Which Qualification is Better: CPA or ACCA in General?

CPA and ACCA are two accountant degrees that are well known and highly useful for career progression in the field of finance and accountancy. While immensely popular globally, both programs are vastly different in terms of learning. 

So, before picking between the two you have to make sure that you are well acquainted with what CPA and ACCA are and which one would best suit your career requirements. Here is a detailed explanation of both the courses. 

Which Qualification is Better: CPA or ACCA in General?

What is CPA?

Certified Public Accountant or CPA is an accountancy degree that is offered by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and reflects a higher level of learning in this field. A CPA degree holder is sought after by many companies as they are considered a trusted authority in financial advising. They can guide both individuals and business on a plethora of things such as opening a new office to planning a merger.   

This certification can be extremely beneficial for CA, Financial Advisors, CS, Cost Accounting professionals and others such professionals. Demand for CPAs is huge in the business sector, public accounting and even government and non-profit organisation. With CPA, you need to have a considerable amount of experience to gain notable job positions. 

What is ACCA?

The ACCA or Association of Chartered Certified Accountants is an internationally recognised accountancy body with presence in over 170 countries. It is a qualification which is given great precedence in many nations and treated equally to local degrees. 

An ACCA degree holder has access to innumerable employment prospects since they are considered highly skilled for all managerial positions. Employers in sectors like banking, auditing, consultation and others are keen to take in such candidates as they possess the right knowledge to carry out demanding job roles. 

Difference between CPA and ACCA?

There are various differences between CPA and ACCA which have been discussed in the table below. 

Certified Public Accountant is a granted by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants (AICPA) and makes one eligible for management, taxation, auditing, handling accounts and much more. Association of Certified Chartered Accountant is a degree awarded by globally reputed Association of Chartered Accountant and makes one eligible for roles in taxation, auditing, accounting, and Finance.
CPA is concerned with accounting services and professionals are required to help individuals and firms adhere to finance-related law and procedure. They can also work in other fields of finance- accounting, financial analysis and more, aside from going into general job profiles like auditing, taxation and more. ACCA can perform several job roles ranging from auditing and taxation to financial analysis, accounting, finance controlling. Given that they deal with International Accounting Standards, they can apply for important profiles in several different countries.
The course can be done in a time span of 18 months While ACCA has tenure of 2-3 years, it has a flexible study pattern making it easier for professionals to study and give their exams.
CPA works according to the rules and regulations of the company and take into consideration all the various work ethics of the business. An ACCA professional are the ones who frame policies and execute ethics within the workplace.

If you are keen to grow in the field of accountancy and wish to apply for higher job roles or even plan to work in other countries, then you must take your pick from the two degrees. Whether you consider choosing an ACCA course or CPA, both the degree carry a lot of relevance and weightage to help accelerate your career.

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About Dequiana Jackson

Dequiana Jackson, Founder of Inspired Marketing, Inc., helps overachieving women entrepreneurs conquer limiting beliefs and create marketing plans that win. This includes one-on-one marketing plan development, digital product creation, web design and content marketing. Dequiana is the author of Know Your Business: How to Attract Ideal Clients & Sell More and runs the award-winning blog, Entrepreneur-Resources.net.

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  1. Accountants can provide far more than simple tax assistance and will often both save your time and find you money. Whether this is by making savings by managing your expenses or by preventing penalties for non-compliance with your filing requirements an accountant can add value to your company.

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