Accountants courses

AAT examines and updates its courses regularly to ensure that they meet the needs of businesses and the industry. The projected revisions to the AAT Qualifications in the accounting syllabus are as follows: AAT will introduce updated bookkeeping and accounting certifications in February 2022.

The AAT qualification syllabus in accounting

Assuring that trainees are well-prepared for influential positions in the ever-changing corporate world. The new certificate, Qualifications2022, does an excellent job of balancing the AAT’s strong technical foundation, which employers respect, with improved business understanding and commercial focus. It will also provide superior preparation for those interested in pursuing higher education or level 7 apprenticeship programmes. Employers may, however, have to recognise that some students will benefit from starting at a lower level than AQ2016 allows. As a reason, they may have to wait longer to receive their AAT qualification.

The independent learning that young people have experienced in 2020 and 2021 is likely to compound this. Due to less part-time employment, they have less experience taking and preparing for tests and less exposure and chance to learn about business processes.

Dates to remember:

The deadline for AQ2016 registration is August 31, 2022.

September 1 2022 – From this moment forward, all registrations will be for Qualifications2022 only.

The deadline for AQ2016 assessments is September 30, 2023.

What are the new changes?

The following are the major distinctions between AQ2016 and Qualifications2022:

The substance of the curriculum is no longer repeated across levels.

Material has been updated to match current accounting situations and duties better.

There are fewer tests at all levels as part of the qualification.

The only synoptic assessment part of the qualification is at level 2 (apprentices must take an additional synoptic test as part of their EPAs at levels 3 and 4).

These are must remove papers:

  1. Level 2 – Accounting Software Level 3
  2. Level 4 – Synoptic Evaluation

The following subject papers have been added to the mix:

  1. The Business Environment (Level 2)
  2. Business Awareness (Level 3)

Some papers have been combined:

  1. Final Accounting combines Level 3 – Advanced Bookkeeping and Final Accounts Preparation.
  2. Advanced Management Accounting combines Level 4 – Budgeting and Decision & Control.

All levels include four new ‘themes’: technology, communication, ethics, and sustainability.

In the case of apprenticeships, the entire AAT qualification will be completed ‘on-the-job’ (before gateway)

EPA – Levels 3 and 4 will be exempt from the qualification.

A new in-tray job is the Level 2 synoptic. For Levels 3 and 4, the existing synoptic will be used again.

L2 and L3 guided learning hours rose, whereas L4 recommended learning hours decreased.


The newly authorised level 2 apprenticeship standard will begin to become a more desirable AAT certificate for both students and companies. Many students take significantly longer to finish the standard AAT certificate.

Employers will choose a Level 2 apprenticeship to support AAT training under Quals22 due to the greater financial assistance and enhanced communication skills for apprentices.

Changes in Membership

It, however, will change on February 1, 2022. People now pay an annual membership fee to remain an AAT student and access AAT’s assistance, resources, and assessments. A one-time registration fee is charged when you register for a new qualification. This grants you access to the capability for the duration of its validity, which is typically four to five years.

What are the consequences of these modifications?

Points of Entry:

It will reduce the redundancy of material taught at more than one level to aid in obvious competency advancement. As students grow, they will build on their previous knowledge. On the other hand, fast-tracked students will find it more difficult since they may lack fundamental learning and abilities in areas that have been presented at a lower level.

As a result, fast track options will need to be carefully reviewed, as will the student’s previous academic record. If a student is fast-tracked, their previous experience and whether or not they are a high achiever will become more vital in ensuring they do not suffer.

As a result of fewer part-time work options and diminished in-person class engagement, these students will have had disconnected learning, less test experience, and inferior interpersonal skills. As a result, a student without accounting experience will likely take longer to earn their AAT certificate. These students will very certainly require additional assistance and attention, and they may be best served by beginning AAT at Level 2.

New themes:

Technology, communication, sustainability, and ethics will now be the four major topics that will carry across all AAT levels. As they advance through the qualification, students will build on their prior knowledge. Level 2 introduces a concept, Level 3 expands on it, and Level 4 puts it into practice. Students will find it simpler to go to higher levels if they have a deeper knowledge of key procedures.

These themes and the Qualifications2022 curriculum as a whole will better represent contemporary industrial situations and real-world accounting responsibilities. Additionally, it is extremely beneficial for students who are transitioning to higher levels of education. The level 2 AAT Using Accounting Software and the Level 3 synoptic exam have been removed from the syllabus. It is because accounting software and technology are becoming tailored to the needs of particular businesses. Students will, however, still need to know how to use digital and computer systems.

Students who enrol in the AAT qualification before February 1, 2022, and who cannot complete Level 4 by February 28, 2023, will be required to move from AQ2016 to Qualifications2022. Depending on where they are in their studies, some students may need extra help to fill up knowledge gaps between certifications. Future Connect will guide the best time to transfer and provide customised tools to fill in any knowledge gaps.

What is the importance of AAT qualification?

Many companies are currently recruiting for their next intake of AAT students from high schools and colleges. Candidates who begin their AAT studies at the end of 2021 will be required to take Qualifications 2022 tests at some time throughout their studies. It is because, under AQ2016, there will not be enough time to complete the whole qualifying. Beginning in 2021, students will have enough time to finish their first level of AQ2016, but likely not their entire AAT certification.

Under the present syllabus, students studying AQ2016 will have until September 30, 2023, to obtain their AAT qualification. Anyone who has not completed the AAT qualification by this date will be required to complete the remaining courses on the Qualifications 2022 curriculum. If they don’t plan the transition well, they may have to conduct more research to cover the knowledge gap.


It is something companies should think about in their current hiring process. Students recruited midway through 2022, particularly fast-tracked ones, risk not having assumed knowledge when they go to higher levels. Similarly, kids being recruited now are likely to have experienced COVID’s negative effects on their education. As a result, they may require a more gradual introduction to the job. As a result, they will probably take longer to finish their AAT certifications.

Employers must examine the individual candidate’s academic achievements more than ever before when determining whether to start them on AAT Level 2 or Level 3. Students from the ‘COVID generation’ may need to be accommodated more in the recruiting process. Providing additional assistance at the start and anticipating later qualifying deadlines.

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