Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)

The ACA qualification from the ICAEW (Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales) is considered the premium, gold standard accountancy qualification that qualifies you as a chartered accountant. ICAEW Chartered Accountants are always in demand and the ACA Qualification equips students to perform at the highest levels of accountancy, business and finance. The majority of ACA trainees work in accounting practice and the ACA qualification has a strong practice subject focus (audit, taxation) as well as covering other key technical accounting areas.

An increasing number of students are now training in other sectors too. Once qualified, ICAEW Chartered Accountants work in all sectors, from accounting practices to commercial organisations, financial institutions, not for profit organisations and the public sector.

The University of South Wales is recognised as an ICAEW Partner in Learning, working with ICAEW in the professional development of students. The University has a rich history of providing first class tuition for accountancy, and is currently PQ Magazine Public Sector Accountancy College of the Year (2016). We offer tuition for the ACA Qualification at our Newport campus with a flexible portfolio of ACA courses that appeal to large or small training organisations (day release and block delivery). The Professional Accounting course information brochure provides further details on part-time fees, timetables and the next available entry points.

UCAS Code Study Mode
Duration Start Date Campus Campus Code
N/A Part-time 3 Years January Newport City C
N/A Part-time 3 Years March Newport City C

To qualify as an ICAEW Chartered Accountant students are required to complete:

  • 15 examinations
  • 450 days of technical work experience, which you gain by obtaining a training contract with an appropriate employer
  • Professional development (delivered through ICAEW or your employer)
  • Ethics and professional scepticism programme (delivered through ICAEW)

The ACA Qualification comprises three examination levels – Certificate, Professional and Advanced.

A Certificate in Finance, Accounting and Business (ICAEW CFAB) qualification is available upon completion of the Certificate Level, which is an excellent qualification in its own right for non-financial managers.

At the Advanced Level students are required to study a number of technical areas, which are then examined together in the Corporate Reporting and Strategic Business Management papers. These papers aim to simulate real-life business and accounting practice environments, and the concept is taken further with a final case study examination.

Certificate Level #

  • Accounting
  • Assurance
  • Law
  • Principles of Taxation
  • Business and Finance
  • Management Information

Professional Level *

  • Audit and Assurance
  • Tax Compliance
  • Financial Accounting and Reporting
  • Financial Management
  • Business Planning: Taxation
  • Business Strategy

Advanced Level *

  • Corporate Reporting
  • Strategic Business Management
  • Case Study

*Available in day release mode 

How you will study

We offer a flexible portfolio of ACA courses that appeal to large or small training organisations.Our average student pass rate on our ACA course since its inception in 2012 has been 83%.

Weekly day release tuition (with block revision):

Available at City Campus, Newport for all Levels (Certificate, Professional, Advanced)
Papers taught for one day per week, with a block revision period at the end

Typical tuition period lengths
Certificate Level papers – 10 weeks plus revision block
Professional Level papers – 11-14 weeks plus revision block
Advanced Level – 18 weeks plus revision block

Advantages – Knowledge built up and exam question practice undertaken week on week. Students build skills gradually and sustainably, and are not absent from their work place for long periods of time (which is particularly important for smaller accounting practices)

Our Professional Accounting and Finance course information brochure provides further details on part-time fees, timetables and the next available entry points.


Students will attend workshops which will contain lecture, tutorial and question practice elements.

Timetable Information


Certificate level:
Each assessment is 1.5 hours long and each exam will be e-assessed.

Professional level:
Modules will be assessed by paper based exams. Each will be 2.5 hours long, with the exception of the Financial Accounting and Reporting paper which will be assessed by a three hour exam.

Advanced level:
Consists of two technical integration papers and a case study:

  • Technical integration papers will be 3.5 hours long
  • Case Study will be four hours long



Our Accounting teaching team includes 14 qualified accountants and a qualified solicitor, who have significant industry and accounting practice experience, as well as significant experience of teaching professional accountancy qualifications. Question practice reinforces technical knowledge and exam technique each and every week on all of our programmes. The learning environment here is friendly and supportive, and we are able to offer an exceptional level of pastoral support.

