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Applications for Professional and Advanced Level exams

All the information you need to apply for a Professional and Advanced Level exam.

The process is slightly different for Certificate Level exams, find out more about how to apply for Certificate Level exams.

Exam dates and deadlines

It is your responsibility to apply for your exams by the exam closing deadline. Ensure you have all the key exam dates and deadline you need during your ACA studies. 

Please note that we do not accept late exam applications or changes to an exam application once the deadlines have passed. No allowance is made for any special circumstances or any error or omission.

You can also download the annual ACA planner. It’s designed to help you get organised at any time of the year. Use the planner to help keep your ACA training on track – add your study days, revision timetable, exams, six-monthly reviews and reminders on when you need to update your online training file.

Exam entry fees

Apply for exams

Apply for and book any Professional and Advanced Level exam using our online booking system.

Our exam booking system, is a live system, which means that when you book your exam, it is booked and confirmed immediately. The booking system will ask you to enter your preferred location to sit your exam and the closest centres with availability will appear. Exam centres are available on a first come, first served basis so be sure to book your exam early. If an exam centre doesn't appear, it means that this centre is fully booked. And remember to book your exam by the exam session closing date, we do not accept any late applications or changes once the deadlines have passed.

Access the booking system via your online training file. Go to the ‘Examinations’ tab and select ‘Apply for exams’. You can also book your exams via exams online.

For guidance on how to use our booking system, view the how to book an exam online guide.

If you are unable to access the online booking system, call +44 (0)1908 248 250, email or send us a question using the live help box displayed on this page.

Exam centres

For Certificate Level exams, many tuition providers are also ICAEW-approved test centres. Download the full list of tuition providers which are approved test centres. If you are studying independently, or if your tuition provider is not an approved test centre, you can book your assessment at a Pearson Vue test centre.

Exam centres for the Professional and Advanced Level exams are available worldwide. Exam centre details will appear when you apply for and book your exam using our online booking process. Simply enter your preferred location and the five closest exam centres with availability will appear. 

Application summary

Once you have applied for and booked a Professional or Advanced Level exam, you will receive an application summary by email immediately after completing your application. This includes the timetable, venue, candidate number and instructions. You can also view this information on our website. 

Cancelling or amending an exam application

You can withdraw from an exam at any time to ensure you are not recorded as absent. However, whether you get a refund and how you do this will be different depending on how close to the exam you make the withdrawal.

  • Before the closing deadline for a Professional or Advanced Level exam session, you can withdraw online. A refund will be issued to you within 15-20 working days after the closing deadline.
  • Between the closing deadline for exam entry and the cancellation deadline, you will not be able to withdraw online. Instead you must e-mail us. You will get a refund issued to you within 15-20 working days of the exam.
  • After the cancellation deadline has passed you can still email us to ensure you are not marked as absent from an exam, however a refund can only be considered if appropriate medical evidence that has been obtained no later than 2 days after the exam date. This evidence then needs to be submitted to us within 14 calendar days of the exam date.

Please note that if you withdraw from an exam (with or without refund), your application will not be transferred automatically to the next exam session and you must apply again as normal for any future sessions. If you are eligible for a refund, this will only be issued to the original method of payment, we no longer issue credits towards future exam sessions.

If you need to change the exam or centre you have applied for before the closing date for a Professional or Advanced Level exam session, you can amend your application online up to the exam closing date.

Make sure that you are aware of all exam key dates and deadlines, as listed above.

Access arrangements for exams

Application guidance

If you feel your exam performance may be hindered due to a health condition, disability, or specific learning difficulty (SpLD), we may be able to put access arrangements in place to support you during an exam. You can apply anytime, however, if you are applying for a specific exam, your application needs to be submitted to us 30 days before a planned Certificate Level exam and by the exam entry closing date for any Professional and Advanced Level exam. 

Before you submit your application, please read the guidance for access arrangements. There are two to read. Please note that one of the guidance documents is expressly for specific learning difficulties such as dyslexia. This is due to the application process and evidence required being different. The second relates to pregnancy or breastfeeding or prayer times during exams.

If the condition you are suffering from is considered a disability within the meaning of the Equality Act 2010, we will do everything we reasonably can to support you, as long as you can provide suitable evidence. This may involve adjustments such as awarding you extra time, rest breaks, use of a computer (if the exam is paper-based), a reader or a scribe, or changes to the exam format such as coloured overlays.

If you are suffering from a short-term condition and therefore not covered by the Equality Act, we will provide support in accordance with the ACA assessment regulations. This support is subject to the receipt of sufficient notice and suitable medical evidence; please read the access arrangement guidance note for clarification. We cannot always guarantee that a request for an access arrangement for a short-term condition will be granted but we will consider the details of your situation fully before confirming a decision.

Once we have received your application for access arrangements we will review it and notify you of our decision within 10 working days.

Access arrangements - stop the clock rest breaks awarded

If you have been awarded stop the clock rest breaks following an access arrangements application for a computer-based Professional or Advanced Level exam, please read the following guidance document and view the webinar before your exam. The guidance explains how to locate the stop the clock function, how the time is displayed and how to resume your exam.

Access arrangements - not awarded

If access arrangements cannot be awarded you should consider carefully whether to defer your exam until the following session; we can let you know when this will be. You should not rely on receiving special consideration for your condition when your exam result is being determined. See the cancelling an exam application section above.

There are also provisions available for the Certificate Level exam centres.

For any further enquiries not addressed in the access arrangement guidance please email us.

Access arrangements for exams moving to computer

If you have already applied and have been awarded access arrangements for any of the Professional or Advanced Level exams, we will contact you to confirm your access arrangements for these exams before they move to computer. If you have access arrangements already in place that are not due to expire, you do not need to reapply. 

If you do not have access arrangements for any of the Professional or Advanced Level exams but feel you may need them, or you haven’t taken an exam in two years, please email us.

Special consideration

Students must read and understand the special consideration guidance before they sit an exam. Special consideration applies to circumstances where you feel that your performance in an exam has been adversely affected by illness or other circumstances. You can apply to have these factors taken into consideration during the results determination process. Please refer to the guidance and supporting flow chart.

If you wish to apply for special consideration, you must complete the special consideration application form and submit the form with any supporting evidence within 14 days of the exam session. 

Full details of all the available provisions can be found in the ACA assessment regulations.

Instructions to Candidates

It’s very important that you read the instructions to candidates carefully before the day of your exam, and you are familiar with the administration, processes and procedures of all our exams.

All regulatory information relating to the Professional and Advanced level exams can be found in the ACA assessment regulations.