Accounting and Finance BA (Hons)
Gain the advantage of accounting and finance skills, which are valuable in any profession.
Studying Accounting & Finance is a great opportunity to gain a degree that is clearly focused on your career prospects in a wide variety of contexts. This course will give you a thorough understanding of accounting concepts which is ideal if you want to go on to be a professional accountant.
- UCAS Code – N1N2 | With placement year N4N3
- Duration – 3 years full time
- Start date – September 2020, September 2021
- School – York Business School
Minimum Entry Requirements
96 UCAS Tariff points
3 GCSEs at grade C/4 (or equivalent) including English Language
UK and EU 2020-21 £9,250 per year
International 2020-21 £12,750 per year
York Business School
This course will introduce you to and develop your knowledge of the principles and practice of Accounting and Finance. This degree will give you a thorough understanding of accounting concepts which is ideal if you want to go on to be a professional accountant. However, having a good understanding of accounting and finance is an advantage in any profession today. So even if you don’t want to become a professional accountant, you will find this degree invaluable.
On the Accounting and Finance BA (Hons) programme you will experience and take part in lectures, seminars, workshops, task focused activities, field-trips and excursions and informative engagement with industry practitioners. Crucially, this distinctive programme is backed up by four distinct features. These are:
- A focus on employability and work-readiness, your studies will help you to gain career awareness and clarify your career goals and how to achieve them
- Research informed teaching where experts in their subjects will work with you and develop your knowledge, critical thinking and analytical awareness in the world of accounting and finance
- Dedicated one on one support from your personal tutor to enable you to reach your potential and capped seminar sizes of 20-25 students
- A digitally aware programme from experts that will help you to learn how to use digital media and data analytics to inform your accounting and finance skills
Year in industry
All of our business students have the option of adding in a year in industry and / or a semester of studying abroad with one of our partners to their course. A year in industry gives students fantastic experience and is attractive to potential employers. This normally takes place after the second year of the course and extends the course duration by one year (15% of the standard tuition fee is chargeable). Study Abroad normally takes place for a semester of the second year of the course and doesn’t extend the course duration as credits achieved abroad count towards your degree.
You don’t need to decide whether you would like to take either of these options until after you have started the course with us.
Economic Analysis of the Business Environment: This module is designed to provide an introduction to economics. The module aims to provide knowledge and comprehension of the basic economic principles and techniques related to microeconomics and macroeconomics. The emphasis is on developing an understanding of economic principles and allowing students to make a use of standard economic techniques. The module considers the different issues related to microeconomics theories that can be applied to business decisions. It also considers the different issues related to macroeconomics theories and provides an insight into the impact of macroeconomic environment on business decisions.
Professional Accounting and Academic Skills: This module introduces students to some of the contexts in which accounting operates. It provides an introduction to the accountancy profession and the organisations and environments in which they operate (capital markets, financial institutions, government, non-profit, as well as business organisations). The module will contextualise the accountant’s role in organisations, working and communicating with other organisational functions to provide useful information. The module will begin the process of skills identification and development for employment purposes, helping students to identify and evaluate their current employability competencies and to plan action to achieve intended skills and employability outcomes.
Financial Accounting Fundamentals: The syllabus for this module introduces the candidate to the fundamentals of the regulatory framework relating to accounts preparation and to the qualitative characteristics of useful information. The syllabus then focuses in depth on recording, processing, reporting business transactions and events, the use of the trial balance and how to identify and correct errors. Finally, the production of financial statements for unincorporated entities will also be introduced.
Developing Analysis Techniques: Students will be introduced to the essential quantitative methods of modelling and analysis for financial data. In addition, statistics and probability concepts will be discussed and applied to various events. These theories will then be used to analyse practical situations and contribute to obtain necessary information for problem solving.
Financial Accounting: This syllabus builds on double entry, the trial balance and extends it to the preparation of financial statements for unincorporated and incorporated entities such as partnership and limited company accounts and their basic interpretation.
Management Accounting: This module will introduce basic cost concepts and methods of cost accumulation, allocation and apportionment in a variety of business settings. The principles of financial control will be explored including standard costing and budgeting. Analytical techniques involved in the provision of accounting information for short-term decision making will be utilised.
