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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), the Association of Certified Chartered Accountants (ACCA) or CPA Australia once you graduate, and gain an internationally recognised qualification. See below for details.

Qualifications

If you wish to take Accounting as your 1st Major, you'll need to enrol for either the 3-year Bachelor of Business, or the 4-year Bachelor of Management Studies with Honours.

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 14-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

Waikato is ranked in the world's top 300 universities for Accounting & Finance in the prestigious QS Subject Rankings 2021.

You'll study at our internationally recognised Waikato Management School, which has Triple Crown Accreditation from AACSB, EQUIS and AMBA, placing it in the top 1% of all business schools worldwide.

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

In Tauranga, Accounting is available as a major subject under the Bachelor of Business. There are two ways you can structure your study - either by studying all three years at our new CBD campus, or by including a one-year pathway through Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology.

Optional pathway from Toi Ohomai: It's also possible to complete the one-year NZ Diploma in Business (Level 5) at Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology, and then transfer into Year 2 of the Bachelor of Business (BBus) at the University of Waikato in Tauranga. You'll receive guaranteed credit for eight 100-level papers of the BBus (120 points), which may vary. If you want to major in Accounting or Finance, choose the NZDipBus - Accounting strand.

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 Management15.022A (Hamilton), 22B (Hamilton), 22B (Internet Waikato College), 22B (Tauranga), 22C (Internet Waikato College) & 22X (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 Accounting15.022A (Hamilton), 22A (Tauranga), 22B (Hamilton), 22H (Hamilton) & 22X (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 Accounting15.022A (Hamilton), 22A (Tauranga) & 22B (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 Control15.022A (Hamilton), 22B (Hamilton) & 22B (Tauranga)
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 Systems15.022A (Hamilton), 22B (Hamilton) & 22B (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 Accounting15.022A (Hamilton) & 22A (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 Accounting15.022B (Hamilton) & 22B (Tauranga)
This paper involves detailed examination of current accounting practices, principles and regulations.
ACCTN303Management Accounting15.022A (Hamilton) & 22A (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 Entities15.022A (Hamilton) & 22A (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...
ACCTN305Auditing15.022A (Hamilton), 22A (Tauranga) & 22B (Hamilton)
This paper examines current audit practice techniques, audit theory, audit technology, and the processes employed to audit financial statements.
ACCTN306Taxation15.022B (Hamilton) & 22B (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 Reporting15.022B (Hamilton) & 22B (Tauranga)
This paper develops competencies in performance reporting pertaining to the key areas of financial management: investment, financing and asset management.
MNMGT304Commercial Transactions15.022B (Hamilton) & 22B (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 Internship15.022A (Hamilton), 22A (Tauranga), 22B (Hamilton), 22B (Tauranga), 22C (Hamilton), 22C (Tauranga) & 22X (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 Investigation15.022A (Hamilton), 22A (Tauranga), 22B (Hamilton), 22B (Tauranga), 22C (Hamilton) & 22C (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 Reporting30.022B (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 Accounting30.022A (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 Accounting30.022B (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 Analytics30.022A (Hamilton)
The paper emphasises contemporary methods for detecting and preventing fraud. Students will engage in case analyses and conduct data analytics using current technologies.
ACCTN570Fundamental Accounting for Decision Making15.022A (Hamilton) & 22H (Hamilton)
This paper emphasises learning the preparation of financial records and also provides an understanding of the techniques and issues related to management accounting.
ACCTN571Financial Accounting15.022A (Hamilton)
This paper addresses financial reporting principles, regulations and practices in New Zealand with emphasis on financial reporting in partnerships and companies.
ACCTN572Advanced Auditing15.022A (Hamilton)
This paper examines current audit practice techniques, audit theory, audit technology, and the processes employed to audit financial statements. The paper fosters professional judgement and inter-personal skills.
ACCTN573Management Accounting and Control Systems15.022A (Hamilton)
This paper will provide an overview of some of the developments in the management accounting field. Emphasis throughout the paper will be placed on the importance of information to decision makers. Techniques of planning and control will be examined. The importance of feedback will be stressed and the distinction between feedback a...
ACCTN574Advanced Financial Accounting15.022B (Hamilton)
The paper is designed to facilitate students' understanding of the issues involved in the principles, practices and regulations of accounting within the New Zealand environment.
ACCTN575Advanced Taxation15.022B (Hamilton)
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.
ACCTN576Commercial and Corporate Law15.022A (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.
ACCTN577Performance Reporting15.022B (Hamilton)
The paper will cover the three key areas of financial management decisions relating to investment, financing and asset management.
ACCTN578Accounting Information Systems15.022B (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.
ACCTN581Professional Development Capstone20.022G (Online) & 22H (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 Project20.022G (Online) & 22H (Online)
Students undertake a research project from an accounting workplace environment.
ACCTN583Professional Internship20.022G (Online) & 22H (Online)
Students undertake a professional internship within an accounting workplace environment.
ACCTN590Directed Study30.022X (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 Dissertation30.022X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
ACCTN592Accounting Dissertation60.022X (Hamilton)
A report on the findings of a theoretical or empirical investigation.
ACCTN593Accounting Thesis90.022X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.
ACCTN594Accounting Thesis120.022X (Hamilton)
An externally examined piece of written work that reports on the findings of supervised research.

800 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN800Accounting MPhil Thesis120.022X (Hamilton)
No description available.

900 Level

Code Paper Title Points Occurrence / Location
ACCTN900Accounting PhD Thesis120.022I (Hamilton), 22J (Hamilton), 22K (Hamilton) & 22X (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.


To meet the academic requirements to join either Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand (CA ANZ), CPA Australia or ACCA once you graduate from your bachelor's degree, you will need to choose Accounting as a single major and follow a specific programme of papers.

This means it's not possible to take a 2nd Major (8 papers) in another subject without completing 4-5 extra papers, depending on your degree.

However, you may still have the option of taking a Minor (4 papers) in another subject, if you wish.

You will need to pass the following papers, in addition to any other papers required to complete your degree:

  • ACCTN101 Accounting for Management
  • ACCTN102 Introductory Financial Accounting
  • ECONS101 Business Economics and the New Zealand Economy
  • FINAN101 Introduction to Finance
  • ACCTN202 Intermediate Financial Accounting
  • ACCTN203 Management Accounting: Accounting for Organisational Control
  • ACCTN204 Accounting Information Systems
  • ECONS205 Data Analytics with Business Applications
  • MNMGT301 Business Law and the Legal Environment
  • ACCTN301 Capstone in Accounting
  • ACCTN302 Financial Accounting
  • ACCTN303 Management Accounting
  • ACCTN305 Auditing
  • ACCTN306 Taxation
  • ACCTN308 Performance Reporting
  • ACCT309 Law of Business Enterprise

Contacts

Management Student Centre (MSC)

Location: MSB.1.50, Waikato Management School, Hillcrest Road, University of Waikato, Hamilton
Phone: +64 838 4303
Email: [email protected]
Website: www.management.ac.nz/msc
Opening hours: 8.45am - 4.45pm Monday to Friday

One of the best times to pop into MSC is Open Advice Day, held every Wednesday from 10am to 2pm.