How to become an Accounting Technician

Give your career an uplift with the learning and experience you need to become an Accounting Technician.

Explore the five steps to become an Accounting Technician (AT) in New Zealand which is centred around the AT Program course and supervised practical experience.

Step 1: Choose a suitable entry pathway into the AT Program

Designed for early career or experienced professionals, there are two pathways into the AT Program, no matter what stage of your career.

  • Experience pathway: for those who have gained five or more years relevant employment in accounting or finance roles covering certain competency areas.
  • Academic pathway: for those who are undertaking, or have undertaken, a formal academic qualification covering accounting and business management.

Unsure which pathway is right for you?

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AT entry requirements

  • Experience Pathway

    This pathway enables you to be formally recognised for your existing skills and experience, which must include five or more years relevant employment in accounting or finance roles covering certain competency areas.

  • Academic Pathway

    This pathway is applicable if you are studying towards or have gained a formal academic qualification covering accounting and business management. This should be a tertiary study through the New Zealand Diploma in Business course or an equivalent university degree level study.

    This pathway allows you to undertake the AT Program while you study towards an approved course covering relevant competency areas.

    If you have obtained any of the following qualifications, you will be eligible for academic pathway:

    • NZ Diploma of Business (Level 5) Accounting Strand (1 year full-time study NZQA2459)
    • NZ Diploma of Business (Level 6) Accounting Strand (1 year full-time study NZQA2460)
    • NZ National Diploma in Business Level 6 (2 years full time study NZQA1499) with specified topic coverage
    • Completed at least the first year of study of a CA ANZ accredited degree and passed subjects in required AT competency areas.

    Review the AT Approved Academic Course lists at the bottom of the webpage for more information on entry qualification and education providers.

    Overseas or other non-accredited academic qualification

    If you hold a qualification from an overseas or non-approved New Zealand educational provider, you will need to apply for a Standard Assessment to determine if you meet the entry requirements.

    Complete the Standard Assessment form below and include the following documents translated in English and certified:

    • Academic Award: degree/diploma certificate
    • Statement of Academic Record: transcript
    • Syllabus: a handbook or course outline from your university

    Once you complete the form, send it to [email protected].


    Download the Standard Assessment form


    Download FAQs on the Standard Assessment

Step 2: Apply for provisional AT membership

Before you can enrol in the AT Program course and start your supervised practical experience, you first need to apply for provisional AT membership.

Experience pathway: To apply through the experience pathway, complete the below application form and send it to [email protected].


Academic pathway: To apply through the academic pathway:

  • Create an account or log into your existing account on MyCA
  • Select My Applications and then New Application
  • Under Admissions Applications click on Provisional membership and CA Program
  • Select Accounting Technician (AT) on page 2 (Membership) of the application form and fill out the Provisional Member - Academic Pathway form

You must either provide an official transcript of completed courses or provide proof of enrolment into an approved study course.


There is a one-off application fee of NZ$109 including GST, payable before your application can be assessed (If your application is declined, you will receive a full refund). An annual pro-rated provisional membership fee of NZ$223.50 including GST will also be invoiced once your application is approved.

Step 3: Enrol in the AT Program course

Once your provisional AT application has been approved, you can undertake the AT Program course which involves 45 learning hours over 8 weeks.

The course is designed to deliver:

  • Research-based, practical, and relevant content relevant to the modern accounting profession.
  • Incorporates case studies, knowledge quizzes, videos, animations and other interactive materials as part of a contemporary, online learning experience.
  • Future-focused technical competencies with embedded professional competencies to incorporate into your daily work.

This blended learning program comprises of three elements:

  • Accounting Technician Essentials (online learning)
  • Accounting Technician Workshop (workshop)
  • Accounting Technician Assessment (two-hour exam)

Please refer to the AT Program timetable at the bottom of this page, for current enrolment dates. The ATP course fee is $405 NZD including GST.

Step 4: Complete AT supervised practical experience

*From 1 March 2023, all new provisional members will need to undertake 1-2 years of AT Supervised Practical Experience (ATSPE). This is an integral part of becoming an AT, requiring you to demonstrate technical and professional competencies in the workplace. This can include knowledge and skills to solve problems, make decisions, work in teams, build relationships and communicate with others.

The length of time of your supervised practical experience depends on your pathway and education:

  • Academic pathway:
    • NZ Diploma L5: 2 years
    • NZ Diploma L6: 1.5 years
    • Partially Approved Degree L7: 1.5 years
    • Fully Completed Approved Degree L7: 1 year
  • Experience pathway: 1 year

This will be tracked in a logbook and signed off by a full member of CA ANZ including an AT, ACA or CA.

Download the logbook

Step 5: Apply for full AT membership

Once you’ve completed the AT Program course and supervised practical experience, including the logbook, you can apply to become a full AT.

For those undertaking the academic pathway, you will also need to provide an official transcript or letter from your educational provider stating you have completed CA ANZ approved academic qualification or study.

To apply, complete the online application by logging in to My CA and attach the following documents:

  • a Professional Reference
  • a Member Reference completed by a separate person to your Professional Reference.
  • the Accounting Technician Supervised Practical Experience form, filled out by your supervisor. Applicable to members approved as provisional ATs after March 1, 2023.
  • a Criminal Conviction Information letter. For New Zealand residents, this is supplied by the New Zealand Ministry of Justice. If you have lived in a country other than New Zealand or Australia for periods of 12 months or more during the last 10 years, you are required to obtain a police clearance certificate(s) from the country or countries you have lived. The certificate must be a scanned copy of the original that is dated within 6 months of your application.
  • If your name has changed, a copy of a legal document as confirmation such as a marriage certificate or deed poll.

There is an application fee of NZ$132.25, payable at the time of application. To enjoy the benefits of full AT membership and continue using the AT designation after your name to demonstrate your experience and skilled training, there is an annual fee of NZ$374.50 including GST.

To maintain your full membership, you will need to complete 60 hours continuing professional development (CPD) per triennium, including 45 hours verifiable hours. This includes a minimum of 10 hours CPD per annum.

Members approved as provisional AT members before March 1, 2023, will need to meet the requirements current at that time. In case of any uncertainty, please reach out to us to clarify your eligibility to gain the full Accounting Technicians designation.

Summary of the five steps

Click on the graphic below to view a high-level overview of the process to become an Accounting Technician.

AT Program Pathways Illustration

Have questions?

Our Member Support Team are here to help you through this process.

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