AAT Level 2 Certificate in Accounting

The AAT Level 2 Certificate in Accounting course is an ideal introduction to accountancy which explores the fundamental concept of double-entry bookkeeping up to trial balance.

Students will learn how to prepare and record transactions in a manual and computerised double entry bookkeeping system to trial balance, how to prepare basic management information both manually and using IT and will be given an introduction to basic costing principles. This course is for learners aged 19 years and over.

Course Info
Do I have to pay a fee?
How to Apply
Other courses in this area
Course Content

The course is unit based, with these being undertaken as a whole.

The standards (Q2022) for the course are set by the Qualifications and Credit Framework Authority with the qualification being awarded by the AAT.

Assessment per unit is achieved by external computer based exams.

All mandatory units must be completed before the synoptic exam is completed. The dates for exams are set. Exam re-sits are available at an additional cost set by the AAT.

AAT Accounting Certificate Level 2 units students will cover include:

  • Introduction to Bookkeeping
  • Principles of Bookkeeping Controls
  • Principles of Costing
  • The Business Environment (synoptic)

It is vital that students aiming for accreditation of the AAT Accounting Certificate Level 2 and eventual AAT membership attend all lectures.

Entry Requirements

This course is for learners aged 19 years and over

Students will require 3 GCSEs, including English and maths (grades 9-4/A* – C), or relevant work experience.

AAT membership is mandatory for all full-time and part-time accounting courses, and you will be unable to sit the examinations without it.

Applicants enrolling on this course will be supported with obtaining their AAT Membership upon commencement of the course.

Applicants should visit the AAT website and undertake the skills check to ensure that they start at the correct level.

What Can I Do Next?

Successful completion of this course could allow students to gain employment in junior accounting positions, both in accountancy practice or industry/commerce. Students could progress to the Diploma in Accounting Level 3, to gain further accountancy skills that can lead to full membership of the AAT and to higher professional accounting qualifications.

Fees and Funding

This course is for learners aged 19 years and over.

If you are aged 19 and over, in certain circumstances you may be eligible for a fee waiver and therefore you will not have to pay for this course. 

Eligibility for a fee waiver will depend your age at the start of the course, your previous qualifications, your employment status and whether you claim certain benefits.

If you do not meet the criteria for a fee waiver, you may be eligible for some assistance from the College’s Bursary Funds, depending on the household financial circumstances.

If you do not meet the criteria for a fee waiver, and are not eligible for assistance from the Bursary Fund, you will have to pay for this course.

Published course fees for this course are located further down this course information page.

Do I have to pay a fee?

The information in this section applies to this course, and may not apply to other courses with different funding criteria.

You will not pay tuition fees if you are:
aged 19-24 at the 31st August 2022 and have an active Education, Health and Care Plan
aged 19-23 and have not achieved a level 2 qualification in any other subject (or 5 GCSEs grades 9-4)
over 19 at the start of the course, unemployed and in receipt of benefits
over 19 at the start of the course, employed and have a gross annual salary under £18,525 per annum
If you are aged 19-23 and have previously achieved a Level 2 qualification, if you do not meet the low income or unemployment criteria you will not be eligible for a fee waiver
You will not meet the low income or unemployment criteria if you:
are aged over 19 at the start of the course, unemployed and are not in receipt of benefits
are aged over 19 at the start of the course, employed and have a gross annual salary over £18,525 per annum
Therefore you will pay tuition fees

In certain circumstances, the College’s discretionary bursary fund maybe able to assist with a contribution towards tuition fees. Eligibility to the fund depends on the household’s financial circumstances.  Further information regarding the discretionary bursary fund can be found further down this page.

Am I eligible for a bursary?

Applicants thinking of enrolling on this course can apply for funding to help with the costs associated with attending college.  Bursary funds are targeted at students where there is an identified low household income.

The bursary fund cannot provide help with costs unrelated to your course, such as general living expenses, nor can it be used as an attendance incentive.

Applications to the fund are not normally considered if the household income exceeds £25,000 but may be considered in some instances if the household is experiencing severe financial hardship.

If you do not meet the above criteria then you are likely to be eligible for support through the 19+ Bursary Fund

Funds are targeted at course related costs such as travel, childcare, books and equipment.

Regardless of income or employment status, students self-funding (including where an employer is covering course fees), are not eligible for financial assistance through any discretionary bursary funds.

When can I apply?

Bursary Fund applications for courses starting in the 2022/23 academic year will be open from June 1st 2022.

For courses starting in September 2022, applications should be made by 1st November 2022. If you find yourself in financial hardship after this date it is important that you still contact Student Services. Applications received after 1st November will be considered on a pro-rata basis subject to need and the availability of funds.

Payment Options

Can I pay in instalments?

Where total course fees exceed £200 you (or your employer, if they are paying your course fees) can choose to pay your fees in instalments through a monthly payment plan.

40% of the fee or £500 (whichever is lower) will be payable at enrolment.

The balance must be paid within 6 months or by the end date if the course is less than 6 months in duration.

Payment in full in advance

Payment should be made in full at the time of enrolment. Acceptable payment methods include Debit Card and Credit Card (excluding American Express). Please note that we are no longer able to accept cash or cheque payments.

Applications are now open!

The application window for part-time courses starting in September and October 2023 opens on Tuesday January 3rd 2023, and we start processing applications from this date.

Applications for this course are made via our online application form and you will be able to access it from this course page.

Once you are ready to apply then please click the ‘Apply Online‘ button which will be located in the menu directly underneath this section from Tuesday January 3rd.

Upon successful submission of an application you will receive an acknowledgement email from our Admissions team. If you do not receive this you should contact the team to check that your application has been received.

During the second half of the summer-term (May and June), applicants will start to receive further correspondence from the College about the next stages of the admissions process. These will include details about interviews with the course tutor or any pre-assessments and trades tests.

Once applications are open, if you have any further questions about the application process or next available start date, want to check the progress of your application or if you are unsure about anything please contact us using the enquiry line or enquiry form below.


AAT Accounting Foundation Certificate Level 2
Course Outline: An ideal introduction to accountancy which explores the fundamental concept of double-entry bookkeeping up to trial balance
LevelLevel 2
Duration34 Weeks


Study ModePart-Time
Campus / Adult Skills CentreColchester Campus
Start DateSeptember 2023
ApplicationsApplications for starting in September 2023 are open now
AttendanceLearners studying the full certificate have the choice of two attendance modes:
Attendance Mode 1:
1 Day per week:
Thursday (10am-4.30pm)

Attendance Mode 2:
2 evenings (both) per week:
Tuesday (6pm-8.30pm)
Thursday (6pm-9pm)
Price£866 (plus AAT fee. More information on AAT membership and current fees can be found at www.aat.org.uk)


All fees, prices and funding information shown on this page are for courses starting in the 2022-23 academic year unless stated otherwise, and are correct at the time of entering/printing information, however these may be subject to change due to factors outside of our control. The College cannot accept legal or financial liability as a result of any such changes.

Courses fees are generally not confirmed for September until June / July due to the above factors.

The course information describes programmes offered by Colchester Institute. The College takes all reasonable steps to provide courses as described, but cannot guarantee provision. The information is for guidance and does not form any part of a contract.

The College reserves the right to update and amend information as and when necessary. Colchester Institute will do its best to provide the courses shown, but may have to modify or withdraw a course depending on customer demand and other factors.