MA (Hons) Accounting and Business Finance

The course

Course code
KPT/JPS (N/344/6/0452)(FA7011) 03/21
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

  • Business Accounting and Assurance
  • Finance and Financial Statistics
  • Financial Reporting
  • Management Accounting in Organisations
  • Choose 4 optional or elective courses

Optional courses available for Year 1 include:

  • Management in a Global Context
  • Commercial Law
  • Business Entities
  • Organisational Behaviour

Elective courses are also taken.

Year 2

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

Optional courses available for Year 2 include:

  • Financial Markets Theory
  • Auditing and Assurance
  • Corporate Financial Theory
  • Taxation in Malaysia
  • Strategic Management

Elective courses are also taken.

Year 3

  • Choose 6 optional courses

Across both semesters

  • 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

  • Foundation Year Heriot-Watt University Malaysia Foundation in Science or Business: CCCC
  • A-Level/STPM: CCC
  • UEC: 20 points or less (5 subjects not less than B grade)
  • CPU: 70%
  • SMA 3 (Indonesia): 7.5
  • IB Diploma: 25 points
  • Diploma or any other relevant qualification recognised by the Malaysian Government,  acceptable to the University

Special requirements

In addition to the entry requirements above, we also require a minimum B in Mathematics at SPM/O-Level or equivalent. Special English requirements may also apply.

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.