ACCA vs. CPA: Which One’s For You?
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|In short||With ACCA or CPA status you will be qualified to engage in accounting in a professional manner. But that’s where the similarity ends. Read on to see just how the two differ.|
|License granted by body in:||US, by any of the 55 states or jurisdiction. There is no centralized body; each state has slightly different exam and licensing requirements.||UK|
|Application process||Online or directly through the Board of Accountancy with which you are pursuing your licence||Online at accaglobal.com|
|Minimum entry requirements||4-year bachelor degree and preferably a master’s degree in order to fulfill the 150 credit hours, equivalent to 5 years in higher education.||Accessible to all|
|Experience required to license||Varies from one jurisdiction to another (generally ranges from 12 to 24 months on average )||36 months|
|In existence since||1800s||1904|
|Number of bodies||Many||1|
|Number of exams||1 in four parts||14 papers (Fundamental level 9 papers, Professional level 5 papers)|
|Subject areas||Four sections:
|Fundamental section has two modules: Knowledge and Skills. The professional section has two modules: Essentials and Options.Knowledge section:
|Types of questions||Multiple choice + task-based simulations (i.e. intense case studies) + written communications||Objective + longer type + case studies|
|Exam timing||You can choose to take the 4 parts one at a time, 2 at a time or even 4 at the same time. You can sit for the exam any time (Monday to Saturday) during the first 2 months of each quarter.||Exams are offered in June and December each year|
|Average timeframe to complete||Minimum six months, more likely one year.||Most likely 3 to 4 years.|
|Possible exemptions||AICPA (the US accounting body) members can choose to take a simplified version of the CPA exam known as IQEX.||If you have a bachelor degree in relevant subjects, you can apply for exemption on part or all of the papers at the Fundamental Level. Also, AICPA members can receive exemptions on a number of papers.|
|Where in the world can you take the exams?||US, Bahrain, Kuwait, Lebanon, the UAE, Japan, and Brazil.||170+ countries around the world.|
Still in two minds? Let Morgan help you decide which one’s right for you. Schedule your free consultation session today!