All modules are worth 20 credits, except Dissertation which is worth 40 credits
Business and Commercial Law: The aim of this module is to develop students’ knowledge and skills in the understanding of the general legal framework, and of specific legal areas relating to business, recognising the need to seek further specialist legal advice where necessary. The module will also cover a range of specific legal areas relating of most concern to business professionals.
Financial Reporting: The financial reporting syllabus assumes a sound knowledge of financial accounting, develops and applies this further and in greater depth. It then moves into a detailed examination of the regulatory framework of accounting and how this informs the standard setting process. The main areas of the syllabus cover the reporting of financial information for single companies in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and relevant accounting standards. The analysis and interpretation of information from financial reports will also be covered.
Financial Planning and Control: This module develops the planning and control principles from management accounting and introduces elements of strategic analysis and long term decision making through capital investment appraisal. The impact of budgeting on human behaviour is also introduced. This ensures that students are developing their understanding of the management accounting techniques existing within a broader context of the organisation as a whole and the wider environment.
Corporate Finance: The aim of this module is to create an understanding of the financial decisions that are made by corporations. Students will evaluate stakeholder theory and its relationship to a business’s objectives. Company valuation will be examined through various investment tools and their relative merits will be discussed. The sources of finance for a business will be studied and the implications these have for the company’s cost of capital. The interrelationship between capital structure, dividend policy and a company’s cost of capital will also be addressed.
Performance Management: This module will further develop managerial accounting techniques, in particular those relating to planning, control and decision making at an operational and tactical level. Consideration will be given to both the Ethical and financial consequences of such decisions, both within and without the organisation.
Auditing Fundamentals: The aim of this module is to develop a knowledge and understanding of auditing. Students will gain an understanding of auditing procedure together with an understanding of contemporary issues in auditing. Whether the student aspires to a career as a professional accountant in professional practice, or in industry or commerce or to a more general role in management a sound understanding of the principles underlying auditing is essential. This knowledge will underpin their wider awareness of issues such as ethical conduct, quality assurance and practice development
Principles of Taxation: The aim of this module is to develop a knowledge and understanding of taxation. Students will gain an understanding of taxation policies and principles together with a detailed knowledge of income taxation. Whether the student aspires to a career as a professional accountant in professional practice, or in industry or commerce or to a more general role in management a sound understanding of the principles underlying personal taxation is essential.
All modules are worth 20 credits, except Dissertation which is worth 40 credits
Contemporary Issues in Corporate Governance: This module introduces corporate governance and explores its role in the regulation and direction of corporations. The role of Directors is considered alongside the role of other key stakeholders. Corporate governance in an integral part of everyday business so students will acquire an understanding of the development of corporate governance and also consider ways to improve the behaviour of those involved in corporate governance in the future.
Advanced Financial Reporting: The advanced financial reporting syllabus assumes knowledge of financial reporting and continues the exploration of accounting standards. The main area of the syllabus will cover the reporting of financial information for group companies in accordance with generally accepted accounting principles and relevant accounting standards. There will also be an examination of the major debates in financial reporting.
Strategic Management Accounting: The module examines advanced issues in management accounting, focusing on the accountant’s role in providing information for strategic planning and decision-making, control and performance management. The module will consider recent developments on cost management, the integration of cost accounting with modern manufacturing techniques and the links between management accounting and strategic management.
Strategic Corporate Finance: This module extends the knowledge of financial management Finance and Corporate Finance modules through critical examination of the theory of business finance and its contribution to strategic corporate finance decision making. The module introduces the complex environment of financial decision-making, involving corporate objectives and the role and importance of the capital markets in meeting the needs of finance managers in terms of raising finance and rewarding providers of finance.
The aim of this module is to facilitate and express independent enquiry in a substantial piece of individual self-directed research work. This module provides students with the opportunity to plan and conduct a piece of research through individual and independent activity and to present their findings in using visual aids and in written academic format that meets professional standards. Students will develop research objectives, formulate appropriate methodologies, and apply problem solving and analytical skills in a business context of their choice. You will be able to choose between a traditional dissertation, an organisation based project, a business research project and a business creation project.
