Rhodes achieves 100% pass for SAICA’s Assessment of Professional Competence (APC) ExaminationDate Released: Wed, 18 February 2015 11:00 +0200
2014 saw SAICA (South African Institute of Chartered Accountants), the professional body for Chartered Accountants launch the new Assessment of Professional Competence Exam (APC). In November 2014 a total of 2050 students sat the exam at various centres country-wide. All 31 Rhodes candidates passed the exam, giving Rhodes the distinction of being the only university of the 13 SAICA accredited institutions to achieve a 100% pass rate in the inaugural APC. The national pass rate was 86%.
The APC is the final assessment in the process of qualifying as a Chartered Accountant (CA (SA)) and is written towards the end of the second year of the three-year training contract. The APC assesses professional competence with a specific focus on the assessment of the strategic and managerial aspects of the broader accountancy discipline. Candidates were presented with a case study five days before the exam, to allow them to do additional research before writing the assessment. The exam focused on examining the candidate’s ability to use the knowledge and skills they developed through their academic and well as professional training programmes. Technical proficiency is thoroughly tested in the Initial Test of Competence (ITC), written shortly after the final post-graduate year at university. The APC in contrast focuses on the candidate’s ability to demonstrate real-life professional application of the knowledge and skills they have acquired. SAICA states that “Development of professional competence... is the combination of the academic programme, training programme and professional programme which contributes towards the development of professional competence”.
The Head of the Rhodes University Department of Accountancy, Professor Jackie Arendse, said “I am extremely proud of our Rhodes graduates who achieved 100% pass rates in both the ITC in 2013 and the APC in 2014, meaning that these graduates have proceeded from our Post Graduate Diploma in Accounting straight through both sets of professional exams: a phenomenal achievement! We extend our congratulations to each one of our Rhodes Alumni and also to all the successful candidates nationwide.” Arendse stated that “the success of our graduates shows that the pervasive skills that we try to inculcate in our students here at Rhodes, including lifelong learning, the ability to self-manage both their time and learning, communication, the ability to conduct research and to analyse and interpret data critically is producing dividends in the form of qualified Chartered Accountants who are able to take their place as leaders of business and society”.
The 100% pass rate in the 2014 APC follows on the heels of a 100% pass rate in the ITC for both 2013 and 2014.