Accounting and Finance MSc

Postgraduate (12 months, 15 months full-time)


January, September

Intermediate awards: PG Cert, PG Dip

Course duration: September starts, 12 months; January starts, 16 months

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Apply directly to ARU


You want lucrative, wide-ranging opportunities that challenge you. You can keep up with the changes and bustling nature of the finance world. You’re driven and want to understand the complexity of global financial markets around the world. Our full time course has the right balance of everything you need to succeed in accounting and finance; niche international content reaching beyond ACCA, knowledgeable and industry-experienced lecturers, influential guest speakers, The Bloomberg Lab, and strong local and London-based professional connections.

Find out more about teaching options and studying during COVID-19 in the Entry requirements section, below.

Full description


Your MSc in Accounting and Finance can lead to a lucrative career in a wide range of settings and roles, in the UK and internationally.

Modules & assessment

Core Modules

  • International Financial Markets and Investment
    In this module, you'll cover both theoretical and practical areas of international financial markets, with a special focus on investment analysis and portfolio management. There is an international approach and you'll study the subject from an international perspective, alongside students of diverse backgrounds and learning from academics with international reputations. You'll learn modern finance and investment theory alongside practical skills and knowledge of the finance and investment industry, with a strong focus on employability and activities designed to develop your transferable skills. You will be able to work with your peers and module tutors in the University's Bloomberg trading room to develop analytical and trading skills and as teams conduct financial investment analysis and make investment decisions in international financial markets. You will be guided to carry out independent research and critically evaluate key theoretical concepts and practical applications in finance and investment.
  • International Accounting
    The word International in International Accounting can be defined at three different levels. The first level is the supranational accounting, which denotes standards, guidelines and rules of accounting, auditing and taxation issued by supranational organisations (United Nations, International Federation of Accountants). At the second level, the company level, international accounting can be viewed in terms of the standards, guidelines and practices that company follows related to its international business activities and foreign investments. These would include standards for accounting denominated in foreign currency and techniques for evaluating the performance of foreign operations. At the third and broadest level, international accounting can be viewed as the study of the standards, guidelines and rules of accounting that exist within each country and comparison of these rules with International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS) set by International Accounting Standards Board (IASB). The learning outcomes for this module will be assessed at the end of the module in the form of a written, case study based assignment and a written exam. One of the main focuses for the design of this module has been the further development of relevant professional skills.
  • Applied Corporate Finance and Financial Strategy
    This module will give you a conceptual and analytical framework for looking at organisations operating in capital, financial and operational markets, with a focus on applied corporate finance and financial strategy in international and global considerations, both quantitative and qualitative. We'll begin by considering the availability of financial information that may be relevant to decision making and how this fits with that needed for the informed decision. This is further developed to the type of decision and differing requirements, leading to a more bespoke deliverable information set that meets the context of the decision. You'll gain an appreciation of core themes prevalent throughout corporate finance and financial strategy. Strategic financial decision making areas covered include raising finance (both short and long term), efficient allocation and utilisation of financial resources (including investment decisions), international operations and investment, financial risk management using various hedging strategies, financial strategies from start-up to growth and maturity, mergers and restricting, etc. You'll develop knowledge and skills required in accounting and finance, business analysis and banking related professions in this module or start your own business through practical tasks involving developing financial strategies, conducting a financial analysis, managing foreign currency risks and conduct acquisition analysis, among others using professional database such as Bloomberg and Osiris, etc.
  • Tax and Audit
    Using real life, recent case studies to support your course work, you'll look at both the theoretical and practical elements of tax, and provide detailed tax advice or tax planning to resolve such problems. Tax and Audit is very practical subject and you will be able to participate in professional events organised by the professional accounting bodies such as the ACCA and AIA, as well as taking part in guest lectures from practising tax experts. The audit element of this module looks at the nature, purpose and scope of assurance engagements, including the statutory audit, its regulatory environment, and introduces professional ethics relating to audit and assurance. The importance of auditing theory underpinning practice is also emphasised. Internal audit will be covered, including the scope of internal audit as well as the differences between internal audit and external audit. The module then covers a range of areas relating to an audit of financial statements. These include planning and risk assessment, evaluating internal controls, audit evidence, and a review of the financial statements. The final stage deals with reporting, including statutory audit reports, management reports, internal audit report and an evaluation of current issues facing auditing profession.
  • Postgraduate Major Project
    This major project module allows you to engage in a substantial individual primary and/or secondary research project focussed on a topic relevant to your business degree and specialist subject area under the supervision and guidance of a member of academic staff. Supervisors will discuss with you the contemporary research problems and issues based on your research and practice, and you will conduct literature reviews, evaluate and critically appraise a range of information, investigate and adopt suitable theoretical frameworks, research methodologies and methods, and process and analyse data to produce a coherent and justified solution to the problem(s) identified. Throughout the module your supervisor will support you in terms of content and skills development so that you can work semi-autonomously on your individual research project. This is achieved through regular supervisory meetings throughout the year, which will allow for individual discussion of the tasks that will have to be completed in order to develop the project smoothly.


