Women surpass men in ICAEW exams for first time

EVERY top-performing student in the latest ICAEW chartered accountancy exams was a woman, for the first time in the institute’s history.

In November, over three quarters (77%) of top-scorers in ICAEW’s Advanced Level results were women. This time, 100% were female and will win prizes, the institute said.

The highest number of best-performing students came from PwC, with others coming from Deloitte, KPMG and Hagen Streiff Newton & Oshiro Accountants.

ICAEW hopes the surge of females scoring the highest exam result in the latest ACA professional level exams will encourage more women to consider chartered accountancy as a career.

The level of women entering the profession runs at about 35% of students, according to the latest figures collated by accounting watchdog the FRC.

There has also been a big push at the top end of the career path to bring more women through at boardroom level, while recruiter Egon Zehnder recently announced a female CFO drive.

This year, overall pass rates have been consistently high with 92% of candidates passing Business Strategy and 87.1% of students passing Audit and Assurance papers.

ICAEW executive director for learning and professional development Mark Protherough said: “Women are demonstrating real excellence when it comes to chartered accountancy exams. At this stage of entering the profession, it’s women who are dominating the top scores and they are role models for all women thinking about taking up chartered accountancy. Our qualification is known for creating business leaders, and I hope these scores mean we see a stream of female business leaders in the future.

“I’d like to congratulate all our students as these results were phenomenal. We had consistently high pass rates across the papers. It’s important to celebrate these results – our students are showing us and employers that we have a bright future of ICAEW chartered accountants coming through. It’s not just about passing these exams, it’s about taking that next step in their career.”

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