International Accounting with Analytics - MSc

2024/25 Full-time Postgraduate course

Award:

Master of Science

Faculty:

Ulster University Business School

School:

Department of Global Business and Enterprise

Campus:

Derry~Londonderry campus

Start date:

September 2024

Overview

This unique programme offers you the ability to advance your accounting career as well as acquire practical analytics skills.

Summary

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.

We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
  • Fees and Finance
  • Admissions

For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.

About this course

About

This highly desireable programme allows students to combine a postgraduate master's qualification with study for professional examinations with Chartered Accountants Ireland.

All students who sucessfully completed this programme in July 2022 and December 2022 are currently employed in graduate Chartered Accountants Ireland training contracts.

Attendance

Over the course of one academic year, lectures are delivered in flip classroom format with students required to attend on campus practical workshops two days per week (Monday and Tuesday only).

Start dates

  • September 2024

Teaching, Learning and Assessment

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.

Assessment

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.

Attendance and Independent Study

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:

  • 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 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, 20, or 40 credit modules (more usually 20) and postgraduate courses 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. Teaching and learning activities will be in-person and/or online depending on the nature of the course. 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

    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 assessments. This feedback may be issued individually and/or issued to the group and you will be encouraged to act on this feedback for your own development.

    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, the assessment timetable and the assessment brief. 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. The module pass mark for undergraduate courses is 40%. The module pass mark for postgraduate courses is 50%.

  • 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 Masters degrees of more than 200 credit points the final 120 points usually determine the overall grading.

    Figures from the academic year 2022-2023.

Academic profile

The Department of Global Business and Enterprise has strong ties with the major professional accountancy and taxation bodies including:

  • Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI)
  • The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)
  • The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • The Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Ireland (CPA)
  • The Irish Taxation Institute (ITI)

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 - 60% have PhDs in their subject field and many have professional body recognition.

Courses are taught by staff who are Professors (19%), Readers, Senior Lecturers (22%) 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 and learning support staff (85%) are recognised as fellows of the Higher Education Academy (HEA) by Advance HE - 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 from the academic year 2022-2023.

Modules

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.

In this section

Year one

Strategic Leadership for International Accounting

Year: 1

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.

International Audit and Assurance

Year: 1

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.

Advanced UK Taxation

Year: 1

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.

International Financial Reporting

Year: 1

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.

Strategic Finance

Year: 1

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.

Strategic Management Accounting

Year: 1

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.

Data Analytics for Finance Professionals

Year: 1

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.

International Corporate Reporting and Tax Planning

Year: 1

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.

Research Methods for Finance Professionals

Year: 1

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.

Dissertation

Year: 1

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.

Applied Research Project

Year: 1

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.

Standard entry conditions

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.

Entry Requirements

Applicants must be able to satisfy the University's general admissions requirements in one of the following ways:

Applicants must:

(a) have gained
(i) a second class honours degree in an accounting discipline 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 an accounting discipline in a Graduate Diploma, Graduate Certificate, Postgraduate Certificate or Postgraduate Diploma or an approved alternative qualification;

and

(b) provide evidence of competence in written and spoken English (GCSE grade C or equivalent).

Alternatively, applicants must demonstrate their ability to undertake the course through the accreditation of prior experiential learning.

English Language Requirements

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.

Careers & opportunities

In this section

Career options

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.

Apply

Start dates

  • September 2024

Fees and funding

Important notice - Tuition fees for this course may vary

Visit Tuition Fees pages for more details on the price of this course.

Scholarships, awards and prizes

Prizes are awarded each year on the programme from Chartered Accoutnants Ireland, MCI Accoutants and HireIQ. A scholarship is also available from Inspired Corporate Advisory.

Prizes are presented at our annual Prize-Giving Event each Autumn, when students and their guests attend along with academic staff, sponsors and other key employers.

All students on the programme who graduate with an MSc International Accounting with Analytics graduate at our Winter Graduation Ceremony in December. If students exist the programme with a PG Diploma International Accounting with Analytics, they will graduate at our Summer Graduation Ceremony.

