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Will contractor accountants sit new qualification?

Will contractor accountants sit new qualification?

The AAT, ICAEW and Manchester Metropolitan University have got together and launched a low cost accountancy qualification which it hopes will enable more people to take up the profession.

The new programme starts in January next year and will be delivered through MMU’s business school. Students will be required to attend two three-hour weekly sessions. The programme is flexible, there are multiple entry points and students will gain a recognised qualification once they have completed each stage. The entire course costs £15,000 but this is based on current fee levels.

Students will be able to obtain an AAT qualification, as well as a BA (Hons) in professional accountancy after three years nine months. A further two years of study will complete the ACA qualification from the ICAEW and a masters degree in professional accountancy.

AAT president, Hilary Lindsay, said that making accountancy an affordable career choice will lead to a larger pool of talent to support future economic growth.

PwC has applauded the decision to launch the part-time course, saying the combination of higher education and professional skills development will ensure its graduates receive favourable treatment from the firm.

Meanwhile, the Professional Oversight Board has said that audit qualifying bodies should improve the way they award exemptions from some professional examinations. Furthermore, all supervisory bodies must strengthen the process for approving people who are allowed to sign audit opinions.

In particular, the report singled out the ACCA as an organisation that needs to ensure applicants are competent to do their job when initial audit experience was obtained some years ago. The board also said that the ACCA has already implemented some significant changes into its final audit examination and these will be reviewed to establish whether the exam is now sufficiently challenging.

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Image: final exam by dcJohn

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