Exemptions for the CA qualification

Exemptions may be available from five out of six papers of the Test of Competence (TC) level if you have a relevant degree, if you are a full AAT member or if you have part-completed a qualification with ICAEW. A relevant degree may or may not have been accredited by ICAS (see below).

Please note:

  1. Exemptions are not awarded based on work experience.
  2. Exemptions are not available for:
    • Principles of Taxation
    • Test of Professional Skills
    • Test of Professional Expertise
    • Business Ethics

CA students must check the exemption policy with their employer before applying to ICAS for exemptions. Policies vary between employers and this can make a difference to the exemptions that will be available to you.

Have queries regarding exemptions?

Get in touch


How do I apply?

To apply for an exemption, you will be required to submit a completed application form, together with supporting documentation. The various application forms can be found on this page and must be submitted by post to the address below.

Please note that exemption applications are reviewed on a case by case basis. Students applying to join the 2018/19 intake with ICAS on the basis of a university degree must have graduated in 2015 or later.

Supporting documentation

Please note that ICAS cannot accept responsibility for the loss of any documents and cannot return any documents submitted with your exemption application. If possible, we would ask that you provide certified copies of what you submit to ICAS via recorded delivery.

Each exemption form will detail the supporting documentation and the minimum grades required for each exemption.

This supporting documentation must include an academic transcript detailing the modules you sat and the marks you were awarded. For non-accredited degree exemption applications (see below), you must also provide course documentation such as module notes and slides that contain enough detail to clearly demonstrate how your degree has covered all the syllabus requirements.

This evidence will be used to support your application; if this evidence is not provided or is insufficiently detailed, it could lead to you not being awarded an exemption.

Applying for Exemptions before joining ICAS

Should you wish to apply for exemptions before you have a training contract with a firm, you will be required to pay the exemption application fee in full prior to being issued the decisions from your application.

The application process

Applications must be submitted by post to the address below. Exemption applications will not be accepted by email nor will ICAS accept electronic copies of information or supporting documentation, including emails and links to websites. Please ensure that all the information you submit is secured together (e.g., stapled, treasury tagged) and is easily identifiable to your application.


Completed applications for exemptions should be returned to:

EXEMPTIONS ADMINISTRATOR
ICAS
CA HOUSE
21 HAYMARKET YARDS
EDINBURGH
EH12 5BH


You will receive an email to confirm receipt of your application and we will process your application as quickly as possible.

Your application will be reviewed by ICAS to ensure you meet the eligibility criteria for the exemption. The time taken to process your application will depend on its complexity and the volume being processed. Applications will normally be processed within 7-10 working days, it is however recommended that you submit your application well in advance of the deadline date.

You will be advised in writing of the result of your application.

Deadline

Applications must be made at least six weeks before the start of tuition. The closing date for receipt of applications for the 2018/19 intake is 27th July 2018.

Frequently Asked Questions

How do I know if my degree is accredited by ICAS?

A full listing of all degrees accredited by ICAS is provided on the ICAS website.

What information do I need to provide in relation to my exemption applications?

The information required will vary depending on whether you are applying with an accredited or non-accredited degree. Full details of the supporting documentation can be found on the relevant application forms, but will include an academic transcript.

What is an academic transcript?

An academic transcript is an official document from the University, normally the Registrar, detailing all the courses you have taken over your time at University and the marks you obtained. The transcript provides evidence of the modules completed at university.

I don’t have an academic transcript, can I still submit my exemption application?

If you don’t have an academic transcript, you must contact your university to obtain one. Students should note that results notices cannot be accepted. Although you can submit your application, it cannot be processed without this information and it is the responsibility of the student to obtain this document from the university and submit it to ICAS by the deadline date.

I don’t have the module outlines for the courses I’ve taken, can I still submit my exemption application?

If you are completing a non-accredited exemption form, you must submit appropriate supporting documentation as detailed on the form, otherwise the exemption application will be rejected. Full details can be found on the non-accredited form, but module outlines are not necessarily required if the student submits other documentation instead, such as module notes or slides which show the same information. ICAS cannot contact universities for this information and it is the responsibility of the student to obtain all supporting documentation and submit it to ICAS.

My module outlines are not particularly detailed, will this provide sufficient information?

You must ensure that the information submitted is sufficiently detailed to show clear evidence of your coverage of each area of the ICAS subject syllabus. If module outlines are not sufficiently detailed, other documentation should also be submitted, such as module notes or slides to fill any gaps.

Can relevant work experience be taken into account when applying for exemptions?

No, exemptions are not awarded on the basis of work experience.

I have already studied at another Institute – am I eligible for exemptions based on this?

Some exemptions are available for full AAT members, as well as those having completed some or all of the ICAEW qualification. Further details and exemption forms for these can be found on this page.

I studied abroad for a year as part of my degree.  Am I still eligible for exemptions?

Any modules taken abroad would need to be reviewed along with the rest of an application, and while exemptions cannot be guaranteed, they may still be awarded. Students with overseas modules, or whole overseas degrees should apply using the non-accredited exemption form.

What do I do if I need help in completing my exemption application?

If you have any questions regarding the exemptions process or your individual application, please email studentservices@icas.com.

If my application is rejected, is there anything I can do to appeal?

It depends on the reason your application was rejected. For example, if the application was rejected because the application form was incomplete, students may submit a revised form for consideration. Any questions about resubmitting applications should be directed to studentservices@icas.com.

ICAS accredited degrees

Degrees from certain universities have been accredited by ICAS, and with the appropriate module choices and grades, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the TC stage of examinations.

