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Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations

  • Accounting practice
  • Banking
  • Charities and not for profit organisations
  • Commercial enterprise
  • Financial services
  • Government bodies and agencies

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles

  • Accountant
  • Auditor
  • Business analyst
  • Forensic accountant
  • Fund accountant
  • Management consultant
  • Tax advisor

Overview

Important notice – campus change This course will move to the Belfast campus in September 2019.  Students will change campus part way through this course. Find out more

An innovative suite of pathways that offers you great employment opportunities within several of the fastest growing professional service areas.

Summary

Study Accounting (Pathways) at Ulster University in the United Kingdom.

The BSc Hons Accounting (Pathways) is an innovative suite of pathways that offers you the opportunity to progress your studies within fast growing areas of professional services. You will be able to graduate with one of the following awards: BSc Hons Accounting or BSc Hons Accounting (Forensic Services) or BSc Hons Accounting (Financial Economics) or BSc Hons Accounting (Management Consulting).

This suite of pathways offers you high quality teaching, expertise in forensic and financial services and well established links with the accounting professional bodies, key graduate employers, public sector and local industry.

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About this course

In this section

About

This programme has been designed to broaden your opportunities in accounting and utilise our high level employer links to ensure you get excellent employment oppotunities.

All our pathways in Accounting give you maximum professional exemptions from many of the professional accounting bodies.

You can specialise in the area of accounting through either the BSc Hons Accounting or BSc Hons Accounting (Forensic Services) - both of these pathways are highly sought after by employers and following your programme, you will be emloyment-ready in these fields.

You could decide to maintain a focus on accounting and explore other areas such as financial economics or management through the BSc Hons Accounting (Financial Economics) or BSc Hons Accounting (Management Consulting) - both pathways offering a highly sought after skills-set in the economic, public sector or industrial environment.

Structure: All modules in each pathway of the BSc Hons Accounting (Pathways) are compulsory. The structure of the suite of pathways is such that you can delay choice between these four programmes until the second-year of study in the BSc Hons Accounting (Pathways). This flexibility provides you with the opportunity to experience subject areas, before making a choice between maintaining specialism in accounting or broadening interest to within financial economics / management.

Year 1: Subject areas including financial mathematics and statistics, financial accounting, management accounting and economics, are to establish the academic foundation for the second year of the programme with a professional skills-based module equipping you with the necessary academic and managerial awareness to enhance your learning and employability. The first-year of the programme is designed to help you make a choice of pathway through providing opportunities to experience each pathway area.

Year 2: In the second-year you will take four modules which develop knowledge and skills in the accounting subject including law, financial accounting, management accounting and personal and business finance. In second year, a career entrepreneurship module will further develop key communication skills and soft skills to enhance professional development and enterprise skills. The sixth module studied will be dependent on your chosen pathway. Students on the BSc Hons Accounting and BSc Hons Accounting (Forensic Services) pathways will complete a module on assurance and risk management. Students on the BSc Hons Accounting (Financial Economics) will complete a module on money and the economy and on the BSc Hons Accounting (Management Consulting) pathway a module on managing people.

Year 3: You will have the option of a paid placement year in a range of local and international locations. This will provide a link between the subjects you have studied and your application in a 'real world' setting. Satisfactory completion of the placement year will lead to the award of the Diploma in Professional Practice. You have also the option to study abroad for a year; satisfactory completion of a study abroad year will lead to the award of the Diploma in International Academic Studies.

Year 4: You will spend the final year developing your in-depth knowledge in your chosen pathway: Students on the BSc Hons Accounting will complete final-year modules in: advanced financial accounting; advanced financial management; advanced management accounting; auditing; governance, risk and ethics; and modern taxation.

Students on the BSc Hons Accounting (Forensic Services) will complete final-year modules in: advanced financial accounting; advanced financial management; advanced management accounting; cyber-crime and forensic technology; forensic accounting; and personal and business taxation.

Students on the BSc Hons Accounting (Financial Economics) will complete final-year modules in: financial markets and institutes; advanced financial management; advanced management accounting; international finance; money, banking and other financial institutions; and personal and business taxation.

