frequently asked questions
2. Overview of responsibilities for CA qualifying experience
CA Training Office Responsibilities are defined in CA Practical Experience Requirements (PER), Section 2.4.
Supervision requirements are defined in Section 4.
Reporting requirements are defined in Section 5.
The primary purpose of the CA Practical Experience Requirements is to ensure that all CA students are employed in an appropriate working environment that offers sufficient quality and quantity of experience opportunities, with the required supervision to develop the competencies expected of the newly qualified CA, and that CA students have developed these competencies before admission to membership as Chartered Accountants.
The practical experience component of CA qualification is a partnership between approved CA Training Offices and the profession. CA students also have specific responsibilities to be admitted to membership in a Provincial Institute/Ordre. The following diagram provides an overview of these responsibilities.
The CA student’s responsibility to the profession with regard to practical experience is the maintenance of his/her Record of CA Qualifying Experience. This is a tool provided to every CA student in which he/she is required to track and self assess his/her CA competency development. On completion of his/her term of qualifying experience (or when changing employers prior to completing the experience requirements), the CA student is required to sign-off on the completion (or their progress towards completion) of the profession’s practical experience requirements (See Section 11: The Record of CA Qualifying Experience). The CA student is required to maintain an up-to-date copy of his/her RQE throughout his/her period of employment, and a copy of the completed RQE for a minimum of one year after certification.
Q: What are the reporting requirements for a CA Training Office?
CA Training Offices must provide their Provincial Institute/Ordre/Region with all required information on their CA Training Program and on their CA students. Further, all CA Training Offices must ensure that their Provincial Institute/Ordre has access to any records/information deemed necessary to ensure its continued recognition as a CA Training Office (See Section 10: Reporting to the profession).
Required information will generally cover:
- HR and Training Policies supporting CA training (such as learning policies, code of conduct, etc.);
- Evidence that CA students are provided with sufficient opportunity to develop the required CA competencies (variety of clients and assignments, and increasing responsibility and progression);
- Evidence that all CA students are appropriately supervised and counselled; and
- Evidence of semi-annual meetings between CA students and Counselling Members.
For each CA Student employed by a CA Training Office, the Training Principal will also be required to sign a report for the profession attesting to the CA student’s period of employment in the CA Training Office’s CA Training Program.
Q: What are the specific responsibilities of CA Training Offices for providing practical experience for CA students seeking to practise public accounting?
Qualifying experience for public accounting can be offered only by CA firms (including offices of the federal and provincial Auditors General and the Auditor General in Bermuda.) CA students seeking to practise public accounting must meet the profession’s competency requirements in a carefully prescribed manner (see Section 6: Practical experience requirements for the practice of public accounting), while meeting the specific chargeable-hour requirements for public practice. The chargeable-hour requirements for qualifying experience to practise public accounting remain unchanged: the ability to provide CA students with at least 2,500 chargeable hours, with specific minimum chargeable hours in Assurance Services, Audit Engagements and Taxation Services. For specific details on chargeable-hour requirements, contact or visit the website of your Provincial Institute/Ordre.
Q: What are the main responsibilities and commitments of a CA Training Office?
In general CA Training Offices are responsible for:
- Providing an appropriate working environment that prepares CA students to become CAs;
- Providing a CA Training Program that offers a diverse range of progressive practical experience opportunities for CA students to learn, demonstrate and develop their competencies;
- Meeting the specific hour requirements for CA students seeking to practise public accounting (where applicable);
- Ensuring CA students document their competency development using the profession-supplied Record of CA Qualifying Experience;
- Providing appropriate supervision;
- Providing training or ensuring provision of training;
- Ensuring each CA student meets with his/her Counselling Member at least semi-annually; and
- Maintaining approval as a CA Training Office with its Provincial Institute/Ordre.
Q: Are organizations approved on a national basis, or must each office be separately approved?
The CA profession is regulated provincially, which means that approval is required in each province in which the CA Training Office wishes to train CA students. To facilitate the process for organizations wanting to train CA students in more than one province, the profession reviews their submissions on a Canada-wide basis, generally ensuring approval decisions in all applicable provinces at the same time. Your regional CA Training Office Liaison can facilitate this multi-jurisdiction approval process on your behalf.
Q: How are CA Training Offices approved?
CA Training Offices are approved based on the commitment and ability of the applicant to provide CA students with a sufficient quality and quantity of experience opportunities to meet the profession’s practical experience requirements. CA firms and organizations in the corporate and government sectors interested in becoming CA Training Offices should contact their regional CA Training Office Liaison. Regional CA Training Office Liaisons will work with interested organizations to develop an application.