Accounting and Finance MSc

  • Programme duration: Full-time: 12 months  
  • Programme start: Autumn 2021
  • Entry requirements: A first degree from an approved university or a UK 2:1 or International equivalent for students with Bachelor’s degrees with at least eight modules in accounting and/or finance.
Accounting and Finance msc

Module details

Due to the impact of COVID-19 we're changing how the course is delivered

This 12-month programme consists of five taught compulsory and two taught optional modules, each focusing on a major area of Accounting and Finance. These are followed by a 60 credit project carried out over the summer period.  

Semester 1

Required Modules

ACFI821 Advanced Financial Accounting & Reporting

This module aims to provide students with an in-depth understanding of the conceptual principles and key techniques of financial reporting practices. The module evaluates the key elements of financial reporting systems set out in International Financial Reporting Standards with particular reference to the preparation and interpretation of financial statements. It identifies the key stakeholders of businesses and develops a framework for understanding their main interests and accounting information needs, related to business operations. It thus enhances students’ practical financial accounting skills, explores the role of financial accounting in assessing financial performance, and explains the main principles and purpose of the subjects in contemporary organisations.

ACFI906 Corporate Finance and Valuation

The module is intended to develop students’ knowledge and understanding in theoretical and empirical aspects of a number of areas in Corporate Finance including: capital budgeting, capital structure, dividend policy, raising long-term capital, corporate governance and international corporate finance.

ACFI815 Quantitative Techniques for Accounting and Finance

The aim of this module is to provide students with the foundation necessary to successfully understand and apply the quantitative techniques commonly used in the accounting and finance industry. The module starts with an overview of basic mathematical functions and operations. It then goes on to discuss the ordinary least squares estimation technique. In particular, students will learn how to develop a well-specified econometric model, test interesting hypotheses, interpret the results and formulate recommendations. The module draws on different areas of accounting and finance to illustrate the use of the quantitative techniques, thus offering students exposure to various fields. Students will also improve their computing skills through the seminars in the computer lab.

Optional Modules (Choose one):

ACFI824 Financial Markets, Financial Regulation and Ethics

The Financial Markets, Financial Regulation and Ethics module is core to the programme and addresses key issues associated with how the financial markets are regulated and supervised, along with the nature and importance of an ethical framework.

Key topics include:

  • Basic concepts about financial markets
  • Financial instruments traded in markets
  • The role and nature of financial regulation
  • Regulation through the lens of the global financial crisis
  • Internationally enacted financial regulations
  • CFA Institute Ethics and Professional Standards of Practice
  • Ethical Practices.

This module develops a conceptual understanding of the regulation of financial markets and of ethical issues and behaviours.

ACFI816 Advanced Management Accounting

This module aims to provide students with an in-depth understanding of the conceptual principles and key techniques of management accounting practice. The module explores the roles of management accounting information in planning, coordination, decision making, control, performance measurement, and business strategy. The module enhances students’ practical management accounting skills, explores the role of management accounting in assessing financial performance, and explains the main principles and purpose of the subjects in contemporary organisations.

Semester 2

Required Modules:

ACFI825 Security Analysis, Valuation and Investment

This module aims to enrich students’ understanding and enhance their practical skills by building the core competency of investment analysis inspiring careers in finance. Students will be given a general introduction to the different asset classes and financial instruments; study the most popular techniques in financial analysis and valuation models rooted from research-led teaching contents; learn and practice investment strategies inspired by theoretical insights and empirical rigors.

ACFI810 Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation

Financial Statement Analysis and Valuation comprehensively reviews accounting reporting requirements under IFRS to support understanding of corporate performance and position. Students are introduced to all of the main accounting standards with a strong focus on the development application skills to underpin accurate interpretation of corporate financial statements. The methods and flaws of corporate valuation are demonstrated as a key element of the module.

Optional Modules (Choose one):

ACFI823 Contemporary Issues in Accounting and Finance Research

This module aims to provide students with in-depth conceptual understandings of current research topics in accounting, finance and related areas. The module addresses latest developments in the key areas of relevant research with a specific reference to the roles of current research contributions in policy making and organisational development. It will equip students with the skills to develop a conceptual framework for understanding and evaluating; the identification of an appropriate topic for research, conducting a structured literature review, identifying research gaps, critically evaluating and compiling different research methods, and pinpointing the research implications and contributions. The overall content of this module will therefore help in enhancing students’ practical research skills, and explore the roles and implications of current research findings in assessing contemporary organisations.

ACFI811 Advanced Corporate Finance

The module builds on Corporate Finance to lead students to advanced research debates in corporate finance and position students to undertake research in the area. It particularly develops strengths in agency, financing, financial reorganisation and the wider relevance of options (both financial and non-financial).

ACFI817 Audit and Assurance

Auditing plays a crucial role in the smooth functioning of the financial markets. Most accounting and finance graduates will work in areas closely related with auditing. The module aims to give students a relatively in-depth understanding of the concepts, techniques and theories related to the audit of financial statements and provides students with relatively advanced knowledge of the regulatory and professional frameworks of auditing.

ACFI814 International Finance

The aim of this module is to provide students with an understanding of international arbitrage relationships, models of exchange rate determination, and recent issues in international finance literature. By the end of this module, students should be able to describe the basic international parity relationships, outline some of the basic models of exchange rate determination, and have a good grasp of current issues in international financial markets, and be able to critically evaluate the empirical literature on international finance. Students should also be able to analyse risks that exist in international finance including foreign exchange, foreign trade and investment risks and to select and use appropriate techniques to manage such risks.

ACFI818 Corporate Governance

This aim of this module is to present key issues in corporate governance and discuss their impact on corporate financial performance. These include most common big-scale “agency” problems, where top executives of the firm have opportunities to take actions that benefit them, while shareholders and other stakeholders bearing the cost of these actions. In particular, it covers various aspects of internal governance including the role of the board of directors, reviews the importance of executive compensation, equity ownership structure and turnover as internal control mechanism. The course also explores numerous external governance devices from non-executive to non-equity shareholders, and addresses the role that accounting, legal and regulatory interventions play in corporate governance. Academic research and real-world case studies will be used to enhance the understanding of why corporate governance matters, and how directors, managers and shareholders respond to these issues in their daily corporate affairs. By the end of this module, students will gain: (ii) the ability to look at the “big-picture” questions in the area of corporate governance, and (ii) skills to critically discuss the practical solutions/mechanism to improve the effectiveness of corporate governance.

Summer Term

ACFI912 Dissertation

The dissertation module is an opportunity to apply the empirical skills gained on MSc Finance and MSc Accounting and Finance and apply it to an appropriate research question in accounting and finance in the form of a 15,000 word dissertation. Supporting lectures will be provided to students covering following topics:

  • Research project planning and time management
  • Identifying and formulating research questions
  • Review of theoretical and empirical literature
  • Research design: structure, method and presentation
  • Data collection, storage and cleaning
  • Introduction to databases at Liverpool University
  • Research tool: Excel, Stata and Eviews
  • Research tool: STATA and MATLAB
  • Referencing and bibliographies
  • Research example: OLS regression
  • Research example: Time series and panel data
  • Research example: Event study
  • Research example: Other methods
  • Evaluation of research contribution, impact and limitations
  • Academic writing and presentation.