Students on the BSc Hons Accounting (Management Consulting) will complete final-year modules in: effective organisations; performance management; public sector accounting; strategic business planning; governance, risk and ethics; and personal and business taxation.

Associate awards

Diploma in Professional Practice DPP

Diploma in Professional Practice International DPPI

Diploma in International Academic Studies DIAS

Find out more about placement awards

Attendance

Full-time attendance is up to four days per week with 12-16 teaching hours per week, depending on level.

Each year has a different amount of time allocated to the modules being studied. Normally students are in class for 3 or 4 days per week. On top of this you would be expected to spend approximately 10 additional hours of independent study time per module.

Taking all modules into account this would equate to 40 hours per week over a semester.

Start dates

  • September 2017
How to apply

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

Financial Mathematics and Statistics

Year: 1

This module develops students' quantitative skills and provides the building blocks for subsequent quantitative analysis.

Introductory Accounting

Year: 1

This module forms a foundation for the further study of Accounting in later modules. The aim of the module is to provide students with an academically challenging and intellectually stimulating study of foundation accounting. It focuses on the skills and techniques appropriate to practical accounting, as well as providing an understanding of basic accounting theory.

Principles of Financial Accounting

Year: 1

Principles of Financial Accounting provides the student with an introduction to the concepts underpinning corporate financial reporting for single companies and groups of companies. This provides students with the foundations required for further study in Financial Accounting module.

Principles of Management Accounting

Year: 1

This module provides students with an introduction to the principles of management accounting. It examines the role of the management accountant within an organisation and how management accounting information contributes to making judgements and decisions. The module focuses primarily on the theory and practice of cost accounting and introduces students to various cost accounting concepts, techniques and processes. It provides a firm foundation for further study in the area of Management Accounting.

Academic, Professional and Managerial Awareness

Year: 1

This module provides students with an opportunity to consider, reflect on, and develop the key skills that will provide the basis for successful study on their programme of study and in their future professional life. It provides an opportunity to consider personal strengths and learning styles, and to develop strategies to obtain maximum benefit from these.

Business and the Economy

Year: 1

This module will provide an introduction to the fundamental concepts and applications of economics as they affect individuals, firms and governments, as well as the policy decisions taken in industry, commerce, and local government.

Year two

Personal and Business Finance

Year: 2

This module introduces financial decision making for individuals and small- to medium-sized companies. Within the personal finance element students will study the financial lifecycle, the financial plan and the main personal finance decisions. Within the business finance element students will study the role of business finance, ethics in financial decision making, the influence of the environment on financial decision-making, capital investment appraisal and working capital management.

Financial Accounting

Year: 2

Financial accounting provides the student with an understanding of the concepts underpinning corporate financial reporting for single companies and groups of companies. The role of financial accounting regulation, particularly International Financial Reporting Standards is examined and students are provided with the skills to apply these to practical examples.

Management Accounting

Year: 2

Having completed this module the student will be able to: understand the role of the management accountant and how this contributes to the achievement of organisational objectives; understand the role of modern management accounting practices which enable organisations to develop and assess performance; and apply appropriate management decision tools to a specified range of scenarios.

Career Entrepreneurship

Year: 2

Understanding the diverse career options within Accounting and Finance is essential if students are to understand and develop the skills and attributes that employers across different markets are seeking. This module aims to engage students in their own employability development as well as aid their understanding of what recruiting employers look for and in particular why they look for specific attributes.

Assurance and Risk Management

Year: 2

This module introduces the student to the conceptual and theoretical fundamentals of assurance and risk management combined with the processes surrounding risk management in both the private and public sector organisations. It identifies the skills that a professional accountant must have and how best to utilise those skills in today?s challenging business environment.

Managing People

Year: 2

This module is about the various processes that can be utilised within an organisation to maximise an individual's motivation, abilities and performance, within the context of organisational goals, especially in maximising employee performance. To that end, the syllabus concentrates on potential transformation processes that might lead to 'commitment' rather than a reliance on 'compliance' in the workplace.

