Updated: Jun 23, 2021
As you may have heard from CAANZ - there will be a new CA Program commencing from June 2021 (May 2021 enrolment).
If you have already studied/enrolled in any CA subject before May 2021, you don't need to worry, you will still be undertaking the old program until you graduate. You likely won't notice any changes, just carry on with your existing program (i.e. 4 core subjects + capstone) and you can continue to use Merit Training's notes and exam prep courses. However you must complete your 'old' program course by Dec 2022, as this is when the last course will complete (CAP222, but this should be ample time for your to complete your CA course).
Existing students can transfer your course across to the new program if you wish, but we recommend sticking with the existing program as it is the same length to complete, you will have access to previous years of resources, notes, past exams etc, you will be familiar with the exam and marking structure and you will not be exposed to new structural risks of the program (see list of structural changes to courses below).
If you have not enrolled or studied any CA subject before May 2021 (i.e. you are a new CA student just starting in June 2021) you will need to study under the new CA program.
This will involve studying 9 modules instead of the historical 5, but the new courses will be shorter and less information heavy. It also gives you access to elective courses, meaning you can customise your course towards your interest.
Comparability of new courses to old CA program
As you can see in the above table, most of the new courses correspond closely to the existing program in terms of underlying content (albeit with reduced content, more options). The reduction in content /length has allowed core subjects, e.g. tax/MAAF, to be split out across 2 (e.g TAX has been split into 1. Tax & 2. Advanced Tax). On top of these split outs, there are 2 completely new subjects: 1. Ethics & 2. Risk & Technology, which we will release new notes and exam prep courses for by mid-2021 (i.e. prior to the new course starting).
We understand that the content and structure of the new courses will be very similar to the existing courses (except for Ethics/Risk which are new), but shorter, meaning that Merit Training's existing notes and exam prep courses will still be applicable to the new subjects. Nonetheless, we will re-release new notes and courses from the existing content but adapted to the new course outline, by mid-2021 (i.e. prior to the new courses starting).
Some of the key structural changes to the CA courses include:
There will no longer be supplementary exams, you will just have to retake the next course available (noting that the courses are more frequent and shorter)
The new courses will lower the weighting of the final exam, to be more spread out across other assessments, such as written, quiz or oral assessments. So these 'other' assessments will become more important to score well in.
Some courses need to be completed in a certain order now (previously the core subjects could be completed in any order as long as capstone was last). Now Ethics must be completed first and ICAP last. Also, some core subjects must be completed in a certain order, e.g. Risk before Business Perf, FIN before Audit etc. See below.
Greater emphasis on workshops in core subjects (previously this was only for capstone)
Pre-requisites for subjects:
As per above, the new course requires certain subjects to be studied in a certain order, which will require CA students to start planning out in detail the ordering of their course:
If i purchase ALL (either notes or exam prep courses), will i be able to view ALL notes and exam prep courses for the new CA course program when they are released? YES you will. If you purchase ALL, you will get access to all future notes and exam prep courses for both the existing and new CA programs. For the online courses, simply log in to the website and you will always have access to the most up to date courses. For notes, if you have purchased ALL and wish to transfer to the new course, simply message us at time of enrolment and we will send you an updated download link for the new subject download files. Otherwise, the existing notes should suffice for the meantime given the limited changes to the underlying course content.
Is the 3 year mentoring requirement the same under the new program? YES. This hasn't changed and you still need to have 3 years of professional experience to become a full CA.
Can i complete more than one subject per term YES, however it is not recommended to do more than 2 per term (excluding Ethics, which is a short/easier course).
Will there be face to face workshops? YES but not for all subjects, but more than under the old program. Candidates will have to attend online or a face to face workshop at a CAANZ approved venue in Ethics and Business and ICAP, and fully online workshops in Business Performance and Audit and Risk.
Will the new exams be online? YES, even going forward post COVID this will be online.
Until the changes and pitfalls of the new courses have fully been identified, we recommend sticking with the existing course structure until graduation if you are an existing student. You can always transfer across later if you wish, but based on the above article, we have posited there is minimal benefit for you to do so.
If you are a new student, we hope the above has helped with your understanding of the new structure and we will be releasing adapted versions of our notes and courses for the new program by mid 2021. If you wish to study earlier than this, you can purchase our existing notes and exam prep courses and we will also give you access to the adapted versions upon release for no extra charge, just message us in the chat at www.merittraining.shop