Course details

Study options

Full-time: 1 year, Part-time: 2 years

UK fee

£7,850 for the full course or £875 per 20 credits* (2021/22)

International/EU fee

£14,700 for the full course (2021/22)

Course level




Start dates

January, September


Derby Campus

Course description

Offering a challenging and intellectually stimulating learning experience, our MSc Accounting and Finance prepares you for ACCA professional level examinations alongside a highly respected masters qualification.

This MSc Accounting and Finance prepares you to be operationally and strategically effective in senior finance roles in any sectors, anywhere in the world.

Enhance your career prospects

We deliver thorough and inspirational training. You’ll extend your practical skills in the core areas of finance and accounting, gain a strong theoretical framework of knowledge and develop important research and analytical abilities.

The MSc offers a dual approach to learning which will help you create a CV of real interest and substance. You can start working towards your ACCA professional level papers in parallel to studying for your masters qualification, with comprehensive support and guidance from your personal tutor throughout. 

When you’ve completed the course, you’ll be fully equipped to advance your career within an increasingly complex and global business environment.

Making it real

We link the academic content of the course to real life business scenarios throughout. Via challenging consultancy projects, you’ll work with employers and leading professionals who will share their experiences with you and bring you up to date with latest developments in finance and accounting.  

They deliver guest lectures, offer professional mentoring, give their input to assessments, and provide live case studies to bring a new dimension to your learning.

Many employers also offer our students short-term or medium-term finance-related internships, either on a paid or voluntary basis. The list of opportunities is broad. You could, for instance, make a difference to a local community organisation: our students have enjoyed internships with Derby Museum and the Citizens Advice and Law Centre in Derby.                 

Be inspired by our expertise

You’ll be taught by a dedicated team of professionally qualified (CIMA, ACCA, CIPFA and ICAEW) accountants who have many years of teaching, learning and assessment experience in higher education and professional accountancy programmes.

Among them are staff who have also taught on ACCA and CIMA courses so are ideally placed to help you prepare for your external professional papers. They also include active researchers whose work underpins and enriches the course.

Build your networks

The College of Business, Law and Social Sciences is proud of its role at the heart of the regional business community. We provide you with an academic experience that connects you to this business world, improving your networking skills and building your professional contacts.

Our MSc Accounting and Finance students have taken part in our Geldards Debate Series and our Network of Entrepreneurs events, and have attended talks by inspirational senior figures such as Sam Rush, CEO of Derby County Football Club. All these opportunities give you a broader picture of business in action.

A dynamic learning experience

Class sizes are small so you’ll enjoy plenty of guidance in a friendly and stimulating atmosphere. Because the MSc attracts students from across the world, you’ll also be able to deepen your knowledge of accounting and finance in other countries and the cultural implications of business practice.

In our Financial Markets Lab you can gain hands-on experience of trade floor activities and financial market analysis. It gives you the chance to work with data direct from the stock exchange to simulate what it’s like to work in such a fast-paced arena.

We encourage you to take part in a wide range of extra-curricular activities and these can lead to an additional award to show employers the breadth of your experience. Our special Futures Award for the Finance Professional enables you to build a portfolio showing what you have achieved above and beyond your studies – from networking to volunteering, from taking part in competitions to attending leadership workshops.

It’s all about demonstrating your ambition, confidence, independent thinking and professional behaviour to help you secure your ideal job and achieve greater success in your career.

Students studying

Study full-time over 18 months

Benefit from a study break over the summer to add valuable work experience to your CV. Find out more about our full-time 18-month extended masters route.

Find out more about our extended mastersFind out more about our extended masters
Multi-Faith Centre, Kedleston Road

Postgraduate Open Event

Join us at an upcoming Postgraduate Open Event, where you will get the opportunity to meet our expert academics and find out more about your course.

Book your Postgraduate Open EventBook your Postgraduate Open Event

What you will study

The course is made up of three stages – Postgraduate Certificate, Postgraduate Diploma and MSc.

To complete the MSc Accounting and Finance, you'll study modules such as: 

Strategic Business Leader

This module will develop your ability to exercise professional judgement in undertaking the role of the accountant in respect of governance, internal control, compliance and the management of risk in an organisation, all within an overall ethical framework. It focuses on enhancing your application, communication and technical skills.

