From Student to Statutory – Master The Journey To Become Chartered Accountant In India

Chartered Accountancy offers a lucrative career option for the  students of Class XII, especially so, for the Students from Commerce Stream.

Liberalisation, Privatization and Globalization have opened up vast vistas in the career progression  of CAs. It has, indeed, thrown open a multitude of job opportunities at an accelerated  pace.

Companies Act provides the endorsement  to  the CAs who  are the only professional class authorised to be Auditors.

Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI)

CA Qualification in India is conferred by Institute of Chartered Accountants of India (ICAI).

CA Qualification commands both professional and social esteem.

ICAI was established in July 1949, under the Chartered Accountancy Act enacted by Parliament.

Functions for ICAI’s for Prospective CAs are:

  • Impart theoretical education.
  • Arrange and monitor practical training.
  • Hold qualifying examinations.
  • Grant membership to successful candidates.
  • Grant Certificate of Practice (COP) to Members intending to practise Accountancy Profession.

The Board of Studies (BOS) under ICAI is responsible for formulation and implementation of policies and programs relating to education of students.

Connotation of a Chartered Accountant

A Chartered Accountant is an internationally recognized financial professional who manages for his clients:

  • Budgets
  • Auditing
  • Taxes
  • Business Strategies

CA can work for Business, Government and the Individuals.

CA qualification confers on an individual the credentials to offer Business Consultation and ability for Keeping of Financial Records.

New Scheme Of Education And Training

The ICAI has formulated the New Scheme of Education and Training in 2023. It takes into account inputs received from various stakeholders. It is in conformity with International Standards and National Education Policy (NEP), 2020.

Academic Education and Practical Training as envisaged under New Scheme of Education devised by ICAI comprises of three components for testing the proficiency:

  • Technical competence
  • Professional skills
  • Values, ethics and attitudes 

Assessment of professional competence to test whether the aspiring Chartered Accountants have achieved the appropriate level of professional competence, is essential to:

  • protect  public interest
  • enhance the credibility of the profession by permitting those who meet the profession’s competence requirements to become Chartered Accountants.

 Stages in Assessment of Skills Progression

Salient Features of New Scheme of Education and Training

Entry Routes To CA Course

Two Routes to pursue CA Course in India are:

1.   Foundation Route.

2.   Direct Entry Route.

Route I: Foundation Course

A Class X passed student may register himself with the Board of Studies of the Institute for the Foundation Course.

 Steps under Foundation Route scheme are:

  • Register and complete 4 months of theoretical education for the Foundation Course.
  • Apply for appearing in Foundation examination by filling up the prescribed Exam Form released by the Examination Section.
  • Appear in Foundation Examination after appearing in Class XII Examination.
  • Qualify Foundation Examination.
  • Register for Intermediate Course after qualifying Class XII Examination and Foundation Examination.
  • Complete 8 months of theoretical education for the Intermediate Course.
  • Apply for appearing in Intermediate examination by filling up the prescribed Exam Form.
  • Appear and Pass both the Groups of Intermediate Examination.
  • Complete Integrated Course on Information Technology and Soft Skills (ICITSS) before commencement of Practical Training.
  • Register for two year Practical Training after passing both the Groups of Intermediate Examination and completing ICITSS.
  • Register for the Final Course after qualifying both Groups of Intermediate Examination.
  • Complete the four Self-paced Online Modules and qualify the online assessment.
  • Complete Practical Training.
  • Undergo and qualify Advanced ICITSS after completion of Practical Training
  • Apply for appearing in Final examination.
  • Appear in Final Examination after completing six months from the end of the Practical Training Period.
  • Qualify both groups of Final Examination.
  • Become a Member.

Route-II Direct Entry

Eligibility Conditions

The following categories of candidates can enter Intermediate Course directly.

  • Commerce Graduates/Post-Graduates (with minimum 55% marks) or
  • Other Graduates/ Post-Graduates with minimum 60 % marks.   

 Intermediate level passed candidates of Institute of Company Secretaries of I India  and Institute of Cost Accountants of India.

The Institute of Cost Accountants of India  and The Institute of Company Secretaries of India are exempted from qualifying Foundation and can register directly to Intermediate Course.

