Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory: your complete guide

Written by: The Tax Institute

Published: 15 Feb 2023


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Tax is an unavoidable fact of life – it affects every person, company, and organisation., and everyone wants to save money on their tax bill. However, few understand the complexities of the Australian taxation system. And everyone wishes someone else would give them sound advice or do the paperwork for them. That's where tax professionals come in.

When you build a successful career in tax, you do not simply gain the necessary skills without hard work and support from other tax practitioners. The Tax Institute Higher Education can support you with the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory.


What is the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory?

The Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory puts you on the path to a specialised career in tax. This postgraduate qualification has four subjects that equip you with detailed knowledge of core tax issues, the expertise to provide professional tax advice and advanced specialist knowledge in superannuation, trusts or corporate entities.

On completion, you will gain not only the theoretical knowledge needed but practical skills and understanding that will enable you to undertake highly skilled tax work across a range of contexts.


How is it relevant to my career?

You would be interested in completing the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory if you are:

  • A professional accounting and commerce graduate requiring a specialised taxation qualification to continue in a specialist tax role
  • Already working in a tax role but require a relevant qualification to upskill in Australian tax. 
  • Already are or want to become an expert/specialist in Australian tax, such as: tax consultant, tax analyst, tax manager, tax accountant, or tax lawyer


Learning with The Tax Institute Higher Education

At The Tax Institute Higher Education, we are focused solely on tax. No one knows the profession as we do. Our convenors and lecturers are the best at what they do, which means when you study with us, you benefit from the knowledge and experience of some of the tax profession’s brightest minds.

Our programs and subjects are developed and taught by practising tax experts who know the skills you need. We want to equip you with the skills you need now and in your pursuit of career growth while helping you to stay up to date with the ever-changing tax landscape.

When you study with us, you will not learn on your own. You will be supported by a:

  • Subject Convenor, an experienced tax professional who you can connect with to address tax-technical questions and help you better understand the program material
  • Subject presenters, who are experts in the specific areas of tax and tax law that they teach
  • Subject Coordinator, to assist you with any administrative or non-tax technical queries


Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory subjects

You will graduate with the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory after completing three core and one elective subject.

Core subjects:

Elective subjects (choose one):

Prior study may make you eligible for recognition of prior learning, which could exempt you from needing to complete certain subjects. We recognise subjects and courses from other Australian tertiary institutions. There is a limit of two exemptions for this program.


Admission requirements

There are a few key entry requirements to set you up for success when completing the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory. Before you start, make sure you:

  • Hold an Australian degree or diploma in accounting, finance, commerce, accounting or law
  • Meet minimum English language requirements if the language from your highest qualification was not in English.
  • If you are working in the Australian tax industry with non-student visa status and satisfy the above criteria (or alternative criteria below), we welcome you to enrol in the Graduate Certificate.
  • At least 12 months of Australian Tax and/or Australian Tax law experience to progress in the program.

Alternative entry methods

If that doesn't sound like you, don't worry. Provided you meet the minimum English language requirements; alternative entry methods to the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory are available, including:

  • Demonstrating at least 3 years of relevant Australian tax or tax law experience in the last 5 years
  • Enrolling in and completing the CTA1 Foundations as a single subject
  • Completing only the assessments for CTA1 Foundations

If you're still unsure of your best pathway into the Graduate Certificate, get in touch with our team. We can help you map the best route to your career goals.


How you will study

There are different modes of study available that you can choose to complement your work and lifestyle. The method of assessment is the same for all subjects except for CTA3 Advisory and includes a series of checkpoint questions and an exam.

1.  Online study

Learn through interactive webinars presented by industry experts. This mode runs across a full 12-week study period, with two webinars per module, allowing you to pace yourself and organise your learning around your other commitments. Webinars are recorded so you can revisit them whenever it suits you.

Canvas is our student learning management system. On this platform, all subject materials are online in one place, to help you better manage your study and access useful resources, including:

  • Online study timetable and calendar
  • Orientation information
  • Subject outlines and PDF module notes
  • Forum posts that keep you updated on current subject events
  • Live and pre-recorded webinars
  • Practice exams and revision materials
  • Additional resources such as online units about searching for and interpreting legislation and case law.

2.  Intensive online study

CTA1 Foundations may be taken in intensive mode over 6 weeks. On this fast-tracked schedule, you will study 2-3 modules per webinar, with access to all the same great resources as regular online study.

3.  Assessment only

If you have the requisite prior knowledge and experience, you can accelerate your progress by undertaking the assessments only. Candidates receive access to past exam papers and online checkpoint tests before the exam. Please refer to Modes of study for information on assessment for the CTA3 Advisory subject as this differs.

Regardless of the study format, you will sit an online exam for each subject.


Key dates to know

Our study timetable lays out all the key dates you will need to know, including when enrolment closes, study commences and when exams take place for each of the three study periods.


Start your Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory today and build the tax career you want: Explore the Graduate Certificate in Applied Tax Advisory>

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