professionals for careers in management accounting. Regardless of which programme you take, you will be assessed on the same material and must demonstrate the same level of competency and experience to earn the CGMA® designation and CIMA® membership.

How will my learning be different?

A key difference between the two programmes is how you learn. In the self-study route, you have the flexibility to find a learning provider that fits your needs, timelines and preferred learning format. In the CGMA FLP, the learning is part of the all-inclusive subscription package and delivered online in a self-paced e-learning environment.

Is the CGMA FLP more flexible in terms of learning?

The CGMA FLP allowsyou to learn and be assessed online, at your pace. As there are no objective test exam dates to schedule or work towards, you can study when you want, wherever you are and even learn the topics in whichever order you like.

How is assessment different?

The self-study route uses objective tests to assess topic proficiency within each of nine competency areas of the syllabus. These objective tests (OT) are multiple choice and taken via Pearson VUE, either at testing centres or online. You can decide when you are ready to take an OT and schedule your exam sitting at any time.

The CGMA FLP seamlessly blends learning and assessments to ensure you understand key topics and can apply new skills before you move on to more advanced business concepts. Topic proficiency is regularly assessed via multiple-choice questions that are embedded into the online learning experience.

In both programmes, you must pass the assessment of all competencies within a given level to be eligible and authorised to sit for a case study exam.  

Case study exams

Regardless of which programme you choose, you will take the same case study exams, under the same exam conditions and to the same standards. All case study exams are offered four times per year, administered worldwide via Pearson VUE either in testing centres or online.

Practical experience requirement (PER)

All CIMA members must meet the same practical experience requirements. For complete details, click here. You will be advised on what steps you need to take leading up to, or upon completion of the strategic level case study exam. You will need to submit your PER and application via the Membership Application Tool, which can be accessed online from the My Account section of the CGMA FLP platform


Awards are the same for both routes. Upon completion of the CIMA Professional Qualification, you will be awarded CIMA membership at either the ACMA or FCMA level. You will also be awarded the CGMA designation.

What happens when a CIMA student wants to transition to the CGMA FLP? What is the process for switching?

Any CIMA student who wishes to transition to the CGMA FLP route can do so by starting the CGMA FLP registration process. During the registration process, you will be identified as a CIMA student and a notification will be sent to the Global Engagement Centre to review your status, location and other relevant information to ensure you’re eligible for the CGMA FLP. If you are eligible, the reviewer will send you a consent email, explaining the details of making the switch. You must then confirm that you wish to do so. Upon receipt of the confirmation, you will be notified within three business days.

Am I eligible for the CGMA FLP?

All CIMA students at Operational level or above are eligible to transition to the CGMA FLP.

  • Cert BA students are NOT eligible for The CGMA FLP. You can begin the CGMA FLP at the Operational level once you have successfully completed the Cert BA.
  • Lapsed CIMA students are welcome to transition to the CGMA FLP. There is no re-registration fee, as all fees are covered in the bundled CGMA FLP purchase price.
  • Any person who is restricted from being a CIMA student for disciplinary or other reasons is ineligible for the CGMA FLP.
  • Students from other CIMA routes (e.g., CSEP) are eligible for the CGMA FLP, but will have to be addressed on a case-by-case basis as there is no standard process for transitions from other programmes.

How is my progress transitioned?

You will maintain all progress you have made with CIMA as a student, as outlined here:

  • If objectives tests have been passed, you will receive credit for the corresponding competency area learning and assessment. This means you will not be required to re-take the learning or assessment in competency areas where you have already proven your proficiency via OT.
  • If case study exams have been passed, you will receive credit for them in the CGMA FLP and will not be required to re-take them. 
  • No credit is given for learning taken with other providers, as it did not include the necessary assessment that is embedded in the CGMA FLP

How is the entry route determined?

You enter the CGMA FLP at the same level you are as a CIMA student.

What is included in the subscription?

Everything you need to complete the CGMA FLP is included, no supplementary learning, tuition support or materials are required. Regardless of length, each subscription includes:

  • Registration fee
  • Student fees
  • Case study exam fee
  • All learning materials
  • All assessment materials
  • Interactive exercises
  • Business simulation assignments
  • Access to tutor videos about how to approach your case study exam 
  • Video analysis of the pre-seen materials for your case study window 
  • Graded case study mock exams with personalised feedback 

Is all learning mandatory in the CGMA FLP?

Mandatory learning depends on where you enter the programme. You must complete all learning (including embedded assessments) and case study exams to pass a level and progress through the programme. You have access to all levels of learning at all times, regardless of your entry route.

