Accountants analyze financial information and prepare financial reports to determine or maintain record of assets, liabilities, profit and loss, tax liability, or other financial activities within an organization. The duty of Chartered accountant is to ensure that the financial transactions of an organization are maintained according to the law; they also keep track of cost of management of the company and manage tax matters.
A student who has passed the Class 10 examination conducted by an examining body constituted by law in India or (an examination recognized by the Central Government as equivalent thereto) may register for Common Proficiency Test.
A registered student may appear in Common Proficiency Test after he has appeared in the Senior Secondary Examination (10+2 examination) conducted by an examining body constituted by law in India or an examination recognised by the Central Government as equivalent thereto and has complied with such requirements as may be specified by the Council from time to time.
A student who has got himself registered for Common Proficiency Test 60 days prior to the first day of the month in which CPT examination is to be held can appear in the examination i.e. on or before 1st April and 1st October for appearing in CPT examination to be held in June and December respectively. Common Proficiency Test examinations are held in June & December every year.
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The courses offered in Chartered Accountancy are a blend of theoretical education and practical training. The theoretical part includes the passing of PE-1 PE-2 (Professional Examination) and Final part. Students are also expected to go through a two and a half years of practical training and 15 days course on General management and Communication Skills.
It is essential for the candidates to register with the Institute of Chartered Accountants of India to appear for the examination. The minimum period for each level of study is 10 months. Exams are held twice a year.
Chartered Accountancy can be pursued after 10+2 or graduation. The whole course can be divided into three stages i.e. Foundation, Intermediate and Final. The following section gives information about them.
The Institute of Chartered Accountants of India offers CA foundation course to students passing 10+2 in any subject. The duration of the course is one year. On registration with the institute, students are provided with the study material by the Board of Studies. Students have to complete their study and clear the test papers under the postal tuition scheme. They also have an option to attend contact classes organised by accredited institutions. Students opting for these classes are exempted from taking the test papers under the postal tuition scheme.
After 12 months of registration and satisfactory compliance with the requirement of the Board of Studies, the Foundation examination can be taken up. The examination is conducted twice every year i.e. in the months of May and November. The course has four papers in the following subjects.
After clearing the papers of the foundation course, candidates can register for articleship (apprenticeship) under the practicing CAs or CA firms. Articleship has to be done for a period of over 3 years. The training begins under close supervision and later on, articles can manage bigger assignments. The purpose of articleship is to impart practical training and exposure of the profession. During the articleship, after 12 months, the articles can take up intermediate examination. Articleship also includes a year of industrial training which can be done in the last year after clearing Intermediate examination. After completing articleship, seeking membership of the Institute is essential for practicing as a Chartered Accountant. After 5 years of membership fellowship of the Institute can be taken.
Many students prefer to pursue Chartered Accountancy professional training and course after graduating. These students have to take entrance test in 4 subjects (Elements of Accounting, English, Mathematics and General commercial knowledge and Economics). Graduates who have secured 50% marks in subjects (Accounting, Auditing and Commercial or Mercantile Law) are exempted from taking the entrance test. Other graduates with 55% marks are also exempted from the entrance test. Rest all is same as those who have taken the Foundation Course.
Registered students who have completed 9 months of training as articled or audit clerks and have completed the oral/postal tuition scheme imparted by the Board of Studies, are eligible to take the Intermediate Examination. The Examination has the following subjects.
GROUP I: Accounting, Law, and Auditing
GROUP II: Cost accounting, Income-Tax & Central Sales Tax, and Oganisation & Management and Fundamentals Of Electronic Data Processing
Students who successfully clear both the groups of Intermediate Examination of the Institute and complete the prescribed period of practical training (3years) or have yet to serve a period not more than 9 months of such services can take the Final Examination. The Examination has the following groups.
GROUP I: This group consist of the following subjects; Advance Accounting, Management Accounting, Auditing and Company Law
GROUP II: This group consists of the following subjects;
Chartered accountants are responsible for financial reporting, taxation, auditing, forensic accountancy, corporate finance and insolvency. They play a strategic role by providing professional advice, aiming to maximize profitability on behalf of their client or employer. They work in many different settings, including public practice firms, industry, commerce and the public sector.
In public practice firms, chartered accountants provide professional services to fee paying clients, from private individuals to large commercial and public sector organizations. In commerce, industry and the public sector, they may work in fund management and procurement, as well as in financial management and reporting roles.
The ICAI has recently started Campus Placement for CA's and the response from the industry was overwhelming. The maximum salary bagged by a fresh CA was 32 Lakhs with average salary at around 6.5 Lakhs. The craze for CA Profession is also fuelled by the fact that a fresh Chartered Accountant in India earns at least three times then an average MBA or Company Secretary.
According to one estimate India would need 50,000 CAs a year by the end of 2010. At present about 9,000-10,000 CAs pass out from India every year.
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