Certificate: Local Government Accounting NQF 3

AT(SA) Local Government

About this course

The Certificate: Local Government Accounting Qualification is the introductory level of the AT(SA) Qualifications. This level covers a range of basic accounting practices and techniques, from costing and double-entry bookkeeping to computerised accounting. The learner will also gain invaluable self-management and time management skills and will develop an appreciation of ethical issues and sustainability, which is essential for any workplace.


2023/2024 Enrolment Dates

Intake 1: Enrol from 1 September 2023 – 15 January 2024. Study from February 2024 – September 2024.

Intake 2: Enrol from 1 February 2024 – 15 March 2024. Study from April 2024 – November 2024.

Intake 3: Enrol from 1 April 2024 – 15 April 2024. Study from May 2024 – December 2024.

Credo Local Government Accounting Technician Qualification NQF 3

Qualification Description

The Local Government Accounting qualification gives learners access to the accounting field through entry and mid-level accounting roles within the municipal environment. These are customised qualifications, offering municipal accounting and finance officials’ formal qualifications that immediately demonstrate their acquired skills through practical and competence-based assessments. These qualifications support the development of learners who are employed in local government and who want to progress with a career in local government accounting. Qualified accounting technicians, with a qualification awarded by AT(SA), make a valuable and critical contribution to organisational and national economic success. The South African Institute of Chartered Accountants (SAICA) is a partner in the development of this qualification and is championing this as a direct measure to increase the skills base in accounts departments in the local government environment. The learning programmes are registered as learnerships and are therefore eligible for SETA funding and for the tax rebate.

Training format

In-person training is usually the preferred choice for Local Government courses and can be customised for groups of 10 learners or more. Please contact us today with your requirements for full-time, part-time or distance learning.

Regardless of the format, learners will benefit from our well-designed and comprehensive study support, encompassing unit/module notes, assignments, feedback, and revision assistance, ensuring a well-rounded and engaging learning experience.

Admission Requirements

The qualification has open access, meaning there are no specific entry requirements but prospective learners need basic English literacy and numeracy skills, as well as basic computer skills. These skills are needed to succeed in this course, and learners will complete a skills assessment to evaluate competence.

  • Basic literacy involves reading, writing, listening, and speaking in English.
  • Numeracy skills include using mathematics for problem-solving and understanding basic math like addition, subtraction, division, and multiplication.
  • Computer literacy is the ability to use technology effectively.


Upon completion of the qualification, learners will receive the Certificate: Local Government Accounting (SAQA ID 59751) and a Statement of Results detailing the units of learning completed.


The focus of this qualification is Local Government (Municipalities) but graduates of the qualification can work in all sectors of the economy in several positions, including:

  • Senior Accounts Clerk
  • Accounts Officer
  • Credit Controller
  • Ledger Supervisor
  • Trainee Accounting Technician

Additional Opportunities

Further Studies:

Graduates can progress to the next level FET Certificate: Local Government Accounting NQF 4.


Assessments are paper based. The final assessment for each module is invigilated and conducted at an examination venue. To earn the qualification certificate, learners need to be competent in all modules. AT(SA) qualifications are competency-based, meaning learners must demonstrate competence in each task based on minimum standards. A learner is deemed to be Competent or Not Yet Competent in the module.

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Course Modules

This course has 5 modules which must all be successfully completed to obtain this qualification.

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This unit relates to the role of invoicing and receiving payments

  • Accurately prepare invoices and credit notes in accordance with organisational requirements and check against source documents.
  • Ensure invoices and credit notes are correctly authorised before being sent to customers.
  • Ensure invoices and credit notes are correctly coded.
  • Enter invoices and credit notes into books of prime entry according to organisational procedures.
  • Enter invoices and credit notes in the appropriate ledgers.
  • Produce statements of account for despatch to debtors.
  • Communicate politely and effectively with customers regardingaccounts, using the relevant information from the aged debtors analysis.
  • Check receipts against relevant supporting information.
  • Enter receipts in appropriate accounting records.
  • Prepare paying-in documents and reconcile to relevant records.
  • Identify unusual features and either resolve or refer to the appropriate person.

This unit relates to the organisation’s expenditure.

  • Check suppliers’ invoices and credit notes against relevant documents for validity.
  • Check calculations on suppliers’ invoices and credit notes for accuracy.
  • Identify and deduct available discounts.
  • Correctly code invoices and credit notes.
  • Correctly enter invoices and credit notes into books of prime entry according to organisational procedures.
  • Enter invoices and credit notes in the appropriate ledgers.
  • Identify discrepancies and either resolve or refer to the appropriate person if outside own authority.
  • Communicate appropriately with suppliers regarding accounts.
  • Calculate payments from relevant documentation.
  • Schedule payments and obtain authorisation.
  • Use the appropriate payment method and timescale, in accordance with organisational procedures.
  • Enter payments into accounting records.
  • Identify queries and resolve or refer to the appropriate person.
  • Ensure security and confidentiality is maintained according to organisational requirements.

This unit is about your ability to use a computer system safely and effectively.

  • Perform initial visual safety checks and power up the computer system.
  • Use passwords to gain access.
  • Access and use word processing software.
  • Use appropriate file names and save work.
  • Print documents.
  • Exit from software.
  • Transfer word processed documents by e-mail
  • Seek immediate assistance when difficulties occur.
  • Ensure passwords are kept secret and changed at appropriate times.
  • Identify potential risks to computer hardware.
  • Identify potential risks to data.
  • Take steps to resolve or minimise risks to computer hardware and data.
  • Maintain security and confidentiality of data at all times.

The Professional Ethics unit requires the candidate to provide evidence of their ability to demonstrate the ethical duties and responsibilities necessary and the knowledge required to underpin ethical practice in this sector.

  • Identify and apply the fundamental principles.
  • Highlight situations within accounting work that require objectivity and fairness, and where judgements and actions could compromise personal or organisation’s integrity and reputation.
  • Recognise and explain why certain types of information should be regarded as confidential.
  • Identify circumstances when it would be appropriate to disclose confidential information.
  • Identify the key issues which ensure accounting work is performed within the scope of professional ethics guidance.
  • Make critical decisions to identify appropriate ethical behaviour when interacting with others in a variety of circumstances.
  • Refer and seek advice from relevant sources for issues beyond own competence.
  • To discuss, agree and resolve ethical conflicts.
  • Describe the type of culture within organisations which supports and promotes high ethical values and helps resolve any conflict of loyalties.
  • Resolve conflicting loyalties where an employer may ask you to perform tasks which are illegal, unethical or against the rules or standards of the accounting profession.
  • Follow appropriate procedures where you believe an employer has or will commit an act which you believe to be illegal or unethical.
  • Respond appropriately to confines of your own accounting experience.

This unit is about those skills that all accounting technicians need to operate effectively as a member of an accounting team, or as the accounting member of a broader team, within an organisation.

  • Identify and prioritise work tasks taking account of organisational procedures and prepare a work plan.
  • Monitor and report progress against work plans and deadlines, adapting as necessary.
  • Communicate courteously with, and support, colleagues in work tasks to build effective working relationships.
  • Follow organisational procedures to find workable solutions to conflicts or difficulties in working relationships.
  • Review and evaluate performance and identify and agree training and development needs and objectives taking account of current work tasks and career goals.
  • Monitor work methods and activities against legislation, regulations and organisational procedures ensuring that emergency procedures are adequate for potential hazards.
  • Organise and monitor your work area so that conditions promote an effective and efficient working environment.

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