The RA Path

At School
The first step in a career as an RA is choosing Pure Maths and English and passing these subjects very well. Remember different universities have different entry requirements.
Accountancy Degree or Equivalent
You must be enrolled for an Accountancy Degree or equivalent. This degree must be accredited by SAICA. This qualification is equipping you with a thorough grounding in the knowledge, skills and theory of the accounting profession. The assessment provides you with the opportunity to apply the acquired knowledge in professional scenarios.
Successful completion of this degree and compliance with the minimum requirements will grant you eligibility to enter the postgraduate degree. See the next step.
Accountant Honours Degree or Equivalent
This postgraduate degree builds on the knowledge you have already attained at undergraduate level by exposing you to more complex scenarios that may be encountered in practice. This degree is commonly referred to as the Certificate in the Theory of Accounting (CTA). In addition to assessing your theoretical knowledge, the postgraduate degree also assesses your ability to apply this knowledge at a higher level of integration. Once you have successfully completed your CTA, you will now be writing your Initial Test of Competence (ITC). See the next step.

Depending on your qualification at entry into the training programme or articles, your articles could be 3, 4 or 5 years. Within your articles all the theoretical knowledge attained from your universities degrees will now be applied practically on the job. The general three year articles will include the following:

  • Year 1 – Immediately after your CTA you write your first board exam. This exam is called the Initial Test of Competence (ITC). This exam is written in January and there is another opportunity in June each year. The ITC is a standard setting examination written by candidates from all SAICA accredited universities. This exam is set by SAICA.
  • Year 2 – In November of your second year your write your second board exam, this is called the Assessment of Professional Competence (APC). This examination assesses your professional competence attained from both your university degrees and your articles.
Qualification as a Professional Accountant, Currently a CA(SA)
Now you are a qualified Professional Accountant, and currently a CA (SA). You can now register for the IRBA’s ADP.
The Audit Development Programme (ADP)
The ADP is a period of work experience undertaken by a qualified professional accountant [CA (SA)] that is relevant to the work of a Registered Auditor (RA). The work experience enables the development of professional competence in the workplace and provides a means whereby individuals can demonstrate the achievement of professional competence in a Registered Auditor firm. Professional accountants registered for the ADP are referred to as Registered Candidate Auditors (RCAs) and are required to complete the following:
  • A minimum of 18 months in an audit and assurance environment.
  • A minimum of 1 500 productive hours in audit and assurance.
  • Successful demonstration of the competences outlined in the competence framework prescribed by the IRBA.
Eligibility to Register as an RA
On successful completion of the ADP you obtain eligibility to Register as an RA.