Transfer students’ frequently asked questions

How much does the all-inclusive subscription package to the CGMA Finance Leadership Program cost?







 The CGMA FLP is a subscription-based route. You will purchase a 1-, 2- or 3-year subscription that includes your registration fee, all student fees, access to learning, exam preparation courses and all assessments and case study exam fees. Current CIMA students who wish to transfer to the CGMA FLP are offered a 30% discount off of the list price. Prices below reflect the discount:

Subscription length

Normal price

CIMA student transition discount price










Do I need to have an active CIMA student subscription to study CIMA via the CGMA FLP?

No, the all-inclusive subscription package includes your CIMA student subscription fees.

  • If you do not have an active subscription, we will restart one for you.
  • If you have an active CIMA student subscription, we will transition it into the new CGMA FLP subscription, and add a new end date.

How long will my CGMA FLP subscription last? Will it end when my current CIMA student subscription ends?

You will get a new student subscription to the CGMA FLP, which will be active for the length of subscription you choose starting with the day of purchase. For example, if you purchase a 1-year subscription on April 1, 2021, it will expire on April 1, 2022.

Will I get credit for the CIMA students dues I paid for the rest of the year?

No, the discount provided for students transitioning to the CGMA FLP takes into account fees already paid to CIMA.

I have already paid for an OT and/or case study exam, can I get a credit for that?

You will not automatically get a credit when you transfer to the CGMA FLP. You must cancel your scheduled exams with Pearson VUE, and you will receive a refund to the card you used to pay for the exam. Note: Exams must be canceled at least 48 hours ahead of the scheduled exam sitting to be eligible for a full refund.

Can I do more than one level and case study per year in the CGMA FLP?

Yes, with an active subscription to the CGMA FLP you can progress as far as you’re able for the duration of your subscription. The subscription does not prevent or restrict progression. For example, if you have time to complete the learning and exam prep for one level and pass the case study exam, you can then continue to the next level learning and possibly even finish the exam prep and case study for that level, too. Active students are encouraged and rewarded.

Will CIMA mail me the diploma and advanced diploma when I am studying the CGMA FLP route?

Yes, all CIMA students will get the same diplomas sent via mail when they pass the Operational Case Study Exam or Management Case Study exams.

Can I pay my CGMA FLP subscription in instalments?

No. You pay for your chosen subscription in one payment.

Does the learning assessment in CGMA FLP take as long to complete as the OT exams in the self-study route to the CIMA PQ? How many hours do I need to invest in these modules?

The embedded assessments after each topic take about five minutes to complete. Over the course of each level these assessments roughly total 5 hours for Operational, 7.5 hours for Management and 7.5 for Strategic.

Why don’t I have to take assessments at a test centre or online?

As we deliver the learning and embedded assessment through the CGMA FLP, we can be confident that you have all the tools and materials within the CGMA FLP to complete the CIMA PQ, and be fully prepared to take the case study exams.

How long does it take to complete a level?

The programme is entirely self-directed, so you can complete it at whatever pace you prefer. If you have ample time to dedicate to completing the learning and prepping for exams, it’s possible to complete multiple levels in a year. Typically, a learning level takes around 75–125 hours to complete and case study preparation takes an additional 25–35 hours.

Do I need to submit proof of my previous qualifications to get my exemptions from the CGMA FLP?

Uploaded documentation is not required to register and begin the CGMA FLP. You must attest to the Code of Ethics, which prohibits giving false information about previous qualifications, education, professional experience or the like. Random audits will be conducted that may require you to submit verification of previous qualifications, including but not limited to educational transcripts, certifications, and/or attestations from previous employers. If the audit finds any false information, it is a breach of the Code of Ethics and is grounds for removal from the programme.

Is the CGMA FLP available in the U.K.?

In the U.K., we are working with our strategic partners (including tuition providers) on ways to embrace this new approach. We intend to roll this out later in 2022.

Upon completion of the CGMA FLP, do I still obtain the same ACMA, CGMA membership under CIMA PQ?

 Yes — the CGMA FLP confers the same benefits as other routes to the CIMA PQ.

Will I get a refund if I already made the student subs payments for 2021?

No. The 30% discount provided for students transitioning to the CGMA FLP takes into account fees already paid to CIMA.

Who can I talk to if I have more questions?

For any additional queries you can to speak directly to the Global Engagement Centre. We recommend using the online chat feature for the best service experience.

You can schedule an appointment to chat with us at a time that suits you: