Follow the graduate entry route and become a Chartered Accountant (CA)

The graduate route to becoming an ICAS Chartered Accountant enables students from a variety of backgrounds to train as a CA while earning a competitive salary.

Lots of our students come to us to train as CAs directly upon graduating from university.

They’re from a variety of backgrounds because it doesn’t matter what degree you have, and previous experience in accountancy or business isn’t required.

All you need is a university degree that meets the entry requirements, and the ambition to begin a truly extraordinary career.


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What to expect

  • takes approximately 3 years
  • supported study
  • a competitive salary
  • detailed workplace experience
  • a training vacancy that fits you

Three-years’ supported study

The graduate route to becoming a CA takes around three years. The qualification is rated at the same level as a master’s degree and is organised to cover everything from the essentials to advanced principles of accounting, business and ethics.

We’ll provide support throughout your studies, offering high-quality information, advice and guidance.

Paid workplace experience

To qualify as a CA, you’ll also need a minimum of 450 days of relevant practical experience. You’ll gain this by signing a training agreement and working with an ICAS-authorised employer – and earn a competitive salary whilst you learn.

A training vacancy to fit you

The range of available employers varies, from big accountancy firms and large corporations, to government offices, smaller start-ups and local companies, so you’re bound to find a training vacancy that fits you.

What’s required

  • various degrees accepted
  • international degrees also qualify
  • meet the employer’s requirements
  • course fees covered

Graduates with non-accountancy degrees

Most CA students hold non-accountancy degrees. With this type of degree, you won’t be eligible for exemptions and will begin at Test of Competence (TC), which provides the trainee CA with base concepts, knowledge and skills.

Graduates with ICAS-accredited degrees

If you graduated with an ICAS-accredited degree, you could be eligible for up to five exemptions from the first level of the CA qualification.

Graduates with non-UK degrees

ICAS welcomes international students holding degrees that are equivalent to a UK degree. There’s more information on our International Students page.

What’s next?

Apply for an ICAS CA training agreement

The first step to becoming a CA is to apply for a training agreement with an ICAS-authorised employer. Entry requirements vary per employer, and we offer a range of firms to work with, from small local companies to large corporations.


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