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Accounting

Studying accounting is your pathway to working with clients to help them make their businesses more profitable and successful, and reduce their exposure to financial risk. With accounting you'll gain the skills you need to become a trusted business adviser and make strategic financial decisions for organisations.

Accountants can earn attractive salaries and are in demand both in New Zealand and overseas. They often work in high-level management positions where skills in financial control, decision making, legal compliance and leadership are essential.

If you enjoy working with numbers and people, and want to help businesses grow, then accounting may be a good fit for you.

In this subject, you'll learn how to prepare financial records to comply with professional reporting standards, and gain an understanding of commercial and taxation laws that apply to businesses.

A qualification in accounting can lead you into all kinds of industries, such as agribusiness, manufacturing or entertainment.

Become a professionally qualified accountant

Professionally qualified accountants are paid attractive salaries, and can work anywhere in the world.

By following a specific programme of study, you can meet the academic requirements to join either Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CAANZ), CPA Australia, the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA), or the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) once you graduate, and gain an internationally recognised qualification.

Qualifications

If you wish to take Accounting as your 1st Major, you'll need to enrol for the 3-year Bachelor of Business.

Otherwise you can normally take it as a 2nd Major (8 papers) or Minor subject (4 papers) for any other bachelor's degree offered at the University of Waikato.

If you have never studied accounting before at university level, and wish to study towards becoming a professionally qualified accountant, graduates of any bachelor's degree may enrol for the Master of Professional Accounting, a 12-month accelerated programme.

If you'd like to gain specialist expertise through postgraduate research, take a look at our Master of Management Studies in Accounting.

Internationally recognised

You'll study at our internationally recognised Waikato Management School, which is in the top 1% of business schools globally thanks to our prestigious Triple Crown Accreditation from AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA.

Waikato is one of New Zealand's leading business schools, consistently ranked 1st or 2nd in New Zealand for Business and Economics in the Times Higher Education World University Subject Rankings since 2022.

Apply to enrol

Key information

Study Locations:Hamilton, Tauranga
Papers offered differ by location. The Catalogue of Papers has full location info.
Area of Study:

Career opportunities

  • Auditor
  • Business consultant
  • Chief financial officer
  • Company accountant
  • Financial accountant/controller
  • Management accountant
  • Tax accountant

Study in Tauranga

In Tauranga, Accounting is available as a major subject under the Bachelor of Business.

For advice before you enrol, please contact a Tauranga Future Student Advisor, email [email protected] or phone 0800 WAIKATO.


100 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN101Accounting for Management15.024A (Hamilton), 24B (Hamilton), 24B (Hamilton Waikato College), 24B (Tauranga), 24C (Hamilton Waikato College), 24VA (National Economics University, Vietnam) & 24X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper focuses on the analysis and use of financial and non-financial information by internal and external stakeholders to make informed business decisions.
ACCTN102Introductory Financial Accounting15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Tauranga), 24B (Hamilton) & 24X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
This paper teaches students how to record, report, and analyse accounting information and prepare financial statements. The paper involves the use of current accounting software technologies.

200 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN202Intermediate Financial Accounting15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Tauranga) & 24B (Hamilton)
This paper deals with the practices, principles and regulations of Financial Reporting in New Zealand with emphasis on financial reporting in partnerships and companies.
ACCTN203Management Accounting: Accounting for Organisational Control15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Tauranga) & 24B (Hamilton)
This paper provides students with an understanding of management accounting, with emphasis on the use of costing, budgeting, and performance evaluation to make informed business decisions.
ACCTN204Accounting Information Systems15.024A (Hamilton), 24B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper employs hands-on application of current technologies to prepare students to use and develop accounting systems, to store and retrieve accounting data, and to analyze complex accounting data.

