Find out how the ACCA qualification works, including exams, modules and entry routes.


Professional Ethics module

Practical experience requirement


The ACCA exams are divided into two levels; Fundamentals and Professional.

The Fundamentals level is divided into two modules Knowledge and Skills.

The Knowledge module introduces you to the main areas of financial and management accounting. You will study the other technical accountancy areas after you study this. There are six subjects in the Skills module which cover the main technical areas that accountants are expected to know.


The Professional level is divided into two modules; Essentials and Options. Both of the modules at Professional level have been set at the same ability level as a Masters degree.

This level builds on the technical knowledge you will already have. It will also explore more advanced professional skills, techniques and values. These are required at a senior level by accountants working in an advisory or consultancy role.

All students have to pass the three papers in the Essentials module. The Options module contains four papers, but you only need to complete two.

Professional Ethics module

Professional ethics is at the heart of the ACCA Qualification.

Professional ethics is covered in 11 of the 16 exam papers. This includes all papers at Professional level and three of the Essential performance objectives. 

The Professional Ethics module underpins both your studies and your practical experience. The aim of the module is to introduce you to a range of ethical ideas.

You get access to the module  as soon as you complete the Knowledge module (F1-F3) of the Fundamentals level.  While you have the flexibility to complete the ethics module in your own time you should note that ethics is now one of your requirements of membership and it is therefore recommended that you take the Professional Ethics module at the same time as, or before, the P1, Governance, Risk and Ethics exam. The Professional Ethics module must also be completed for you to receive the Advanced Diploma in Accounting and Business award from ACCA on completion of the Fundamentals exams and before you submit your RAP to Oxford Brookes University if you wish to take the B.SC (Hons) degree in Applied Accounting.

Practical experience requirement

As part of your journey to become a qualified ACCA member, you will need to demonstrate relevant skills and experience within a real work environment. This is what the Practical Experience Requirement (PER) is all about. PER is to be completed in addition to your ACCA exams and the Professional Ethics Module.

For more information, visit our practical experience page.

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