MSc Accounting and Finance

Course overview

This Master's programme  has been developed as a collaboration between Henley’s Business Informatics Systems and Accounting (BISA) area and the International Capital Market Association (ICMA) Centre. It is best suited for students who are accounting graduates.

What it gives you

This programme is suited to anyone wishing to deepen their knowledge of accounting and finance, and who wants to enter a career in financial markets or advisory/financial services; either as an analyst, as a professional accountant, or as a preparation for further research at PhD level. The programme curriculum will provide a blend of theoretical-, research- and practice-led content. This will enable students to develop deeper conceptual and theoretically informed perspectives of accounting and financial practices with acknowledgment of the role of information systems in those processes.

 

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How we teach you

A holistic approach

Effective leadership requires more than first-class business acumen. It also requires a degree of self-awareness and sensitivity. Henley is renowned for its well-researched, professional approach to this aspect of business education and all our postgraduate programmes examine this aspect of leadership - helping to create emotionally intelligent graduates who can be fully effective in their chosen careers.

How you will learn

Henley Business School enjoys a strong reputation for the practical application of business ideas and concepts, underpinned by academic excellence and the strength of our research. We offer high-quality technical skills training as well as a deep understanding of the importance of personal development for leaders, a thread that runs through all of our Masters programmes.

Our postgraduate masters programmes feature a mix of core and optional modules, allowing you to tailor your degree towards your individual personal development needs and career ambitions. You will complete up to 10 taught modules during your programme, totalling 180 credits. One module usually equates to 20 credits or 10 hours of work per week. Your week will include lectures, tutorials, workshops and personal study, with each accounting for 25% of your time on average. This stimulating mix of lectures and interactive tutorials provides you with the opportunity to discuss and explore the subject material in depth with your lecturers and fellow students. You will be introduced to the latest thinking and research findings and be able to challenge some of those that have created it. You will also explore real-world issues and tackle current business challenges, and interact with guest lectures and speakers from industry, giving you the opportunity to test, extend and refine your knowledge and skills.

How we assess you

You will learn and be assessed through a wide variety of teaching methods which vary depending on your chosen Masters programme. These include online materials and multimedia content, guest lectures, individual and group assignments, case studies, field visits, dealing room simulations, presentations, applied projects, consultancy work and examinations.

On average examinations form around 70% of the assessed work with the remaining 30% coming from coursework, including a written dissertation or project depending on your chosen programme. The exam period falls between April and June in the summer term, with students taking an average of 5 or 6 exams. Graduation normally takes place in December.

Ongoing support

While postgraduate students are self-motivated and determined individuals, study at this level can present additional pressures which we take seriously. Lecturers are available to discuss the content of each module and your personal tutor can meet with you regularly to discuss any additional issues. Full-time support staff are also available to help with any questions or issues that may arise during your time at Henley

How to apply

Apply for 2018 entry now

There are two different application processes: apply online and apply by post.

The quickest and easiest way to apply for Postgraduate study at Henley Business School, at the University of Reading is through the University’s online application service.

This allows you to complete your application information, attach electronic copies of your academic transcripts, certificates and other supporting information and also provides a facility for an email request to be sent to your referees enabling them to send your supporting references directly to us.

Apply online

Apply online now using the University of Reading's online application system.

Apply by post

If you are unable to apply online you can request a paper application form by telephoning +44(0) 118 378 5289 or writing to the Admissions Office, University of Reading, Miller Building, Whiteknights, Reading, RG6 6AB, UK.

When to apply

We operate a rolling admissions system and it is recommended that you apply early to secure your place. There is no specific deadline and applications will be considered until the programme is full. However, to allow time for us to process your application we recommend that you apply by the following dates for admission in October:

  • UK/EU applicants: by 1 August
  • International applicants: by 1 June

After you apply

You will receive a confirmation email when we receive your application form. Your application is then reviewed by a member of staff. Successful applicants will receive a formal offer letter outlining any necessary entry cri­teria you will need to meet and you will be asked to confirm your acceptance of this offer.