Market Analysis 

You’ll integrate your understanding of strategic analysis, marketing, finance, people management, IT, project management and business process change to make an informed analysis of the issues facing a business. You’ll then apply that knowledge and make reasoned judgements so that you can give practical, commercial advice based on a real business scenario.

Corporate Reporting

Providing a mix of technical and non-technical understanding, this module covers the application of international accounting standards to the preparation of group accounts. You’ll evaluate the ethical implications of selecting appropriate corporate reporting strategies and discuss the impact of contemporary and emerging corporate reporting issues on strategic business decisions.

Advanced Financial Management

You’ll develop your skills in managing the conflicting needs of stakeholders as part of a senior financial manager’s responsibility; analysing the impact of macro economics in the financial management of multinationals; evaluating potential investment decisions; planning strategic growth and corporate reorganisation; and applying alternative advanced treasury and risk management techniques.   

Advanced Performance Management (subject to availability)

This module deepens your understanding of the links between management accounting and organisational strategy. It investigates external and internal influences on performance measurement in not-for-profit organisations and private companies. You’ll gain in-depth knowledge of performance management systems and insights into whether management accountants can forecast and help prevent business failure.

Advanced Taxation (subject to availability)

You’ll gain further knowledge and understanding of business and personal taxation within a UK and international context. This will equip you to make decisions and provide recommendations surrounding strategic financial and taxation issues at senior levels within an organisation. You will also look at the impact of government taxation policies on businesses and individuals.

Advanced Audit and Assurance

You’ll discuss the nature, purpose and scope of audit and assurance practice, evaluating information systems and internal control systems and exploring the auditor’s position in relation to professional and ethical frameworks. This module equips you to appraise current approaches to undertaking an audit and assurance services within the requirements of international standards.

International Finance

Investigate how the global financial system works, examine international sources of finance and suitable investment opportunities, form a critical awareness of the risks associated with international trade, and evaluate how fluctuations in exchange rates affect a business.

Mergers and Acquisitions

Drawing on a range of disciplines, you’ll gain a strategic financial perspective on the use of mergers and acquisitions in business strategy. This module will help you to evaluate and analyse potential mergers and acquisitions and to make recommendations for a way forward in light of a company’s objectives.

Independent Study: Research Methods (20 credits)

Independent Study: Dissertation (40 credits)

Please note that our modules are subject to change - we review the content of our courses regularly, making changes where necessary to improve your experience and graduate prospects.

How you will learn

You will learn through a mixture of lectures, group work, discussions, workshops, case-study analysis, practical analysis and personal networking.

How you'll be assessed

The MSc Accounting and Finance uses a range of assessment methods including case study evaluation, time constrained assignments, reflective writing, research-based papers, presentations and group work. 

We have also introduced assessments that will enhance your digital literacy capabilities, such as reporting via video and presenting data using infographics.

Who you'll meet

Our staff are passionate about their subject disciplines and committed to your success. The team includes:

Parminder Johal, our Programme Leader whose professional interests centre on how higher education can be aligned to the ever-changing nature of the accountancy profession and employers’ needs. Her research focuses on investigating accounting practices within SMEs, family-owned businesses and across international borders.

Elaine Conway, Senior Lecturer in Accounting and Finance, whose research interests span business development and improvement, corporate social responsibility, corporate financial performance and accounting standards development.

Dr Nicola Lynch, Head of Economics and an applied economist who researches on public policy issues – including industrial/enterprise policy development, economic development policy and the impact of business networks at micro and macro levels.

David Thompson, Lecturer in Accounting and Finance,who specialises in advanced audit and assurance as well as governance, risk and ethics.

Who will teach you

Parminder Johal

Parminder Johal
Programme leader

As Head of Accounting, Parminder Johal leads a team of passionate and dedicated professionals. Parminder is a professionally qualified accountant and member of the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) and Chartered Global Management Accountants (CGMA). Parminder previously worked in industry as a senior financial analyst for BT plc.

View full staff profileView full staff profile

Entry requirements

For the MSc you will usually need:

To take advantage of the dual learning offered by the MSc programme, you will need:

Fees and funding

2021/22 Fees (August 2021 - July 2022)


£7,850 for the full course or £875 per 20 credits*

£875 per 20 credits


£14,700 for the full course


Please note fees normally increase in line with inflation and the University's strategic approach to fees, which is reviewed on an annual basis. The total fee you pay may therefore increase after one year of study.

