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Student conduct and behaviour

ICAEW students, along with members, affiliates and firms, are expected to demonstrate the highest standards of professional conduct and abide by ICAEW’s regulations, codes and other policies.

What we expect from students

As an ICAEW student you are expected to demonstrate the highest standards of professional conduct. Our Code of Ethics sets out the requirements of professional conduct and provides guidance to help students and members meet these obligations.

You must always comply with the five Fundamental Principles of the Code as well as any specific requirements relevant to your circumstances at the time.

  1. Integrity – to be straightforward and honest in all professional and business relationships. Integrity also means that you must not knowingly be associated with misleading information.
  1. Objectivity – not to compromise professional or business judgements because of bias, conflict of interest or undue influence of others. If undertaking an assurance engagement, you must also be and appear to be independent.
  1. Professional Competence and Due Care – to attain and maintain professional knowledge and skill at the level required to ensure that a client or employing organisation receives competent professional service, based on current technical and professional standards and relevant legislation; and act diligently and in accordance with applicable technical and professional standards.
  1. Confidentiality – to respect the confidentiality of information acquired as a result of professional and business relationships. Confidential information must not be disclosed outside the organisation without authority, unless there is a duty or right to disclose, or disclosure is in the public interest and permitted by law.
  1. Professional Behaviour – to comply with relevant laws and regulations and avoid any conduct that the professional accountant knows or should know might discredit the profession.

As well as abiding by our Code of Ethics, you also need to comply with our Bye-laws and the regulations and policies relevant to your qualification.

Exam and assessment conduct

You must continue to conduct yourself professionally and act with integrity and honesty when sitting ICAEW exams or assessments. You must also ensure you comply with our specific policies and procedures in this area.

You can see further details for the ACA and ICAEW CFAB in the following policies and regulations:

If you have been granted specific access arrangements for an exam, you will also need to ensure you remain compliant with the conditions of the award as well as our Access arrangements guidance for exams and, if you are sitting Certificate Level exams, PearsonVue’s guidance.

You can see further details for ICAEW’s apprenticeships in the following policies and regulations:

You can see further details on our Pathways to Membership Examination of Experience in the following policies and regulations:

You can also see further details on assessments for ICAEW’s other qualifications below:

If you fail to comply with any of the requirements here, you may be deemed to have committed misconduct which could result in your exam/assessment being awarded a mark of zero or your submission not being marked as well as referral to ICAEW’s Conduct Department for further disciplinary action. Your employer may also take action against you so you could be putting your job and future career at risk.

Examples of misconduct may include (but are not limited to):

  1. cheating ie, failing to comply with the rules governing assessments or any instructions given by the invigilator;
  2. colluding ie, assisting another candidate to gain an advantage by any means, facilitating or receiving such assistance;
  3. fabricating ie, misleading or attempting to mislead the examiners by presenting work for assessment in a way which intentionally or recklessly suggests that factual information has been collected which has not in fact been collected, or which falsifies factual information;
  4. personating ie, acting, appearing, or producing work on behalf of another candidate in order to deceive the examiners, or soliciting another individual to act, appear or produce work on your own behalf;
  5. plagiarising ie, incorporating within your work, work (published or unpublished in whatever format or medium) created by another person without appropriate acknowledgement;
  6. using any materials prohibited under ICAEW’s regulations during an assessment;
  7. continuing to write after an assessment is declared closed;
  8. disruptive conduct in the assessment venue, including failure to act in a professional manner;
  9. failing to comply with instructions from the invigilator, ICAEW, or the Instructions to Candidates.