Before we go into the details of the ICB exams, you first need to understand what the difference is between an Exam, an Assessment and a Portfolio of Evidence. You need to understand the “language” of your ICB exams.


An exam means that you sit down, at a time specifically arranged, with someone invigilating (supervising and checking that nobody can cheat), and you have a set amount of time to finish an exam paper.

Each ICB subject has a formal exam that you write when you have completed your studies for that subject. You get up to five opportunities in a year to write your exam, if you are a distance learning or home study student.

The formal exam is also called a “summative assessment”.


An assessment is anything for which you get a mark. So an assignment that you do at home, but which gets marked at your college, can be an assessment. A formal exam can also be an assessment.

We get two different kinds of Assessments: Formative Assessments, and Summative Assessments.

Summative Assessment

A summative assessment is a formal exam.

Formative Assessment

Exercises, assignments and practicals can all be formative assessments. You do these over the period of your studies, and some of them can count towards your final mark for each subject. When you get your Portfolio of Evidence (POE) workbook, it will direct you to include all these things in your POE. In this way all the work you do in your course count towards your final marks.

Portfolio of Evidence (POE)

A Portfolio of Evidence (POE) is a workbook or collection of documents which act as proof that you have mastered a specific piece of work. With all your ICB subjects you gets sent a POE workbook before the exam. You must then complete this Portfolio of Evidence before the exam, and then take it with your to the exam. At the exam you hand in your POE, and it gets marked with your exam. In this way it counts towards your final mark for your subject.

Since you get to do the Portfolio of Evidence before the exam, it is a good way to get some points before you even get to the exam!

You want to make sure you get your POE as soon as possible, so that you have the maximum amount of time available to work on it, before the date on which you must hand it in at the exam.

How do I make sure I have the maximum time to work on my POE?

When you Register for your exam, the ICB sends you the POE for the subject/s you have registered for. You then get to work on your POE from the date you receive the POE from the ICB, till your exam date. And then you hand in your POE at the exam.

So, if you want the maximum amount of time to work on your POE, you need to register for your exam as soon as you can. If you want to register for the February 2017 exams; then note that Exam Registrations for the February 2017 Exam open on 26 October 2016. And Registrations close for these exams on 23 December for distance learning students registering via the ICB student portal.

Once you have registered for your exam, the ICB will courier your POE to you. The ICB usually couriers your POE three to four weeks after receiving your exam registration application.

Note that you must get a POE for every subject you do. So if you register for three subject exams, then the ICB will send your three Portfolios of Evidence.

If your POE is incomplete, that can mean that you fail that subject. So make it as complete as possible. Also make sure that you make a copy of your POE before you hand it in. Put it in a safe place, so that you know if something happens to your POE, you have a back-up plan.

What exactly goes into my Portfolio of Evidence?

As you study a subject (or learning area) all your assessments are kept in a folder. So all these assessments, plus your final exam paper makes up your complete Portfolio of Evidence. When you get your POE from the ICB, it will contain the Administration Book , which tells you exactly how to complete your POE.

You hand all of it in at your final exam, and the assessors (examiners) marks all of it to determine if you pass or if you have to redo the work.

Note that you must get a POE for every subject you do. So if you register for three subject exams, then the ICB will send your three Portfolios of Evidence.

If your POE is incomplete, that can mean that you fail that subject. So make it as complete as possible. Also make sure that you make a copy of your POE before you hand it in. Put it in a safe place, so that you know if something happens to your POE, you have a back-up plan.

How your ICB Final Marks are Calculated

The ICB uses two different marks to determine your final mark, and to determine if you pass or fail your course. These two marks are marks for; 1. Your formal exam, and 2. Your Portfolio of Evidence.

Your formal exam counts 70% of your final mark. You must get at least 50% for your formal exam, to pass your course.

Your Portfolio of Evidence counts 30% or your final mark. This consist out of work done while you were studying your subject. Things like assignments, evaluations and other work.

You need to get a final total mark of 60% to pass your course.

Exam Registration and Application

If you want to write an exam, you must do the following:

  1. Ensure you are registred with the ICB as an ICB learner.
  2. Apply for Exam Entry before the Exam Entry Closing Date – this is usually two to three months before the exam date.
  3. Ensure your yearly ICB Student Registration fee is paid to the ICB.
  4. Ensure your ICB Exam / Assessment fees are paid to the ICB.

This means you need to:

  1. Submit the Learner Details Form
  2. Complete the Assessment Entry Form, and submit it
  3. Pay the correct Assessment Fee to the ICB

About ten days after the ICB has received your application documents and payment, they will send you a confirmation letter, and later on your POE.

Finding an Exam and Assessment Centre

Exam Centres

The ICB has many exam centres throughout South Africa, and even two in Namibia.

Here is a list of the listed centres, correct as in October 2016:

Eastern Cape


MSC College – East London

14 St Matthews Road


East London


East London Management Institute

231 Oxford Street


East London



MSC College – Port Elizabeth

71-76 Parliament Street


Port Elizabeth

Free State


MSC College – Bloemfontein

2nd Floor, Allied Building

98 Charlotte Maxeke Street






MSC College – Benoni

54 Woburn Avenue




The Academy of Commerce and Accounting – Benoni

Shop E22M, Lakeside Mall

Tom Jones Street




MSC College – Braamfontein

Cnr of Smith and Melle Streets




Sandton Ridge


Block B, Greyston Ridge

144 Katherine Street

Sandton Ridge


Directions: M1, Greyston/Sandton exit, Katherine/Sandton off-ramp, Cnr of Greyston Drive and Katherine Street