Assessment is mainly through informal question and answer sessions. You can expect individual and group presentations, management reports, exams, presentation or written analysis of case studies, and assignments. Our assessment strategy is linked closely to your future employability. You'll develop skills that can be transferred to the professional environment, such as team work, communication and presentation skills, and the ability to work under pressure.

As part of this course, you will create impact on current knowledge by contributing to existing research with your Postgraduate Major Project.

This is a 12 or 16 month programme

Please note that modules are subject to change and availability.

Where you'll study

Your faculty

You have a highly active mind and see opportunity everywhere. Now you need theory and life-changing skills to sharpen your approach to management. At the Faculty of Business & Law, you will immerse yourself in a multicultural environment where technology blends with teaching to create a dynamic and innovative learning environment. An environment to help you gain those skills.

Where can I study?

Tindal Building on our Chelmsford campus

Our striking, modern campus sits by the riverside in Chelmsford's University and Innovation Quarter.

Explore our Chelmsford campus

Fees & funding

Course fees

UK students starting 2021/22 (per year)


International students starting 2021/22 (per year)


How do I pay my fees?

UK students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in instalments – though you won't need to pay until you've accepted an offer to study with us.

How to pay your fees directly

International students

You can pay your fees upfront, in full or in two instalments. We will also ask you for a deposit of £4,000 or a sponsorship letter. Details will be in your offer letter.

Paying your fees

Funding for postgraduate students

It’s important to decide how to fund your course before applying. Use our finance guide for postgraduate students to learn more about postgraduate loans and other funding options.

We offer a fantastic range of ARU scholarships and bursaries, which provide extra financial support while you're at university.

International students

As well as a number of scholarships, we offer an early payment discount. Explore your options:

Entry requirements

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Important additional notes

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of on-campus and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. A small number of our courses require additional technical specifications or specialist materials. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning. Our website also has general information for new students about starting university in 2020-21.

Our published entry requirements are a guide only and our decision will be based on your overall suitability for the course as well as whether you meet the minimum entry requirements. Other equivalent qualifications may be accepted for entry to this course, please email for further information.

Teaching options

In response to the COVID-19 pandemic, many of our students can choose to study face to face on campus or online only. They're also able to change their mode of delivery on given dates in each trimester.

For on-campus teaching, we offer at least four hours face-to-face teaching related contact time per week for our undergraduate full-time courses, supported by online learning using our established online learning systems. The number of contact hours varies course by course, and you can contact us for further information. The provision offered is subject to change due to the possibility of further Government restrictions, however we remain committed to delivering face-to-face teaching and ensuring a COVID-19 secure environment.

In the event that there are further changes to the current restrictions that are in place due to the pandemic, we may need to move some courses online only at short notice to remain in line with Government guidelines and ensure the continued safety of our students and staff.

View the impact of the current restrictions.

International students

We welcome applications from international and EU students, and accept a range of international qualifications.

Whether you're studying entirely online or through a blend of face-to-face and online learning from September 2020, you'll need a computer and reliable internet access to successfully engage with your course. Before starting the course, we recommend that you check our technical requirements for online learning.

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, you'll need to make sure you meet our English language requirements for postgraduate courses.

Check the standard entry requirements for IELTS requirements for this course.

Improving your English language skills

If you don't meet our English language requirements, we offer a range of courses which could help you achieve the level required for entry.

We also provide our own English Language Proficiency Test (ELPT) in the UK and overseas. To find out if we are planning to hold an ELPT in your country, contact our country managers.

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Get more information

UK & EU applicants

01245 68 68 68

Enquire online

International applicants

+44 1245 68 68 68

Enquire online