How to become a Chartered Accountant

Follow the process outlined below to become a fully qualified Chartered Accountant

The pathway to become a Chartered Accountant (CA) through CA ANZ's CA Program is a rewarding one that combines the rigour of education and the application of learned skills in the workplace. Here are the steps you need to take to become a CA.

CA Program Step 1 CA Program Step 2 CA Program Step 3 CA Program Step 4
 

STEP 1: Do you meet the entry requirements to access the CA Program and provisional membership?

For entry into the CA Program, you must ensure you are aware of, and able to meet, the following criteria:

Eligibility criteria

  • Academic eligibility

    You are eligible for entry into the CA Program if you:

    • (a) Hold a CA ANZ accredited degree or qualification that has been assessed by CA ANZ as equivalent to at least an Australian or New Zealand Bachelor degree (level 7 or higher) with coverage of required competency areas (see our 'Recognised academic qualifications' information and form for Standard Assessment of Academic Qualification);
    • or

    • (b) Hold a degree which has not been accredited by CA ANZ, but has been assessed by us as equivalent to at least an AU or NZ Bachelor degree (AQF level 7 or higher) with coverage of required competency areas. Where the degree has not been delivered in English evidence of attainment of the minimum English Language requirements is also required.
    • (c) Meet the 'Required Competence' through completed study to commence at least one core subject in the CA Program's GradDipCA course.
  • Demonstrate required competence areas

    You will need to demonstrate that you have sufficient knowledge in the following areas:

    • Accounting Systems and Processes
    • Financial Accounting and Reporting
    • Audit and Assurance
    • Business Law
    • Economics
    • Finance and Financial Management
    • Management Accounting
    • Quantitative Methods
    • Tax
    • Information and Communication Technology
    • Business Acumen (required from 2022 only)
  • Alternate pathways to meeting competence requirements

    If you are not yet able to demonstrate the competence requirements, you can use the following avenues to gain the necessary competence requirements:

    • Tertiary courses accredited by CA ANZ may meet all or some of the required competencies as indicated in CA ANZ's Accredited Tertiary Courses Table.
    • For holders of a degree which has not been accredited by CA ANZ, satisfactory completion of the required competencies is assessed as part of the Standard Assessment of Academic Qualifications.
    • If you meet some, but not all required competency areas , you can complete any additional competencies through additional study, either with a provider listed on CA ANZ's Accredited Tertiary Courses list or through CA ANZ's CA Foundation Pathway.
    • You can start the CA Foundations Program during your final year of study. Once you complete your degree and you have completed the necessary prerequisites for entry to least one CA Program subject you can apply for provisional membership.
  • English language requirements

    The study of Chartered Accounting is nuanced. Successful completion of the course requires a well-developed proficiency in the English language, reading and writing ability.

    Candidates admitted on the basis of a CA ANZ accredited degree or qualification are deemed to have meet the English language requirements for admission.

    Candidates admitted on the basis of a degree that is equivalent to at least an AU or NZ Bachelor degree (AQF level 7 or higher) with coverage of required competency areas that has not been delivered in English are required to demonstrate

    • you meet the required English language competency through demonstration of attainment in the last 2 years of academic IELTS minimum overall score of 6.5 with no test score less than 6.0 in each of the four components (listening, reading, writing and speaking) or accepted equivalent^.
    • or

    • have passed CA ANZ Full (Permanent) migration skills assessment which includes an assessment of the above minimum accepted English Language Proficiency skills of IELTS minimum overall score of 7 with no test score less than 7.0 in each of the of the four components (listening, reading, writing and speaking) or accepted equivalent for the migration skills assessment.
    • or

    • have successfully completed in accordance with the specifications in Appendix B of the Candidate Admissions Policy and Procedure:
    • (a) a minimum 1 year full-time (or equivalent) of approved study in English; or

      (b) 3 years (or equivalent) of paid and/or voluntary employment in an English speaking country within the past 5-years.