- Dissertation: The aim of this module is to facilitate and express independent enquiry in a substantial piece of individual self-directed research work. This module provides students with the opportunity to plan and conduct a piece of research through individual and independent activity and to present their findings in using visual aids and in a written academic format that meets professional standards. Students will develop research objectives, formulate appropriate methodologies, and apply problem solving and analytical skills in a business context of their choice.
- Business Research Project: The aim of this module is to facilitate and express independent enquiry on a small-scale substantial piece of individual self-directed research work. This module provides students with the opportunity to conduct a piece of research through individual and independent activity and to present their findings in using visual aids and in a written academic format that meets professional standards. Students will develop research objectives, formulate appropriate methodologies, and apply problem solving and analytical skills in a business context of their choice.
- Organisation Based Project: The aim of the Organisation Based Project is to give students the opportunity to combine an investigation into an authentic challenging business project with an in-depth research-based report. This offers links with potential employers and demonstrates an understanding of the application of business principles in a real-world situation. Students will develop their research skills alongside techniques of reporting back on findings.
- Business Creation Project: The aim of the Business creation Project is to support entrepreneurial students in their professional development as the business founders of the future. The module is intended to allow students to develop a full business proposal and plan which will be supported by primary and secondary research. This module will involve students in a demanding process of personal and professional developed, leading to an integrated and critically aware understanding of business creation from a pioneering industry and academic perspective.
Advanced Taxation: The aim of this module is to develop a knowledge and understanding of taxation. Students will gain an understanding of taxation policies and principles together with a detailed knowledge of corporate tax, VAT, capital gains tax and inheritance tax computations. Whether you aspire to a career as a professional accountant in professional practice, or in industry or commerce or a more general role in management a sound understanding of the principles underlying personal and business taxation is essential.
Advanced Auditing: The aim of this module is to further develop knowledge and understanding of auditing. Students will gain an understanding of the main technical language and practices of auditing. Students will learn to review and test transactions and other financial events to arrive at an audit opinion. Whether you aspire to a career as a professional accountant in professional practice, or in industry or commerce or to a more general role in management a sound understanding of the principles underlying auditing are essential. This knowledge will underpin your wider awareness of issues such as ethical conduct, quality assurance and practice development.
All modules are worth 20 credits, except Introduction to Auditing and Introduction to Taxation which are worth 10 credits each and the Dissertation which is worth 40 credits.
Teaching & assessment
All modules are delivered utilising a range of teaching, learning and assessment strategies including lectures, seminars, guest speakers, tutorials, workshops and a range of events and learning activities.
You are supported initially in the use of guided learning strategies in Level 1 developing towards autonomous, well-judged use of collaborative and ndependent learning strategies in Levels 2 and 3.
Throughout the programme you will be introduced to a range of different teaching and learning strategies. For example in Level 1 you will be introduced to the foundations of core accounting and finance concepts through Introduction to Financial Accounting. At Level 2 (for example) there will be evidence of practice-based learning (Financial Planning and Control) in which you will be expected to engage in practical based activities. Finally at Level 3 (for example) you will demonstrate your skills through practice and enquiry-based learning giving you the opportunity to develop creative and innovative solutions to problems through Advanced Financial Reporting and Corporate Governance.
42 hours contact time per module.
As a university student, there is an expectation that you will develop from being a dependent learner to being an independent one. This means you are expected to undertake self-study and group learning. In year one you will be provided with guidance to progress your learning and self-development. By the time you get to year 3 it is hoped you will have developed greater autonomy and independence.
The academic staff who deliver the BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance programme bring a wealth of professional experience from the world of finance and professional accounting to York Business School. You will be taught by academic and industry experts who have worked for a wide range of organisations from National brands such as British Rail to professional practice in financial accounting, auditing and taxation. All of your lecturers are chartered accountants and can pass on to you their breadth of knowledge from working in industry and/or professional practice.
The team have research profiles and you will be provided with the opportunity to join them in their research through our ‘Students as Researchers’ scheme.
The course will also be supported the course at every level through professional accreditation, guest lectures, live projects work and internships and placements.