Rhian Gosling – Academic Manager (Accounting Professional courses)
Christine Hellings – Programme Leader

Study resources

Our tuition fees include the provision of a wide range of ICAEW published materials per paper – study manuals, question banks, course exams, unseen questions and mock exams
Progress tests and mock examinations for each paper reinforce exam technique skills
Our tuition sessions can be recorded and replayed by students for the duration of the teaching year
Student performance reports for sponsoring employers are available

Fees payable to the professional body

The following fees are payable directly to ICAEW and are in addition to course tuition fees:

• Annual student membership fee: £165 (+VAT where applicable)
• Certificate Level exam fee: £70 for each exam
• Professional Level exam fee: £90 for each exam
• Advanced Level exam fee: £170 for each Corporate Reporting and Strategic Management exam and £255 for Case Study exam
• The costs for applying for credit for prior learning, where applicable, will be £70 for each Certificate Level module and £90 for each Professional Level module

Fees are reviewed and updated annually and are currently accurate to 31 December 2016.

There are various entry routes, including open entry without previous qualifications.The main requirement is a training contract with an employer.

Completion of the AAT qualification gives exemption from up to 5 of the ACA exams.

You must apply for student membership and exemptions (where applicable) with ICAEW before joining the course. Visit for more information.


August 2017 - July 2018 Fees

Additional Costs

Students have access to a wide range of resources including textbooks, publications, and computers in the University’s library and via online resources. In most cases they are more than sufficient to complete a course of study. Where there are additional costs, either obligatory or optional, these are detailed below. Of course students may choose to purchase their own additional personal resources/tools over and above those listed to support their studies at their own expense. All stationery and printing costs are at a student’s own expense.

* Obligatory

Item Cost
Additional assessment or memberships: Student membership of ICAEW professional body - annual fee £165
£165 + VAT (where applicable) for 2016. All. See:
Additional assessment or memberships: Payment of exemption fees (exemptions based on prior studies) £70
£70 for each Certificate Level module and £90 for each Professional Level module, for 2016. All where exemptions claimed. See:
Additional assessment or memberships: Computer based exams - exam entry fees (NB - exams are sat externally with ICAEW) * £70
£70 per exam for 2016. Certificate level. See:
Additional assessment or memberships: Exam entry fees (NB - all exams are entered and sat externally with ICAEW) * £90
£90-£260 per exam in 2016. Professional & Advanced level. See:

UK and EU students

Apply via UCAS if you are a UK/EU residing applicant, applying for year 1 of a full-time undergraduate degree, Foundation Year, Foundation Degree or HND and you have not applied through UCAS before. If you are applying to study part-time, to top up your Foundation Degree or HND, or to transfer to USW from another institution, please apply directly

International students

Apply directly to the University if you live outside the UK/EU

Apply now 

Admissions statement

ACA students enjoy early responsibility and excellent career progression. Many ACA students double their salary during training. Salaries for newly qualified ICAEW Chartered Accountants are on a par with careers in law and banking and many become partners or financial directors early in their careers, leading to a greater variety of opportunities.

ICAEW Chartered Accountants work at the highest levels of some of the world’s largest organisations; 80% of UK FTSE 100 companies have an ICAEW Chartered Accountant on their board.

Our Careers and Employability Service

As a USW student, you will have access to advice from the Careers and Employability Service throughout your studies and after you graduate.

This includes: one-to-one appointments from faculty based Career Advisers, in person, over the phone or even on Skype and through email via the "Ask a Question" service. We also have extensive online resources for help with considering your career options and presenting yourself well to employers. Resources include psychometric tests, career assessments, a CV builder, interview simulator and application help. Our employer database has over 2,000 registered employers targeting USW students, you can receive weekly email alerts for jobs.

Our Careers service has dedicated teams: A central work experience team to help you find relevant placements; an employability development team which includes an employability programme called Grad Edge; and an Enterprise team focused on new business ideas and entrepreneurship.