Higher Certificate in Accounting Practice

Accounting is not just about numbers; it offers various career paths, entrepreneurial possibilities, and high demand. It is a dynamic field that empowers individuals to have a significant impact in the world of finance.

This qualification provides the foundational theoretical knowledge, methodology, and practical skills required in the field of accounting and related services. You will gain knowledge of bookkeeping, taxation, pastel, auditing, record keeping, adherence to accounting standards, and understanding of accounting systems.

By completing this qualification, you will have a solid foundation for entry-level career opportunities in bookkeeping and accounting-related practice.

Additionally, this qualification provides a pathway for further academic endeavours, enabling you to progress towards a Boston Diploma or Degree with the possibility of advanced placement through the institution’s credit accumulation and transfer process.

HCert (Accounting Practice)

Time to Complete:

1 year (minimum) - 3 years (maximum)

Study Options:

Full-time or Part-time



NQF Level:




Entry Requirements

National Senior Certificate (NSC), with English passed with endorsement for admission to Higher Certificate study; or National Certificate (Vocational) (NC(V)), with English passed with endorsement for admission to Higher Certificate study; or prior to 2009, Senior Certificate with English as one of the modules passed. Alternatively, a post school qualification may also be considered, for example, an FET/National Certificate, NQF (OQSF) Level 4, minimum Credits 120.

This programme is offered by Boston City Campus in the distance mode of education with support provided at Learner Support Centres. Apply to register at any Boston City Campus Learner Support Centre nationwide.

All modules are compulsory and must be passed.

Possible employment opportunities include, but are not limited to:

  • Assistant Accountant
  • Auditing Assistant
  • Bookkeeping to Trial Balance
  • Computerised Bookkeeper
  • Junior Cost Accountant
  • Accounts Receivable and Payable Administrator

Did you know that Boston does not work on a points system

Although your subjects may be considered, Boston does not use a point system for entry.
Your endorsement says it all.
Semester ASemester B
  • Computer Literacy
  • Academic Literacy
  • Bookkeeping to Trial Balance
  • Business Management 1
  • Computerised Accounting (Pastel)
  • Introduction to Taxation
  • Introduction to Auditing and Internal Control
  • Introduction to Cost and Management Accounting
  • Work Integrated Learning

Various Assessment Strategies (ASC, ASW and AS2) are used throughout the modules in the programme. For example, AS2 is predominately applied in this programme and consists of a Formative Assessment (FA1), also known as an assignment or test, which count fifty percent (50%) towards the overall mark.

The Summative Assessment in the form of a final exam or capstone project (SA1), will count fifty percent (50%).

No supplementary assessment is provided for FA1. A maximum of one (1) additional supplementary assessment opportunity is provided for SA1, which will be charged for.

Please consult the Fact Sheet and Student Rulebook for additional, detailed programme information.

On completion of the programme, graduates will have the necessary knowledge and practical skills required to:

  • Operate effectively in the workplace using a number of Windows-based end-user applications
  • Apply an informed understanding of bookkeeping functions, make numerous daily computations, update accounting records and maintain the entire company’s books
  • Demonstrate an awareness of the operation of the Income Tax Act and South Africa’s taxation system
  • Demonstrate an informed understanding of and competence in Pastel language and navigation
  • Implement basic audit and internal controls in an entity to ensure that the records are accurate and conform to set standards
  • Understand how functional departments operate and understand how actions in one area affect other areas within the same system


On successful completion the Learner will be issued a Higher Certificate in Accounting Practice, NQF Level 5, SAQA ID 102038, minimum 122 credits from Boston City Campus.