Additional mandatory costs

It is important to remember that costs associated with accommodation, travel (including car parking charges) and normal living will need to be covered in addition to tuition fees.

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses (in addition to tuition fees) we make every effort to highlight them above. 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 Wi-Fi are also available on each of the campuses.

There are additional fees for graduation ceremonies, examination resits and library fines.

Students choosing a period of paid work placement or study abroad as a part of their course should be aware that there may be additional travel and living costs, as well as tuition fees.

See the tuition fees on our student guide for most up to date costs.

Contact

We’d love to hear from you!

We know that choosing to study at university is a big decision, and you may not always be able to find the information you need online.

Please contact Ulster University with any queries or questions you might have about:

  • Course specific information
  • Fees and Finance
  • Admissions

For any queries regarding getting help with your application, please select Admissions in the drop down below.

For queries related to course content, including modules and placements, please select Course specific information.

We look forward to hearing from you.


For more information visit

Disclaimer

  1. Although reasonable steps are taken to provide the programmes and services described, the University cannot guarantee the provision of any course or facility and the University may make variations to the contents or methods of delivery of courses, discontinue, merge or combine courses and introduce new courses if such action is reasonably considered to be necessary by the University. Such circumstances include (but are not limited to) industrial action, lack of demand, departure of key staff, changes in legislation or government policy including changes, if any, resulting from the UK departing the European Union, withdrawal or reduction of funding or other circumstances beyond the University’s reasonable control.
  1. If the University discontinues any courses, it will use its best endeavours to provide a suitable alternative course. In addition, courses may change during the course of study and in such circumstances the University will normally undertake a consultation process prior to any such changes being introduced and seek to ensure that no student is unreasonably prejudiced as a consequence of any such change.
  1. The University does not accept responsibility (other than through the negligence of the University, its staff or agents), for the consequences of any modification or cancellation of any course, or part of a course, offered by the University but will take into consideration the effects on individual students and seek to minimise the impact of such effects where reasonably practicable.
  1. The University cannot accept any liability for disruption to its provision of educational or other services caused by circumstances beyond its control, but the University will take all reasonable steps to minimise the resultant disruption to such services.

Testimonials

Studying the MSc International Accounting and Analytics was a natural step for me after completing my BSc Hons Business with Accounting at Ulster University’s Derry~Londonderry Campus. It was also one of the wisest career decisions I’ve ever made. I have gained professional knowledge from the intensive accounting modules and great practical skills from the analytics modules. My learning experience on the programme was excellent with plenty of support and encouragement provided by the course tutors and director. I am now well on my way to becoming a Chartered Accountant with only two final exams to do. I really enjoyed my time studying at home before moving to Dublin to work in Grant Thornton.

Émíne McGonigle, Financial Services Audit Trainee at Grant Thornton (Dublin)

This programme provided me with a stepping stone towards an exciting career. The friendly and supportive atmosphere on the programme and on campus, is second to none. All my lecturers knew me by name and they were always helpful. The programme is delivered on a Monday and Tuesday on campus and so I was able to study and work in a local professional services firm while studying for the year. I have no doubt that the knowledge and practical skills I gained enabled me to secure a training contract with Deloitte.

Bryna Clarke, Associate at Deloitte (Belfast)

I knew when I completed my undergraduate degree that I wanted to continue my studies to become a Chartered Accountant and a Chartered Tax Adviser. When I heard the MSc International Accounting with Analytics course offered a tax scholarship with Inspired Corporate Advisory it was a no brainer for me to continue full time study, albeit only two days on campus, and apply for the scholarship. The scholarship offered financial support, work experience during the year and a graduate post. I cannot recommend the MSc International Accounting with Analytics enough. I had a great experience studying the various accounting and taxation modules as well as getting the chance to work directly with and learn from Chartered Accountants and Chartered Tax Advisors working in Inspired.

Thomas Steenson, Tax Associate at Inspired Corporate Advisory