Are you highly organised and good with numbers, but not keen on geometry and trigonometry?
If the thought of studying A level Maths gives you a headache, you might be wondering whether accounting is a possibility for you.
So, do you need A Level Maths to be an accountant? You might be pleased to hear that you don’t need to be an aspiring mathematician, or even have any A Levels at all, to become a qualified accountant.
No complex maths involved
The truth is, while accounting relies on arithmetic, complex mathematics rarely comes into it. When dealing with numerical data as an accountant, you will be adding and subtracting and, even then, you’ll be using a calculator.
The reason many accountants are also good at maths is that the two subjects share a lot of similarities. Both have a heavy focus on logical thinking and problem solving. However, you can learn the knowledge and skills needed to be a great accountant without ever studying straight Maths past high school.
Many people imagine that accountants spend most of their time working out difficult equations. In fact, what’s more important than a knowledge of maths is an understanding of the underlying principles of accounting. Accountants work within a broader framework of legal and commercial considerations, using numbers not just to gain objective answers, but to make financial recommendations.
What does it take to become an accountant?
Watch the webinar with AAT qualified accounting tutor Patricia Barlow
No A levels needed
Not only do you not have to be a maths whiz to be an accountant, but you don’t need any A Levels at all. Whether they’re looking to train after finishing school, or make a career change, many people without A levels begin the path to professional accounting with the Association of Accounting Technicians (AAT). Starting at the first level gives you a grounding in the basics, from double entry to computerised accounting. You can study either through a part-time course (with a distance learning option), or through an apprenticeship, where you’ll gain experience and a wage alongside the qualification.
If you’re looking to go into management accounting, you can also begin the Chartered Institute of Management Accounting (CIMA) qualification with no A levels. The Certificate level requires no previous qualifications, and gives you an understanding of basic methods and principle.