A (non refundable) deposit of between £500 and £1,000 (depending on the programme you have applied for) is payable upon acceptance of an offer of a place. International applicants requiring a Certificate of Acceptance for Studies (CAS) for a visa will be sent the CAS details by email once all conditions of the offer have been met, and the relevant deposit has been paid.

Throughout the admissions process we will keep you updated with key information via email. We also provide opportunities to interact with faculty and staff online.

You can find us on Facebook and keep up-to-date with news and events in the School or ask us a question. In addition, you can speak to a current student; our students and alumni are always happy to share their Henley experience.

Meet Us

If you are unable to attend a postgraduate event please get in touch with our team.  We will be happy to speak to you by telephone, on Skype or through our Live Chat system (during UK office hours: 9 - 5 pm).

Our contact details are: postgraduate@henley.ac.uk or telephone: +44 (0) 118 378 7593.

Please see our list of world fairs below where you can meet a Henley representative. 

UK

  • QS Connect Masters 121, London

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  • QS World Grad School Tour - London

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EUROPE

  • QS World Grad School Tour, Rome

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  • QS World Grad School Tour, Bologna

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  • QS World Grad School Tour, Milan

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  • QS World Grad School Tour, Thessaloniki

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  • QS World Grad School Tour, Athens

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ASIA

  • IDP Korea Global Education Exhibition

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  • Hands On UK Universities Application Day - Bangkok

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  • BRIT-Education UK Application Day, Bangkok

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  • BEO International Education Fair, Osaka

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  • SI-UK University Fair, Osaka

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  • BEO International Education Fair, Tokyo

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  • SI-UK University Fair, Tokyo

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  • 2018 SWUFE Study Abroad Fair, Chengdu

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INDIA & THE MIDDLE EAST

  • Study UK UAE Business Study Tour - Dubai

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  • Study UK Exhibition - Kuwait

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AFRICA

  • Access Masters Tour, Casablanca 2018

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AMERICAS

  • Access Masters Tour, Casablanca 2018

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Faculty & Staff

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Contact Us

For more information please contact us by email at postgraduate@henley.ac.uk or by phone on +44 (0) 118 378 7593.

Important Information

Duration: 12 months full-time

Starts: September 2018

Assessment: Exams, applied project and individual and group assignments

Consistently maintain highest standards and with an excellent networking potential : 72,000 Henley alumni members in 150 countries

High calibre students: always oversubscribed, 1,000 ambitious new Master's students join Henley each year

Award winning campus: beautiful, green, 134 hectares, with state of the art facilities

World-leading faculty: widely published, frequently asked for expert comment by media and to speak at events

Henley is proud to be part of the University of Reading.  The University is ranked within the top 200 universities worldwide (Times Higher Education World University Rankings 2016/17 and QS World University Rankings 2018) and 98% of the research is rated as being of international standard.

Course modules

The module descriptions set out on this page are correct for modules being taught in the 2017/18 academic year. Optional module listings are indicative and may be subject to change

Modules Credits

Compulsory modules:

 

20 [10 ECTS credits]

20 [10 ECTS credits]

The objective of the module is to give students an introduction to econometrics so that they might understand the analytical techniques used in the finance research literature. Via case studies and computer modelling exercises, students then learn how to apply these techniques to real data. Emphasis is placed on practical applications of the techniques in the global financial markets.

10 [5 ECTS credits]

The module considers accounting as a social and institutional practice and focuses on wider social implication of financial reporting. Financial statements are a key source of information about the economic as well as overall activities of a firm. This course is intended to enhance the student''s ability to relate economic events to financial statements and disclosures. It also seeks to aid in developing a coordinated set of concepts and principles to serve as a framework for analysing a wide variety of financial reporting issues. The course also explores the regulatory environment and political climate, and how these link with the development of existing and introduction of new standards and their underlying theories.

