2020/21 Full-time Postgraduate course
Master of Science
Ulster University Business School
Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics
Our first term will commence as planned on 21 September and we will be prepared to deliver lectures and other teaching online for Semester One
Some on-campus activities will still take place, based on a robust local risk assessment, and priority will be given to using campus spaces for practice-based learning activities including lab work.
The University’s primary concern remains the physical and mental health, safety and wellbeing of our students, staff, their families and the wider community. Nothing is more important to us.
On our COVID-19 webpages you will find further information for applicants and students, along with answers to some of the questions you may have.
Accelerate your accounting career with this fast-track to ACCA membership plus an Masters in Strategic Accounting.
In this section
Do you aspire to become a leader within the global accounting profession?
The MSc in Strategic Accounting is an excellent way to advance your career within this competitive and highly rewarding industry.
Give yourself an additional edge in accounting and professional services by getting the finance, technology, leadership and advanced accounting skills employers are looking for.
This course will help you obtain ACCA membership in the minimum possible time, while gaining an Masters with employment relevant skills.
All of ACCA’s strategic professional papers are embedded into the course, so you will be ready to complete all of the examinations in the ACCA professional qualification.
As well helping you achieve your ACCA membership this course provides the opportunity to work with an employer on a live project ensuring the course is relevant and provides you with workplace ready skills.
Over 2 years you will cover topics such as financial accounting, management accounting, strategic business leadership, strategic business reporting, advanced performance management or advanced audit and assurance, advanced taxation or advanced financial management, cyber security or data analytics.
ACCA members are in demand across the globe – and this demand is increasing.
If you want to be part of this growth, this course is for you.
Sign up to register an interest in the course.
In this section
The MSc Strategic Accounting is designed to build on, and further develop, the employment relevant skills that are at the heart of the ACCA qualification.
Completing the Strategic Business Project module will enable you to meet some of the performance objectives of ACCA’s Professional Experience Requirement (PER).
You will also be encouraged to complete ACCA’s Ethics and Professional Skills Module.
Thus, you will be well placed to obtain ACCA membership in the minimum possible time, while gaining a Masters and employment relevant skills.
The modules you will study are:
First semester of study (January – May)
Regulatory Framework of Accounting
Management Accounting in Practice
Second Semester of study (June – August)
Audit and Assurance
Third semester of study (September – January)
Introduction to Research
Strategic Business Reporting
Advanced Performance Management OR Advanced Audit and Assurance
(You will sit the relevant ACCA exams in December.)
Fourth semester of study (January – May)
Strategic Business Leader (you will sit the ACCA exam in June)
Cyber security OR Data Analytics
Fifth semester of study (September – January)
Strategic Business Report
Advanced Taxation OR Advanced Financial Management
(You will sit the relevant ACCA exam in December.)
The course is completed over five semesters of study (24 months), on a full-time basis.
Attendance and Independent Study
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements. Usually, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. A course handbook is also made available.
The course comprises modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by credit points. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort.
This Master’s course comprises 80 credits at level 6 and180 credits at level 7, taken over five semesters (24 months).
Class contact times vary by module. Typically, you can expect at least 4 contact hours per week for each module. The precise model will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module.
Assessment for modules in the first and second semesters of study will be by a combination of coursework and university exams.
Successful completion of these modules, will lead to ACCA awarding 5 exemptions, so that you will be able to progress to the remaining modules.
All other modules will be assessed through coursework but may also include closed book class tests. These assessments are designed to confirm your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes – and to fully prepare you to sit ACCA exams in relevant modules.
You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons.
The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Calculation of the Final Award
The pass mark for each individual module at level 6 is 40%, and 50% at level 7.
A pass with distinction will be awarded if your average mark in the modules in the third, fourth and fifth semesters of study is 70% or greater and a pass with commendation will be awarded if your average mark in these modules is 60% or greater.
Your average mark will be calculated as a weighted average of the modules in the third, fourth and fifth semesters of study, based on the credit points for each module.
The content for each course is summarised on the relevant course page, along with an overview of the modules that make up the course.
