When I was doing my Lower six, there was this career guidance event for Upper Six students. It so happened that when they were about to go, someone called out to me and a friend to come and fill some empty seats on the bus. We jumped on and boy was it worth it!
You may be wondering why I’m mentioning this; it was on this event that I really got to first know about ACCA. Afterwards I really blamed them for their lack of marketing. Needless to say, my friend and I both decided to do ACCA. On my part, my family was more traditional and didn't support the idea of not going to University. My friend went on to do his full ACCA and got the degree as well. All in two years! So this week I decided to show you why I fell in love with this option way back in 2001.
On Wednesday the 15th of October armed with this purpose in mind, we took to the road with a work colleague and drove to Mt Pleasant. After doing a few rounds in the area where they were supposed to be located, we finally concluded that we were lost. A friendly guard told us that they had moved to the Westgate complex, so off we went. We met the Business Development Manager for Zimbabwe, Mr Munhupedzi who insisted that we spell out A-C-C-A instead of pronouncing it “AKA” (brand management I guess). Here is what we found:
What or who is ACCA?
ACCA stands for Association of Chartered Certified Accountants. ACCA is a global body for professional accountants which has a very large membership.
What do they offer?
ACCA has two programmes that you can embark on:
- Foundation in Accountancy
- Chartered Certified Accountancy
At the time of this writing the exam fees is quite affordable ranging from sixty nine pounds to a hundred for each exam depending on the study level.
- Foundation in Accountancy: you can do this with O levels or if you are older than 16 years. This qualification can take you one year or less, so if you are sure that you want to go into ACCA, you can forego A’ level and take this path! After completing this stage you will attain a Diploma in Accounting and Business. This also exempts you from stage 1 of the Chartered Certified Accountancy Programme.
- Chartered Certified Accountancy: This qualification is divided into two levels- Fundamentals and Professional level.
- The Fundamentals level requires two A ‘levels and five O ’levels including Maths and English. If you meet these requirements you may therefore skip the foundation stage and start here. This stage also subpides into the “Knowledge” and “Skills” Modules. Completing this level sees you attaining the Diploma in Accounting and Business followed by an “Advanced Diploma in Accounting and Business”.
- Professional level: If you have a relevant accredited degree you can start at this highest level. ACCA also allows you to claim up to nine exemptions. (See: www.accaglobal.com/exemptions). Also of note is that: after completing the Knowledge & Skills Modules of ACCA and a Research and Analysis module you will have completed the requirements for a B.Sc. in Applied Accounting from the Oxford Brookes University.
One of the most exciting bits about ACCA is: you can actually earn both a Professional Qualification and a degree in two years (though according to them students tend to take three or four years). So imagine if instead of A ‘level you do the Foundation in Accountancy for one year and afterwards you then do your Chartered Certified Accountancy in two or three years! You will have gained at least three years compared to the traditional academic route. You may also opt to go for a Master’s degree in Accounting or other business area to further maximise on the time you have gained!
Now if you are considering a career in accounts and that doesn't excite you then I just don’t know what to say!
Written by: Edmore Munedzimwe