ACCA or ACA?

CarrieCarrie Just JoinedPosts: 1Registered
I'm after some advice!

I have just completed my final 3 exams in the AAT diploma route. I am now looking at what to go on to next. My employer has offered me either ACCA or ACA/ICAEW. They will pay for both and allow time of work for study of ACA, and 2 days per exam for ACCA. I'm only 20 and have no long term plans to work towards, but I would love to go travelling at some point.

I completed my AAT via distance learning and the thought of continuing this for ACCA doesn't bother me at all.

ACA is perceived as a better qualification, all though my work collegues assure me that there is not much in it!

I would love any advice or thoughts on each course which might help me decide what to do next!!!

Thanks!

Comments

  • Sonny_LSonny_L Well-Known Posts: 201Registered
    ACA all day long. Accountancy's elite qualification.

    From accountancyage.com

    ICAEW 6+ years qualified average salary: £67,272

    and for ACCA: £56,567


    Of course this is merely an average and it is the person that ultimately earns the salary rather than the qualification. But were I in your position it'd be a no brainer.

    I believe the courses themselves are extremely similar. That is something you can easily research on each institutes website though. Check out the past exam papers. They're a bit scary!
  • 2cool2cool Feels At Home Posts: 53Registered
    hi

    May I ask what are the major differences between ACA and ACCA?

    I am also 20 and i have always been under the illusion that ACCA was the one to do after AAT. :001_unsure:

    2cool
  • aer87aer87 Feels At Home Posts: 26Registered
    meeee2

    me 2, please help
    we was told about CIMA and ACCA
    but whats ACA?
    Difference? Length of course etc?

    Help Us All Please - I'm only 21!?
  • BluewednesdayBluewednesday Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 1,624Registered
    There are always different answers relating to this.

    ACCA and ACA with the right practical experience can qualify you to do the same thing. CIMA is more management accounting focussed and ACCA is generally thought to sit between ACA and CIMA. However anyone can practice - under certain conditions - with these qualifications.

    The reason a lot of people do ACCA after AAT is the flexibility of study. To do ACA you need have a training contract (I believe) with a firm which you don't require for ACCA. However ACA is perceived to be the elite qualification as Sonny has stated but ACCA is more globally recognised. It really is swings and roundabouts and it's best to have a look at the syllabi and see which one you fancy.

    To be honest once you are qualified it's experience that counts and not which qualification you took.
  • moneymotivatedmoneymotivated Feels At Home Posts: 35Registered
    Again I am also in the same boat (apart from i'm 21 not 20!)

    I work in a firm of chartered accountant's and the directors don't care if you do ACA or ACCA.

    CIMA is not considered as it is for management accounts mainly (so if you work as in-house accountant this is the course for you etc).

    I have researched into this quite a bit and here is what I have found....

    There is an AAT- ACA fast track system where you get upto 4 exemptions on the computer based multiple choice exams, and an exemption from the financial statements paper (if you done DFS that is for AAT). All you have to do is sit a quick top up paper instead of the actual written exam. This means you can do the whole course in 2 years instead of the normal 3 years.

    I haven't really looked into ACCA as of yet so if anyone can shed some light on available exemptions from them that would be great, although I expect them to be fairly similar to the one's ACA are offering.

    As for the difference between the two I have also heard that they are fairly similar and that the ACCA is a cross between ACA and CIMA. Apparently firms do not distinguish between the two as one being better than the other, but for 'snobbery' value, ACA is what people tend to go for.

    I also heard that if you are ACA qualified you can sign of audits whereas if you are ACCA qualified you can't. Don't know if this is true or not?

    Finally it is true that you need a training contract for the ACA and not ACCA. In order to do ACA your firm has to be registered to ACA (details of how to do this are on the ICAEW website).

    I have decided to go for ACA, not for snobbery reasons, but because i'd rather stay in the sector I am, and not venture into management accounts, and I feel the ACA will be best suited to do that.

    Hope this is of some help.

