CA Sri Lanka launches Curriculum 2020 to mould revolutionary Chartered Accountants

To counter the changing dynamics of the corporate world, and increasing challenges with the onset of digital disruption, big data, automation and robotics, the Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka (CA Sri Lanka), launched its new curriculum on Thursday, 25th July 2019, as the Institute celebrated its diamond jubilee.

The Curriculum 2020 will mould revolutionary Chartered Accountants by instilling strong business intelligence, IT and leadership skills to help revive corporate Sri Lanka. The new curriculum was unveiled to a houseful audience of business leaders and c-suite executives including Mr Rajendra Theagarajah, Managing Director/CEO of Cargills Bank and former Chairman of the Ceylon Chamber of Commerce who was the Chief Guest at the event at Hilton Colombo.

Delivering the welcome speech, Mr Jagath Perera declared that the new curriculum was developed not only to fulfil national demands but also to benchmark with global standards. “The Curriculum 2020 outlines how CA Sri Lanka plans to equip young Sri Lankan accountants with skills which are required for the 21st century,” he said. Mr Perera said plans were also afoot to make every new member of the Institute a graduate by offering the CA Sri Lanka BSc. Applied Accounting Degree.

The first copy of the Curriculum 2020 was presented to Mr Theagarajah by Chairman of the Curriculum Task Force Mr Chaaminda Kumarasiri in the presence of CA Sri Lanka President Mr Jagath Perera.

Mr Theagarajah said the new curriculum was extremely timely in a national economic and business perspective. “What we saw here is an important piece of development and as someone coming from the industry, I am delighted to see the elements of business factored into the new curriculum which I believe will develop a new breed of Chartered Accountants for the future,” he added.

An important feature of the new curriculum is its increasing emphasis on digital technology as well as the introduction of computer-based assessments and the availability of an e-learning platform for students. Another key highlight of the new curriculum which will come into effect next year is that it incorporates speechcraft, business writing, entrepreneurial and business acumen skills for the benefit of students following the Chartered Accounting program.  

Mr Kumarasiri said that the new curriculum offers three exit routes, the Certified Business Accountant (CBA), Certified Corporate Accountant (CCA), and the Associate Chartered Accountant (ACA). “What we aspire to achieve here is to ensure that students who exit any of the three levels are qualified all-rounders and not half-baked products. A student who completes the CBA qualification can engage as an accountant in the SME sector, while a CCA can serve as an accountant in a large organization. An ACA will not only be CFO compatible in a larger organization but also an all-rounder, who will spearhead the success of the organization as a true business leader” he added.

Mr Kumarasiri noted that with the new curriculum the Institute aims to regain the status quo of the Chartered Accountant by going beyond a traditional number cruncher, to a future-ready, trusted business partner. “Our primary aim was to develop a curriculum which provides a competitive advantage to the student, making them different from the rest,” he said.

The curriculum is structured around three pillars; Professional Experience, Professional Knowledge and Professional Skills and are offered at Business Level I & II, as well as Corporate Level and Strategic Level. Curriculum 2020 has been developed to meet the increasing demands of both employers as well as present and future market requirements.

For the first time, the new curriculum also offers specialization in Actuarial Science, Data Analytics, Finance, Taxation, Governance Risks & Controls and Entrepreneurship. The new CA Sri Lanka curriculum also meets International Education Standards (IESs) set by the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), the global accountancy body.    The ultimate goal of the new curriculum is to ensure that future Chartered Accountants go beyond their traditional functions in finance and has the business and strategic skills to swerve their way successfully in the business world by converting challenges into opportunities and thereby help revive the corporate world.