Accounting refers to the process of keeping track of a corporation’s financial transactions. As long as there has been business, it has been important for firms to keep track of their outgoings and income in order to establish profit margins and to progress.
These days the majority of firms have an Accounting department which will hire potential new graduates. This department will not only deal with turnover, revenue and costs of production, but will also be responsible for all legal financial transactions (such as tax payments), and to use financial data to predict the expansion of a business.
Are you passionate about finance? Do you have a thirst for business knowledge? Are you looking to pursue a career within a corporate environment? If so, then a course in Accounting might be perfect for you.
Those who study Accounting should not only demonstrate a flair for maths and business, but should also have an interest in law and economics. As part of the course, students will be expected to learn the legal requirements regarding taxation and monetary policy, as well as acquiring knowledge of different financial transactions.
There is a lot of content involved in studying Accounting, so it is important that students are quick learners, hard workers and are willing to conduct extra reading during non-contact hours.
The majority of graduates who pursue qualifications in Accounting do so with the intention of pursuing a career as an accountant. However, as part of the course, students will also learn about business structure, law and economics; so quite often, graduates in this field will be employed in managerial roles.
Similarly, due to the understanding of financial data gained throughout the courses, many graduates will also find work in the banking sector, working as in-branch financial advisors or as risk analysts for large insurance institutions.
For those who enjoy Accounting, there is also the option to work with not-for-profit organisations writing funding bids and making grant applications. Even those graduates who opt not to work within the Accounting industry can find suitable work within other occupational fields such as sales, marketing and advertising (and even journalism or law).
Some students even decide to take a postgraduate qualification that will allow them to teach at either higher education or secondary school level.
The structure of your course will very much depend upon your level of study. Most undergraduate degree programmes will last for 3 years, while also requiring students to take a work placement year between stages 2 and 3 of the course. Potential applicants will be expected to score a minimum of 3 A-levels of equivalent.
There are also a number of postgraduate Accounting courses available for graduates with a particularly strong degree classification and who have a natural aptitude for maths, economics or even business.
For all courses, students who don’t speak English as a native language will be expected to sit an IELTS test and score 6.0-6.5 in order to start their programme.
Accounting students are also expected to attend regular lectures, and will be assessed through a combination of examinations and written projects. As mentioned, students may be encouraged to partake in a work placements as part of their course.
The most important thing to consider when you’re deciding where to study is which module options are available at each university. Many of the core degree modules are similar between courses, but the optional modules offered may vary depending on the institution. It is always worth investigating whether a university offers you module choices that appeal to your particular areas of interest and will benefit your postgraduate career.
You should always look at the entry requirements and your own finances before submitting an application to your university of choice. Do you have the right grades for entry? Are the fees manageable along with the cost of living? If you’re still struggling to secure funding there are a number of options available to you including scholarships and bursaries.
It is also important to ensure that you attend a university that is both prestigious and has strong links within the career fields you are interested in. Many top firms cultivate relationships with certain academic establishments from which they will recruit the majority of their entry level staff.
Irrespective of which course you decide to study, the location of the university itself should also be taken into consideration when deciding where to study. You will be studying for a minimum of 3 years, so it is important that your university of choice is located in an environment where you will thrive both socially and academically. Discovering new cultures and meeting new people is a huge part of student life, and it is vital that you make the most of your university experience. While some students prefer to study in big cities with large campuses, others prefer smaller establishments with a more communal focus.