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PwC UK, ICAEW launch accountancy training scheme

PwC UK, the Institute of Chartered Accountants for England and Wales (ICAEW) and Reading University have joined forces to create an accountancy degree programme.

Henley Business School at the University of Reading is offering the four-year accountancy degree programme which includes courses in marketing, law, governance and ethics. In a similar way to PwC’s traditional graduate intake, students will study towards the ACA, the ICAEW professional qualification, while attaining a degree.

But the qualification will differ from the traditional six-year route so students qualify five years after starting the degree, a year after joining the firm.

Students will work within PwC’s assurance team on client projects over three paid, work placements in the last years three years of the programme. Tuition fees in these years will be set at 80% of the University’s standard undergraduate fee.

PwC UK said students can expect to earn at least £20,000 over the course of work placements and successful graduates will be offered a higher starting salary than other graduates, joining the firm of up to £35,000 plus benefits.

"We see no shortage of talented students who want to perform at this level, and we expect strong competition when recruitment opens in September 2011,” PwC Chairman and Senior Partner Ian Powell, said.

The ICAEW said it is working hard to reach out to as wide and diverse a range of students as possible.

"This programme will provide a compelling alternative to pursuing a traditional university route to qualification. This new programme will help ensure the profession of chartered accountancy remains accessible to all," ICAEW, Chief Executive Michael Izza said.

In January KPMG UK announced a six year education and work programme. Its programme for A-level students includes paid tuition fees for a business degree at Durham University, an accountancy qualification and a starting annual salary of £20,000.

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