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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED QUALIFICATION: 

Postgraduate Diploma in Accounting 
SAQA QUAL ID QUALIFICATION TITLE
90906  Postgraduate Diploma in Accounting 
ORIGINATOR
Nelson Mandela University 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY NQF SUB-FRAMEWORK
CHE - Council on Higher Education  HEQSF - Higher Education Qualifications Sub-framework 
QUALIFICATION TYPE FIELD SUBFIELD
Postgraduate Diploma  Field 03 - Business, Commerce and Management Studies  Finance, Economics and Accounting 
ABET BAND MINIMUM CREDITS PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL QUAL CLASS
Undefined  120  Not Applicable  NQF Level 08  Regular-Provider-ELOAC 
REGISTRATION STATUS SAQA DECISION NUMBER REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE
Reregistered  SAQA 06120/18  2018-07-01  2021-06-30 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2022-06-30   2025-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This qualification does not replace any other qualification and is not replaced by any other qualification. 

PURPOSE AND RATIONALE OF THE QUALIFICATION 
Purpose:
This qualification aims to equip graduates with the essential knowledge and specific skills for a career in accountancy, finance, management and taxation and for further learning in these fields.

The qualification has a two-fold purpose, viz., to:
  • Develop the knowledge, skills and values of the Accountancy graduate in the more advanced aspects of the field of accounting and its related sub-disciplines to improve the graduate's career opportunities at a managerial level.
  • Prepare graduates to sit the professional stage papers of the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), the global body for professional accountants.

    The qualification thus prepares successful graduates for a managerial role in accountancy in corporations.

    Rationale:
    Currently there is no post graduate learning pathway for accountancy learners other than the focused Postgraduate Diploma: Internal Auditing for Bachelor of Commerce general accounting learners. The introduction of this qualification will widen the existing post graduate pathway to accommodate many more learners in this field of study.

    In 2009, South African Institute for Chartered Accountants (SAICA) estimated that 22 000 additional accountants are required in the national financial management and auditing sector. It was further stated that there is a particular need for qualified accountants at a level below that of the Chartered Accountant (SA), but above that of a Bachelor of Commerce: Accounting Degree. This Postgraduate Diploma: Accountancy will increase the employment opportunities of Bachelor of Commerce (BCom): General Accounting, Bachelor of Commerce: Accounting for Chartered Accountants and Bachelor of Technology graduates because they will all have the opportunity to acquire knowledge and skills beyond that of the undergraduate qualifications.

    This qualification will thus satisfy the national demand of both public and private accounting sectors for graduates with management level knowledge and accounting skills. 

  • LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
    Learners who register for this qualification are assumed to have:
  • Knowledge of financial accounting principles including International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS).
  • Knowledge of the auditing process, International Standards on Auditing and codes of professional conduct of one or more professional bodies such as SAICA.
  • Knowledge of the various laws applicable to taxation in South Africa.
  • Knowledge of management accounting and financial management principles.
  • Ability to manage own time, do self-study and complete written assignments within the required allocated times.
  • Ability to communicate in English (read, write and speak) and critically analyse, interpret or assimilate information.

    Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):
    A relevant Bachelor's Degree or Advanced Diploma would be the usual route to admission for this post graduate qualification. However, in particular cases, learners without such qualifications, but with proven expertise and competency, will be allowed to apply for provisional status for acceptance into the qualification, in line with the institutional Recognition of Prior Learning policies.

    In addition, applicants may apply for exemption from certain modules on grounds of prior relevant study completed.

    In all cases, approval by institutional faculty structures applies.

    Access to the Qualification:
    Access to the Postgraduate Diploma: Accountancy is granted to all applicants who are in possession of one of the following qualifications:
  • Bachelor of Commerce: Accounting.
  • Bachelor of Commerce: General Accounting.
  • A foreign qualification that is equivalent to one of the above qualifications, as determined by SAQA. 

  • RECOGNISE PREVIOUS LEARNING? 

    QUALIFICATION RULES 
    This qualification consists of compulsory modules, all at NQF Level 8 and each worth 30 Credits.

    Modules:
  • Corporate Reporting 1.
  • Professional Taxation 1.
  • Audit Assurance and Governance 1.
  • Strategic Management Accounting and Finance 1. 

  • EXIT LEVEL OUTCOMES 
    1. Demonstrate a solid knowledge base in the core disciplines of accountancy, namely, financial accounting, management accounting, taxation and auditing.
    2. Work effectively, using optimum available resources, as part of a professional accounting team.
    3. Apply the ethical values expected of a professional accountant.

    Critical Cross-Field Outcomes:
    All the Critical Cross-Field Outcomes are addressed in the qualification. 