  • Register with the BoS for the Intermediate Course.
  • Complete 8 months of theoretical education of the Intermediate Course.
  • Apply for appearing in Intermediate examination by filling up the prescribed Exam Form.
  • Appear and Pass both the Groups of Intermediate Examination.
  • Complete Integrated Course on Information Technology and Soft Skills (ICITSS) before commencement of the Practical Training.
  • Register for two year Practical Training after passing both the Groups of Intermediate Examination and completing ICITSS.
  • Register for the Final Course after qualifying both Groups of Intermediate Examination.
  • Complete the four Self-paced Online Modules and qualify the online assessment.
  • Complete Practical Training.
  • Undergo and qualify Advanced ICITSS on completion of Practical Training but before appearing in the Final Examination.
  • Apply for appearing in Final Examination by filling up the prescribed Exam Form.
  • Appear in Final Examination after completing six months from the end of the Practical Training period.
  • Qualify both groups of Final Examination.
  • Become a Member.

Skill Assessment In Exams

A set of Skills expected of CA aspirants at various Stages of their CA journey has been laid down.

Subject wise necessary skills for assessment in the examination is prescribed as:

  FOUNDATION COURSELevel ILevel II 
Comprehension& KnowledgeApplication 
1Accounting5%-20%80%-95% 
2Business Laws45%-65%35%-55% 
3Quantitative Aptitude 100% 
4Business Economics10%-20%80%-90% 
  INTERMEDIATE COURSELevel ILevel II 
Comprehension& KnowledgeAnalysis &Application 
 Group I   
1Advanced Accounting5%-15%85%-95% 
2Corporate and Other Laws   
 Part I: Company Law and LLP40%-55%45%-60% 
 Part II: Other Laws45%-55%45%-55% 
3ATaxation: Income-tax law5%-20%80%-95% 
3BTaxation: Goods and Services Tax (GST)15%-45%55%-85% 
 Group II   
4Cost and Management Accounting20%-30%70%-80% 
5Auditing and Ethics40%-60%40%-60% 
6AFinancial Management20%-30%70%-80% 
6BStrategic Management30%-55%45%-70% 
  FINAL COURSELevel ILevel IILevel III
Comprehension& KnowledgeAnalysis &ApplicationEvaluation &Synthesis
1Financial Reporting5%-15%55%-80%15%-30%
2Advanced Financial Management10%-20%20%-40%50%-60%
3Advanced Auditing, Assurance andProfessional Ethics10%-20%65%-75%10%-20%
4Direct Tax Laws and InternationalTaxation5%-10%65%-70%20%-30%
5Indirect Tax Laws   
 Part-I: Goods and Services Tax10%-30%45%-75%15%-25%
 Part-II: Customs & FTP25%-55%45%-75% 
 6Integrated Business Solutions (Multi- disciplinary Case Study with StrategicManagement)  100%

Candidate is admitted to Foundation Examination, if:

He is  registered on or before 4 months prior to the month of Foundation Examination to be held in the month of May/November or June/December respectively.

OR

He has appeared in the Senior Secondary (10+2) examination.

Requirements for Passing Foundation Examination.

Minimum of 40% marks in each paper and minimum of 50% marks in the aggregate of all the papers.

Paper Nos. 1 & 2 – subjective type.

Paper Nos. 3 & 4- objective type

Registration Procedure

ICAI has a centralised Registration Procedure through Self –Service Portal.

All administrative interactions throughout the life cycle of students covering Intermediate and Final courses are done through this portal and there is no need for personal visit or submission of physical documents. The candidates may visit:  https://www.icai.org/post/students-services.

Self-Paced Online Modules

To create the process of developing a Chartered Accountant with critical and interdisciplinary thinking, research and innovation.

Four Self-Paced Online Modules [SETS A, B, C and D] encompassing different fields, have been introduced for the first  by ICAI  in the Scheme of Education and Training.

Students can learn and qualify the modules at their own pace after qualifying the Intermediate level Examination.

Manner of Learning

The learning modules/study materials for the Self-Paced Online Modules will be provided to the students in the form of eBooks and physical copies.

