If you can provide evidence of a previous relevant qualification or module, this may result in you not being required to repeat learning or undertake an assessment. If you have completed an academic qualification or have completed a professional qualification, you may be eligible to apply for exemptions towards studying the Professional Accountancy Qualification you can learn more on the Recognition of Prior Learning and Exemption Policy or you can find out the full detail of CIPFA’s policy student policies procedures and forms.

If you are applying under the apprenticeship scheme, please consult your line manager before submitting any application as your organisation may not permit exemptions.

To apply, please follow the steps outlined below:

  1. Ensure you meet the entry criteria as detailed in the entry guidance
  2. Ensure you have achieved relevant academic qualifications in the last 10 years from an Institute of Higher Education or hold an active membership from your professional membership awarding body.
  3. Check your institute and qualification are listed below in 'Find your exemptions’.
  4. Forward copies of your certificate, transcript, downloaded pdf document identifying your qualification and completed application form to paqexemptions@cipfa.org 
  5. If your institute and qualification are not listed, communicate via paqexemptions@cipfa.org. We will need your certificate, transcript, syllabus and completed application form. Applications that fail to include all required documents will be rejected.

  6. The documents must be translated into English to be assessed.

  7. Once your application has been submitted you can expect an automated message confirming receipt of your email. The team will respond to your application within 28 working days. 
  8. Successful applicants will find further information on how   to pay for their exemptions in their confirmation email. Exemptions must be claimed within 6 months of receiving the confirmation letter or will otherwise expire. Exemptions are priced at £100.00 per module with the exception of the following PAQ strategic level modules - Implementing Business Change (IBC), Strategic Public Financial Management (SPFM), Public Sector Financial Reporting (PSFR UK and International), Advanced Audit (International) and Strategic Case Study which are priced at £200 per module.

Please note: All exemption information listed on the CIPFA website is indicative, based on the modules usually studied as part of the degree in question. No exemptions are guaranteed. CIPFA reserve the right to review syllabi, transcripts, and other related documents to ensure sufficient syllabus coverage before awarding exemptions.