Professional qualifications: An option for matrics

According to news reports 455 825 learners passed the 2015 National Senior Certificate exams marking an increase of 51 952 from the 2014 figure. Of these 166 263 qualified for admission to study towards a degree (Bachelor’s pass) and 183,720 for admission to study towards a diploma.

Universities have reported that they have been flooded with applications. Applications from more than 100 000 prospective first year students were received by the University of Johannesburg which can only accommodate 10 000 undergraduates. A similar situation is being experienced at two other major universities in Gauteng province with only about 12% of applicants being accepted to the University of the Witwatersrand (Wits) and the University of Pretoria (UP) (24%). Over 50 000 applications were received for 6 000 undergrad places at Wits and 42 000 applications for 10 250 places at UP.

Outside Gauteng the picture remains bleak with more and more prospective students are unable to find a place to study further within the traditional university route. The University of KwaZulu-Natal has recorded 90 000 applications and can only accommodate 8 400 new students. Stellenbosch University can only accommodate 5000 of the applied 22 000 and Nelson Mandela Metropolitan University has accepted 5850 of the 26 000 applications.

Responding to these news reports, Head of South Africa for CIMA, the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants, Zahra Cassim, says that there is still hope for those who did not gain a place in an accounting degree programme at university. All is not lost she says, as there are other options including professional qualifications offered by professional institutes.

CIMA offers a series of SAQA recognised qualifications that lead to a registered professional designation. These include Certificate in Business Accounting, Diploma in Management Accounting and Advanced Diploma in Management Accounting. They can be studied part-time, with or without tuition classes or via distance learning.

Says Cassim: “CIMA has programmes offered through UNISA for those who want to follow a degree programme in accountancy, but in addition we offer the Certificate in Business Accounting as a foundation qualification for those who have not achieved a bachelor’s pass. This can be completed via a number of recognised CIMA tuition providers or by self study. Furthermore we have endorsed accounting programmes, certificate, diploma and degree courses, offered by the IIE colleges, including Varsity College and Rosebank College, which makes the graduates eligible for exemptions to allow them to continue with the professional qualification after graduation.”

CIMA is a globally recognised qualification with one curriculum and the most modern assessment model currently available. Assessments for each paper are computerised objective tests that can be booked on demand. To complete each level there is an integrated case study.

Says Cassim: “With the complexity of modern business a qualification in management accounting can lead to many diverse career options in marketing, human resources, brand management, operations, production, manufacturing and finance. It is the most relevant global finance-based qualification for business today.”

For more information email [email protected] or call 0861 CIMA SA (0861 246 272).

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