General Exam FAQs

20 Apr 2021

You can find a list of FAQs on the exams below. You can also type in any question you may have into our chatbot, TaxBot, which can provide you with a comprehensive amount of information. 

The exam is modular but can I sit all the exams together? 
Yes. The exam structure is modular, although this does not preclude you from taking the requisite exams at one sitting should you wish to do so.

What are the exams? 
There are two written Advanced Technical exams, one written Awareness exam and one written Application and Professional Skills exam. In addition to this there are three one-hour Computer Based Exam (CBEs) on Principles of Accounting, Professional Responsibilities & Ethics and Law. These three CBEs can be sat separately. Full details can be found here

What is the pass mark? 

  • CBEs: You will be allocated up to 50 questions. To pass the CBEs at least 60% of the responses to the questions must be correct.  
  • Awareness and Advanced Technical: The pass mark for the Awareness and Advanced Technical tax exams is 50% of the total marks (there is also a requirement for a minimum mark to be achieved in each module of Awareness).  
  • Application and Professional Skills: To pass the Application and Professional Skills paper you are required to demonstrate competence in each of three skills. 

How do I choose what options to sit for each paper? 
You must choose two Advanced Technical exams from a choice of seven. The Awareness paper is comprised of three modules and you cannot take them on the same subject as the corresponding Advanced Technical exams. You choose one one Application and Professional Skills question from a choice of five.  

Is there a date by which the three CBEs must be passed? 
The normal rule is that all three CBEs must be passed before the exam closing date for your final written tax paper(s). For the May session this is the last day of February and for the November session this is the last day of August. This would not include the late entry period for either session. 

How long is a pass valid for?
Passes are subject to the seven sitting rule if they are for tax exams or the nine sitting rule if they are for the CBEs. 

How long does it take to complete the CTA? 
Most typical CTA students complete the exams in two years. One important point to note is regardless of how quickly students may complete the exams, the CTA qualification is not awarded until they have three years of relevant professional experience, and have applied to become a member of the Chartered Institute of Taxation.