Business School Degrees with Placement
The emphasis of these courses, which include a placement year in industry, is on gaining practical experience; allowing you to apply the skills you have developed on your programme in a commercial setting and gain valuable experience whilst in real employment.
The placement occurs at the end of your second year, for between 9 and 12 months. You will return to University to spend your fourth year completing your degree. Students who undertake the placement year in industry often return for their final year more focused on their studies and are deemed to be more job-ready by employers.
At York St John University we provide you with support to help you source a placement which meets with your career aspirations; however, it is your responsibility to secure your own placement through the competitive recruitment process.
From the end of your first year, and throughout your second year, placement preparation sessions, delivered by the Careers, Placements and Student Opportunities Team and York Business School, will provide you with help and guidance on the placement year in industry process. This will include sessions on CV and cover letter writing, assessment centres and interview techniques, identifying placement opportunities and professional conduct. The sessions will provide opportunities to engage with employers, organisations offering placement years, guest speakers and former placement students.
During your placement you will keep a reflective journal of your experiences. You will be allocated an academic mentor from within York Business School, who will monitor your progress throughout the placement. This may include video conferencing or email conversations and each student will have a minimum of two field visits, which will include a conversation with the employer. You will also be in contact with the Careers, Placements and Student Opportunities Team. On completion of your placement you will return to University and be expected to take part in an event to showcase your experiences and achievements from placement.
To undertake the placement year in industry, you will need to have achieved the minimum requirements for progression in Year 2. During the Placement Year your fees will be reduced to 15% of the annual value.
York Business School Consultancy Clinic
At York Business School we also have a Business Consultancy Clinic, where students can sign up to work as a business consultant in their specialist field. You can get involved with short term or longer term projects working in a team with other students to fulfil a consultancy brief for a real organisation. York Business School undergraduate & postgraduate students work together in consultancy teams with the support from our academic staff to provide advice and tackle organisations challenges, develop innovative solutions and offer the advice and support needed to achieve your organisational outcomes at all levels.
You are also encouraged to look for summer internships.
You will undertake a variety of assessments which include the use of written assignments (often in the form of reports), individual and group presentations, exams and tests, and practical activities. (Please note that there will be a higher proportion of formal examinations in comparison to other awards which is due to ACCA requirements which stipulate 2 hour exams in order to attract the relevant exemption). An essential part of the assessment is to encourage both learning and the development of skills as well as preparing you for the requirements of the workplace.
You will have opportunities for formative assessment and feedback to inform your work prior to submission and you will receive detailed feedback on assessments to help you develop and continuously improve your performance whilst on the programme. Advice will be provided in relation to development, further areas for research and guidance on how to enhance your knowledge of business and practice.
You will have the opportunity for study support including academic writing and research skills to enhance employability and career development in the field of accounting and finance.
Teaching & learning methods
The minimum entry requirements for this course are:
96 UCAS Tariff points
3 GCSEs at grade C/4 or above (or equiavalent) including English Language
This course is available with a foundation year. This option is ideal if you do not yet meet the minimum requirements for entry straight onto a degree course, or feel you are not quite ready for the transition to Higher Education. A foundation year prepares you for degree level study, giving you the confidence and skills needed to make the most of your course. Passing it guarantees you a place on this degree course the following academic year.
Considering transferring to join us in year 2 or 3 of our Business Courses?
Please see our Advanced Entry page for information on the courses available and how to apply.
As well as a strong standard of written English, we also look for an interest and enthusiasm for the subject. This can be done in a variety of ways, either from an academic viewpoint, for example studying a business related A Level, or through relevant work experience or placements.
Candidates can demonstrate a real enthusiasm for the subject that goes beyond achieving good grades in exams. Examples of this include:
- Career plans
- Attending workshops or seminars related to the chosen subject area
- Showing leadership and teamwork skills through project work or awards such as the Duke of Edinburgh or sports teams, theatre groups etc.
- Experience of work
Canditates may also look to undertake professional qualifications such as accounting qualifications or CIPD.
Terms and conditions
Our terms and conditions, policies and procedures contain important information about studying at York St John University. These can be accessed through our Admissions webpages.