What is Chartered Accountancy

Chartered Accountancy is offered by the ‘Institute of Chartered Accountants of India’ (ICAI). Chartered Accountancy has always been a very sought after professional qualification. The moment you say you are a qualified CA, people judge you as someone bright, diligent and knowledgeable. It is a rigorous course in the field of Accounting and Finance, which opens the doors to various career options in the financial domain. CAs are sought after by almost every business house for corporate finance, auditing, taxation, accounting, and legal counsel. Apart from this, since the course is challenging and demanding, a CA is considered to be a diligent person with an analytical bent of mind and penchant for numbers. Several banks and financial services firms look for CAs to fill their various financial analysis roles. CAs can also start their own practice soon after qualifying.

To apply for the course, the steps are as follows:

1. The first step is to clear the Common Proficiency Test (CPT). You can register for this with ICAI post your 10th Std. However, you are only eligible to write the exams once you clear your 12th Std. or HSC.

  • The CPT is exempt if you are already a commerce graduate with >55% marks
  • It is also exempt for non-commerce graduates with >60% marks

2. The next step is to enrol for the Integrated Professional Competency Course (IPCC)

  • Students need to undergo an orientation program, 100 hours of Information technology training and 8 months of studying (called foundation course)
  • Students can then appear for Group 1 and /or Group 2 examinations of the IPCC
  • They also need to complete General Management and Communication Skills course – Part 1.
  • Once they clear Group 1 exams, they are eligible for a 3 year articleship with a firm

3. The last step after clearing IPCC is the final CA exams

  • The exam can be attempted when 6 months of articleship are remaining
  • Students also need to complete Advance Information Technology Training and General Management and Communication Skills – Part II, if not completed earlier, before the final exam

This course is largely done by correspondence and self-study with help from coaching institutes. One can do the foundation course and IPCC exams simultaneously while pursuing another graduate degree. However, articleships are usually very taxing and are taken up as full time jobs by students. On clearing the final CA exams and getting the CA designation, candidates are usually promoted within the firms in which they articled or take up plum offers from other firms.