Money and the Economy

Year: 2

This module introduces students to the macroeconomic environment and modelling, the role of money and central banking in the economy, the rationale for monetary policy and its effects on economic performance.

Law for Accountants

Year: 2

This module introduces students to basic legal structures, principles and concepts relevant to business and the business environment in the United Kingdom (with a particular emphasis on Northern Ireland). It also enables them to acquire certain skills, such as those of instant recall, analysis, argumentation and articulation, which will prove useful in their work as business professionals.

Year three

Professional Practice

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module enables students who have secured a placement job to complete a period of appropriate work experience in a supportive environment. Students will have opportunities to gain employability skills, reflect upon the applicability of their subject specific skills, and gain insight into the graduate job market. Students who successfully complete the module are eligible for the award of Diploma in Professional Practice (DPP) or Diploma in Professional Practice International (DPPI).

International Academic Studies

Year: 3

This module is optional

This module provides an opportunity to undertake an extended period of study outside the UK and Republic of Ireland. Students will develop an enhanced understanding of the academic discipline whilst generating educational and cultural networks.

Year four

Advanced Management Accounting

Year: 4

An important role of management accounting is to present accounting information to facilitate decision making which is aimed at key elements of the overall management system, i.e. planning, decision making, performance measurement and control. The module will develop further the students' appreciation of management accounting. This will involve the in-depth study and critical appraisal of advanced practices and theories of the discipline.

Advanced Financial Accounting

Year: 4

The nature and purpose of accounting theory; the theory of capital and income; the role of accounting regulation including the development of the latest accounting standards and advanced group reporting; contemporary issues in accounting.

Advanced Financial Management

Year: 4

This module examines some of the fundamental concepts underpinning managerial finance, including agency theory, EMH, theories on capital structure and dividend policy. The module focuses on financial management decision-making in large companies that interact with the capital markets and have an international presence.

Money, Banking and Other Financial Institutions

Year: 4

Banks, and other financial institutions, play a pivotal role in developed and developing economies. This module provides an overview of these institutions and the role of money in such institutions.

Strategic Business Planning

Year: 4

The module introduces the concept of strategic business planning. With the dynamic business environment and the requirement for enterprise development to be linked to strategic management architecture, there is a need to enhance the level of understanding and competency in business planning.

Governance, Risk and Ethics

Year: 4

The module informs and equips students to effectively respond to the governance challenges organisations face today. The module aims to investigate the key components for securing the highest standards of effective corporate governance.

Public Sector Accounting

Year: 4

Public sector accounting analyses organisational structures and management control in central government, local authorities and National Health Service. This module will introduce students to the financial accounting and management accounting techniques and methods within public sector. The module also provides an insight into the nature of recent managerial and accounting reforms within public sector organisations.

Forensic Accounting

Year: 4

This module allows students to combine their understanding of accounting, finance and governance structures, with the evidence gathering, investigative techniques, and report writing skills necessary to be a forensic accountant.

Modern Taxation

Year: 4

A knowledge of taxation is essential to students intending to pursue a career in accounting and is an essential part of most financial and economic decision making. This module provides a fundamental undertaking of the main aspects of the UK tax system covering personal, business taxation, corporation tax, inheritance tax and capital gains tax as well as an understanding of the administration of the self-assessment system.

Auditing

Year: 4

This module introduces the student to the conceptual and theoretical fundamentals of auditing combined with the practical application of auditing principles and the issues encountered in a financial reporting and audit environment. It identifies the skills that a professional auditor must have and how best to utilise those skills in today?s challenging business environment.

Performance Management

Year: 4

An important role of management accounting is to present accounting information to assist managers to plan, make decisions, measure and assess performance and control. The modulate activities of the organisation. This module will develop students? appreciation of management accounting, through in-depth study and critical appraisal of advanced practices and theories of the discipline.

Personal and Business Taxation

Year: 4

Knowledge of taxation is essential to students intending to pursue a career in Accounting and is an essential part of most financial and economic decision making. This module provides a fundamental detailed study of the main aspects of the UK tax system covering personal and business taxation, as well as an introduction to capital gains tax and inheritance tax. The integration of the various personal tax elements will be integrated as the students will be engaged in personal tax planning. The module also requires a critical evaluation of modern issues/ethical dilemmas and key topics of academic and professional debate in this discipline.

