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C03. Business Mathematics (FBSM)


The is CIMA Certificate level self study workbook series contains everything you need to know to pass your exam. Consisting of five papers in total C01, C02, C03, C04 and C05. All papers must be completed to achieve the certificate in Business Accounting. This workbook is paper C03.


·         It combines the theory and the practice in a unique way that will help you prepare for the assessment in the shortest possible time. Key features:

·         Relevant text that fully covers the syllabus, well-written in a pragmatic and stimulating style

·         Key points that will teach you the most relevant syllabus topics

·         Plenty of diagrams and flowcharts, examples and exercises

·         Numerous assessment-standard questions that will test your knowledge and develop assessment techniques



Enclosed CD provides practice in exam-like environment – you have the option of creating a progress test and a mock that will show you what exactly you can expect to achieve on the assessment day.




This syllabus aims to test the student’s ability to:

·         explain and demonstrate the use of basic mathematics, including formulae and ratios;

·         identify reasonableness in the calculation of answers;

·         identify and apply techniques for summarising and analysing data;

·         explain and demonstrate the use of probability where risk and uncertainty exist;

·         explain and apply financial mathematical techniques;

·         explain and demonstrate techniques used for forecasting.



There will be a written paper of two hours. Initially, objective testing will account for a minimum of 50% of the marks awarded on this paper.

Course Requirements This is a Foundation Level study in mathematical and statistical concepts and techniques. The first two sections, Basic Mathematics and Summarising and Analysing Data, include techniques which are fundamental to the work of the Chartered Management Accountant. The third section covers basic probability and is needed because Chartered Management Accountants need to be aware of and be able to estimate the risk and uncertainty involved in the decisions they make. The fourth section is an introduction to financial mathematics, a topic that is important to the study of financial management. Finally, there is an introduction to the mathematical techniques needed for forecasting, necessary in the area of business planning.




Learning outcomes and syllabus content


3c(i) Basic mathematics – 10%

Learning outcomes


On completion of their studies students should be able to:

·         demonstrate the order of operations in formulae, including the use of brackets, negative numbers, powers and roots;

·         calculate percentages and proportions;

·         calculate answers to appropriate significant figures or decimal places;

·         calculate maximum absolute and relative errors;

·         solve simple equations, including two variable simultaneous equations and quadratic equations;

·         prepare graphs of linear and quadratic equations.


Syllabus content


Use of formulae.

·         Percentages and ratios.

·         Rounding of numbers.

·         Basic algebraic techniques and the solution of equations, including simultaneous and quadratic equations.


3c(ii) Summarising and analysing data – 25%

Learning outcomes


On completion of their studies students should be able to:

·         explain the difference between data and information;

·         explain the characteristics of good information;

·         explain the difference between primary and secondary data;

·         identify the sources of secondary data;

·         explain the different methods of sampling and identify where each is appropriate;

·         tabulate data and explain the results;

·         prepare a frequency distribution from raw data;

·         prepare and explain the following graphs and diagrams: bar charts, time series graphs (not Z charts), scatter diagrams, histograms and ogives;

·         calculate and explain the following summary statistics for ungrouped data: arithmetic mean, median, mode, range, standard deviation and variance;

·         calculate and explain the following summary statistics for grouped data:
arithmetic mean, median (graphical method only), mode (graphical method only), range, semi-interquartile range (graphical method only), standard deviation and variance;

·         calculate and explain a simple index number, a fixed base and chain base series of index numbers;

·         use index numbers to deflate a series and explain the results;

·         calculate a simple weighted index number. Candidates will not have to decide whether to use base or current weights.


Syllabus content


·         Data and information.

·         Primary and secondary data.

·         Probability sampling (simple random sampling, stratified, systematic, multi-stage, cluster) and non-profitability sampling (quota).

·         Tabulation of data.

·         Frequency distributions.

·         Graphs and diagrams: bar charts, time series graphs (not Z charts), scatter diagrams, histograms and ogives.

·         Summary measures for both grouped and ungrouped data.

·         Coefficient of variation.

·         Index numbers.


3c(iii) Probability – 20%

Learning outcomes


On completion of their studies students should be able to:

·         calculate a simple probability;

·         demonstrate the use of the addition and multiplication rules of probability;

·         calculate a simple conditional probability;

·         calculate and explain an expected value;

·         demonstrate the use of expected values to make decisions;

·         explain the limitations of expected values;

·         demonstrate the use of normal distribution and the CIMA Tables;

·         demonstrate the application of the normal distribution to calculate probabilities.


Syllabus content

·         The relationship between probability, proportion and per cent.

·         The addition and multiplication rules.

·         Expected values.

·         Normal distribution.


3c(iv) Financial mathematics – 20%

Learning outcomes


On completion of their studies students should be able to:

·         calculate future values of an investment, using both simple and compound interest;

·         calculate an annual percentage rate of interest, given a quarterly or monthly rate;

·         calculate the present value of a future cash sum, using both a formula and CIMA Tables;

·         calculate the present value of an annuity using both a formula and CIMA Tables;

·         calculate loan/mortgage repayments and the value of an outstanding loan/mortgage;

·         calculate the present value of a perpetuity;

·         calculate the future value of regular savings (sinking funds) or find the savings given the future value, if necessary, using the sum of a geometric progression;

·         calculate the NPV of a project and use this to decide whether a project should be undertaken, or to choose between mutually exclusive projects;

·         calculate and explain the use of the IRR of a project.


Syllabus content

·         Simple and compound interest.

·         Discounting to find the present value.

·         Annuities and perpetuities.

·         Loans and mortgages.

·         Sinking funds and savings funds.

·         Simple investment appraisal.


3c(v) Forecasting – 25%

Learning outcomes


On completion of their studies students should be able to:

·         calculate the correlation coefficient between two variables and explain the value;

·         calculate the rank correlation coefficient between two sets of data and explain the value;

·         explain the meaning of 100r2 (the coefficient of determination);

·         demonstrate the use of regression analysis between two variables to find the line of best fit, and explain its meaning;

·         calculate a forecast of the value of the dependent variable, given the value of the independent variable;

·         prepare a time series graph and identify trends and patterns;

·         identify the components of a time series model;

·         calculate the trend using a graph, moving averages or linear regression, and be able to forecast the trend;

·         calculate the seasonal variations for both additive and multiplicative models;

·         calculate a forecast of the actual value using either the additive or the multiplicative model;

·         explain the difference between the additive and multiplicative models, and when each is appropriate;

·         calculate the seasonally adjusted values in a time series;

·         explain the reliability of any forecasts made.

Syllabus content


·         Correlation.

·         Simple linear regression.

·         Time series analysis – graphical analysis.

·         Calculation of trend using graphs, moving averages and linear regression.

·         Seasonal variations – additive and multiplicative.

·         Forecasting.

Advantages of this distance learning course:
  • Home Study: you declare when you study, no need to attend class at fixed times and fixed dates. Your study hours fit around you!
  • We will post all the beautifully printed course materials to you. Everything is written in a clear and easy-to-understand format.
  • Start this course anytime of the year! No need to wait until the new academic year starts. Enroll today so soon you'll start improving your CV or re-skill for your new career.
  • Create your own study routine, learn at your own pace, complete your course as quickly or slowly as your circumstance dictate.
  • Your home learning is totally supported by experienced tutors who guide, encourage and assess your progress. You will not be alone because all our tutors are friendly and approachable.


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