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Search or Quote Course Code: 78110

Higher Level Apprenticeship in Accounting

This course is aimed at individuals who wish to pursue a career in accountancy. The Apprenticeship is dependent upon the candidate securing full-time employment with an organisation and attending training on one full day per week in College.

Available Sessions

We have 1 session available for this course running in Lisburn

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Title Campus Type Week Starting Places Available Fee
Higher Level Apprenticeship in Accounting
More Info
Part-Time 10/09/2018
Day: Tuesday
Time: 09:00-18:00
20+ Apply Now

During your study, you may need financial support and SERC is here to help. Find out more information on student fees and financial support in the Student Finance section.

Course Overview

This is a work-based programme which enables you to earn while you learn and gain a nationally recognised professional qualification.  The apprentice will be employed in an accountancy practice for two years and mentoring will be provided throughout the employment period. The Higher Level Apprenticeship in Accountancy provides an alternative entrance route to starting a career in the accountancy and finance profession.

Students will be employed for four days per week and will attend college one day per week.  Weekly contact hours will be scheduled to 8 hours per week, consisting of mainly lectures and other practical class activities in preparation for their end of year exams.  Students are expected to undertake at least 8 hours independent study per week which will increase closer to the exam period.

All staff teaching on the programme hold graduate, post graduate and professional qualifications as well as significant industry experience.

Modules may include:


Mandatory modules include:

  • Financial Accounting
  • Taxation
  • Business Management
  • Law and Ethics
  • Advanced Financial Accounting
  • Advanced Taxation
  • Management Accounting
  • Integrated Accounting Systems
Entry Requirements

Candidates must be at least 18 years on or before 1st July 2017 and meet the following minimum entry criteria set by the awarding body, Accounting Technicians Ireland. 

  • One A Level or two AS Levels and Grade C at GCSE level in English and Mathematics or Accountancy.

It is at the employers’ discretion to enhance the entry criteria for selection. Based on advice from the Sector Partnership in Accountancy the enhanced criteria is English Language (minimum GCSE Grade B) and Mathematics (minimum GCSE Grade B).  Applicants should also have obtained a minimum of 96 UCAS points achieved through the completion of A Levels in any subject or equivalent qualification.

  • Provide evidence of ability to undertake the course through the Accreditation of Prior Experiential Learning (APEL).  APEL is a process by which you may be awarded credits for learning that you have gained in the past, and which is relevant to the course to which you have applied.  It may also help you gain entry to a programme if you do not have the required entry qualifications.  This may be certificated or experiential learning.

All applicants will be required to attend an interview.

Where will it take me?

Apprentices will be enrolled as students and subsequently full members of Accounting Technicians Ireland during their learning journey.  Apprentices who complete the Level 5 Apprenticeship successfully may be eligible to progress to the Level 7 programme (Chartered Accountants Ireland).

This programme may provide opportunities for an international placement with a financial institution.

How will it make me more employable?

Special Features


  • You will gain lots of valuable knowledge, practical skills and work experience as well as an internationally recognised qualification – just the combination that can help increase your future employability, boost your CV, help you progress into management roles and open new career opportunities for you.  This programme will provide you with an immediate 2-year employment contract working with a leading NI accountancy practitioner as well as attending college on a weekly basis.

A Recognised Qualification

  • You will gain an internationally recognised qualification - Diploma of Accounting Technicians from Accounting Technicians Ireland (ATI) which is a Level 5 qualification and is equivalent to a Foundation Degree programme.

A Stepping Stone to Chartered Accountancy

  • Upon successful completion of your Higher Apprenticeship, you could continue your studies towards Chartered Status at Level 7 with Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI).

Earn While You Learn

  • You will gain valuable accountancy work experience from your employer as well as gaining a recognised professional qualification and earning a regular salary (at least the national minimum wage).


This Higher Level Apprenticeship programme will allow you to start your highly-skilled career without the student debt that your university peers will have accumulated during their degree course – providing a real alternative to university.

Getting a Higher Apprenticeship with an employer is the same as getting a job.  Following submission of your application, you will be invited to go through the employer’s recruitment process. It will be competitive and there are likely to be a number of people applying for each Higher Apprenticeship vacancy, so you will need to sell yourself and convince the employer that you are the right person for the role.  Apprentices may be recent school leavers who have undertaken A Levels or other suitable Level 3 qualifications or be currently employed in an organisation with a suitable accounts department who will be changing roles to take on the HLA in Accountancy or anyone who has a keen interest in developing a career in Accountancy.

As an apprentice

  • You will commit your time and effort to gaining the required skills and putting these into practice in the workplace.
  • You will also be required to complete formal study one day per week at South Eastern Regional College for the ATI Diploma as well as informal work-based training (e.g. attending meetings).
  • You will also be expected to play an active role in the mentoring programme determined by your employer.
  • Your employer will commit to employing you for 2 years, pay you at least the national minimum wage, carry out regular reviews of your progress and provide career development support.
How will I be assessed and given feedback?

Assessment will be through Accounting Technicians Ireland (ATI) external examinations.

Additional Costs
There are no additional costs associated with this programme.

Accredited by Accounting Technicians Ireland (ATI).

Terms & Conditions

Students will be required to comply with SERC's Terms & Conditions of study.

While we endeavour to run all our courses on the advertised day, SERC reserves the right to change the day of week on which the course runs.

In addition to the above Terms & Conditions students must also adhere to the following:

Students are required to:

  • Comply with college Policies and procedures.
  • Submit all coursework and assessments by specified dates, coursework submitted without consent after the deadline shall not normally be accepted.
  • Pass three out of four modules which includes Taxation, Financial Accounting and one other before progressing to Level 5 Diploma.

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Please note all courses are subject to funding and demand.
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