Accountancy and Finance (Generic Pathway) - MSc

Full Time
September 2016
£7,500 for UK/EU Full Time 2016 entry (view all fees)

If you want a career that offers exciting opportunities across the world, then our MSc Accounting and Finance (Generic Pathway) course will help you to thrive in this demanding industry.

Developed using the Quality Assurance Agency benchmark for Masters Awards in Business and Management, the course focuses on current and topical issues in accounting and finance, from corporate business challenges to investment analysis.

What's covered in the course?

  • Our course combines the traditional technical requirements needed for a career in accounting and/or finance, while also developing your critical thinking and generic business skills.
  • The modules studied and information gained on the course will equip you to successfully negotiate challenges in the accountancy and finance sector. Our wide range of module options also gives you the chance to tailor the course to your own interests.
  • Developed using the Quality Assurance Agency benchmark for Masters Awards in Business and Management, the structure, content and outcomes of the course are designed to meet the high standards demanded by the competitive financial sector.
  • We’ll provide you with a clear understanding of the joint roles played by the disciplines of accounting and finance. You’ll be presented with a practical yet critically informed perspective that is an essential skill when it comes to succeeding in getting accountancy and finance jobs. You’ll work in small groups with a dedicated tutor, as well as having Career Enhancement Tutorials to help you answer that all-important question – “What next?”
  • We develop your skills and confidence through academic rigour, practical application and a strong commitment to employability. Because of this our graduates have gone to work for established companies in a number of high-profile roles.

Why Choose Us?

  • You’ll study as part of an international community, developing a truly global perspective on the relationship between accountancy, finance and business.
  • With our accreditations, excellent industry links and practice-based approach, practice-based approach and with excellent industry links and accreditations from bodies such as ACCA and CIMA, we produce students who can apply critical insights in real-world situations – an enviable ability in any potential employee.
  • If you’re an international student, you’ll have the opportunity to build a strong grounding in the international business language.
  • The University is an active research centre, and the latest Research Excellence Framework 2014 report found that we’ve doubled the amount of staff producing internationally recognised research.
  • The course offers a recognised and respected programme of study around one of the business world’s key functions, perfectly preparing you for finance jobs and accountancy careers.
  • You’ll work in our new, cutting-edge facility, The Curzon Building, which boasts state-of-the-art facilities.
Visit our open day

Postgraduate Open Day

Our next Postgraduate Open Day will be in Autumn 2016. The date will be confirmed soon and registration will open shortly.

In the meantime, register your details and we'll contact you when more information is available.

Sign up for Open Day info

This course is open to International students

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New £10,000 postgraduate loans

You may be able to take advantage of the government’s plans to make loans of up to £10,000 available for postgraduate study.

More about postgraduate loans

Entry Requirements

You will need to demonstrate academic ability and technical capability in accounting and finance to be able to study on this programme. Consequently the entry requirements for the programme are as follows:

UK students

A good Honours degree in Accountancy, Accountancy and Finance, or Business-related degree that contained a substantial accountancy element.

International students

In addition to the above requirements where English is not your first language, you must be able to furnish satisfactory evidence of a level of attainment in English language commensurate with study at Masters Level at Birmingham City University.

In most cases, a TOEFL score of at least 575 or an IELTS score of at least 6.5 average or 6.0 in all bands or an alternative qualification evidencing an equivalent competence in English will be required.

UK or EU students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MSc Sep 2016 FT 1 year £7,500

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

International Students

Award Start Mode Duration Fees
MSc Sep 2016 FT 1 year £12,000

If you're unable to use the online form for any reason, you can complete our PDF application form instead.

The University reserves the right to increase fees broadly in line with increases in inflation, or to reflect changes in government funding policies or changes agreed by Parliament.

Additional costs

While there are no additional costs associated with purchasing text books, there may be other costs to you. If you are joining the course which has a professional body accreditation you may be required to pay membership or examination costs. For details of these costs, please click on the link below.

Based on the past experience of our students, you might find it helpful to set aside about £50 for each year of your studies for your personal stationery and study materials. All our students are provided with 100 free pages of printing each year to a maximum total value of £15.

Find additional costs for your course

Your personal statement

Your personal statement is a highly important part of your application. It gives you a crucial opportunity to say why you’re applying and why the institution should accept you.

Here are the key areas you’ll need to address:

Course choice

Why does this course appeal? What areas are of particular interest?

Career plans

If you have a specific career in mind, say how your chosen course will help you pursue this goal.

Work experience

Mention any work that is relevant to your subject, highlighting the skills and experience gained.

School or college experience

Highlight skills gained at school/college, eg summer schools or mentoring activities.

Non-accredited skills or achievement

eg Duke of Edinburgh Award, Young Enterprise scheme.

You should also mention your future plans – if you’re planning to take a year out, don't forget to give your reasons. Talk about any subjects you’re studying that don’t have a formal assessment and any sponsorships or placements you’ve applied for. And don't be scared to add in details about your social, sports or leisure interests.

Get more information on writing personal statements.

This course is not available part-time

Got any questions?

Search our Frequently Asked Questions for a range of information about our courses and studying here.

Financial Support

We offer further information on possible postgraduate financial support. This includes the type of loans, grants and scholarships available both from the government and from Birmingham City University.

Did you know that you will soon be able to apply for a postgraduate loan of up to £10,000?

Postgraduate loans

Postgraduate Certificate Stage

You must study three modules – the core module and two options – from the list below.

Principles of Modern Finance (core)

You’ll gain a critical understanding of modern financial theories which influence corporate financial decisions. The module also covers the key asset pricing models on which investment analysis and portfolio management are based. You’ll learn how to think and apply different financial theories on a more strategic level.