    ^ English language skills tests accepted include:

    • International English Language Testing System (IELTS) Academic
    • Test of English as a Foreign Language: internet based (TOEFL iBT)
    • Pearson Test of English (PTE) Academic
    • Cambridge English C1 Advanced (formerly CAE) and Cambridge English C2 Proficiency (formerly CPE)

    See CA Program Candidate Admission Policy and Procedure for further details.

  • Recognition of prior learning

    You could get a head start through credit towards your CA Program course. We recognise candidates may be eligible for credit in recognition of their prior learning for previous study or work experience or other types of informal learning. When a candidate applies for credit, we will consider any combination of three main forms of prior learning, these being formal, non-formal and informal. If full credit is granted for a subject the candidate is exempted from studying it.

    Credit for recognition of prior learning may result in a reduction of the amount of study required to complete the GradDipCA qualification in the CA Program. For details refer to the CA Program Credit Arrangements Policy and Procedure.

  • Inherent requirements

    We strongly support the rights of all people who wish to pursue a further study to achieve your potential and career objectives. We are committed to fostering a learning environment that empowers and supports the personal and professional development of our candidates. As part of this, we embrace diversity and endeavour to accommodate all candidates.

    What are inherent requirements?

    • Inherent requirements are the essential components of a course or subject that demonstrate the core abilities, knowledge and skills needed to achieve the core learning outcomes of the course or subject overall. Inherent requirements ensure the academic integrity of the course is maintained and preserves the CA Program learning, assessment and accreditation processes.
    • All candidates must meet the course’s inherent requirements to successfully complete the course.

    You should read the inherent requirements carefully to ensure your able to meet them. If you have any concern about your ability to participate in aspects of the course, you should seek pre-enrolment advice by contacting the CA Program Support Services at CandidateSupportProgram@charteredaccountantsanz.com or CA ANZ Member Services at service@charteredaccountantsanz.com

  • Provisional membership and character assessment

    Before you can commence the CA Program or enrol in the program’s GradDipCA course and subjects, you must apply for Provisional Membership. In applying, you will need to agree to the terms and conditions of provisional membership and complete a character assessment.

    The requirements for admission to membership as a Provisional Chartered Accountant (Provisional CA) are: 

    (i) a qualification that is assessed to be at least comparable to an Australian or New Zealand bachelor degree; and

    (ii) if required by the Education Board, passing an approved ethics examination; and

    (iii) registration for the CA Program. 

    To apply, you need to provide your official academic documentation and by completing the Provisional Membership Application*. Applications for Provisional Membership are accepted all year round. Applications are submitted online. If the application is successful, provisional members are required to pay an annual membership subscription fee. Processing times are approximately 20 business days. For details see below.

    *Note:

    • CA ANZ provides a 'single service' application lodgment and outcome advisory process for CA Program and provisional membership admission.
    • Provisional membership admission eligibility is assessed separately to the CA Program.
    • Provisional membership admission must be done before CA Program admission.
    • All applicants must agree to the terms and conditions of Provisional membership and complete a character assessment (see 'Fit and proper persons declaration' section below and other CA requirements information) and also agree to the CA Program Candidate Terms and Conditions prior to setting up your CA Program enrolment and each term you enrol in a subject  (see 'Before applying' section below).

    Before you start your first subject enrolment, look at CA ANZ's Provisional Member (CR5) requirements. This sets out the expectations and obligations during your provisional membership. Refer to CR5 section 5.11 which sets out the maximum time you have to complete the CA Program and the GradDipCA component of this program.

    Fit and proper person declaration

    Before enrolment, all applicants must agree to the terms and conditions of provisional membership and complete a character assessment called the "Fit and Proper Person Declaration".

  • Right to Study/Visa requirements - Australian based applicants

    Australia based applicants who are not Australian citizens or permanent residents, must hold a visa that entitles them to study the CA Program.

    CA ANZ has adopted the general policy position that it cannot register candidates studying or seeking to study the CA Program on an Australian student visa because CA ANZ and the CA Program are not registered on the Australian Commonwealth Register of Institutions and Courses for Overseas Students (CRICOS) due to the online nature of the CA Program. CA ANZ has adopted this general policy position consistent with advice from CA ANZ’s regulator.