    J
  • aer87aer87 Feels At Home Posts: 26Registered
    thanks

    hello

    you've both helped alot
    however.......... if you was in my position
    working in industry? wud you leave industry and study ACCA?

    bcos my boss advised that industry is falling, and its true in UK isnt it?

    Also... the MD is CIMA qualified, and my boss is ACCA qualified, yet both work here? So does it really matter bcos if i did ACCA, surely i could stil work in industry? Is this making any sense? Haha im boggled
  • BluewednesdayBluewednesday Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 1,624Registered
    moneymotivated

    You can become a registered auditor with ACCA, as long as you have the required work experience and have completed the advanced audit paper.
  • PGMPGM Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 1,954Registered
    Sonny_L wrote: »
    ACA all day long. Accountancy's elite qualification.

    From accountancyage.com

    ICAEW 6+ years qualified average salary: £67,272

    and for ACCA: £56,567

    I mostly agree, however its not quite that simple. The company you work for needs a training contract with ACA, so this tends to be larger companies. I'd imagine the avarage for ACCA is brought down by the accountants working for small/medium sized companies.
    There are always different answers relating to this.

    ACCA is more globally recognised. It really is swings and roundabouts and it's best to have a look at the syllabi and see which one you fancy.

    To be honest once you are qualified it's experience that counts and not which qualification you took.

    I was initially going for ACA, until I realised how ACCA is better recognised globally! And for my situation that tipped the balance.

    However, in the end I'd be very happy to have either!
  • mehmetmehmet Well-Known Posts: 113Registered
    PGM wrote: »
    I was initially going for ACA, until I realised how ACCA is better recognised globally! And for my situation that tipped the balance

    To be honest, any UK Accounting qualification (be it CIPFA, ICAEW, ICAS, ACCA) will be well recognised throughout the world. The EV for my college is an FCA, and he's worked in the USA, Canada and Venezuela.

    Also worth mentioning is the fact that finishing ACA will allow you to move into corporate banking a lot easier than ACCA would (if you've ever considered a career in it).
  • AdamRAdamR Experienced Mentor Posts: 668Registered
    I've just finished AAT and I've managed to convince my employers, a small ACCA practice, to apply to register as an ACA training provider so that I can study for ICAEW. If it's approved, I'll be delighted as it's the qualification I've always favoured - it's more based around practice, and is specific to England and Wales.

    Also, I find the fast track more rewarding as it actually takes into account which options you took at Technician. The exam structure is also better than ACCA - I will have only 2 exams in my final year, whereas an ACCA studier has 5!

    That said, each to their own and if you're not in or desperate to work in practice, and want a qualification that will be better recognised by countries outside this little island, ACCA is probably the better choice.

    I'm sure the snobbery element of ACA has been mentioned but that is really all that's in it. They both attract good money!
  • Gentle JesusGentle Jesus Well-Known Posts: 241Registered
    Hello

    The ACCA have sittings for exams every 6 months june and december.

    The maximum exams one can take in one sitting is 4.

    From passing the AAT Technician and intermediate you get exemptions from papers F1 F2 F3.

    leaving you with papers F4,F5,F6,F7,F8,F9.... P1,P2,P3 AND 2 MORE OPTIONS PAPERS

    so in june sitting to make it easy one can sit 3 papers and in december one can sit anoither 3 papers

    next year for june same thing sit 3 papers and in december only left with 2 papers

    so you could do ACCA within 2 years aswell providing they pass first time round.

    or 1 and a half if 4 papers are taken in the first 2 sittings and 3 in last sitting

    ADAM, i do not know where you got the information from that an ACCA studier will have to sit 5 papers in their last stitting.

    But 5 papers in one sitting will not b allowed

    Hope this helps

    Kind Regards
  • AdamRAdamR Experienced Mentor Posts: 668Registered
    ADAM, i do not know where you got the information from that an ACCA studier will have to sit 5 papers in their last stitting.

    But 5 papers in one sitting will not b allowed

    If it came across as that I apologise; what I meant was an ACCA studier will have to sit 5 exams for the final level of the qualification.
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