Business Management Strategy

You’ll learn how to question conventional approaches to organisational practices, helping you to become a specialist in the industry. You’ll become adept at looking at information systems and the interconnectivity between business strategy, business unit strategy and information strategy.

Corporate governance issues in accounting and finance

Corporate governance is a fast developing and exciting new area in accounting and finance, and investors’ expectations are more demanding than ever before. This module will deal with these current issues in corporate governance, and you’ll gain a thorough understanding of how the area works.

Investment Analysis and Portfolio Management

We examine the conceptual and practical issues involved in the measurement and evaluation of the performance of fund managers, inviting you to reflect on your own decision-making in terms of portfolio construction and selection. The module provides a critical overview of the methods of strategic and tactical asset allocation.

Postgraduate Diploma Stage

You must study three modules – the core module and two options – from the list below.

International Financial Reporting and Financial Statement Analysis (core)

The world of accounting and finance is always changing and developing, so how do you keep up with what methods are appropriate? This module informs you of the complex group structures and with the application of existing and proposed accounting standards, against an ever-changing environment.

Performance Measurement and Evaluation

Management Accountants play an important role in any successful organisation, and thorough knowledge of the tools and techniques needed is essential. This module ensures you gain the information needed to successfully manage and evaluate, solving important situations with good strategies.

International Financial Strategy

Companies, from small enterprises to multinational businesses, need strategic, intelligent financial management. This module provides you with a critical understanding of financial management, increasing your ability to create innovative strategies and theories to help businesses thrive.

Audit Theory and Practice

This module seeks to develop your critical awareness of current issues relating to audit and assurance services. You’ll then be equipped to identify the work required to meet the objectives of an assurance assignment, and evaluate the findings of assurance work and subsequent reports.

Operations and Project Management

You’ll examine all the key stages within a project, from the design and execution right through to analysis and termination. Both of these disciplines make positive contributions to today’s organisations, so we provide you with a firm basis for understanding how operations management can be applied successfully in the workplace.

Masters Stage

You must study both modules below.

Financial Econometrics and Research Skills in Accounting and Finance

The aim of this module is to prepare you for your dissertation, providing a critical overview of modern research methods employed to research topics in accounting and finance. You’ll develop techniques for analysing data, conducting literature search and other issues regarding undertaking and writing an academic dissertation.


This 15,000 word dissertation is a chance for you to pursue an area of the subject that particularly interests you in much greater depth, resulting in you becoming an expert in that chosen field. The topic will be chosen, investigated and published by you, with guidance from a supervisor.

Course Structure

This course offers core modules in both accounting and finance, as well as the opportunity for significant personal research.

It provides students with a clear understanding of the joint roles played by the two disciplines in a range of organisational settings: a practical yet critically informed perspective that is an essential intellectual skill in this post-crisis world.

Our status as an ACCA Platinum Approved Learning Partner means we provide students with extensive and contemporary knowledge of the accountancy and finance sector. This also means we produce graduates who are highly employable, with former students progressing into roles with companies such as Capital One and Interserve.

Postgraduates earn an average £9,000 more per year than those with just undergraduate degrees*. A postgraduate qualification can really help you stand out from the crowd in today’s competitive job market. By becoming a specialist in your field, you’ll have the chance to advance thinking in that subject and lead, rather than follow, the latest developments.

* The Sutton Trust, 2015.


OpportUNIty Student Ambassador

OpportUNIty: Student Jobs on Campus ensures that our students are given a first opportunity to fill many part-time temporary positions within the University. This allows you to work while you study with us, fitting the job around your course commitments. By taking part in the scheme, you will gain valuable experiences and employability skills, enhancing your prospects in the job market.

It will also allow you to become more involved in University life by delivering, leading and supporting many aspects of the learning experience, from administration to research and mentoring roles.

International Students

Birmingham City University is a vibrant and multicultural university in the heart of a modern and diverse city. We welcome many international students every year – there are currently students from more than 80 countries among our student community.

The University is conveniently placed, with Birmingham International Airport nearby and first-rate transport connections to London and the rest of the UK.

Our international pages contain a wealth of information for international students who are considering applying to study here, including:

Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC)

International students who have a serious interest in studying with us but who perhaps cannot meet the direct entry requirements, academic or English, or who have been out of education for some time, can enter Birmingham City University International College (BCUIC) and begin their degree studies.


BCUIC is part of the global Navitas Group, an internationally recognised education provider, and the partnership allows students to access the University’s facilities and services and move seamlessly through to achieving a Bachelor’s degree from Birmingham City University.

Learn more about BCUIC

Popular home countries

Our students come from around the world but our accountancy and finance course is most popular with international students from:

Curzon facilities eatery
Curzon facilities staircase
Curzon facilities student hub

Our Facilities

We are constantly investing in our estate and are currently in the process of spending £260 million on new learning facilities.

The Curzon Building

This course will be held at our newest facility, The Curzon Building, part of our City Centre Campus.

The £63 million building provides you with a unique learning space, featuring plenty of informal ‘break out’ areas available, creating an open, sociable atmosphere. There is also a new home for the Students’ Union, with its location moving to the restored Victorian pub The Eagle and Ball. Both City North and Millennium Point libraries have moved to the new building.

The dedicated social learning spaces ensure you’ll have the perfect facilities to work independently and confidently, having the time and support you need.

All this ensures that The Curzon Building is a vital support hub and a true central location for students in Birmingham City Centre.

Meet our staff

Our staff are experts in their chosen fields. You’ll be taught by people with professional qualifications, as well as relevant academic and industry experience.

Take a closer look at our staff

UK prospective students:

UK enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5595

EU / International prospective students:

International enquiry form

+44 (0)121 331 5389

Already applied?

Email the applications team

+44 (0)121 331 6295