Cyber Crime and Forensic Technology

Year: 4

In today?s increasingly networked digital age, a knowledge of cybercrime and its impact on the operations of businesses is important. Delivered in association with Grant Thornton?s forensic technology specialists this module provides insights into cybercrime and forensic technology from both a theoretical perspective (the legal, professional and ethical issues relating to the cybercrime) and a technical perspective (gathering, reserving and presenting digital evidence).

Effective Organisations and the Consultancy Process

Year: 4

This module seeks to provide the student with the opportunity to develop consultancy skills through the research and management of a consultancy project relating to organisational effectiveness. Students will have the opportunity to apply knowledge and skills acquired in order to produce a range of acceptable solutions to problems faced by a case organisation.

International Finance

Year: 4

This module builds upon Money and the Economy introduced at level five. It covers the international financial system, exchange rates, open-economy macroeconomics, and will discuss current issues within international finance.

Financial Markets and Institutes

Year: 4

This module examines the nature of financial risk and the different strategies and techniques adopted by financial market participants as they seek to attain an efficient risk-return relationship. The module examines a broad range of financial instruments that are exchanged in a variety of financial markets as investors strive to attain their respective objectives. The module is particularly relevant for those seeking employment in the financial sector.

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.

In this section

A level

The A Level requirement for this course is – ABB or BBB to include A Level in Maths.

BTEC

Overall BTEC award profile DDM -to include 10 distinctions.

Irish Leaving Certificate

Overall Irish Leaving Certificate profile – A1,A2,B2,B2,B3 or B2,B2,B2,B2,B2 to include A Level in Maths.

Scottish Highers

The Scottish Highers requirement for this course is – AAABC.

Scottish Advanced Highers

The Scottish Advanced Highers requirement for this course is – ABB.

International Baccalaureate

Overall International Baccalaureate profile minimum 27- (13 points at higher level).

Access to Higher Education (HE)

Overall Access profile 70%.

GCSE

GCSE Profile to include Maths with a minimum Grade B.

GCSE Profile to include English Language with a minimum Grade C.

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.

Teaching and learning assessment

Learning and Teaching Methods include: lectures, tutorials, seminars, case studies, experiential learning, guest speakers, practitioner master classes, workshops, directed and independent study, computer assisted learning including contemporary interactive learning technology to help enhance your learning.

Assessment Methods include:examinations, class tests, completion of worksheets, reflective logs, critiques, reports, subject-specific essays and oral presentations, using both individual and group projects, and interactive technology.

Exemptions and transferability

The majority of students enter this programme in year 1 at Level 4. However applicants who provide evidence of previous relevant successful study may be considered for entry to Level 5 of the programme. Exceptionally applicants may be considered for entry at Level 6. Transfer will normally be admitted with exemptions depending on prior accredited knowledge.

There is a facility for transfer to other undergraduate degree programmes depending upon the nature of the subject matter of the other degrees and academic achievement.

Students who transfer from another university can present module information. Ulster can consider giving them module exemptions on a like for like basis for prior studies.

The programme has been accredited by all UK and Ireland professional accounting bodies such as: Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI), Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), ACCA and CIMA. You have the opportunity to gain maximum exemptions from professional examinations depending on the pathway selected for study and the final module mark obtained.

The Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics have high level and well established partnerships with the following major accountancy bodies: Chartered Accountants Ireland (CAI); The Institute of Chartered Accountants of Scotland (ICAS); The Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW); The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA); The Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA); The Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA); The Institute of Chartered Secretaries and Administrators (ICSA); The Institute of Certified Public Accountants in Ireland (CPA); The Chartered Institute of Taxation (CIT); The Assocaition of International Accountnats (AIA); and The Institute of Internal Auditors UK and Ireland (IIA).

