2021/22 Part-time Postgraduate course
Master of Science
Ulster University Business School
Department of Global Business and Enterprise
This unique programme offers you the ability to advance your accounting career as well as acquire practical analytics skills.
Qualified accountants are always in high demand and the profession provides excellent employability and earning prospects. The MSc International Accounting with Analytics offers you the ability to advance your accounting career as well as acquiring practical analytics skills essential to the accounting profession.
This programme is designed for business and accounting graduates to combine study for a Master’s degree, while also gaining exemptions from professional examinations and gaining an understanding of and expertise in accounting and business analytics.
The programme is informed and shaped by the needs of the accounting, finance and taxation professionals of tomorrow. The programme encourages critical and creative thinking, teamwork and communication, and develops a diverse range of professional attributes which equip graduates to excel in the accounting profession and to become the business leaders of the future.
Significant exemptions from the Chartered Accountants Ireland examinations will be available on completion. Graduates of the MSc should be granted full exemption from their CAP2 examinations and therefore have only two final admitting examinations to complete after graduation.
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Learning and Teaching
The range of modules offered on this course allows a varied and interesting mix of methods to be used, to enhance knowledge and understanding as well as allowing you to practice and develop your professional and transferable skills.
For each module on this course you will have weekly lectures and seminars. Lectures are used to explain and develop the skills identified as being important to you in developing your professional and personal development within the subject areas. Lectures provide the framework for directing independent student learning activity and skills development. Weekly seminars will provide opportunities for you to engage in an in-depth appreciation of theoretical and practical issues related to the subject area. A number of modules will utilise the simulation suite available on campus to enhance your learning experience. In addition, a number of modules involve small group teaching in a workshop format.
Considerable effort has been devoted to ensuring that the assessment requirements built into each module on this course are appropriate to the learning outcomes, qualities and abilities being assessed. Assessment methods range from class tests, essays, business reports, group projects and practical skills audits, a variety of group and individual presentations incorporating self and peer assessment, practical simulations, case study applications, reflective portfolios, on-line assessment, class tests, management reports, projects and work-based assignments and unseen end of semester examinations.
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.
The Department of Global Business and Enterprise has strong ties with the major professional accountancy and taxation bodies including:
All accounting staff in the department are members of professional accountancy bodies with a number of lecturers also having obtained additional qualifications in areas such as taxation and financial services. Many staff have trained and worked in the Big Four professional services firms as well as having experience advising within small and medium sized practices and in industry.
All lecturing staff within the Department of Global Business and Enterprise are Fellows/Senior Fellows of the Higher Education Academy.
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.
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Here is a guide to the subjects studied on this course.
Courses are continually reviewed to take advantage of new teaching approaches and developments in research, industry and the professions. Please be aware that modules may change for your year of entry. The exact modules available and their order may vary depending on course updates, staff availability, timetabling and student demand. Please contact the course team for the most up to date module list.
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This module explores the legislation and practice governing the income tax, capital gains tax, inheritance tax and stamp tax exposure of an individual within the scope of UK taxation. It also explores the taxation implications for a corporate entity from a corporation tax, capital tax and stamp tax perspective. The scope, legislation and practice for VAT is also explored for both business and property transactions.
This module explores the concepts underlying financial accounting, current regulations and how these concepts inform regulation including the preparation of internal and external financial reports.
This module covers key concepts, principles and theories in strategic finance and will be of particular relevance to professionals either employed or seeking employment in medium and large sized entities. Key topics will include financial strategy formulation, investment decision making, financing sources, dividend policy, company valuation, mergers and acquisitions and financial risk management.
This module covers key concepts, principles and theories in strategic management accounting and will be of particular relevance to professionals either employed or seeking employment in medium and large sized entities. Key topics will include frameworks /for performance management, performance management decisions, IT and data analytics, behavioural aspects of budgeting, approaches to budgeting, budgetary control, variance analysis, divisional performance measures and ethics, transfer pricing and corporate governance.
This module provides students with knowledge and understanding of the research process in the broad area of international accounting, finance and analytics. It will equip students with an in depth understanding and ability to develop a research question, undertake a critical literature review, and identify a justifiable research methodology to match the research question.
The aim of this module is to develop students' appreciation of strategic leadership in accounting, in an international context. The module will emphasise the role of high level financial techniques, technology and analytics in leading strategic change within an organisation.
This module explores the conceptual and theoretical fundamentals of auditing, combined with the practical application of auditing principles and the issues encountered in the international audit environment. The use of data analytics and emerging technologies are also explored for the conduct of the audit.
This module is designed to introduce the student to the role of data analysis, data visualisation and reporting using within accountancy and business. The module will provide students with the skills and know to work with data and apply data analysis techniques to inform client management strategies, business advisory approaches and reporting.
This module explores the financial accounting legislation and regulations, including IFRS and local GAAP, needed for the practical preparation of financial statements for groups. The module also explores the legislation, procedures and practice governing the most common aspects of UK corporation tax for UK companies and multinational groups operating in the UK.
This module is optional
The master's dissertation enables students to carry out research on a chosen topic within the field of international accounting, finance or analytics. Students will gain an in depth understanding of the academic research process. Completing the dissertation enables the student to build on the knowledge and skills gained throughout their masters programme, to produce a major piece of academic writing.
This module is optional
The applied research project module provides students with the skills to apply their technical knowledge and capabilities to research an opportunity, problem or challenge in an organisation in the area of international accounting, finance and/or analytics and come up with an effective solution for the organisation. The module integrates the knowledge gained throughout the programme so that students can critical apply financial, analytical and technical skills to a research project.
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.
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(a) have gained
(i) a second class honours degree or better 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; or
(ii) an equivalent standard (normally 50%) in a Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma or an approved alternative qualification;
In exceptional circumstances, as an alternative to (a) (i) and/or (a) (ii), where an individual has substantial and significant experiential learning, a portfolio of written evidence demonstrating the meeting of graduate qualities (including subject-specific outcomes, as determined by the Course Committee) may be considered as an alternative entrance route. Evidence used to demonstrate graduate qualities may not be used for exemption against modules within the programme.
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:
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Accounting specialists with knowledge of accounting, finance and the business environment are always in great demand. The combination of subjects you will study on this course will provide you with a sound basis to become a future business leader. The knowledge you will acquire will enable you to work in any industry sector and across all areas of business including financial reporting, accounting, finance, taxation or management in public, private or not-for-profit organisations.
The analytics element of the programme is essential to prepare graduates for their professional career by enabling them to ‘add value’ to the business decision making processes within an organisation or for a client business. Graduates will gain practical understanding of and expertise in the use of analytics tools to enable them to help businesses uncover valuable insights within financial information, identify process improvements to help businesses increase efficiency, and to ensure the better management of exposure to risk.
Due to the exemptions available, you will also be a step ahead in your professional accountancy training. On successful completion of this course, you will only be required to undertake a three year training contract and will only have two more examinations to undertake to become a Chartered Accountant.
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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.
Emma McLaughlin, Admissions
Course Director: Mrs Claire Scott McAteer
International Admissions Office: