Postgraduate Course

MSc Accounting and Finance

MSc Accounting and Finance

Overview

The details
Accounting and Finance
October 2023
Full-time
1 year
Colchester Campus

The dual disciplines of accounting and finance complement each other to create a wide-reaching view of an organisation’s financial status which makes MSc Accounting and Finance a desirable Masters degree. At Essex we encourage you to practice fair finance and ethical accounting to mitigate and manage risk.

MSc Accounting and Finance builds on your existing knowledge of financial reporting and corporate analysis to develop you into an agile and confident financial manager.

You cover topics including:

  • recent developments in theoretical approaches to accounting and corporate finance
  • quantitative and qualitative approaches to empirical research
  • financial reporting
  • portfolio management

Our MSc Accounting and Finance is taught at Essex Business School. You join one of the UK’s largest and most respected finance groups and experience a Masters education that combines theory with practice. You further your understanding of advanced accounting and corporate finance and can tailor your studies to your professional ambitions by choosing from a range of optional modules.

You benefit from academic excellence in two fields where you work with researchers who are at the cutting-edge of accounting and finance theory:

  • The Essex Finance Centre (EFiC) works with leading financial services firms and public sector organisations, governments and policy institutions to produce work that makes real-world impact across the globe.
  • The Essex Accounting Centre is at the forefront of the field of accounting and produce empirical and theoretical research.

Our world-renowned academics embed the latest thinking into your course to ensure you stay up-to-date with the current developments and major issues in accounting and financial reporting.

Whether you’re thinking about continuing your studies to PhD level or targeting a senior role in the world of accounting or finance, this is the course to advance your career.

Professional accreditation

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

Completion of this course gives you accreditation exemptions from up to four professional examination papers with The Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA).

This means that you are able to gain a professional qualification more quickly by taking fewer exams when you graduate, giving your career a head start.

Why we're great.
  • Further your understanding of accounting and finance with this specialist programme.
  • Work with world-leading experts in both accounting and finance, who bring their research into your teaching.
  • Learn how accounting and finance practitioners play an essential role in ethical and sustainable business.

Our expert staff

Essex Business School has a number of established research strengths in accounting, including:

  • accounting in emerging economies
  • sustainable accounting
  • governance
  • global development
  • public sector accounting
  • regulation and reporting

Our researchers make a significant impact on the lives of people all around the world, with past and current research projects covering five continents.

The experience and findings of our experts will feature throughout your teaching. For example, you’ll hear from Professor Kelum Jayasinghe, Professor of Accounting at Essex Business School.

Professor Jayasinghe’s research liaises with development practitioners and policy-makers for his work on sustainability in emerging economies. For example, some of his recent research will help the Ministry of Disaster Management in Sri Lanka to formulate a new policy framework and accountability strategy that can be used by central and local governments, NGOs, and national and international agencies, in times of crisis.

Kelum is also Director of Employability Development at Essex Business School, meaning he is well-placed to support accounting students and graduates exploring their early career opportunities. Kelum’s academic career is complemented by three years of industrial experience in professional accounting and five years’ experience in providing consultancy services to private and public sector agencies.

Two research centres support the research activities taking place in the accounting group. They organise seminars by external invited speakers, Essex Business School staff and research students; co-ordinate workshop programmes; and schedule bi-annual conferences of international renown. These offer a further excellent opportunity for you to engage with the very latest research and ideas in the field of accounting.

The Essex Accounting Centre conducts distinctive world-class research, with a particular focus on accounting research applied in developing countries, including topics such as social responsibility and corporate governance; management accounting change; and corruption and accountability.

Our new interdisciplinary centre, the Centre for Accountability and Global Development (CAGD), is a dynamic hub for social justice research, with a particular focus on accountability across all sectors in both developed and emerging economies. The Centre contributes to impactful global development through rigorous research and engagement with the policy community, which complements the existing research strengths and expertise established within the Essex Accounting Centre.

Specialist facilities

Our MSc Accounting and Finance is based at our Colchester Campus.

You’ll be studying at Essex Business School, home to the first zero carbon business school?in the UK– demonstrating our sustainable approach to business first-hand. Set around a lush winter garden, with shared spaces to encourage collaborative working, you’ll find a wealth of inspiring teaching and study zones:

  • a virtual trading floor with Bloomberg Financial Market Labs, where you’ll gain hands-on experience and learn how to model financial data in a practical setting
  • access to company reporting databases, Passport (GMID) and NEXIS advance UK
  • learn in modern lecture theatres with ‘listen again’ recording to aid your study
  • utilise study booths in our winter garden and versatile break out areas for group working throughout the building
  • study skills support provided by the Essex Business School Learning Team
  • networking opportunities with visiting businesses and careers events
  • Bonds café and adjacent foyer to enjoy on-site fresh food and drink

You'll also benefit from fantastic University facilities located close by, including our state-of-the-art Silberrad Student Centre, complete with an open-access 24-hour Learning Hub and a cutting-edge media centre.

Our building is located on the Knowledge Gateway, home to some of the region’s most exciting enterprises in the science, technology and creative sectors. The Knowledge Gateway provides potential networking and career opportunities for students directly on campus.

Discover our trading floor:

Your future

We develop your business skills so you can use creativity, innovation and ethical awareness to solve the challenges that the international business world continues to present.

Our recent graduates have progressed to roles in financial analysis, management, public administration and accountancy in high-profile organisations and exciting SMEs across the world, such as:

  • The Government of Pakistan
  • Brit College
  • Dytex Cotfabr
  • Capital Markets Intelligence, a financial publisher
  • Credit Data Research, a provider of small business finance
  • Pension Insurance Corporation
  • BNP Paribas
  • Preservation Capital Partners

Our Student Support team work closely with the University’s Employability and Careers service to help you with careers information and advice and CV support. They will help you find work experience, internships, placements and voluntary opportunities and provide access to employer talks on campus. We also work closely with the Essex Startups team to support our budding entrepreneurs get their business ideas off the ground.

Entry requirements

UK entry requirements

A 2:2 degree in any discipline. Your degree must include one module in Financial Accounting, and one module in Management Accounting.

International & EU entry requirements

We accept a wide range of qualifications from applicants studying in the EU and other countries. Get in touch with any questions you may have about the qualifications we accept. Remember to tell us about the qualifications you have already completed or are currently taking.

Sorry, the entry requirements for the country that you have selected are not available here. Please select your country page where you'll find this information.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, we require IELTS 6.5 overall with a minimum component score of 5.5

Additional Notes

The University uses academic selection criteria to determine an applicant’s ability to successfully complete a course at the University of Essex. Where appropriate, we may ask for specific information relating to previous modules studied or work experience.

Structure

Course structure

We offer a flexible course structure with a mixture of core/compulsory modules, and optional modules chosen from lists. Please be aware that we are planning changes to our first year to make it more relevant to your chosen course.

Our research-led teaching is continually evolving to address the latest challenges and breakthroughs in the field. The following modules are based on the current course structure and may change in response to new curriculum developments and innovation.

We understand that deciding where and what to study is a very important decision for you. We’ll make all reasonable efforts to provide you with the courses, services and facilities as described on our website. However, if we need to make material changes, for example due to significant disruption, or in response to COVID-19, we’ll let our applicants and students know as soon as possible.

Components and modules explained

Components

Components are the blocks of study that make up your course. A component may have a set module which you must study, or a number of modules from which you can choose.

Each component has a status and carries a certain number of credits towards your qualification.

Status What this means
Core
You must take the set module for this component and you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Core with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component but you must pass. No failure can be permitted.
Compulsory
You must take the set module for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Compulsory with Options
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.
Optional
You can choose which module to study from the available options for this component. There may be limited opportunities to continue on the course/be eligible for the qualification if you fail.

The modules that are available for you to choose for each component will depend on several factors, including which modules you have chosen for other components, which modules you have completed in previous years of your course, and which term the module is taught in.

Modules

Modules are the individual units of study for your course. Each module has its own set of learning outcomes and assessment criteria and also carries a certain number of credits.

In most cases you will study one module per component, but in some cases you may need to study more than one module. For example, a 30-credit component may comprise of either one 30-credit module, or two 15-credit modules, depending on the options available.

Modules may be taught at different times of the year and by a different department or school to the one your course is primarily based in. You can find this information from the module code. For example, the module code HR100-4-FY means:

HR 100  4  FY

The department or school the module will be taught by.

In this example, the module would be taught by the Department of History.

The module number. 

The UK academic level of the module.

A standard undergraduate course will comprise of level 4, 5 and 6 modules - increasing as you progress through the course.

A standard postgraduate taught course will comprise of level 7 modules.

A postgraduate research degree is a level 8 qualification.

The term the module will be taught in.

  • AU: Autumn term
  • SP: Spring term
  • SU: Summer term
  • FY: Full year 
  • AP: Autumn and Spring terms
  • PS: Spring and Summer terms
  • AS: Autumn and Summer terms

COMPONENT 01: CORE WITH OPTIONS

BE980-7-FY or BE989-7-FY
(60 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 02: CORE WITH OPTIONS

BE951-7-SP or BE953-7-AU
(20 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 03: COMPULSORY

Issues in Financial Reporting
(20 CREDITS)

Demonstrate a critical understanding of major current issues in financial accounting and reporting. You develop an awareness of financial reporting theory, the problematic nature of accounting measurements and disclosures, corporate disclosure regulation, the implications of market efficiency for financial reporting, and the potential role of accounting information in social reporting and collective bargaining.

View Issues in Financial Reporting on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 04: COMPULSORY

Portfolio Management
(20 CREDITS)

Understand the process of portfolio management. You cover the main concepts such as efficient diversification, managing risk exposures, and the valuation of financial assets that are at the core of managing investment portfolios, and pay special attention to the practicalities of the implementation of these concepts.

View Portfolio Management on our Module Directory

COMPONENT 05: OPTIONAL

EBS (Colchester Campus) option from list
(20 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 06: OPTIONAL

EBS (Colchester Campus) option from list
(40 CREDITS)

COMPONENT 07: COMPULSORY

Postgraduate Mathematics Preparation
(0 CREDITS)

This module covers topics in mathematics that are required in Masters-level finance courses at the University of Essex. You focus on the basics of linear algebra, differential calculus including optimisation and dynamics.

View Postgraduate Mathematics Preparation on our Module Directory

Teaching

  • Tailor the content of your course to more closely fit your interests and aspirations
  • Courses focus on practical applications and links with industry
  • We run an open seminar series, which our Masters students are welcome to attend
  • learn in an international environment; our Masters students join us from more than 40 countries

Assessment

  • Regular assessment is by coursework, presentations, case studies, group work, tests and examinations

Dissertation

  • You submit a 15,000 word dissertation.

Fees and funding

Home/UK fee

£13,650

International fee

£21,350

What's next

Open Days

Applying

You can apply for this postgraduate course online. Before you apply, please check our information about necessary documents that we’ll ask you to provide as part of your application.

We aim to respond to applications within two weeks. If we are able to offer you a place, you will be contacted via email.

For information on our deadline to apply for this course, please see our ‘how to apply’ information.

Colchester Campus

Visit Colchester Campus

Home to 15,000 students from more than 130 countries, our Colchester Campus is the largest of our three sites, making us one of the most internationally diverse campuses on the planet - we like to think of ourselves as the world in one place.

Set within the 200-acre award-winning beautiful parkland - Wivenhoe Park and located two miles from the historic city centre of Colchester – England's oldest recorded development. Our Colchester Campus is also easily reached from London and Stansted Airport in under one hour.

Whether you are planning to visit us at one of our Open Days, or coming to an Applicant day. Our campus conveniently located and easy to reach by car, train or bus.

View from Square 2 outside the Rab Butler Building looking towards Square 3

Virtual tours

If you live too far away to come to Essex (or have a busy lifestyle), no problem. Our 360 degree virtual tour allows you to explore the Colchester Campus from the comfort of your home. Check out our accommodation options, facilities and social spaces.

Exhibitions

Our staff travel the world to speak to people about the courses on offer at Essex. Take a look at our list of exhibition dates to see if we’ll be near you in the future.

Open Days

We hold Open Days for all our applicants throughout the year. Our Colchester Campus events are a great way to find out more about studying at Essex, and give you the chance to:

  • tour our campus and accommodation
  • find out answers to your questions about our courses, student finance, graduate employability, student support and more
  • meet our students and staff

If the dates of our organised events aren’t suitable for you, feel free to get in touch by emailing tours@essex.ac.uk and we’ll arrange an individual campus tour for you.

At Essex we pride ourselves on being a welcoming and inclusive student community. We offer a wide range of support to individuals and groups of student members who may have specific requirements, interests or responsibilities.

Find out more

The University makes every effort to ensure that this information on its programme specification is accurate and up-to-date. Exceptionally it can be necessary to make changes, for example to courses, facilities or fees. Examples of such reasons might include, but are not limited to: strikes, other industrial action, staff illness, severe weather, fire, civil commotion, riot, invasion, terrorist attack or threat of terrorist attack (whether declared or not), natural disaster, restrictions imposed by government or public authorities, epidemic or pandemic disease, failure of public utilities or transport systems or the withdrawal/reduction of funding. Changes to courses may for example consist of variations to the content and method of delivery of programmes, courses and other services, to discontinue programmes, courses and other services and to merge or combine programmes or courses. The University will endeavour to keep such changes to a minimum, and will also keep students informed appropriately by updating our programme specifications. The University would inform and engage with you if your course was to be discontinued, and would provide you with options, where appropriate, in line with our Compensation and Refund Policy.

The full Procedures, Rules and Regulations of the University governing how it operates are set out in the Charter, Statutes and Ordinances and in the University Regulations, Policy and Procedures.

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