Registration Process

At the time of registration of Final Course, students are required to register for Self-Paced Online Module also.

About Examination

The assessment is online by way MCQs (multiple choice questions) which are case scenario based for SETS A and B.

 A combination of independent MCQs and case scenario- based MCQs are given in SETS C and D.

 Expert knowledge is expected in SETS A and B, wherein all skills,  assessed in SETS  C and D are:

  • Knowledge and comprehension,
  • Application, analysis and evaluation and
  • Synthesis would be assessed.  

Requirement for Passing Self-Paced Online Modules

A student has to qualify these online modules (SETS) for appearing in Final Examination. The minimum marks for qualifying each module is 50%.

There is no restriction in the number of attempts.

Final Course

After successfully  passing  Intermediate  Examination,  a  student  has  to  register  for  Final  Course  and Self-Paced Online Modules.

The Final Course consists of two Groups – Group I and Group II.

Each group consists of three papers.

Admission To Final Examination

Students shall be admitted to Final Examination if:

  • He is registered for the Final Course.
  • Has completed Practical Training, six months before the first day of the month in which the examination is to be held.
  • Has successfully completed Advanced Integrated Course on Information Technology and Soft Skills (Adv. IT & MCS).
  • Has passed the Self-paced Online Modules.

Requirements For Passing Final Examination

Minimum of 40% marks in each paper of each of the groups and minimum of 50% marks in the aggregate of all the papers of each of the groups.

The criteria of negative marking in a paper or papers may be adopted having objective type questions.

Exemption

A student who appeared in all the papers comprised in a Group/Unit and fails in one or more papers in that Group/Unit but secures a minimum of 60% marks in any paper(s) of that Group/Unit shall be eligible for exemption in that paper(s) in the next three following examinations.

Information Technology Training & Soft Skills Course

 To facilitate Chartered Accountants become a complete Business Manager equipped with a well-rounded personality, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India has developed two Courses:

  • Integrated Course on Information Technology and Soft Skills (ICITSS) and
  • Advanced Integrated Course on Information Technology and Soft Skills (AICITSS).

Each course is of Four Weeks duration.

Objectives of Information Technology and Soft Skills (ICITSS)

The objective of ICITSS is to:

  • Develop an understanding for use of Information Technology in the field of accounting and   auditing.
  • Develop communication and presentation skills.
  • Groom and motivate the entrants to become knowledgeable and skilled professionals.

Advanced Integrated Course on

Information Technology and Soft Skills A(ICITSS). Objectives of Advanced Integrated Information Technology and Soft Skills (AICITSS)

The Course is designed with an objective to inculcate:

  • Effective and efficient use of IT Tools
  • Inter -personal and leadership skills

Role of Article ship

Practical Training of Articled Training is an integral part of the CA course.

It requires a student to undergo full-time rigorous training under a practising CA or CA in service.

 Such a practical training:

  • Inculcates a disciplined attitude for hard work.
  • Develops necessary skills in applying theoretical knowledge to practical situations.
  • Provides exposure to the overall socio-economic environment in which organisations operate.
  • Develops ethical values.

Duration: Two years

In Retrospect

Chartered Accountancy is anything but only Debit and Credit Account. It is much more than that. Yes, much more than what is conceivable at first sight!.

Financial expertise and knowledge of Chartered Accountants elevate both individuals and businesses to the next level!

The journey to becoming a Chartered Accountant in India is marked by dedication, perseverance, and academic excellence.

The path, involving clearing the CA Foundation, Intermediate, and Final along with completing the article ship, and Self-Paced Modules  demands a commitment to continual learning and ethical practice.

Remember, every Chartered Accountant once stood where you are now — curious, aspiring, and ready to embark on a challenging yet rewarding journey.

As you move forward, keep updating your knowledge, practice diligently, and network with professionals.

Let us leave you with a thought that resonates deeply in the accounting profession:

“Success is not final, failure is not fatal: it is the courage to continue that counts.” –

Winston Churchill

Embrace your journey with resilience and remember that every expert was once a beginner.

Good luck on your path to becoming a Chartered Accountant!

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