    Ultimately you, as a candidate or potential candidate of CA ANZ's CA Program, are responsible for ensuring that you are able to meet the requirements to enrol in the CA Program and satisfy any visa requirements or restrictions.

  • Criminal record / police record check

    Candidates indicating that they have a criminal record history at the time of application are required to provide recent evidence of a criminal record or police record check (as applicable to the location of the candidate) as part of their application. All documents must be dated within six months of receipt by CA ANZ.

    For New Zealand residents - a Criminal Conviction Information letter supplied by the New Zealand Ministry of Justice is required. These can be obtained by requesting a Criminal Conviction History from the Ministry's website.

    For Australian residents - A National Police Check by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) is required. These can be obtained by requesting a National Police Check from the AFP website.

    For international residents - A National Police Check by the Australian Federal Police (AFP) is required through one of the accredited bodies listed on the Australian Criminal Intelligence Commission (ACIC) website.

  • Agree to the Terms and conditions of enrolment

    CA Program applicants on confirmation of provisional membership acceptance (see step 2 below) are required to agree to the CA Program Candidate Enrolment Terms and Conditions prior to setting up your CA Program course enrolment and each term you enrol in a subject.

    The Candidate Enrolment Terms and Conditions set out the obligations of candidates as amended from time. This cover matters such as financial obligations, critical deadlines, policies for deferral, change of enrolment, refunds, complaints, grievances and appeals; behavioral expectations (see also Candidate Code of Conduct and Academic Integrity Policy and Procedure), grounds for exclusion or cancellation disciplinary procedures, and privacy. These and other enforceable CA Program policies can be accessed here.

    The Candidate Terms and Conditions also reference a number of enforceable provisional member obligations that are set out in CA ANZ's by-laws and regulations, including those under Regulations CR1 and CR5 which outline the duration of membership eligibility and requirements for continuation in the CA Program. These can be accessed here.

  • Mentored practical experience (MPE)

    Along with the GradDipCA component of the CA Program, you must complete three years of Mentored Practical Experience. Candidates are responsible for meeting the following criteria:

    • Work in a relevant accounting role with an approved or recognised training employer.
    • Work for a minimum of three accrued years (or part-time equivalent).
    • Work under the guidance of a practical experience mentor, who is a member of CA ANZ or a reciprocal member body.
  • CA Program policies

    Read more about the CA Program policy documents, including more information on complaints, and the grievances and appeals policy and procedures.

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STEP 2: Apply for provisional membership

Before you can enrol in the CA Program or individual subjects, you must apply for Provisional Membership. You can do this by providing your official academic documentation and by completing the provisional membership Application*.

The requirements for admission to membership as a Provisional Chartered Accountant (Provisional CA) are: 

(i) a qualification that is assessed to be at least comparable to an Australian or New Zealand bachelor degree; and

(ii) if required by the Education Board, passing an approved ethics examination; and

(iii) registration for the Chartered Accountants Program.

*Note:

  • CA ANZ provides a 'single service' application lodgment and outcome advisory process for provisional membership and CA Program admission.
  • Provisional membership admission eligibility is assessed separately but concurrently to admission to the CA program.

If the application is successful, provisional members are required to pay an annual membership subscription fee. Processing times are approximately 20 business days.

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STEP 3: Complete your CA Program studies and Mentored Practical Experience

Once your provisional membership application has been accepted, you will be eligible to enrol in your first CA Program subject to commence your course studies and register to undertake your Mentored Practical Experience.

This CA Program pathway to full membership requires completion of both:

  • CA ANZ's Graduate Diploma of Chartered Accounting (GradDipCA) course; and
  • Three years Mentored Practical Experience (MPE) with a CA ANZ approved employer.

Check the CA Program timetables page for upcoming enrolment dates.

Read about the approved employment criteria needed to complete the three-year Mentored Practical Experience component of the Program. Your practical experience can be completed before, during or after the CA Program GradDipCA course subjects.

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STEP 4: Apply for full CA Membership

Once you have successfully completed all required subjects within the CA Program GradDipCA and three years of Mentored Practical Experience, you can apply for full membership of CA ANZ. Processing times are approximately 20 business days, except during peak periods when longer processing times may occur.

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