Members shun ICAEW flagship diploma.

The ICAEW has been forced into a rethink of its advanced diploma after admitting that no members are due to be awarded the qualification this year.

Launched in a blaze of publicity in May 1999, the diploma was designed to complement the new ACA qualification unveiled last year and help the institute compete with competitors such as the MBA.

But despite an initial wave of interest, the institute has discovered that the diploma does not meet with members’ demands for continuing development.

It was intended to be awarded to members with five or more years of high-level experience who had demonstrated ‘outstanding ability within the taxation, corporate finance or IT sectors’. It involved no exams and was based on a three-hour interview with fellow experts.

Last year only seven members of the institute were awarded diplomas, compared with 16 in 1999.

Jonathan Jones, post qualification manager at the ICAEW, said: ‘We will keep the diploma for those who want it but will develop new types of awards as many members want a development award. The issue is that many wanted tuition, not assessment.’

A new scheme is set to be unveiled within twelve months.

The revelation followed the institute’s earlier withdrawal from the global ‘Cognitor’ plan, which was being driven by the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants as a rival to the MBA.

The ICAEW has been looking at ways of ensuring the future relevance of its qualifications to the business world and has suffered training defections to Scottish rival ICAS.

The institute’s website is at

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