23 Aug CPA vs CA (Chartered Accountant): Which is Better for You?
Which is better? Which designation will help your career? When deciding your choice of profession in accountancy, you may be in a dilemma to choose between CPA or CA. The key question that arises is whether CPA benefits your career path or CA? There is no clear winner because both qualifications will help to grow your technical skills, accountancy skills and business management skills. Also, CPA and CA holders tend to be equally spread across commercial and public accounting – so each qualification provides maximum flexibility to work across industry. Let’s take a look at what each of these certifications entail and the major differences between the two.
What is a CPA?
What is a CA?
CPA vs CA: Career Path
CPA vs CA: Salaries
CPA vs CA: Time Requirements
- Direct entry route for school-leavers, which requires five years of training with an ICAS-approved employer;
- Graduate entry route for university graduates, which requires three years of training with an ICAS-approved employer;
- Professional entry route for experienced finance professionals is for established professionals with a university degree (formally recognized as a UK equivalent) or five years of relevant work experience and
- The pathways route that allows members of The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) the opportunity to become a member of ICAS and earn CA designation.
CPA vs CA: Certification Costs and Requirements
The cost for becoming a CA depends on the country you live in, your education and work experience and what organization you are applying to for obtaining your credential.For example, if you are applying to ICAS and you choose Pathways #1 and #2 (direct entry from school or university) then your employer will cover the costs. If you opt for Pathway #3 (Experienced Professional), the costs are roughly £5,750 – £13,900. Pathway #4 (for CIPFA members) costs are £1,035 for the Relevant Expertise Pathway. For the Practical Competence Pathway, the costs are: £596 for the training contract; £1,547 – £1,935 for class fees; £292 for the exam fee and £495 for annual ICAS/CIPFA membership dues. If there are continuing education and licensing requirements, they will be determined by the country in which you are working.