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Digital learning materials

All ACA, ICAEW CFAB and Level 4 apprenticeship learning materials for exams in 2021 are available in a digital format.

Exams are computer-based, now learning materials are too. This allows them to be accessed wherever you are, on the device that is most convenient for you either on a mobile, tablet or desktop.

The digital workbooks work much like printed/traditional/hard copy books in that you can still write notes on them and highlight them, but with the additional benefits of being able to search for key terms, change the settings to make them easier to read, and have the book read itself to you with the text to speech function.

The new ICAEW workbooks combine our skills and syllabus learning with study manual all in one publication, making it easier for you to study.

Digital delivery is better for the environment: books no longer need to be shipped globally to be delivered to you, saving time and fuel.  What’s more it saves 262 tonnes of paper each year.

Set up and access  

Visit the bookstore to purchase your learning materials. The price of your learning materials depends on which level you are studying. You can view the prices for 2021 here. You can use your ICAEW account login details to access the ICAEW Bookshelf via the Bibliu app or browser.

If you cannot see all your learning materials within the bookshelf this might be a connection error so logging out and logging in again should stop this from happening. However, if the issue persists then contact support. 

If you purchased the wrong workbook you will need to contact us, and we will refund the purchase and mark the order as cancelled. This information will then be passed to the ICAEW Bookshelf and the workbook(s) will be removed.

Registering correctly

You must ensure you register for your ICAEW Bookshelf using your existing ICAEW credentials. When first registering for your bookshelf select 'Already registered' and log in using your usual ICAEW credentials. 

If you selected ‘new user’ at the registration stage your account will not be linked to your ICAEW account. This will result in your learning materials not being available via the ICAEW Bookshelf during open book exams.

You can check if you have registered correctly by logging into your ICAEW Bookshelf using the account details you use to access areas on icaew.com such as your training file. If you are not able to log in using those credentials, or you can log in but find your bookshelf is empty, please contact student support who will investigate moving your learning materials. Moving your learning materials will result in losing any notes and/or highlights you have made, however it will ensure you can access your learning materials within your open book exams.


Introducing our learning materials in a digital format comes with many added benefits including:

  • Instant access, on any device wherever and whenever. The ICAEW Bookshelf can be accessed via a web browser or the Bibliu app at any time. No need to carry around heavy printed materials.
  • You can download your ICAEW materials to access when you are offline.
  • Access your ICAEW learning materials via the Bibliu App. This is available from the Apple and Google Play stores. When logging in, select ICAEW from the drop down and enter your ICAEW log in details.
  • Annotate, highlight and search – you can still annotate and highlight while studying, and have the added benefit of searching not only the learning materials, but your notes too. Your notes will also be synchronised across all devices when you are online.
  • Access to your personal ICAEW Bookshelf within the open book exams. You will be able to access your materials, your notes and highlights and use the search functions, during your open book exams
  • Permitted text bundles – we have conveniently bundled most of the relevant permitted texts with the new digital learning materials. This means you get all the learning materials and the relevant permitted text you need to study all in one place*.
  • Digital format means resit students can be more easily supported. You will automatically have access to the latest edition of learning materials without any extra charge
  • Accessibility – a digital format is immediately more accessible, as it offers functionality that allows you to adjust the screen colour and zoom to your preference, use the text to speech or speed reader options to study in a way that suits you and your needs.
  • Access past exam questions directly from your study manual. Test yourself by hiding and revealing the answers at the touch of a button.
  • The ICAEW Bookshelf will save 262 tonnes of paper a year.
  • Cost reduction – the learning materials going digital offer a small cost saving and a large cost saving on the postage fees.

*The only exception is the IFRS Blue Book which must be purchased directly from the IFRS foundation, in hard copy.

How to use the ICAEW Bookshelf 

When studying and reading through the materials in your ICAEW Bookshelf you will be able to use it much like any other textbook including annotating and highlighting. However, what you can’t do in ordinary textbooks is to search and filter via your notes or highlights.

It will depend on what exam you are sitting whether or not you will be permitted to use your own materials, but we will allow you to access the permitted and recommended texts as shown on icaew.com/permittedtexts

For open book exams, you will be able to take in any hard copy materials, if you wish, subject to space restrictions.

A link to your ICAEW Bookshelf account will be available in the open book exams. This will then give you access to all your books, including any notes/highlights. 

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