Taxation and Ethics new AAT qualifications

MarieNoelleMarieNoelle Trusted RegularHampshire/Surrey borderPosts: 1,461Moderator, MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant
Hi,
I read in the latest edition of PQ magazine (p.22 "Change for the better") that AAT is introducing 3 new qualifications, one of them being a level 4 "Taxation and ethics" -

"The new qualification will offer a different exit point at level 4, allowing those who want to specialise in tax to do so under the AAT umbrella [...] (it) will offer a thorough understanding of the basic UK tax system and will equip successful students to provide tax advice and services to the self-employed (sole traders) as well as work in other rewarding areas such as industry."

I am keen to study tax in the near future and was thinking of starting ATT but would be interested to learn more on this new qualification.

Any one has any more info on this? Thanks,
MN

Comments

  • readerreader Experienced Mentor Posts: 1,039MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant
    Hi,
    I read in the latest edition of PQ magazine (p.22 "Change for the better") that AAT is introducing 3 new qualifications, one of them being a level 4 "Taxation and ethics" -

    "The new qualification will offer a different exit point at level 4, allowing those who want to specialise in tax to do so under the AAT umbrella [...] (it) will offer a thorough understanding of the basic UK tax system and will equip successful students to provide tax advice and services to the self-employed (sole traders) as well as work in other rewarding areas such as industry."

    I am keen to study tax in the near future and was thinking of starting ATT but would be interested to learn more on this new qualification.

    Any one has any more info on this? Thanks,
    MN

    I too read this earlier in the week via the PQ magazine.

    Call me cynical but I see this as a rather canny move by the AAT. They are probably seeing increasing numbers of Member in Practice (MiP) applications and hearing about the growing numbers of people doing ATT (to prepare them for being a MiP) and want a slice of the action and cash, hence introducing their own tax qualification.

    ACCA did a similar thing many years go when they saw lots of people coming to them with AAT, so in order to get a slice of the cash ACCA introduced a qualification called CAT (the ACCA's equivalent of AAT). CAT has never really taken off (most people haven't even heard of it) and I don't think AAT's tax qualification will take off either.

    The 3 major benefits of doing ATT over a new AAT tax qualification would be:

    1) The ATT qualification is a long established and well respected qualification recognised by employers (if you go onto the Reed or ProTax recruitment websites you'll see that many tax roles specifically ask for ATT-qualified people). I doubt the AAT qualification will overtake the ATT qualification in terms of employer respect and recognition.

    2) The ATT qualification can lead to chartered status via CTA (whereas the AAT tax qualification probably won't lead to anything other than a lower bank balance). I can't see CTA working with AAT given that CTA has a invested interest in ATT.

    3) The quality of the ATT course will probably be better as it is developed in conjunction with CTA (the highest tax qualification in the country). Whereas I'm assuming the AAT course won't be developed by high calibre tax people (unless the AAT pays the ATT/CTA to help them develop the course).

    I personally think the new AAT tax qualification will be a poor man's ATT/CTA in the same way CAT is a poor man's AAT.

    Now that I've said all of the above I'll probably turn out to be wrong but this is just my prediction/initial thoughts. It will be interesting to see what actually happens and how similar the courses are.
  • SarahJSSarahJS Trusted Regular Posts: 273Registered
    My first thoughts were on a similar vein to Readers.

    Unless it gets decent backing I'd go for ATT as you know what you're getting.

    Obviously this could drastically change in future if/when employers back the qualification, but for now the safer bet will stay ATT.
  • jow774jow774 Trusted Regular Posts: 465Registered
    Speaking for myself I think its a good idea that AAT are looking at doing a specialist tax course. At least
    it wont mean having to join another body and travelling miles to the nearest exam centre, like ATT.

    Maybe Im a "poor man" but I am quite interested and at least it wont mean having to pay another
    professional body subscription fee!

