Your number’s up

May 2021

Which calculator would be the perfect exam buddy? Steven Nash knows, you know.

‘Which calculator can I use in my AAT exams?” That is a question I get asked many times, year after year, and to be fair it’s a great question!

The choice available is as vast as it is wide (with one to suit any budget).

Testing centres should provide you with a calculator to use in your exam, but are you going to be happy with one that you’re not necessarily familiar with? Generally speaking, it can be far less stressful if you’re able to use your own, as you’re likely to be more comfortable with the layout.

This is all good and well, but as testing centres have certain rules regarding the use of external equipment under exam conditions, which ones are you allowed?

Essentially, what it boils down to is the following three rules:
• Your calculator must be silent.
• Your calculator cannot be capable of storing text.
• Your calculator cannot be programmable.

As long as it complies with these three rules, then it is allowable. But is it suitable? After all, there are certain key functions that are vital.

As a minimum, it should have a percentage and a square root function, which would suffice as a starting point. But if you’d like one that’ll take you through all levels of your AAT studies then you need to consider something a bit more advanced. It’s not necessary to go for a really expensive one with all the bells and whistles, as you’re unlikely to be able to use it under exam conditions. The examples (as outlined above) would see you through all your exams and beyond.

All of the above being said, if you’re unsure, you can always use the ones provided by the test centre.

• Steven Nash is a tutor at Training Link