The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Sri Lanka, which is the sole authority in setting up Accounting and Auditing Standards in Sri Lanka, was constituted by the Act No. 23 of the Parliament in 1959. The vital aspect of this authority is that application of such Standards is mandatory for all the Specified Business Enterprises categorized under the Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards Act No. 15 of 1995 which incorporates most of the entities with larger Public Interest akin to Listed Companies, Licensed Commercial Banks, Finance and Leasing Companies, and Insurance Companies etc. It also provides professional services, membership support, sharing information and collaborates in important local and international issues. Education, training, technical support and advocacy are provided as core services for members who are regulated by a Code of Professional Conduct and Ethics prescribed by the Council. Presently, the membership strength is more than 3500 of which, approximately 750 are based overseas and they are engaged in diverse sectors across commerce and industry, academia, government, and public practice.
One of the key tasks of the ICASL is implementation of the Sri Lanka Accounting and Auditing Standards to be in par with the international trends. The relevant International Standards are being adopted after carrying out a thorough Due Review Process. The Institute works closely with national and international and stakeholders. Its global presence continues to grow in terms of representation of international bodies.
The Institute is a member of the global organization for the accountancy profession, the International Federation of Accountants (IFAC), where two ICASL members serve as committee members in two Committees. It holds the membership at the Confederation of Asian and Pacific Accountants (CAPA). ICASL is also a founder member of the South Asian Federation of Accountants (SAFA) and also bestowed with the honour of nominating the chairman of the Accounting & Auditing Standard committee of SAFA.
As the premier national accounting body, the ICASL leads the profession by delivering visionary leadership projects, setting the benchmark for the highest ethical, professional and educational standards. Building on the corporate plan, the ICASL focuses on ensuring a higher level of professional competence among the membership and those aspiring to become members while maintaining integrity among the membership, thus contributing to the national development in a significant manner.
The designation of a Chartered Accountant is a hallmark of a professional with high competence. It specifies accuracy in depth and quality of accountancy knowledge, developing life-long learning experience for members and meeting their needs in a changing world. The students face the core examinations comprising the levels of Foundation, Intermediate, Final I and Final II. These exams are conducted at four national exam centers in Kandy, Galle, Anuradhapura and Colombo.
Currently the strength of the student-base is 29500 and there has been a significant growth in registrations in the year 2008. Special scholarships are awarded for the top 10 island rankers at the GCE A/L examination in each of the 4 streams and also based on merit and income levels of the students. Exemptions are also offered for CIMA, ACCA, AAT, CMA, HNDA and degree holders of Management, Commerce and Accounting at different levels. The students also are benefitted by the consultancy and counseling services of the Institute through which they could seek guidance and assistance for the issues concerned.
The Academic Board of Studies of the Institute comprises of 7 distinguished subject specialists, holding the positions of the Heads of the Departments in the local universities. The syllabus of the Chartered Accountancy program is revised in every five years and the students are exposed to many exam oriented seminars thus supporting them to pass the exams successfully.
Practical training plays a vital role in providing the students enormous exposure throughout their period of study. The combination of structured training at-work would pave way for greater deeds in employment. While studying the Chartered Accountancy Program it is mandatory for them to work in an organization approved by the Institute and they would be mentored by a qualified Chartered Accountant at the respective organization. During this period the students will be provided with the necessary assistance and guidance in applying the concepts and theories that have been learnt to real life business situations. At present more than 800 companies are approved by the Institute for training which comprises of renowned audit firms and leading companies in the country.
Library & Information System
The library is well resourced with a vast array of books over 16000, containing latest editions on accountancy, management, investment etc. Furthermore the method of e-learning is promoted amidst our students in order to enhance their knowledge in the latest developments in the subject matters around the globe.
The library also provides the students with further facilities such as sale of publications, question papers and suggested answers. This facility has been expanded to branch libraries in Kandy, Kurunegala, Matara and Anuradhapura for the benefit of the outstation students.
Development of Language & Communication skills
In bridging the soft skills gap of its students and prospective members a new course on "Developing Communication Skills" has been introduced in the Curriculum at Final Level as a mandatory component. Fulfilling this long-felt need a state-of-the-art Multimedia English Language Center (MELC) was set up to achieve the objectives of improving of language competence and communication skills and thereby increasing language confidence and learner autonomy. MELC caters to a diverse set of students with different learning styles and levels through Computer Assisted Language Learning and professional workshops on Business English hence administering a blended approach.
Yet another valuable phenomenon in developing students' communication skills is the opportunity provided through the ICASL Toast Master Program for improving their public speaking skills. Moreover, prospective career decisions are nurtured by the regular career guidance workshops organized by the Institute.
Nurturing the society
The core element of our Mission is to be the premier national body of Accountants dedicated to serve the nation. The ICASL has contributed immensely to boost up the values and skills of the community and the future generations of the country by conducting all island seminars for GCE A/L teachers and students in the commerce stream; thereby grooming them to face the challenges in the 21st century.
Chartered Accountancy is a highly regarded qualification in today's business world. It is "the" profession that provides grand opportunities in terms of what you do and where you work.
Chartered Accountants bring their analytical expertise in the fields such as strategic planning, market analysis, compliance, change management and the use of information technology. The Institute provides its students the skills and education they need to build a great professional career through the Chartered Accountancy Program.