The study of Accounting covers a wide range of accounting practices and theories in a number of different contexts, providing a solid foundation for a successful professional career.
Accountants provide important financial information for key external groups such as owners, investors and regulators as well as assisting managers with insight that allows them to make organisational decisions. Alongside this, accountants verify the accuracy and reliability of financial information (auditing), assess risk and ensure taxation laws are adhered to.
The subject is therefore divided into:
- financial accounting and reporting
- cost and management accounting
- auditing and assurance
- other relevant areas, including sustainability reporting.
Why study Accounting at UC?
UC ranks in the top 150 universities in the world for Accounting and Finance (QS World University Rankings by Subject, 2017).
The Bachelor of Commerce Accounting major is a pathway to external qualifications with Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, CPA Australia, the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), and other professional accounting bodies internationally.
At UC you will study alternative perspectives on contemporary accounting. Students will learn about the modern, reflective role accountants can play in many spheres such as public and private, social, environmental, economic, political and cultural.
UC experts will help you answer the question of how the nature of the accountant’s work differs from other management and professional specialists, politicians and public officials.
You will also consider important topical issues, such as business ethics and corporate social responsibility, Māori as tāngata whenua and the Crown, and the challenges presented by increasing globalisation.
While some previous study of accounting is useful preparation, it is not essential to have studied accounting at secondary school level.
A background in statistics is recommended. However, accounting is not all number-oriented, and a good grounding in spoken and written English communication is essential.
Students with very good Year 13 results in accounting may be offered direct entry to 200-level Accounting courses at the discretion of the Head of Department of Accounting and Information Systems (ACIS).
UC offers a major and a minor in Accounting as part of the Bachelor of Commerce (BCom). You can also study this subject as a minor within the Bachelor of Arts.**
The first-year, 100-level courses required to be taken for a BCom majoring in Accounting are:
- ACCT102 Accounting and Financial Information
- ACCT103 Accounting and Taxation: An introduction
- ECON104 Introduction to Microeconomics or ECON105 Introduction to Macroeconomics or ECON199 Introduction to Microeconomics (a STAR course for secondary school students)*
- INFO123 Information Systems and Technology
- MGMT100 Fundamentals of Management
- STAT101 Statistics 1
- Plus 30 points from 100-level Commerce or any other UC courses. ACCT152 Law and Business* is recommended.
200-level and beyond
Courses at 200 and 300-level build on knowledge and skills introduced at 100-level. You can study business sector management accounting, corporate social responsibility, accounting and finance in government and the public service, international corporate financial reporting, and accounting firm practices such as audit, tax and business consulting.
As a specialist in accounting you will be able to work in a variety of fields throughout your career. The most common positions are: Chartered Accountant, Accounting Manager, Auditor, Consultant, Credit Analyst, Manager or Executive, Chief Financial Officer.
You can focus on a range of areas such as tax, audit, financial management, investment analysis, business services, company or treasury systems accountancy, government finance or third sector development work. UC Accounting graduates get work in a wide variety of roles around the world.
Many Accounting major graduates go on to become chartered accountants, through Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, or become members of CPA (Australia) or the Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA). For membership of some of these professional bodies your Bachelor of Commerce degree must include specific courses (see 'Courses' section above and refer to the individual association website for more information). For further advice you can also contact the Department of Accounting and Information Systems.
Find out more about what you can do with a degree in Accounting.
College of Business and Law
Reception Level 2, Business and Law building
Department of Accounting and Information Systems
College of Business and Law
University of Canterbury
Te Whare Wānanga o Waitaha
Private Bag 4800