ACCA vs CS – Which Should be Preferred?

ACCA vs CS – Which Should be Preferred? Gone are the days when crunching numbers was a career for the nerds. Today accounting professionals are all about glamorous and powerful figures that are at the helm of a company by the virtue of their accounting skills. And if reading this has got you tempted, please take a minute to read about the different exams, cost and advantage of pursuing a career in this field.

Let’s get started-

Following is the order of the article;

  1. ACCA vs CS Infographics
  2. What is Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)?
  3. What is Company Secretaryship (CS)?
  4. ACCA vs CS – Educational Requirement
  5. Why pursue ACCA?
  6. Why pursue CS?

ACCA vs CS Infographics

Reading time : 90 seconds

Lets understand the difference between these two streams with the help of this ACCA vs CS Infographics.

ACCA vs CS infographics

What is ACCA?

The ACCA or the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants is a body that recognizes the qualification of a CA. ACCA is a global body based in Glasgow UK which works in the interest of the public to ensure that the chartered accountants work according to the principles based and ensures that the regulations set are properly followed. The ACCA offers the certification in chartered accountancy and the exam known as ACCA is most recognized in the commonwealth countries.

What is CS?

A Company Secretary is an important accounting designation in a company. A CS in a company is the mediator between the board of directors, shareholders, government and other agencies. The CS has the required expertise in legal matters, securities law, capital market and corporate governance to regulate a company according to the compliances charted out.

The Institute of Company Secretaries of India” (ICSI)-a premier National Professional body offers the course for Company Secretaryship. The professional body set up by the Act of Parliament imparts the course through Distance Learning and also provides the “Course Material” for all the subjects at the time of Registration. It also provides the option for Optional Oral Coaching classes enabling the students to attain the designation of Company Secretary.

ACCA vs CS – Educational Requirement




You need to be a high school pass out to appear for the examination. In case of a higher degree you can request yourself to be exempted from papers you have already studied for at the fundamental level. Students who wish to join the CS course after passing out high school or 10+2 requires undergoing three stages of the Company Secretary Course while a graduate student would have to undergo two stages. The three stages of Company Secretaries Course are

Foundation Program

Executive Program

Professional Program



The ACCA provides study material in the form of guide books and sample papers for the students to follow. The organization is involved in the preparing process and provides a list of ACCA approved Learning Partners to ensure you come out with flying colours in the exam. The ICSI Associations provides the study material for the course to every candidate at the time of the registration. The institution also provides the option of Oral Coaching Classes to benefit the students.
You need to give 14 papers which are divided in the following format. 9 papers of the Fundamental Level and 5 papers of the Professional Level.  The question papers are divided into three patterns of questions, objective type, longer type and case studies. A candidate requires to successfully clear 18 papers divided into three programs to attain the CS designation. The Foundation Program has four papers and the Executive Program has six, while the Professional Program comprises of ten papers. In addition to this a student is required to undergo 15 months of training after passing the executive or professional program.

Why Pursue ACCA?

ACCA certificate holders are recognized all around the world. ACCA exams can be attempted twice in a year with 400+ locations to choose from around the world making it easy for a candidate to give the exam from a nearby location. An ACCA holder is not required to be practically trained under experience accountants and is ready to start his career after the completion of his course. Thus he does not lose out time on internships and jumps the practical grinding from the very beginning.

ACCA registration is a much simpler process and is more cost effective. ACCA prepares you for both financial and management roles, making it easier for you to choose careers in different sectors and industries. ACCA’s qualification is recognized by employers and students who have passed out ACCA are known for their quality and excellence, making it easy for employers to rely on their ability and knowledge while hiring them.

Why pursue CS?

CS is a great option for students who have already graduated or are pursuing law. Most often a simultaneous attempt to clear both is seen as it enhances a great deal of value for a candidate in the corporate market. A CS does not require crunching too many numbers as the course is more theoretical and therefore suits students from varied courses. A CS can be basically termed as the chief compliance of a company and hence this designation is associated with prestige and a great deal of job satisfaction. The opportunity to shine in the future is immense due to the prospects it offers as well as demand for such trained people in the market.

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