300 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN301Capstone in Accounting15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Online (Tauranga))
The development of accounting and accounting theory, the conceptual framework, non-mandatory reporting, ethics and governance, unresolved issues, and a consideration of the nature and scope of accounting.
ACCTN302Financial Accounting15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper involves detailed examination of current accounting practices, principles and regulations.
ACCTN303Management Accounting15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Tauranga)
This paper examines current theory and practice in management accounting with an emphasis on the design of management accounting systems, and planning, control and performance measurement in both the for-profit and not-for-profit sectors.
ACCTN304Corporate Entities15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Tauranga)
This paper explains the laws and regulations that govern the different forms of legal entities, including the significance of separate legal entity. The paper addresses aspects of company incorporation, directors' duties, governance, share transfers, role of company secretary, membership, meetings and dividends and directors and co...
ACCTN305Auditing15.024A (Hamilton) & 24A (Tauranga)
This paper examines professional ethics and current audit practice techniques, audit theory, audit technology, and the process employed to audit financial statement s with a strong emphasis on fostering audit judgement. The paper applies the international and New Zealand Audit standards to practical case studies.
ACCTN306Taxation15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper educates students about the main statutes and policy in New Zealand taxation. It also addresses the importance of taxation in business decisions, the calculation of income tax obligations and the preparation of tax returns.
ACCTN308Performance Reporting15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper develops competencies in performance reporting pertaining to the key areas of financial management: investment, financing and asset management.
MNMGT304Commercial Transactions15.024B (Hamilton) & 24B (Tauranga)
This paper overviews the sources of New Zealand business law and obligations that arise under this law, and critically examines the importance of key aspects of: the Legal System and Treaty of Waitangi; Jurisdiction; Business forms; Directors duties; Agency; Contracts and On-line Contracts; Consumer Law - Fair Trading Act 1996 and ...
WSAFE396Management Internship15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Tauranga), 24B (Hamilton), 24B (Tauranga), 24C (Hamilton), 24C (Tauranga) & 24X (Zhejiang University City College, Hangzhou China)
The Management Internship provides students with the opportunity to apply their management discipline-based knowledge to an authentic project within an organisation.
WSAFE399Report of an Investigation15.024A (Hamilton), 24A (Tauranga), 24B (Hamilton), 24B (Tauranga), 24C (Hamilton) & 24C (Tauranga)
This paper offers students the opportunity to complete a directed investigation of an approved topic relevant to an organisation or industry and in an area related to their management discipline of study.

500 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN502Advanced Financial Reporting30.024B (Hamilton)
This paper equips students with sufficient practical knowledge to appreciate some of the problems involved in preparing advanced financial statements. It will also enhance an understanding of the different issues facing accountants and preparation of general purpose financial reports, as well as enabling students to critically inte...
ACCTN506International Accounting30.024A (Hamilton)
This paper explores and analyses accounting in a global and transnational context. Similarities and differences between accounting and its regulation in different national contexts, and attempts to harmonise the accounting practices of different countries are discussed. The paper also addresses issues relevant for an appreciation o...
ACCTN531Advanced Management Accounting30.024B (Hamilton)
This paper aims to develop skills and critical ability in management accounting. It will broaden the knowledge of participants by examining the diverse perspectives and approaches evident in the subject of management accounting.
ACCTN541Fraud Auditing and Analytics30.024A (Hamilton)
The paper emphasises contemporary methods for detecting and preventing fraud. Students will engage in case analyses and conduct business data analytics using current technologies.
ACCTN581Professional Development Capstone20.024H (Online)
The objective of this paper is to help students develop critical thinking and sound analytical skills about the past, present and future of accounting theory and practice. This paper covers key theoretical positions underlying the practice of accounting as well as key factors effecting the development of the profession. The princip...
ACCTN582Research Project20.024H (Online)
Students undertake a research project from an accounting workplace environment.
ACCTN583Professional Internship20.024H (Online)
Students undertake a professional internship within an accounting workplace environment.
ACCTN590Directed Study30.024X (Hamilton)
Students have the opportunity to pursue a topic of their own interest under the guidance of academic staff. This paper is available only to Waikato Management School students with the approval of the Chairperson.
ACCTN591Accounting Dissertation30.024X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
ACCTN592Accounting Dissertation60.024X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
ACCTN593Accounting Thesis90.024X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
ACCTN594Accounting Thesis120.024X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
ACCTP512Risk and Technology7.5No occurrences
Risk and Technology analyses how businesses create and protect stakeholder value with a focus on risk management, data and technology arising from existing and emerging technologies, process automation and the use and application of data.
ACCTP513Financial Accounting and Reporting7.5No occurrences
This paper requires candidates to apply International Financial Reporting Standards (IFRS), or local equivalents, and regulatory and ethical requirements to account for and report on a diverse range of business transactions and events.
ACCTP514Business Performance7.5No occurrences
This paper is concerned with equipping students with skills for critiquing the performance of a business and supporting decision-making. The ability to critique the performance of a business and provide advice in the execution of business strategy is an essential skill for Chartered Accountants.
ACCTP515Accounting for Mātauranga Māori and Sustainability7.5No occurrences
In Sustainability for Accountants, students will develop their awareness of environmental, social and governance (ESG) impacts on organisations, and the role Chartered Accountants play in linking these issues to broader business agendas. Students will also develop an awareness of Matauranga Maori and its contribution to sustainability decision-making.
ACCTP516Tax7.5No occurrences
This paper is concerned with the core knowledge and skills of tax required to provide advice and services for a range of transactions and events appropriate to the jurisdiction.
ACCTP517Audit and Risk7.5No occurrences
This paper develops a student's knowledge and skills required for applying professional judgement and professional scepticism in addressing risk in auditing areas where significant professional judgement is required in the context of the audit of general-purpose financial statements.
ACCTP518Integrated Chartered Accounting Practice7.5No occurrences
This paper requires students to build on and integrate existing technical knowledge, critical thinking, and professional skills to provide business advice. Students will embed an ethical approach in the application of these skills and communicate insights effectively to meet the needs of a variety of audiences.
ACCTP519Data Analytics and Insights7.5No occurrences
This paper will enable students to identify, analyse and solve business problems using data analysis techniques and modern business intelligence tools. Students will develop effective techniques to communicate insights.
ACCTP569Management Accounting for Organisational Value15.024H (Hamilton)
This paper provides an understanding of budgeting, product, and service costing, control, and performance evaluation. The paper also covers the local and global organisational environment within which a business operates relating to management.
ACCTP570Accounting Systems and Processes15.024A (Hamilton) & 24H (Hamilton)
This paper covers the form and function of financial statements and how financial transactions are recorded through the understanding of accounting principles and concepts that underlie financial reporting. An understanding of ethical and professional values as important elements to accurate financial reporting will also be covered...
ACCTP571Financial Accounting and Reporting15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper explores the theoretical principles underlying current accounting practices, principles and regulations and their application to the preparation and analysis of financial statements at a national and international level.
ACCTP572Advanced Auditing15.024B (Hamilton)
This paper aims to develop an awareness of auditing by applying theory to audit practice and audit decision-making. Students will focus on the role of the external auditor, professional expectations, professional ethics, and regulation related to the audit of financials statements. The key concepts of the audit process and the appl...
ACCTP573Management Accounting and Strategic Decision Making15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper provides an overview of management accounting, decision theory, control theory, economics, and human and organisational behaviour theory and the importance of information for governance and strategic decision making in a global sustainable environment.
ACCTP574Advanced Financial Accounting15.024B (Hamilton)
This paper is designed to deepen understanding of the issues involved in the current practices, principles, and regulations of New Zealand accounting. The paper critically discusses major issues of accounting practice. The paper further facilitates critical and independent thinking, enhances analytical ability, and fosters creativi...
ACCTP575Advanced Taxation15.024B (Hamilton)
This paper covers the fundamentals of the New Zealand taxation system and its administration and aims to help students develop the technical skills in the interpretation and application of the New Zealand Tax Legislation (Income Tax Act 2007, GST ACT 1985 and other related legislations).
ACCTP576Business Law15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper introduces students to the New Zealand legal system and laws regulation specified business activities. The initial focus is given to the laws applying to business contracts. The paper also cover principles applying to companies.
ACCTP577Performance Reporting15.024B (Hamilton)
The paper will cover the three key areas of financial management decisions relating to investment, financing and asset management.
ACCTP578Accounting Information Systems15.024A (Hamilton)
This paper employs hands-on application of current technologies to prepare students to use and develop accounting systems, to store and retrieve accounting data, and to analyse complex accounting data.