Each course is approved by the University and meets the expectations of:
As part of your course induction, you will be provided with details of the organisation and management of the course, including attendance and assessment requirements - usually in the form of a timetable. For full-time courses, the precise timetable for each semester is not confirmed until close to the start date and may be subject to some change in the early weeks as all courses settle into their planned patterns. For part-time courses which require attendance on particular days and times, an expectation of the days and periods of attendance will be included in the letter of offer. A course handbook is also made available.
Courses comprise modules for which the notional effort involved is indicated by its credit rating. Each credit point represents 10 hours of student effort. Undergraduate courses typically contain 10- or 20-credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate course typically 15- or 30-credit modules.
The normal study load expectation for an undergraduate full-time course of study in the standard academic year is 120 credit points. This amounts to around 36-42 hours of expected teaching and learning per week, inclusive of attendance requirements for lectures, seminars, tutorials, practical work, fieldwork or other scheduled classes, private study, and assessment. Part-time study load is the same as full-time pro-rata, with each credit point representing 10 hours of student effort.
Postgraduate Master’s courses typically comprise 180 credits, taken in three semesters when studied full-time. A Postgraduate Certificate (PGCert) comprises 60 credits and can usually be completed on a part-time basis in one year. A 120-credit Postgraduate Diploma (PGDip) can usually be completed on a part-time basis in two years.
Class contact times vary by course and type of module. Typically, for a module predominantly delivered through lectures you can expect at least 3 contact hours per week (lectures/seminars/tutorials). Laboratory classes often require a greater intensity of attendance in blocks. Some modules may combine lecture and laboratory. The precise model will depend on the course you apply for and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. Prospective students will be consulted about any significant changes.
Assessment methods vary and are defined explicitly in each module. Assessment can be a combination of examination and coursework but may also be only one of these methods. Assessment is designed to assess your achievement of the module’s stated learning outcomes. You can expect to receive timely feedback on all coursework assessment. The precise assessment will depend on the module and may be subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Coursework can take many forms, for example: essay, report, seminar paper, test, presentation, dissertation, design, artefacts, portfolio, journal, group work. The precise form and combination of assessment will depend on the course you apply for and the module. Details will be made available in advance through induction, the course handbook, the module specification and the assessment timetable. The details are subject to change from year to year for quality or enhancement reasons. You will be consulted about any significant changes.
Normally, a module will have 4 learning outcomes, and no more than 2 items of assessment. An item of assessment can comprise more than one task. The notional workload and the equivalence across types of assessment is standardised.
Calculation of the Final Award
The class of Honours awarded in Bachelor’s degrees is usually determined by calculation of an aggregate mark based on performance across the modules at Levels 5 and 6, (which correspond to the second and third year of full-time attendance).
Level 6 modules contribute 70% of the aggregate mark and Level 5 contributes 30% to the calculation of the class of the award. Classification of integrated Master’s degrees with Honours include a Level 7 component. The calculation in this case is: 50% Level 7, 30% Level 6, 20% Level 5. At least half the Level 5 modules must be studied at the University for Level 5 to be included in the calculation of the class.
All other qualifications have an overall grade determined by results in modules from the final level of study. In Master’s degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.
All of the staff involved in the delivery of the modules have extensive experience of assisting students to prepare for the exams of professional accounting bodies, including ACCA and of teaching on postgraduate courses.
They are also either professionally qualified accountants, holders of postgraduate qualifications, or both.
A number of staff are, or have been, examiners or exam markers for professional accounting bodies, including ACCA.
Ulster University students have been prize-winners in a range of ACCA papers and 100% pass rates have been attained in a number of ACCA papers in previous sittings.
The University employs over 1,000 suitably qualified and experienced academic staff - 59% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.
Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (25%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (18%) or Lecturers (57%).
We require most academic staff to be qualified to teach in higher education: 82% hold either Postgraduate Certificates in Higher Education Practice or higher. Most academic staff (81%) are accredited fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) - the university sector professional body for teaching and learning. Many academic and technical staff hold other professional body designations related to their subject or scholarly practice.