* UK full-time fees paid within one academic year are rounded down to the nearest £50 if applicable

Additional costs and optional extras

About postgraduate awards

Please note at postgraduate level, you’ll need to gain the following number of credits in total to obtain the respective awards. If you have any questions please contact us.

Postgraduate Certificate60 Credits
Postgraduate Diploma120 Credits
MA or MSc180 Credits

This means you will gain 180 credits in total to complete the full MA or MSc. If you are studying part time you will normally complete your studies over two or three years, depending on the course structure.

Funding your studies

Find out more about fees, postgraduate loans and support you may be entitled to.

Find out about funding your studiesFind out about funding your studies

Alumni discount for Derby graduates

We offer a discount on postgraduate course fees for all Derby alumni.

Find out about the Alumni discountFind out about the Alumni discount

Students chatting to each other

International student scholarship

We're offering a £2,000 scholarship for all eligible international students studying a full-time postgraduate taught programme (PGT). Terms and conditions apply.

Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship Find out if you're eligible for an international scholarship

How to apply

Full-time 12 month and part-time

UK students

Students should apply directly to the University.

Apply directly to the University
International students

Students applying to start in September 2021 need to apply for this course through an educational agent representative.

Find an educational agent representative in your country

Students applying to start in January 2022 onwards may apply directly, through UCAS or through an educational agent representative.

Apply directly to the University

Guidance for international applicants applying for a postgraduate degree


There is always a demand for professional accountants and the MSc Accounting and Finance will equip you to embark on a new career – or advance your existing career – in many diverse roles and sectors, anywhere in the world.

Our graduates have taken up accounting and finance careers in both public and private sector businesses, ranging from local practices to multinational accounting firms.

Among their career destinations are senior roles with PwC, HMRC, the NHS, Baker Tilly International, epm:technology group, Ashgates Accountants and Business Advisors, Bates Weston and Prime Chartered Accountants.

Our strong links with the business community have opened doors to many exciting job opportunities. Over the last two years, Rolls-Royce have recruited our graduates into their finance department on six-month contracts which have subsequently become permanent jobs.

The MSc is fully focused on helping you to realise your career ambitions. We run a series of ‘professional development’ hours that you are invited to attend to nurture your broader employability skills and help you chart your future direction.

Special sessions are devised to fill any skills gaps which students themselves identify. We have, for instance, responded to requests for extra tuition in the use of Excel. You will also strengthen your CV through the extra-curricular activities undertaken as part of the Futures Award.

Professional accounting bodies such as ACCA and CIMA visit the University to showcase the different career routes that students can explore. Our alumni often attend these sessions too, sharing their own career experiences and often highlighting current vacancies within their own organisations.

Contact us

If you need any more information from us, eg on courses, accommodation, applying, car parking, fees or funding, please contact us and we will do everything we can to help you.

Contact us Contact us

† Additional information about your studies

Full time: 1 year

Full time extended masters: 18 months

Download programme specification

Teaching hours

Like most universities, we operate extended teaching hours at the University of Derby, so contact time with your lecturers and tutors could be anytime between 9am and 9pm. Your timetable will usually be available on the website 24 hours after enrolment on to your course.

Additional costs and optional extras

We’re committed to providing you with an outstanding learning experience. Our expert teaching, excellent facilities and great employability prepare you for your future career. As part of our commitment to you we aim to keep any additional study costs to a minimum. However, there are occasions where students may incur some additional costs.

Please also note that due to the current Covid-19 situation, if your course offers fieldtrips, the location of these may change or be cancelled. If this happens, you will be communicated to in advance and we will do our very best to seek out other practical opportunities to ensure your experience is not affected.

The information below is correct for entry in the academic year September 2021 - August 2022 only. Entry for future academic years may be subject to change.

Included in your fees
Mandatory costs not included in your fees
Optional costs not included in your fees

Please note: Our courses are refreshed and updated on a regular basis. If you are thinking about transferring onto this course (into the second year for example), you should contact the programme leader for the relevant course information as modules may vary from those shown on this page.

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