ACCA is short for the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants, which is the global professional body for accountants. ACCA provides an internationally recognised accountancy qualification, which is accepted by the majority of regulatory and educational institutions. ACCA members are regulated, to ensure that they are competent as professional accountants. Gaining the ACCA qualification is the perfect way to start your journey as a chartered accountant.
The ACCA qualification is comprised of three stages of exams, with an ethics and professional skills module, and a professional experience requirement. The exams are split into three types; applied knowledge exams, applied skills exams, and strategic professional exams.
Applied Knowledge Exams
The applied knowledge exams give you an introduction to the world of finance and accounting, as well as developing your understanding of essential accounting techniques. There are three applied knowledge exams:
- Accountant in Business (AB)
- Management Accounting (MA)
- Financial Accounting (FA)
Applied Skills Exams
The applied skills exams build on your existing knowledge and understanding, developing strong and practical finance required of future accountants in any sector or industry. There are six applied skills exams:
- Corporate and Business Law (LW)
- Performance Management (PM)
- Taxation (TX)
- Financial Reporting (FR)
- Audit and Assurance (AA)
- Financial Management (FM)
Strategic Professional Exams
The strategic professional exams provide students with a unique set of skills, real-world application, as well as offering specialisation options. There are both essential and optional exams. These exams are:
- Strategic Business Leader (SBL) - Essential
- Strategic Business Reporting (SBR) - Essential
- Advanced Financial Management (AFM) - Optional
- Advanced Performance Management (APM) - Optional
- Advanced Taxation (ATX) - Optional
- Advanced Audit and Assurance (AAA) - Optional
In order to gain your ACCA qualification, there is a practical experience requirement. This work experience means that you will qualify as a confident professional, who is ready to apply their knowledge in a work environment. Your relevant accounting experience can be started from when you are first accepted onto the ACCA course. Not only will this module allow you to experience applied accounting, it is also crucial for your professional development.
Ethics and Professional Skills
The ethics and professional skills module will develop your complete range of skills, using the recommendations given to ACCA by employers. This module will expose you to realistic business situations, and allow you to explore the full spectrum of advanced ethical and professional skills.
You should complete the ethics and professional skills module before taking any of the strategic professional exams.