    With the growing amount of mips I think AAT has a responsibility to provide a course.
  • SarahJSSarahJS Trusted Regular Posts: 273Registered
    jow774 wrote: »
    Speaking for myself I think its a good idea that AAT are looking at doing a specialist tax course. At least
    it wont mean having to join another body and travelling miles to the nearest exam centre, like ATT.

    Maybe Im a "poor man" but I am quite interested and at least it wont mean having to pay another
    professional body subscription fee!

    With the growing amount of mips I think AAT has a responsibility to provide a course.

    I'd love to see more info on the actual syllabus before judging the qualfication in terms of the content of the course.

    In terms of travelling to exams, yes it is awkward and a few more ATT venues wouldn't go amiss, but I definitely value the sitting an 'old fashioned' paper exam. This way tests your understanding much more comprehensively in my opinion.

    If AAT introduce the tax qualification with CBAs I really can't see how it would work - in my opinion the lack of long questions in the exams would not suit tax well at all. I took both tax options at level 4 and found both exams very 'forced' due to the restraints of a CBA.

    I definitely agree with the not havin to pay 2 bodies membership though!
  • MarieNoelleMarieNoelle Trusted Regular Hampshire/Surrey borderPosts: 1,461Moderator, MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant
    Thanks all for your feedback.

    I agree with Sarah though:

    SarahJS wrote: »
    I'd love to see more info on the actual syllabus before judging the qualfication in terms of the content of the course.

    I have found nothing on the AAT website and I can't remember seeing anything about it in AAT Magazine.

    Maybe someone up there can shed some light on the syllabus (or is it still a work in progress....)? :huh:
  • Jo ClarkJo Clark Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,526Registered
    SarahJS wrote: »

    I definitely agree with the not havin to pay 2 bodies membership though!

    I thought you received discounted AAT Membership fees if studying ATT/ACCA etc?

    Also, from researching ATT, I understand (maybe wrongly) that the membership fee is for 5 years and can be renewed after that.
    ~ An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest ~
    Benjamin Franklin
  • MarieNoelleMarieNoelle Trusted Regular Hampshire/Surrey borderPosts: 1,461Moderator, MAAT, AAT Licensed Accountant
    Jo Clark wrote: »
    I thought you received discounted AAT Membership fees if studying ATT/ACCA etc?

    Also, from researching ATT, I understand (maybe wrongly) that the membership fee is for 5 years and can be renewed after that.

    Hi Jo,
    I think student membership is indeed for 5 years but the full membership is an annual one. I haven't seen anything on reduced fees for other bodies though...
  • Jo ClarkJo Clark Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,526Registered
    Hi Jo,
    I think student membership is indeed for 5 years but the full membership is an annual one. I haven't seen anything on reduced fees for other bodies though...

    I found it on MyAAT on the membership section... think there is a form to fill out... I don't think the saving is huge but it all helps... and don't forget if you pay by direct debit I think you can pay smaller amounts over the year (quarterly I think)
    ~ An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest ~
    Benjamin Franklin
  • Jo ClarkJo Clark Font Of All Knowledge Posts: 2,526Registered
    Jo Clark wrote: »
    I found it on MyAAT on the membership section... think there is a form to fill out... I don't think the saving is huge but it all helps... and don't forget if you pay by direct debit I think you can pay smaller amounts over the year (quarterly I think)

    http://forums.aat.org.uk/showthread.php?35102-Spread-the-cost-of-your-AAT-membership-renewal-fees
    ~ An investment in knowledge always pays the best interest ~
    Benjamin Franklin
  • Craig_GCraig_G Settling In Nicely Posts: 17Registered
    For those who are interested, here's a link to an online copy of the relevant PQ Magazine issue. As Marie indicated in her original post, you'll find the AAT article on page 22:

    http://issuu.com/pqpublishing/docs/pqapril13
  • villapbvillapb Trusted Regular Posts: 357Registered
    First thing I thought, who is going to teach the new syllabus ?? Might be an opportunity for att qualified people who know their stuff.
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