ACCA is equivalent to which degree in the UK?
ACCA (Association of Chartered Certified Accountants) is one of the world’s most prestigious accounting qualifications. Two common questions that prospective ACCA students ask is: how does ACCA fare in comparison to UK university degrees and ACCA is equivalent to which degree in the UK? Let’s explore this:
ACCA and UK Educational Levels
- Foundation-level qualifications:
- The ACCA’s foundation level qualifications, or the ACCA Diploma in Accounting and Business, are broadly equivalent to the completion of A-levels or a Higher National Certificate (HNC) in the UK.
- ACCA Applied Skills level:
- When you progress to the Applied Skills level, it can be compared to the first and second years of a UK undergraduate degree.
- ACCA Strategic Professional level:
- This level of ACCA, which consists of the Essentials and Options papers, is deemed equivalent to the final year of a UK bachelor’s degree or even a postgraduate qualification. Once you’ve completed all the ACCA exams and gained the relevant practical experience, you’ll be a qualified ACCA member and your qualification will be roughly parallel to a UK Master’s degree in terms of complexity and depth.
Oxford Brookes University Partnership
To underscore the equivalence, ACCA has a partnership with Oxford Brookes University. By completing the Applied Knowledge and Applied Skills exams, along with a Research and Analysis Project, ACCA students can earn a BSc (Hons) degree in Applied Accounting from Oxford Brookes University. This emphasizes the comparability of the ACCA qualification to a UK bachelor’s degree.
Beyond the Exams: Practical Experience
While the ACCA exams themselves are academically challenging, the ACCA also mandates that its members gain relevant practical experience. This ensures that ACCA members are not just theoretically proficient but also practically adept. This combination of academic rigour and practical experience can often be seen as advantageous over traditional degrees, which might not always offer the same balance.
Recognition by UK NARIC
UK NARIC (The National Recognition Information Centre for the United Kingdom) recognises ACCA as being equivalent to a UK Master’s degree. This recognition can be particularly useful for ACCA members seeking further academic pursuits or employment in the UK and abroad.
Whilst ACCA is fundamentally a professional qualification rather than an academic degree, its structure, depth, and breadth mean that it can stand toe-to-toe with some of the best university degrees in the UK. Whether you’re an employer assessing a candidate’s qualifications or a student considering your next steps, it’s clear that ACCA offers a robust and well-respected pathway to professional success in the accounting and finance world.