Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA)

The Chartered Tax Adviser (CTA) qualification is seen as the gold standard for tax professionals. During the course, you'll develop a thorough knowledge of taxes and have the opportunity to tailor your studies to your specialist area.

BPP Professional Education prepares you for exams that are assessed and awarded by The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT. The CTA course is provided by BPP Professional Education and is not a course provided by BPP University.

Key details:  Dates and prices | Ways to study

Key Information

  • Develop practical skills and knowledge on all aspects of taxation
  • Expert tutors dedicated to helping you pass your exams
  • BPP Online Classroom Live allows you to study when you want


Our Lifetime Pass Assurance Scheme guarantees your peace of mind – if you fail, you can keep coming back until you pass!

What to study

Your choice of CTA papers depends on what you’re doing now and what you’re planning on doing in the future. Choose your advisory papers first – this will determine which modules to take at Awareness level. 

The 'General Practice' Route

This is the most popular route through the qualification. It is particularly suited for those who are going to be advising businesses and their owners on all areas of taxation.

These are the papers you need to take if you choose this route:

The 'Corporate Specialist' Route

This is usually the preferred choice for those working in a corporation tax advisory role or those interested in group reorganisations or international aspects of corporate tax.

These are the papers you need to take if you choose this route: 

Dates and prices 

Lifetime Pass Assurance

For added peace of mind, all CTA students and students attempting the CTA joint qualification paper are given free Lifetime Pass Assurance*, meaning you can come back on as many courses as you need for the same paper until you pass.

To qualify** you need to:

  • Book a taught, revision, and (where applicable) exam practice course for the relevant paper
  • Submit your pre revision mock exam and revision mock exam by their due date
  • Score at least 40% in each of these exams
  • Actually sit the real exam

*Lifetime pass assurance does not apply to the computer-based exams.

**Please see full terms and conditions at

ACA/CTA joint programme

The ICAEW and the Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIOT) have created a Joint Programme which enables students to achieve both ACA and CTA qualifications. There are three specialisms available, (1) Taxation of Major Corporates, (2) Taxation of Owner-Managed Businesses, and (3) Indirect Tax.

BPP offers courses towards the Owner-Managed Business specialism. By sitting a “Taxation of Owner-Managed Businesses” paper instead of Business Planning Tax and then a further CTA paper as well as the CTA Ethics computer based assessment, students will be both ACA and CTA qualified providing they have undertaken relevant professional work experience.

The Taxation of Owner-Managed Businesses paper is available to the May and November CTA sittings. 

Online Classroom Live

Our award winning Online Classroom Live is ideal if you like the discipline and motivation of a structured and timetabled course and can commit to scheduled sessions delivered by one of our expert tutors. You can study wherever you have internet access and as the live, interactive sessions are all recorded you can watch any you miss. You are also supported by a library of online content which includes a comprehensive suite of online lectures.

Institute material and Legislation

In addition to the course materials, there are a number of other books you will need.

Institute materials

For some papers, the Institute produce a study text. Where this happens, the cost of this material is included in the price of your courses and it will be included in the material we send you or hand out.


Candidates sitting the ATT and CTA examinations in the calendar year 2018 will be examined on UK tax law as it stands up to and including Finance Act 2017. The ATT and CIOT have confirmed that the provisions of Finance (No 2) Act will not be examinable.

You are permitted to take any mix of the Tolley (yellow and orange books) or CCH (red and green books) versions of the legislation into the exams with you. You have a number of options for exams in 2018:

Tolley legislation:

  • 2016/17 editions together with the FA 2017 supplement; or
  • 2017/18 editions (which will include both FA 2017 and F(No 2)A 2017).

CCH legislation:

  • 2016/17 editions together with the red book volume D (2017/18) and green book 2017/18; or
  • 2017/18 editions (which will include both FA 2017 and F(No 2)A 2017).

Please note that you may take any edition of the books in, or may mix and match. You are NOT allowed to annotate, use ‘post-it’ notes, tag or fold pages in the permitted books.

These books are not included in the price of your course, and will need to be purchased directly from the supplier. Student discount forms are available by using the links below.

Order forms

The links and brochures above will open as a PDF in a new window. To save directly to your computer, right-click the link and select 'Save Link As'. You will need the free Adobe Acrobat Reader to open it.

Resit Options

If you missed out this time, you don't have to give up. You can keep coming back for a free course until you pass with Lifetime Pass Assurance.

Some of our Online Classroom Live revision courses run in the evenings from 6.00pm to 9.00pm, so they are ideal for re-sit students who don't have much holiday or study leave available. They are delivered live over the internet at scheduled times and they are fully interactive - you can see your tutor in real time, ask questions, get instant tutor feedback, interact with your fellow students via online forums and re-watch or catch up on any live lectures you miss – just a few of the reasons BPP's OCR Live was voted "study resource of the year" by PQ Magazine. All of our Online Classroom Live revision courses are recorded for maximum flexibility.

Ways to study

Online Classroom Live

The nearest thing to being in a classroom online, our award winning Online Classroom Live is ideal if you like the structure, discipline and motivation of a traditional classroom course. The live, interactive lectures mean that your course is uncompromising in quality and still gives you all the benefits of studying with BPP. Each session is recorded, so you can even catch up on any you miss.

Entry requirements

You will usually be eligible to sit the CTA exams if you have passed one of the following prior qualifications:

  • The Association of Taxation Technicians (ATT)
  • The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)
  • The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS)
  • The Institute of Indirect Taxation (IIT)

Students who have passed various Inland Revenue or HMRC internal training examinations will also be eligible. In addition, there are a number of other examinations or courses which provide eligibility. For further information, see the CTA prospectus on the CIOT website for further information.

Complete an application form.

Key dates

The following dates are the key dates for the CTA exams.

May exams

Registration with CIOT End of October
Exam entry End of February
Exam May
Results July

October exams

Registration with CIOT End of April
Exam entry End of August
Exam November
Results January


The CIOT offer a number of exemptions depending on your prior qualifications.

Please see the CTA prospectus for further information on registration, exam entry, exemptions and details of the fees payable.

Study locations

All of our CTA courses are run via Online Classroom Live