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MASTER OF COMMERCE specialising in Financial Reporting, Analysis & Governance

UCT’S COLLEGE OF ACCOUNTING OFFERS A MASTER OF COMMERCE DEGREE WHICH EMPHASISES BUSINESS APPLICATIONS AND RESEARCH IN ALL AREAS OF ACCOUNTING.

WHY THIS MASTER’S DEGREE?

If you are aspiring to be a Chief Financial Officer, Audit Partner, Board Member, Regulator or Academic, this qualification will equip you with the skills that will both help prepare you for those roles, but also set you apart from others. This qualification focuses on real world applications and enhances the skills required to achieve leadership in accounting, corporate financial analysis, and corporate governance decision making.

All course content also explores different philosophical and methodological approaches to research with a view to helping you understand the logic and rationale of different research perspectives. This enables you to undertake informed investigation, the ability to collect, organize and analyse data, and to effectively progress in the writing of your research dissertation. These skills are value-adding in all areas of business.

Entrance requirements

An HEQSF level 8 qualification in Accounting/Finance or relevant work experience in Accounting/Finance or a CA(SA). Applicants may be required to present themselves for an interview.

Application deadline

31 October

PROGRAMME OUTLINE

The programme is part-time through coursework and a minor dissertation. There are three compulsory coursework modules that are presented over a one-week period each. The fourth compulsory course is presented in conjunction with each of the three afore-mentioned courses.

CORPORATE FINANCIAL ANALYSIS

Students will be enabled to analyse a company effectively within its respective industry, market and macroeconomic environment. Key insights into monetary policy, financial analysis and both technical and fundamental analysis will be employed. Concurrently, an evaluation of the role of manager and investor sentiment on perceived company performance and financial statement presentation will be discussed.

FINANCIAL AND EXTERNAL REPORTING

Understanding how external reporting meets the needs of the public interest and contributes towards the reporting entity’s value creation process is the aim of this course. Students will be exposed to different types of reports and will be required to develop an understanding of the basis on which they are prepared, including critical analysis of their content.

CORPORATE GOVERNANCE AND RISK MANAGEMENT

This course equips students to identify and exploit opportunities while reducing risks (strategic, operational, financial, marketing, legal, environment, etc.) in pursuit of an entity’s overall objectives. Students will analyse the leadership process of the board or other governing body, analyse the role of the audit committee and review the role of the internal audit function.

RESEARCH METHODOLOGY

The aim of this course is to equip students with a range of skills to prepare them for writing their dissertations. During the course, students will write their research proposal, under the guidance of a supervisor, and present it to a panel of academics and students. In doing so, they will develop the skills to conceive a research idea and acknowledge earlier research in the field. The course will offer guidance for students to undertake informed investigation, and enable the ability to collect, organize and analyse data.

The research methodology seminars run concurrently with the coursework modules in weeks 1 to 3. However, students are required to present their research proposal at one additional session and attend one other research proposal session.

Duration

Students will register for and complete all compulsory coursework in year 1. The preferred option is to register concurrently for the research dissertation in year 1. As an exception, students may elect to register for the dissertation in year 2.

Assessment

Assessment will include individual and group work assignments (submissions and presentations). There are no separate written examinations.

Fees and Funding

The approximate tuition fee for all compulsory courses and the dissertation component is R60 000. You can find the latest fee information (including fees for international students) in UCT’s Student Fees Handbook:

For funding information, you can contact the postgraduate centre and funding office.

WHAT PAST GRADUATES SAY

“Doing my Masters was definitely one of my better decisions! The masters course exposed me to a different type of learning and a learning environment that encouraged debate and lateral thought, something very different to the debits and credits of my undergraduate. I thoroughly enjoyed the experiences shared and information imparted by the lecturers and the multitude of guest speakers. Additionally, completing and submitting a dissertation that I am proud of is one of my greatest personal achievements to date! “

Bronté Morton

“It takes both technical competence and executive prowess to be a distinguished professional, and this degree’s contribution to the latter cannot be gainsaid. I feel empowered to be much more than a number cruncher – I can be an innovator in industry, a contributor to global knowledge through research, a custodian of good governance and I can be a business solutionist to society’s challenges.”

Malilimalo Phaswana

“The MCom was an incredible venture into the world of postgrad studies. The guest lecturers and the interesting topics covered broadened my knowledge base and my horizons, raising questions about my life and career path I didn’t know needed answers to. The thesis portion of the degree stretched me by forcing me to develop my writing and research skills and has sparked a desire to learn more about research and the best ways to analyse data.”

Alison Olivier