    ASSOCIATED ASSESSMENT CRITERIA 
    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 1:
  • Assess the strategic position, make strategic management accounting decisions and take appropriate action by implementing and coordinating relevant knowledge systems and information technology with due consideration of managerial, financial and other constraints.
  • Evaluate the performance and assess the development of an organisation, based on the strategic choices available to it.
  • Advise clients and senior management on the performance of their business by drawing attention to ways of improving organisational performance and highlighting areas of corporate vulnerability.
  • Identify, access and manage risks facing businesses, using appropriate techniques.
  • Plan, perform, evaluate and interpret the sections of the South African Companies Act and King III Code of Governance Principles relevant to professional accountants and apply this understanding to the specific set of circumstances.
  • Conclude an audit, assurance and related service engagements performed in accordance with the requirements of the International Auditing and Assurance Standards Board.
  • Compute the income tax liability for individuals and companies in relation to advanced aspects of the South African Taxation legislation.
  • Identify and solve complex problems in a critical and creative way by demonstrating advanced understanding of the relevant accounting concepts and techniques and by applying appropriate accounting methods.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 2:
  • Organise, coordinate and utilise resources and identify and manage opportunities productively and responsibly.
  • Establish sound interpersonal relationships with other role players and work effectively in a team.
  • Organise and manage the accounting activity effectively in respect of behavioural aspects such as group dynamics, team building, leadership and time-management skills.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit Level Outcome 3:
  • Identify and critically reflect on the suitability of different ethical value systems in various contexts encountered by the professional accountant.
  • Respond appropriately to ethical challenges that may be encountered by the professional accountant.
  • Apply and integrate the requirements of the various accountancy pronouncements, codes and applicable legislation in the execution of accountancy engagements.
  • Effectively communicate the outcomes and findings of engagements undertaken in the accountancy field.
  • Apply, in a self-critical manner, strategies which effectively address professional ongoing learning needs.

    Integrated Assessment:
    Regular assessments of holistic skills of learners will be performed. The essence of the assessment approach will be that of formative and summative assessments, which will incorporate written assignments, presentations, class tests and formal examinations. Written assignments are directly linked to theory and will incorporate the theory and skills related to the Exit Level Outcomes. 

  • INTERNATIONAL COMPARABILITY 
    This Postgraduate Diploma: Accountancy may be successfully compared with those from the following international institutions and which are also linked to the ACCA's professional designations.
    The Chinese University Of Hong Kong (Business Faculty) offers a Postgraduate Diploma in Professional Accountancy for non-accounting graduates and executives with a foundation in accounting theory and practices, and prepares them to become professional accountants.
    Modules include:
  • Cost and Management Accounting.
  • Business and Company Law.
  • Financial Accounting and External Reporting.
  • Financial Management for Professional Accountants.
  • Auditing and Professional Practice.
  • Taxation and Tax Planning.

    Massey University, New Zealand offers a Postgraduate Diploma in Accountancy. The qualification comprises any four modules of 30 Credits each, which may be selected from a given list of ten, viz.:
  • Contemporary Issues in Financial Accounting.
  • Advanced Accounting Theory.
  • Social and Environmental Accounting.
  • Research Methods in Accounting.
  • International Accounting.
  • Contemporary Issues in Management Accounting.
  • Contemporary Issues in Auditing.
  • Contemporary Issues in Taxation.
  • Contemporary Issues in Taxation Policy.
  • International Issues in Taxation.

    The learning content of the Postgraduate Diploma: Accountancy is necessarily geared towards South African legislative requirements. Nevertheless, it can be seen that there is sufficient intrinsic similarity to successfully compare it with the above named international qualifications. 

  • ARTICULATION OPTIONS 
    This qualification articulates horizontally with any Bachelor of Commerce Degree at NQF Level 8.


    This qualification articulates vertically with any Master's Degree in Commerce, at NQF Level 9. 

    MODERATION OPTIONS 
    All final assessment instruments are presented to the external moderator for approval and verification. A percentage of all assessment evidences is presented for moderation and feedback and adjustments as required, supervised by the respective qualification coordinator. Feedback from internal and external moderators informs teaching and learning interactions. 

    CRITERIA FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ASSESSORS 
  • Both internal and external assessors must be in possession of a relevant Postgraduate qualification at NQF Level 9 or above.
  • All assessors must have relevant expertise in the practice of accounting and be accredited as educators by the institution. 

  • NOTES 
    N/A 

    LEARNING PROGRAMMES RECORDED AGAINST THIS QUALIFICATION: 
     
    NONE 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS QUALIFICATION: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    1. Nelson Mandela University 



    All qualifications and part qualifications submitted for public comment, or registered on the National Qualifications Framework, are public property. Thus, the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction: it is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.