Careers & opportunities

In this section

Graduate employers

Graduates from this course have gained employment with a wide range of organisations. Here are some examples:

  • Accounting practice
  • Banking
  • Charities and not for profit organisations
  • Commercial enterprise
  • Financial services
  • Government bodies and agencies

Job roles

Graduates from this course are employed in many different roles. Here are some examples:

  • Accountant
  • Auditor
  • Business analyst
  • Forensic accountant
  • Fund accountant
  • Management consultant
  • Tax advisor

Career options

There is a considerable demand for those with accounting knowledge in business, industry and the public service. This suite of pathways will provide you with an excellent basis for pursuing a professional qualification with one of the accountancy bodies and/or if you want to expand your knowledge in other allied areas of business.

As a graduate, you may take up a position as an Accounting Practitioner providing audit, accountancy, forensic services and taxation services to a variety of businesses and individuals. You can avail of many accounting and finance roles in any type of business e.g. you could become a Financial or Management Accountant in a large commercial enterprise or within central or local Government; a Taxation Specialist; a Management Consultant or an Educationalist.

You may, depending on classification obtained, be permitted to go on to further study at postgraduate level. On successful completion of your programme, it may be possible to progress to a Postgraduate Diploma / Masters in Advanced Accounting.

Work placement / study abroad

After successful completion of your second year on the programme, you will have the option of a paid placement year in a range of local and international locations. This will provide a link between the subjects you have studied and their application in a 'real world' setting.

Satisfactory completion of the placement year will lead to the award of the Diploma in Professional Practice. You also have the option to study abroad for a year; satisfactory completion of a study abroad year will lead to the award of the Diploma in International Academic Studies.

Through our excellent links with businesses and accounting employers, there are also opportunities for you to avail of short-term placements over the summer months.

Professional recognition

Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA)

Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Public Finance and Accountancy (CIPFA) for the purpose of exemption from some professional examinations.

Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW)

Accredited by the Institute of Chartered Accountants England and Wales (ICAEW) for the purpose of exemption from some professional examinations.

Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)

Accredited by the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) for the purpose of exemption from some professional examinations through the Accredited degree accelerated route.

Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)

Accredited by the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA) for the purpose of exemptions from some professional examinations.

Chartered Accountants Ireland

Accredited by Chartered Accountants Ireland for the purpose of exemption from some professional exams.

Academic profile

Many of the teaching staff are professionally qualified accountants with various professional bodies and several also teach for their professional bodies.

Several members of the team are highly regarded in the field through their research interests.

Apply

Applications to full-time undergraduate degrees at Ulster are made through UCAS.

How to apply

Start dates

  • September 2017

Fees and funding

In this section

Fees (per year)

Scholarships, awards and prizes

Student achievements on the BSc Hons Accounting (Pathways) are recognised through an extensive range of prizes and awards sponsored by both professional bodies and leading employers including ACCA, Baker Tilly Mooney Moore, BDO (student bursary), CIMA, CPA, EY, Henry Murray & Co., KPMG, PwC and many others.

At a recent prize-giving ceremony Mr. John Poole, a Director with leading global professional service firm KPMG, stated that “it’s essential that employers and the University work together to develop the great talent pool that exists in Northern Ireland and to reward them for their efforts and successes. As a significant employer of graduates, we will continue to work with the University and its students to achieve our common goal, namely the development of business leaders of the future who will help grow Northern Ireland businesses through the current economic environment and beyond”.

Additional mandatory costs

Tuition fees and costs associated with accommodation, travel and normal living are a part of university life. 

Where a course has additional mandatory expenses we make every effort to highlight them in the online prospectus. 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.

Contact

Department of Accounting, Finance and Economics

T: +44 (0)28 9036 6906

E: accounting@ulster.ac.uk

Course Director: Mrs Danielle McWall

T: +44 (0)28 9036 6466

E: dm.mcwall@ulster.ac.uk

Testimonials

The staff are enthusiastic about the course, and try to engage as much as possible with students, to ensure that the course is delivered in an interesting way. The staff also make themselves available to help deal with any problems students may have. (National Student Survey comment).

Lecturers were very knowledgeable of the area. All had worked in industry, so were able to provide good feedback and real world experience. (National Student Survey comment).