Pretoria North

Boston – Pretoria North

1st Floor, Republic Leasing

Cnr of Gerrit Maritz and Burger Streets




Rosebank College – Sunnyside

Cnr of Jorissen and Johnston Streets






42 Donald Road

Glen Donald






NG Kerk Port Natal

455 Esther Roberts Road (ex Frere Road)




Qualitas Career Academy – Newcastle

The Edu Centre (off Sutherland Street, opposite Checkout)





Boston – Polokwane

1st Floor, Penur Building

52 Landdros Mare Street





PPK Kerk – Middelburg

Cnr of SADC & Meyer Streets (Next to CTM Tiles)




Unigrad – Nelspruit

34 Ferreira Street


North West


MSC College – Klerksdorp

91 Anderson Street




Centurion Academy – Rustenburg

39 Heystek Street



Western Cape



MSC College – Bellville

5 Church Street

Cnr Durban & Church Street




Rhodes High School

Montreal Avenue


Cape Town

Table View

HC Varsity

1st Floor, Giuliva House

47 Blaauwberg Road

Table View


Afritech Training Solutions

Milnerton Mall, 2nd Floor

Cnr. Koeberg and Loxton Road




Jesua Consultants

Diaz Office Park

Block B, Unit 21

Beach Boulevard West

Diaz Beach

Mossel Bay




Vocational College Walvis Bay

86 Hage Geingob Street


Walvis Bay


BSW Business Solutions

31 Calcium Street




What if there is no assessment centre close to me?

If you live and work more than 200 km from one of these assessment centres, then you can apply to the ICB for Private Invigilation. This means an additional fee. And the ICB consider these requests on an individual basis. The ICB would always encourage you to rather make use of a recognised assessment centre.

Exam Dates and Assessment Timetable

Exam dates for distance learning students are now five times a year. Note that the details of these dates can change, so make sure you get the very latest details when you register for an ICB exam.

Exam Dates for Distance Learning

Sarah, please copy from this page:

Exam Dates for Classroom Students

Sarah, please help!

Preparing for your Exam

Old ICB Exam Papers

The ICB does not make old exam papers available to students. When the syllabus changes, it means that old exam papers will not help you.

How do I get extra exam preparation help?

If you choose the PRO option when you register for your course, then you will get mock exams or trial exam papers included in your study materials.

Your Portfolio of Evidence – a critical part of your Exam

Does every subject have a portfolio of evidence (POE)?

Yes, every single subject has a POE; except for the following subject:

  1. Accounting Theory and Practice (FATP) – this is the old name for (RTAP)
  2. Research Theory and Practice (RTAP) – this is the new name for (FATP)

How do I get my POE?

When you register for an exam, at that point your POE is ordered, printed and sent to you for the subjects in your exam. Your Portfolio of Evidence is sent to you by the ICB (Institute of Certified Bookkeepers). It is NOT sent to you by your course provider or college.

As we get close to an exam registration deadline, the ICB gets huge amounts of applications. And for each application they must prepare the Portfolios of Evidence. So it can take up to 8 weeks to get your Portfolio of Evidence.

If you apply early, then the ICB usually sends your PEO to you in three to four weeks after your exam entry application.

Therefore you must register for your exam (and thus order your POE) as early as possible.

What is the earliest date on which I can get my POE?

The ICB process your exam application and then couriers your POE to you. So the sooner you register for an exam, the sooner you get your POE.

Exam registrations for the February 2017 exams open on 26 October 2016. Exam registration closes for distance learners on 23 December, if you register via the ICB student portal.

So if you want to be the first to get your POE, then you need to register for your February 2017 exam on 26 or 27 October. Then you will have the maximum amount of time to work on your PEO before your exam date. The ICB will take three to four weeks from receiving your exam registration application to sending your POE.

Note that you must get a POE for every subject you do. So if you register for exams for four subjects, then you must get four Portfolios of Evidence from the ICB before your exam.

Exam Results

Your exam results will be available on the exam results release date. The 2017 exams results release dates are as follows:

Sarah, please help:

Exam Re-write and Re-assessment

You have up to one month after getting your results to apply for a re-mark. You need to compete and submit the Application Form for Re-Mark, and pay the relevant fee. An assessor and moderator will review your entire Portfolio of Evidence and compile a detailed Re-Mark Report for you.

Receiving your Qualification Certificate and Results Report

Since 2015 the ICB no longer issues Certificates to students. FASSET as the government body overseeing the ICB qualifications has determined that no professional body is allowed to issue qualification certificates to students. So now only FASSET is allowed to issue these certificates to students.

What do I get from FASSET?

You will get a qualification certificate from FASSET.

It can take FASSET up to three months to issue your certificate. Note that in September 2016 FASSET had delays in printing their certificates. So it might take longer than three months.

What do I get from the ICB?

You will get a detailed results report from the ICB. This report is accepted by employers as proof of your qualification, so you can go ahead and apply for that job, or the promotion you want!

When you have completed your Programme, the ICB will also issue you with a Programme Certificate. The ICB usually issue these within a few weeks after you have completed your programme.

How do I know a course or college is accredited?

To find out if a college is accredited to offer ICB courses; and accredited for a specific course; the easiest way is to ask to see their accreditation certificate from the ICB.

The ICB provides each accredited provider with a certificate for each accredited course. Check the provider name, as well as the expiry date on the accreditation certificate.

Accredited course providers also have accreditation letters from FASSET. So also look for that.

Learner Portal

The ICB has a Learner Portal that is especially useful for home study students. This is a “self-service” option for student who wants to:

  • See and update their contact details with the ICB
  • Pay ICB fees online
  • Enter for assessments (register for exams) and see their results (this option only available for home study students)

Last Updated: November 21st 2016