Advancing Accountancy Education

Welcome to the IFAC Accountancy Education E-Tool. To learn more about IFAC's approach to accountancy education at the global level, check out this video. To learn how to use this e-tool, check out this video. For a regular update on our activities, sign up for the Accountancy Education eNews.

In the Spotlight

Revisions to IES 2, 3, 4 and 8 are now effective

As of January 1, 2021, the revisions to International Education Standards, IES 2, 3, 4, and 8 are now effective. The revisions to these standards reflect the increasing demand for accountants skilled in information and communications technologies and place further emphasis on the professional skepticism skills and behaviors. These apply to both aspiring and professional accountants.

Link to revised standards - https://www.iaesb.org/publications/revisions-ies-2-3-4-and-8-1 or check out the e-Tool below.


Is there a transformation initiative you have undertaken you would like to share?

We have all been faced with the challenge of adapting to change at one time or another. This has been particularly evident over the past year and a half, whether it be moving to online examinations, implementing new digital skills and competencies, or considering how sustainability or ESG initiatives fit into your curricula. With that in mind, we would like to spotlight how your organization has adapted to change by providing some examples of initiatives that you have been able to implement to inspire other organizations on their transformation journeys. We can utilize several different formats to accomplish this. Please send an e-mail to Education@ifac.org with your ideas and we can discuss the most efficient way to highlight your initiatives.

International Education Standards

While this e-tool provides easy access and navigation for the currently effective International Education Standards (IES), the 2019 Handbook of International Education Standards contains the authoritative set of standards, including the revisions that were effective January 1, 2021.

Download the 2019 Handbook

International Panel on Accountancy Education

The Panel is a key feature of IFAC’s approach to advancing accountancy education at the global level and instrumental in advising IFAC on how to assist professional accountancy organizations in preparing future-ready accountants.

IPAE Members

IFAC Member Organizations

IFAC member organizations serve the public interest by, among other actions and responsibilities, supporting international standards' adoption and implementation, including the IES.

Member Responsibilities

See the Status of Adoption of IES

SELF-ASSESSMENT AGAINST IES REQUIREMENTS

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Description of Levels of Proficiency

This description of levels of proficiency supports the use of learning outcomes in publications on professional accounting education such as IES 2, 3, and 4. It provides descriptions of three levels of proficiency. These descriptions, together with the learning outcomes, provide information to help IFAC member bodies design their professional accounting education programs for a variety of professional accounting roles and specializations.

Level of Proficiency Description

Foundation

Typically, learning outcomes in a competence area focus on:

  • Defining, explaining, summarizing, and interpreting the underlying principles and theories of relevant areas of technical competence to complete tasks while working under appropriate supervision;
  • Performing assigned tasks by using the appropriate professional skills;
  • Recognizing the importance of professional values, ethics, and attitudes in performing assigned tasks;
  • Solving simple problems, and referring complex tasks or problems to supervisors or those with specialized expertise; and
  • Providing information and explaining ideas in a clear manner, using oral and written communications.

Learning outcomes at the foundation level relate to work environments that are characterized by low levels of ambiguity, complexity, and uncertainty.

Intermediate

Typically, learning outcomes in a competence area focus on:

  • Independently applying, comparing, and analyzing underlying principles and theories from relevant areas of technical competence to complete work assignments and make decisions;
  • Combining technical competence and professional skills to complete work assignments;
  • Applying professional values, ethics, and attitudes to work assignments; and
  • Presenting information and explaining ideas in a clear manner, using oral and written communications, to accounting and non-accounting stakeholders.

Learning outcomes at the intermediate level relate to work environments that are characterized by moderate levels of ambiguity, complexity, and uncertainty.

Advanced

Typically, learning outcomes in a competence area focus on:

  • Selecting and integrating principles and theories from different areas of technical competence to manage and lead projects and work assignments, and to make recommendations appropriate to stakeholder needs;
  • Integrating technical competence and professional skills to manage and lead projects and work assignments;
  • Making judgments on appropriate courses of action drawing on professional values, ethics, and attitudes;
  • Assessing, researching, and resolving complex problems with limited supervision;
  • Anticipating, consulting appropriately, and developing solutions to complex problems and issues; and
  • Consistently presenting and explaining relevant information in a persuasive manner to a wide-range of stakeholders.

Learning outcomes at the advanced level relate to work environments that are characterized by high levels of ambiguity, complexity, and uncertainty.