The profiles of many academic staff can be found on the University’s departmental websites and give a detailed insight into the range of staffing and expertise. The precise staffing for a course will depend on the department(s) involved and the availability and management of staff. This is subject to change annually and is confirmed in the timetable issued at the start of the course.
Occasionally, teaching may be supplemented by suitably qualified part-time staff (usually qualified researchers) and specialist guest lecturers. In these cases, all staff are inducted, mostly through our staff development programme ‘First Steps to Teaching’. In some cases, usually for provision in one of our out-centres, Recognised University Teachers are involved, supported by the University in suitable professional development for teaching.
Figures correct for academic year 2019-2020.
The largest of Ulster's campuses.
Jordanstown is our biggest campus in an idyllic setting surrounded by lush lawns and trees. It's just a few hundred metres from Loughshore Park and promenade, and just seven miles from Belfast city centre.
At our Jordanstown Campus we have world class facilities that are open all year round to our students and members of the public.
At Student Support we provide many services to help students through their time at Ulster University.
We recognise a range of qualifications for admission to our courses. In addition to the specific entry conditions for this course you must also meet the University’s General Entrance Requirements.
In this section
Applicants must have gained an Honours or non-Honours degree from a university of the United Kingdom or the Republic of Ireland, or from a recognised national awarding body, or from an institution of another country which has been recognised as being of an equivalent standard, which provides for exemptions from the following four examinations of ACCA:
Accountant in Business (AB), Financial Accounting (FA), Management Accounting (MA) and Corporate and Business Law (LW).
English language requirements for international applicants
The minimum requirement for this course is Academic IELTS 6.0 with no band score less than 5.5. Trinity ISE: Pass at level III also meets this requirement for Tier 4 visa purposes.
Ulster recognises a number of other English language tests and comparable IELTS equivalent scores.
Typically we require applicant for taught programmes to hold the equivalent of a UK first degree (usually in a relevant subject area). Please refer to the specific entry requirements for your chosen course of study as outlined in the online prospectus. We consider students who have good grades in the following:
Typically, we require applicants for taught programmes to hold the equivalent of a UK first degree.
Please refer to the specific entry requirements for your chosen course of study as outlined in the online prospectus.
The comparable US qualifications are as follows:
UK 2:1 Degree - Bachelor degree with a cumulative GPA of 3.0 out of 4
UK 2:2 Degree - Bachelor degree with a cumulative GPA of 2.6 out of 4
|Level 12 English Lang in HSD|
In this section
ACCA members are employed in a wide range of roles in all sectors globally.
Further information can be obtained at:
The Strategic Business Project module provides an opportunity to work with an employer on a specific project which will be structured so that you will meet a number of the learning outcomes specified by ACCA's Professional Experience Requirement.
In this section
Please note that, in addition to the course fees payable to the University, the following fees are payable to ACCA:
Exam entry fees
Ethics and Professional Skills module.
ACCA fees are reviewed annually. Up to date fees information is available at:
Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges), and normal living are a part of university life.
Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them. These may include residential visits, field trips, materials (e.g. art, design, engineering) inoculations, security checks, computer equipment, uniforms, professional memberships etc.
We aim to provide students with the learning materials needed to support their studies. Our libraries are a valuable resource with an extensive collection of books and journals as well as first-class facilities and IT equipment. Computer suites and free wifi is also available on each of the campuses.
There will be some additional costs to being a student which cannot be itemised and these will be different for each student. You may choose to purchase your own textbooks and course materials or prefer your own computer and software. Printing and binding may also be required. There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines. Additional costs vary from course to course.
Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs as well as tuition fees.
Please contact the course team for more information.
For further details, please contact teh Course Director, Ronnie Patton (email@example.com)
“The model incorporating the ACCA Strategic Professional syllabus into the programme supports students taking their ACCA Strategic Professional Level exams and enable students to benefit from gaining both an academic and professional qualification.”
Alan Hatfield, Executive Director, Strategy and Development, ACCA
“The way this course combines academic and professional study with practical experience and develops the skills employers are seeking and that ACCA has identified as essential for the accountants of the future is unique.” John Cullen FCCA, Partner Menzies LLP