To find out if you have a degree accredited by ICAS, you can scroll down the list below to find your university and course. You would then need to select and complete the accredited degree exemption form relevant to your university and the year of graduation. This must be submitted along with your academic transcript. Detailed module documentation is not required when applying for exemptions with an ICAS accredited degree.

Non-ICAS accredited degrees

Non-ICAS accredited degree exemption applications are considered on a case-by-case basis. To be eligible for an exemption in a particular subject, you must meet both the syllabus and subject requirements. The subject requirements detail the required module types and grades that must be achieved over the course of the degree, and students need to clearly demonstrate that they have covered the entire TC syllabus (‘syllabus requirements’).

If you cannot find your degree/course in the accredited degree list below, then you would need to apply for exemptions using the non-accredited degree exemption form. This application form contains more detailed information on how to complete it. Any gaps in the completion of the form will lead to an automatic rejection.

To apply for an exemption, you must submit:

Exemptions for other professional bodies

AAT Members

Full AAT members can apply for exemption from two out of the six TC courses and examinations, Business Management and Financial Accounting, provided the relevant AAT papers are selected and passed.

To apply for an AAT exemption you must submit:

ICAEW Members

An exemption for ICAEW members is also available.

Other Professional Bodies

Please note that we do not currently have reciprocal agreements with any other professional bodies including CIMA.

Accredited universities and degrees

These are degrees in accountancy from universities which have been accredited by ICAS and with the appropriate module choices attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage of examinations. Please note that there are no exemptions available from Principles of Tax.

ICAS Accredited Universities

Universities may apply to ICAS to be added to the list of accredited degree programmes.

The Accreditation Guide explains how to become an “ICAS Accredited” university. This is based on a self-assessment prepared by the university which is submitted to ICAS and then reviewed by CA Education staff.

If you have any queries about becoming an ICAS Accredited University, please contact Chris Cunnane.

University of Aberdeen

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • MA Accountancy
  • MA Accountancy Single Honours
  • MA Accountancy Joint Honours
  • MA Accountancy with minor components

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Aberdeen website.

Birmingham City University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of four exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA (Hons) Accountancy
  • BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Birmingham City University website.

University of Bolton

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of four exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA(HONS) Accounting and Finance
  • BA(HONS) Accounting and Finance (Ras Al Khaimah Campus, UAE)

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Bolton website.

The University of Dundee

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy
  • BAcc Accountancy

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Dundee website.

The University of Edinburgh

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • MA (Hons)Business Studies and Accounting
  • MA (Hons)Economics and Accounting
  • LLB Law and Accounting
  • MA (Hons) Accounting and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Edinburgh website.

Edinburgh Napier University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA Accounting
  • BA Accounting and Entrepreneurship
  • BA Accounting (and/with) Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Edinburgh Napier University website.

University of Exeter

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

The following degrees have been accredited by ICAS:

  • BA(Hons) Accounting and Finance
  • BSc(Hons) Accounting and Finance
  • BA(Hons) Business and Accounting
  • BSc(Hons) Business and Accounting

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Exeter website.

Glasgow Caledonian University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA Accountancy

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Glasgow Caledonian University website.

University of Glasgow

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BAcc OrdinaryAccountancy
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy
  • BAcc Accountancy with Economics
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy with Language
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy with Finance
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy with International Accounting
  • BSc (Hons) Accounting and Statistics
  • BSc (Hons) Finance and Statistics
  • BSc (Hons) Accounting and Mathematics
  • BSc (Hons) Accounting and Applied Mathematics
  • BSc (Hons) Accounting and Pure Mathematics
  • BSc (Hons) Financeand Mathematics
  • BSc (Hons) Finance and Applied Mathematics
  • BSc (Hons) Finance and Pure Mathematics

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Glasgow website.

Heriot-Watt University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • MA/BA Accountancy
  • MA/BA Accountancy and Business Law
  • MA/BA Accountancy and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Heriot-Watt University website.

Lancaster University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

For the Exemption Application form, please click on the appropriate course above. Or for graduates after 2015, see below.

For further information, please visit the Lancaster University website.

City University London

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BSc Accounting and Finance
  • BSc Banking and International Finance
  • BSc Business Studies
  • BSc Investment and Financial Risk Management
  • BSc Management

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the City University London website.

Manchester Metropolitan University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of three exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA (HONS) Accounting and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Manchester Metropolitan University website.

The Robert Gordon University

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA (Hons) Accountancy and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the Robert Gordon University website.

University of Stirling

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BAcc
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Business Law
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Business Studies
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Computer Science
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Economics
  • BAcc )Hons) Accountancy and Finance
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Management Science
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Marketing
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Maths
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Spanish
  • BAcc (Hons) Accountancy and Sports Studies
  • BA (Hons) in Accountancy and Business Studies
  • BA (Hons) in Accountancy and Computer Science
  • BA (Hons) in Accounting and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Stirling website.

University of Strathclyde

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BA Principal Subject Accounting
  • BSc Mathematics, Statistics and Accounting
  • BSc Technology and Business Studies with Principal Subject Accounting

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Strathclyde website.

The University of Surrey

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BSc Accounting and Finance

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of Surrey website.

University of the West of Scotland

The following ICAS accredited degrees, with the appropriate module choices, attract up to a maximum of five exemptions from the Test of Competence (TC) stage:

  • BAcc in Accounting

For the Exemption Application Form for these degrees, please click below:

For further information, please visit the University of the West of Scotland website.

Topics

  • Become a Chartered Accountant
  • CA Students
  • Test of Competence
  • University route

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