800 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN800Accounting MPhil Thesis120.024X (Hamilton)
No description available.

900 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN900Accounting PhD Thesis120.024I (Hamilton), 24J (Hamilton), 24K (Hamilton) & 24X (Hamilton)
No description available.

Aleena Sutton Studying accounting provides you with many different options. It enables you to work in various branches of accounting and a wide range of industries. It’s also beneficial if you want to start up your own company or work in other areas of business.

Read stories from other Accounting students


Scholarships and prizes

New to Waikato? The International Excellence Scholarship is worth up to $10,000.

Visit our Scholarship Finder for information about possible scholarships

Find your scholarship


At Waikato, you'll get hands-on experience with specialised accounting software such as MYOB and Xero.

You'll analyse real-life case studies of accounting situations, and learn about the business environment and how managerial decisions are made.

You'll also learn about contracts and trusts, evaluate the impact of taxes, and gain skills in auditing, investment, financing and asset management. You could also undertake an industry internship in an accounting workplace.

If you're new to Hamilton, there'll be plenty of opportunities for you to make new friends with similar interests. You could get involved with Beta Alpha Psi, a student accounting club that runs regular workshops and employer visits.


If you'd like to become a professional accountant one day,  you will need to meet the academic requirements of university study by completing a a recognised pathway of specific accounting and business papers at Waikato - rather than just a normal major in Accounting (8-9 papers).

With the Bachelor of Business, you have the option of taking a Minor subject (4 papers) alongside your accounting major, if you wish.

Once you have graduated with your accounting degree, you can then apply to join and become a provisional member of one of the following four professional organisations. Please note that you will need to complete further study and take professional exams to become a fully qualified Chartered Accountant.

  • Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ)
  • CPA Australia
  • Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA)
  • Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA)

Contacts

Management Student Centre (MSC)

Location: MSB.1.50, Waikato Management School, Hillcrest Road, University of Waikato, Hamilton
Phone: +64 7 838 4303
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.management.ac.nz/msc
Opening hours: 8.30am - 5.00pm Monday to Friday