The Zambia Centre for Accountancy Studies (ZCAS) is a statutory body established under Act No.1 of 1989 (Cap 391) as a self-financing non-profit making institution with the mandate to train accountants, promote research and advancement of learning in accountancy, finance and related studies, provide advisory and consultancy services, and for related matters. ZCAS initially offered tuition only for the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) programmes. It also conducted many consultancy assignments for various institutions including government ministries and departments, the private sector, NGOs and donor agencies in the areas of: strategic management, customer services (customer acquisition & retention), financial management, leadership and supervisory skills, development of systems and procedures, accounting and auditing, project management; monitoring, evaluation and reporting; marketing, sales and the development and formulation of business plans. Initially, ZCAS received donor support from the European Union, NORAD and DANIDA. For the last twenty-six years however, ZCAS has been fully self-supporting and reliant only on the income received from its training and consulting services.
The Centre in 2011 completed the construction of a massive expansion project worth over US$16million, internally generated, which has increased its physical capacity by 50%. These include classrooms, lecture theatres, an electronic Resource Centre and a video conferencing facility. The Centre has 24 classrooms, 3 seminar rooms, and 8 air-conditioned and networked computer laboratories with 24 hour internet connectivity, 5 large lecture theatres, an electronic Resource Centre, video conferencing facility, self-catering hostel accommodation with 545 beds for both single and shared rooms, a cafeteria, sports and entertainment facilities and student common room.
The ZCAS University is a private Higher Education institution wholly owned by ZCAS. It was incorporated in 2016 to allow ZCAS to develop, deliver and award its own undergraduate and postgraduate degree programmes. ZCAS University currently has 40 under graduate programmes and 14 post graduate programmes. It currently has over 1300 students enrolled on full-time, evening and distance education programmes. University graduates can upgrade their CVs easily by getting exemptions from lower level assessments on the professional programmes. On the other hand, graduates of professional qualifications can upgrade their CVs by getting significant exemptions from years 1 and 2 examinations on a related degree programme.
ZCAS has consistently recorded high examination pass rates and currently boasts of carrying the prestigious ACCA ‘Platinum’ status (only one in Zambia). The Centre is also accredited with CIMA as a Quality Learning Partner, with ZICA as the only Platinum Training Institution at all 3 Levels as well; as with CISCO, NCC, and many others. Further, ZCAS provides Certified Continuous Professional Development (CPD) for Accountants through the Accounting Executive Development Workshops, which are recognized by ZICA. More recently, ACCA has fully accredited the following ZCAS-U degrees Bachelor of Accounting, Bachelor of Accounting and Finance, and Bachelor of Arts in Financial Services which allows students that complete these degrees to get many exemptions when studying for their ACCA qualification.
To date, ZCAS has graduated more than 1,400 accountants on ACCA, ZiCA and CIMA and other professional programmes. In 2017, ZCAS graduated 18 postgraduate students and 220 undergraduate students. The number of graduates is set to get even higher as the ZCAS University grows.
ZCAS’ position as a leading business training provider not only in Zambia but also in the region is attested to by the Centre’s continued retention of the ACCA, CIMA and ZiCA highest quality assurance recognitions. It has also received the PMR.africa Leaders and Achievers 2012, 2013, 2014, 2015 , 2016 and 2017 annual industry survey Diamond Arrow Award (Outstanding – 1st Overall) in the Institutions for Higher Education/Tertiary Institutions category and the PMR.africa Leaders and Achievers 2017 Diamond Arrow
The Centre has consistently produced outstanding examination results. The average pass rate in 2017 was 76%. ZCAS students perform exceptionally well and continue to win prizes on most of the professional programmes both locally and internationally.