The module covers a number of theoretical perspectives such as deductive approaches, based on the notion of financial accounting as the measurement of economic income and value (including applications to current accounting controversies); economic approaches, regarding corporate financial reporting as an information system, including signalling and disclosure, and studying the demand for and supply of accounting information in a market setting and its stock market impact; and regulatory/institutional approaches, examining the nature of and case for and against the regulation of corporate financial reporting. Illustrations are provided on how these theories are used in standard setting and in valuation.

20 [10 ECTS credits]

Management accounting can be studied as a heterogeneous collection of techniques used to measure and analyse the resources, processes and outputs of organisations. While it is important to understand the techniques, it is equally important to study how those techniques are used. A good understanding of costing techniques is assumed as the module explores beyond these to their application in practice and questions their use(s) and role(s) in organisations from a theoretically informed perspective.Much of the research in management accounting explores the role of the management accountant and the application of management accounting techniques in practice, through a variety of theoretical lenses. The module will draw on published case studies to analyse contemporary management accounting in practice

20 [10 ECTS credits]

This module is designed to support students to acquire knowledge and skills in carrying out research in accounting and financial management. It covers the process of research from the formulation of a research proposal to dissemination of results. It guides students in the preparation and planning of research projects through the knowledge, skills and awareness of elements required in approaching research, including: literature review, research paradigms, methods and techniques, research design, writing a research proposal, project planning and management, ethical issues, and writing research reports.

10 [5 ECTS credits]

This module is an introduction to accounting information systems. It initially covers fundamental concepts in information systems, information management and business-IT alignment in the context of accounting practices. In addition, it will explore how technologies underpin governance, risk and compliance activities within public firms. It builds on both theoretical concepts as well as established industry best practice including COSO’s Internal Control/ERM frameworks and ISACA’s CoBIT. As a practical component of the module, commercial accounting software will be introduced to study their features.

20 [10 ECTS credits]

 This module aims to help students get the most from the learning opportunities offered during their MSc course. It provides students with an understanding of what is required to perform well in essays, dissertations, projects, report writing and examinations at the University of Reading. It develops students’ awareness of the appropriate use of methodology, theory, data, literature reviews and original research for a Masters dissertation or project.
  • Essay and exam skills
  • Learning styles
  • Literature review
  • Selecting an appropriate methodology
  • Good research practice
  • Specific research methods
  • MSc dissertation and project

 

0 [0 ECTS credits]
Either / Or Credits

This module covers the development of corporate governance codes of practice in the UK and around the world. Students undertaking this course will gain a critical and holistic view of corporate governance, which will include an examination of some of the key contextual factors: boards of directors, institutional investors, transparency, sustainability reporting, ethical issues and responsible investment.

  • Theoretical frameworks for corporate governance, accountability and ethics
  • The consequences of corporate governance weaknesses and failure
  • The UK corporate governance framework: codes of practice and governance reviews
  • Internal mechanisms: board effectiveness, the role of non-executive directors, remuneration structures
  • External mechanisms, especially the role of institutional investors
  • International corporate governance: comparative analysis
  • Corporate governance and stakeholder accountability: holistic governance
  • Responsible investment
20 [10 ECTS credits]

The Project enables students to undertake independent research on a specified topic relating to international accounting and/or financial management. With the guidance and support of a supervisor, students manage their own project, taking an aspect of theory and applying it to real companies. Previous projects, for example, have involved analysing published accounts of listed companies to investigate financial performance, dividend policy and the management of capital structure.

  • Define objectives of research
  • Research subject company
  • Synthesise relevant literature
  • Identify relevant data
  • Analyse data
  • Evaluate findings
20 [10 ECTS credits]

Optional modules:

Students choosing MMM049 must choose two spring term optional modules to the value of 40 credits. 

Students choosing ACM001 must choose one spring term module to the value of 20 credits. 

