Monday, 13 August 2012

How to Study ABE

ABE produces a variety of resources to make studying easier, and this article should tell you what each of them is for, what form it takes, and where you can find it. Most of the resources detailed below are available in the Members Area of the ABE website, which you can log into at

The various links you will need to follow to access the resources are shown in italics.


Members>Member login>Tuition Resources> QCF Resources>QCF Syllabuses

Syllabuses set out the knowledge and skills that you will be assessed on in ABE’s examinations. They are available to both members and non-members under the relevant subsection of the Qualifications tab on the ABE website ( For example, if you wish to view a syllabus for a unit in the Business Management programme, you would select ‘Business Management’ from the ‘Qualifications’ drop-down menu, and then scroll down until you see the list of units, which can be selected to reveal the relevant syllabus. Members can also access syllabuses in the Members Area using the above series of links.

Each syllabus includes between 4 and 8 Learning Outcomes. These set out what you are expected to know as a result of taking the unit. You should revise for each learning outcome, as they will all be tested in the examination.

The Learning Outcomes all contain one or more Assessment Criteria. These describe how you will demonstrate in the examination that you have met the Learning Outcomes. The Assessment Criteria are further broken down into Indicative Content, which indicates some of the range of detail covered by the Assessment Criteria.

At the top of each syllabus you will see, among other things, the following information:

Guided Learning Hours (GLH) – this is the recommended amount of time that a student should spend learning the particular unit under the teacher’s direction, both in the classroom and in their own time, before the examination. It is only a guide and colleges may choose to timetable significantly less than the GLH.

Level – this is the level at which the unit has been recognised by OFQUAL, the regulator of qualifications, examinations and assessments in England. It is a measure of the demand or complexity of the unit, so a Level 5 unit would be more demanding than a Level 4 and so on.

Number of Credits – this is the amount of credits the unit is worth on the UK’s QCF framework. One credit equals 10 hours of learning time (which unlike GLH includes private study not directed by the teacher). Credits can be transferred to other qualifications on the QCF.

Lecture Guides

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources> QCF Resources>QCF Lecture Guides

ABE’s lecture guides offer advice from examiners on how the syllabus for each unit should be taught – for each syllabus, there is a corresponding lecture guide, available to ABE Members by following the above series of links on the ABE website. The lecture guides add important detail to each of the Learning Outcomes presented in the syllabus, giving you an insight into what examiners are looking for, and are therefore particularly helpful when studying for the examination. Our blog entry ’Lecture Guides: Who are they for?’, provides more insight into this particular resource.

Past Questions and Suggested Answers

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources> QCF Resources>Questions and Answers

Answering past questions as though you are in a real exam is useful for practising your exam technique, and for testing your knowledge of a particular unit, and so exam papers from previous examination sessions are available for ABE members to use as part of the learning and revision processes. ABE also supplies suggested answers for questions from each paper in the Members Area of the ABE website, so it’s easy to check how close you are to achieving full marks.

Recommended reading lists

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources> QCF Resources>QCF Reading Lists

ABE’s reading lists contain all the details of the various publications that the examiners recommend you read to fully understand the syllabus. These publications are often referred to in the lecture guides, and reading them will give you a more rounded knowledge of the topic covered in the syllabuses. Where appropriate, the reading list will also direct you to where you can purchase the publication.

Study Manuals

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources> QCF Resources>QCF Study Manuals

Study Manuals are textbooks which have been written specifically for particular ABE units. Each manual deals with each of the learning outcomes in the appropriate syllabus and so comprehensively covers all the topics you will need to learn in order to have a chance at passing that examination.

ABE publishes Study Manuals for all units in the BM Pathway of the Business Management stream, and the common BM units in the HRM, MM and TTHM streams. There are also ABE Study Manuals for the specialist units in the Level 4 and 5 HRM Diplomas.

ABE students are able to purchase the BM Study Manuals in PDF format, on CD-ROM, or as printed books either by making an online payment or by downloading and returning the appropriate form. These can be found by following the above series of links on the ABE website. The HRM specialist Study Manuals are available as printed books via BPP Learning Media at , and also from a number of bookshops across the world. A list of these, as well as more information about the HRM Study Manuals is available at .

Study Tips

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources>QCF Resources>QCF Study Tips

Study Tips is a series of articles written for ABE students by ABE staff and examiners. Some of the articles cover examination technique such as how to improve your essay writing skills, whilst some address how to study for and write exams in a particular ABE unit. As well as being available in ABE’s quarterly student publication Student Focus, the articles can also be found in the Members Area by following the above series of links, or at

‘Changes to ABE Examinations’ Document

Members>Member login>Tuition Resources>QCF Resources>Important changes to ABE examinations under QCF

Following the introduction of the Qualifications and Credit Framework (QCF) in the UK, ABE has taken the opportunity to revise its qualifications in order to provide the most relevant and focused learning experience for students. The new QCF qualifications were examined by ABE for the first time in December 2011, and the various changes to ABE’s examinations under this framework are detailed in the ‘Changes to ABE examinations’ document. It is important to read this document as a starting point to familiarising yourself with the structure and requirements of ABE’s examinations under the QCF.

If you sat ABE examinations before December 2011 you should also consult the Transition Arrangements on the ABE website ( to find out how you can use your previous ABE passes to complete your QCF qualification.

Student Focus

Members>Member login>Benefits>Student Focus

Student Focus is a quarterly publication, received free by all ABE members. Its content is specifically for ABE students. It contains relevant information about examinations, courses and colleges, plus articles, news, competitions and study tips from examiners, and is available in PDF form from the Members Area of the ABE website.

Business Executive

Business Executive is a quarterly magazine received by students with current membership who hold a QCF (or NQF) Level 5 Diploma, and its stimulating articles are relevant to anyone with an interest in business or management. It can therefore be a valuable source of information for students taking a Level 6 Diploma with ABE.


  1. very good and helpful for self study but there are so many mistakes or typing errors in the suggested answers especial in Accounting.
    Abe should look this very careful

  2. I want to study ABE UK course online, and I reside in Accra Ghana, I do not intend to enroll with any college. Please let me know where, and how to sit for examinations.