ACCA set to shape the future of accountancy

Published by Afterschool.my on Oct 12, 2016, 10:31 am

The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) unveiled major changes to its professional level qualification in a significant step towards national and global development and to address the employment demand.


Kuala Lumpur, October 12th – In a major step forward, The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) announced significant changes and innovations to its mastery level qualification, which is obtained after a degree equivalent qualification, in an effort to shape the future of accountancy and meet the challenges of the global economy.

The new curriculum of these globally recognised qualifications focuses on an extensive 2 year review and consultation with members, education providers and employers.

According to Helen Brand (OBE), CEO of ACCA, the qualification will equip students with forward thinking strategic abilities and advanced skills-set expected in professional accountants who will shape the future of global economics.

She added that the improved qualification will meet the demand for professional accountants while maintaining the rigorous standards of technical, ethical, and professional skills that has established the reputation of ACCA as an international benchmark in the field.

ACCA’s latest innovations for the top level of its qualification are new strategic professional level exams, which will replace the existing professional level exams effective September 2018. There will also be a new ethics and professional skills module, which will be introduced in October 2017.

The developments include:

  • Strategic Business Leader – an innovative case study exam, based on real business scenarios. Students will have the skills and technical expertise required by the modern business environment.
  • Strategic Business Reporting – a new exam exposing students to the wider context of finance and business reporting, giving them the vital skills needed to explain and communicate to stakeholders the implications of transactions and reporting.
  • Ethics and Professional Skills module – modifications to the existing ethics module.

These changes came through emphasising on rigorous planning and meticulous attention to market demand as the ACCA qualification are highly attractive in the job market. ACCA stakeholders will continue to play an immense role in the delivery and future development of the qualifications.

“Thorough and meticulous consultation and design testing with hundreds of members, employers, C-suite executives and students from around the world over a two year period helped us with these exciting developments to the qualification.

“We’ve listened carefully to not just what current professionals and employers think are essential skills in the here and now, but we’ve also carefully considered what will be vital attributes in the professional accountants of the future, to 2020 and beyond” said Helen.

Malaysia's future accountants

At the launch event in Kuala Lumpur yesterday, ACCA's Asia Pacific director, Leong Soo Yee, said: “This new development will have exciting implications for Malaysia because the outcome will be the grooming of strategic professionals who will contribute towards the country’s aspiration to become an intelligent and progressive economy, essentially leading the way for Asean.”

These qualifications come in line with Malaysia’s Economic Transformation Programme to produce 60,000 qualified accountants by the year 2020 as part of the 12 National Key Economic Areas (NKEAs) under the transformation programme.

With the presence in Malaysia of ACCA that dates back to 1936, the organisation has been working with various partners and organisation in both the private and public sector to produce, enhance and enrich the talent needed by the country. ACCA is the largest international accounting association with an established network of nearly 30 education providers, and 130 approved employers and more than 54,000 members and students in Malaysia.

Soo Yee added: “We’ve incorporated the most relevant and forward-thinking skills into our exams. They represent a significant evolution to our qualification which reflects the changing role of accountancy professionals in the 21st century.”

Additionally, ACCA will be providing essential guidance to training centres and learning partners to fully prepare them to teach the new and improved syllabus. Students will have access to an ample of supporting tools online for self-assessment and development to ensure that students will succeed in their examinations and careers.

Targeting young learners

ACCA in Malaysia is set on a mission to target young learners in national and private schools to promote careers in accounting and educate students to put them on the fast track to gain the needed qualifications after their SPM examination.

Specialists at the event said many of these young learners have the chance to accelerate through ACCA's CAT (Certified Accounting Technicians) qualification which is offered after SPM and will enable the holder to get a job at a younger age. Additionally, holders of the CAT qualification will have certain papers exempted if they decided to pursue the full ACCA qualification.

For high schoolers as young as Form 4 students, they have the opportunity to get the basic skills for free at the ACCA's online education programmes ACCA-X. Students will be exposed to Introduction to Financial and Management Accounting and Intermediate Financial and Management Accounting.

Furthermore, students will be able to prepare themselves for the ACCA Diploma in Accounting and Business through their online papers as well. Three papers at the cost of US$267 (RM1,115) will prepare students for diploma programme and provide them with a unique opportunity to be employed in a record time after graduation.

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