Spring term modules:

20 [10 ECTS credits]

20 [10 ECTS credits]

20 [10 ECTS credits]

The module deals with how corporations are governed and structured, the financing alternatives, structures and processes involved (IPOs, SEOs, Private Equity, Bank Debt and Corporate Bonds), the payout policy of the firm (dividends and repurchases) as well growing through mergers and acquisitions. The module also extensively deals with advanced financial analysis and enterprise valuation methods employed by investment professionals and investment banks.

20 [10 ECTS credits]

20 [10 ECTS credits]

Summer term modules

Students choosing ACM001 must choose one summer term module to the value of 20 credits.

20 [10 ECTS credits]
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Fees & funding

 Home (UK/EU)Overseas (non EU) 
2018 Entry£16,250£23,250
Please note that a non-refundable deposit is payable when confirming your acceptance of an offer of a place. This is part of your tuition fee and will be deducted from the total amount upon enrolment.

UK/European Union Postgraduate Loans

Loans of up to £10,000 are available to eligible students studying for postgraduate Master's courses from the 2018-2019 Academic year. In general, students need to be domiciled in England.  EU students, and individuals falling within certain specified categories, may also be eligible.

You can apply for a loan through the UK Government website.  You can read more about the scheme on the Student Loans Company website or on these two UK Government sites: Introduction of loans for postgraduate students and Government response to the Consultation on Support for Postgraduate Study.

Entry requirements

Academic requirements

A good first or second class UK honours degree, or overseas equivalent, in accounting will usually be required.  Applicants with relevant experience or professional qualifications will also be considered.

See country and region-specific information and entry requirements for International applicants or please contact us with any questions.

Not quite at the required level of English language proficiency for your chosen programme?

Applicants to Henley Business School, whose first language is not English, will be required to attain the International English Language Test Scores (IELTS), or equivalent acceptable qualification accepted by the University, as defined below, to enter a programme.

However, for students who successfully complete one of the Pre-sessional English Language courses run by our International Study and Language Institute, a half-band credit will be applied to their English language condition. (For example - programmes requiring IELTS 7.0 will accept students with a result of 6.5 in the end of Pre-sessional English course assessment providing the student has completed the relevant English course with us).

Applications to the International Study and Language Institute

Henley Business School requires a minimum IELTS score of 7.0 (with no element below 6.0) to enter all programmes except Information Management. Information Management programmes require an IELTS score of 6.5 (with no element below 5.5).

Students completing the above mentioned pre-sessional courses would be allowed entry onto their chosen programme with an overall score of 6.5 for all programmes except Information Management, which will generally accept 6.0.

Equivalent English Language Qualifications will also be accepted. If you require specific advice on your qualification please contact our admissions office directly either by e-mail at pgadmissions@reading.ac.uk or by telephone on +44 118 378 5289.

UK visa requirements

If you are not a national of the European Union (EU), it is likely that you will need to obtain a UK visa to live and study in the UK before you travel. See the UK Border Agency website. Contact the University's International Office with any questions: intoff@reading.ac.uk.

Tier 4 visa pilot scheme

The University of Reading is pleased to have been selected by the Home Office to take part in a small pilot scheme, which provides Master's level students the opportunity to benefit from a streamlined visa application process, and six months extra time on their Tier 4 visa to look for work.

The pilot scheme will cover Tier 4 visa applications made for entry in the academic year 2018/19. Find out more on the University of Reading website.

Careers

Students will enhance their employability in their related first-degree disciplines or in any general business management roles. The programme will also enhance career opportunities in more specialised accounting and finance fields. As the programme offers an international perspective, career prospects are likely to be international.  In addition, the programme will serve as a good basis for further academic development in accounting- and finance-related disciplines.

Accreditation Information

This programme is granted exemptions from four Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) professional exams: BA1 - BA4.

Speak to a student

Our students and alumni are always keen to share their Henley experience, whether you are a prospective applicant or you've already applied for a place on a Masters programme at Henley Business School. For a unique insight into every aspect of life in the School and on campus, you can contact any of our students and alumni below, via email, Skype or social media.

When contacting one of our students for the first time, please introduce yourself and the Masters programme you have applied for before you outline any questions you might have.