Apart from CPAA, two other assessing organisations, Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand (CAANZ) and the Institute of Public Accountants (IPA), are approved by the Department of Home Affairs to provide skills assessments for accounting occupations on the combined current list. Applicants need to choose only one authority and submit qualifications and skilled employment assessments to the same organisation. CAANZ and IPA have their own assessment criteria that may differ from CPAA requirements discussed below.
CPAA provides 2 types of skills assessment, full and provisional. The former is for points tested and employer sponsored visas and the latter is for Graduate Work stream of the Temporary Graduate visa.
Skilled employment assessment is separate from qualifications assessment, but applicants can submit combined application for both. However, CPAA will only assess employment under the same nominated occupation and only if an applicant receives a positive outcome of qualification assessment from CPAA.
All applicants must provide English Language Test (ELT) results that are no more than 3 years old . For a full skills assessment the minimal scores for each module must be no less than in the following table. Successful completion of the Accounting Professional Year Program will also satisfy English language requirement.
For full skills assessment applicants must hold a qualification that is assessed as equivalent to at least an Australian bachelor’s degree. CPA Australia uses the guidelines issued by the Department of Education and Training, when assessing the comparability of overseas qualifications. If qualifications are not formally accredited by CPA Australia, a detailed syllabus must be provided with the application.
In addition, qualifications are assessed for relevancy against competency areas. The first seven competencies out of the following nine core knowledge areas are mandatory for all accounting occupations. The last two competencies, Audit and Assurance and Australian Taxation Law, are mandatory only for External Auditor and Taxation Accountant, respectively.
Core Knowledge Areas
- 1. Accounting Systems and Processes
- 2. Financial Accounting and Reporting
- 3. Management Accounting
- 4. Finance and Financial Management
- 5. Economics
- 6. Business Law
- 7. Quantitative Methods
- 8. Audit and Assurance
- 9. Australian Taxation Law
Core Knowledge Area
Accountant General 221111
Taxation Accountant 221113
Management Accountant 221112
External Auditor 221213
Finance Manager 132211
Skilled employment assessment must be completed by the same assessing body that completed qualifications assessment. CPAA will only consider skilled employment if tasks performed are closely related to the same nominated occupation used in qualifications assessment and if employment was:
- undertaken after completion of a tertiary qualification that is comparable to the level of an Australian Bachelor degree or higher
- minimum of 1 year in total and undertaken within 10 years prior to skills assessment application date
- paid and full-time equivalent (minimum of 20 hours per week)
Processing time varies depending on the volume of application, but usually it is in under 10 business days from the date when all required documents have been received.