MA (Hons) Accounting and Business Finance

The course

Programme code
KPT/JPS (R/344/6/0452) (MQA/FA7011) 03/26
Delivery type
3 years
Intake date
September, January

With very close links with industry, commerce and relevant professional bodies, our business-related programmes are world-renowned for teaching and research.


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Our Accounting and Business Finance programme is a specialist degree, particularly suited to those seeking entry into the accounting profession, financial services or financial management. The value of such studies is also recognised by professional accountancy bodies which offer examination exemptions.

Teaching and assessment

Teaching is delivered through a combination of lectures, tutorials and project work. Course assessment is generally based on either coursework or an exam at the end of the semester, or a mixture of the two at the end of the semester or academic year.

The degree of Master of Arts (MA) is an undergraduate Honours degree, awarded by the ancient universities in Scotland and the UK including Aberdeen, Dundee, Edinburgh, Glasgow, St Andrews, Cambridge and Oxford. At other universities in Scotland and the UK, undergraduate degrees in the arts, liberal arts, humanities or social sciences are awarded as Bachelor of Arts (BA).



The programme has been accredited by the Institute of Chartered Accountants in England and Wales (ICAEW), Association of Chartered Certified Accountants (ACCA), Chartered Institute of Management Accountants (CIMA) and CPA Australia.

Graduates are eligible to apply for exemptions from international Professional bodies:

  • ACCA: up to 9 papers*
  • ICAEW: up to 8 papers*
  • CIMA: up to 8 papers*
  • CPA Australia: Foundation papers*

*subject to results obtained by students; students joining the programme at Heriot-Watt University Malaysia from Year 1

ACCA Accelerate

This programme is also among the few selected in the region by ACCA to run the ACCA Accelerate programme, allowing students to take the remaining 5 papers by ACCA during their second year to potentially be an accredited accountant by the time they graduate.

Course content

Year 1

  • Principles of Accounting
  • Fundamentals of Finance
  • Introduction to Economics
  • Management in a Global Context
  • Financial Accounting
  • Management Accounting in Organisations
  • Finance and Financial Statistics
  • Financial Markets Theory

Year 2

  • Management Accounting Techniques and Decisions
  • Business Research Methods
  • Contemporary Issues in Financial Accounting
  • Choose 5 optional courses

Optional courses available for Year 2 include:

  • Auditing and Assurance
  • Corporate Financial Theory
  • Taxation in Malaysia
  • Strategic Management
  • In addition, students are required to complete the Industrial Training course in Year 2

Year 3

  • Choose 6 from optional courses 

Across both semesters

  • Accounting and Finance Dissertation

Optional courses available for Year 3 include:

  • Managerial Accounting: Decision Making
  • Agency Theory and Corporate Governance
  • Case Studies in Financial Management
  • International Accounting
  • Corporate Reporting
  • Contemporary Issues in Finance

*Information correct at time of publication and may be subject to change


Our graduates are successful in a range of professional, financial, commercial and industrial areas. Many students join accounting firms, taking examinations for one of the professional accountancy bodies. The combination of expertise also provides a firm foundation for successful business and management careers including banking, insurance, finance and management.

Entry requirements

  • A-Level: DDD
  • STPM: C+C+
  • UEC: Maximum 30 points (5 subjects not less than B grade)
  • Canada Year 12 High School Diploma: 50 (average score based on 6 best relevant subjects including English)
  • International Baccalaureate Diploma: 24 points excluding Theory of knowledge and Extended Essay
  • Foundation: Minimum CGPA 2.5
  • Diploma: Minimum CGPA 2.5
  • Heriot-Watt University Malaysia Foundation in Business / Foundation in Science: Pass and eligible to receive the award 
  • SMA 3 (Indonesia): 6.0
  • Year 12 State Board High School Examination (India): 70%
  • Senior High School Graduation Certificate (China): 80%


In addition to the entry requirements listed above, applicants must have grade C in Mathematics at SPM/ IGCSE or equivalent. This requirement can be waived if applicants have obtained at least grade pass in Mathematics at a higher level. 

MQA requires Malaysian students to possess a MUET Band 2 or equivalent qualification in order to register for the programme when using an entry qualification whereby the medium of instruction is not in English, e.g. UEC, STPM. 

We highly urge all prospective students to submit their applications. Our students comprise of individuals with a wide array of qualifications. The most comprehensive way for us to assess eligibility is by receiving a completed application comprising of academic qualification.  

Entry requirements in the prospectus and website may not always apply and individual offers may vary. 

English language requirements

If English is not your first language, then evidence of proficiency equivalent to IELTS 6.0 is required.

If you do not have IELTS 6.0, we offer a Pre-Sessional English Programme (PSEP) prior to commencing your studies.


View our tuition fees for this course.

Scholarships and bursaries

See our range of scholarships and sponsored scholarships.