Programmes

MSc Accounting and Finance

  • Graduate taught
  • Department of Accounting
  • Application code N4U1
  • Starting 2017

The MSc Accounting and Finance has an established reputation for excellence extending over five decades. It provides a comprehensive and rigorous treatment of key areas of accounting and finance. It is appropriate for applicants interested in careers across a wide range of sectors and organisations in the fields of business, consulting and finance, and provides thorough preparation for academic research in accounting or finance.

The programme assumes an academic background in financial reporting, management accounting, finance, economics and quantitative methods prior to entry.  As a condition of admission, you may be required to take one or more courses in these areas to strengthen your background.

Through your course selection, you can emphasise either accounting or finance, or can choose an equally balanced programme across the two areas. You will also be able to specialise in a designated pathway in finance, international accounting and finance, or accounting and financial management.

The programme is housed within the Department of Accounting, which is widely recognised throughout the world for its excellence in accounting and financial management research and education, as well as for its leading role in public policy issues. The interface between accounting and managers, organisations, institutions, public policy and regulatory bodies is a particular teaching and research strength of the Department.

Programme details

Key facts

MSc Accounting and Finance
Start date 21 September 2017
Application deadline None – rolling admissions. However please note the funding deadlines.
Duration 9 months full-time, 21 months part-time (see Bologna process)
Applications 2016 1,140
Intake 2016 160
Availability UK/EU: Closed
Overseas: Closed
Tuition fee UK/EU: £25,944
Overseas £26,448
Financial support Graduate support scheme (deadline 26 April 2017)
Minimum entry requirement 2:1 degree or equivalent in accounting and finance or related subject
GRE/GMAT requirement GMAT is recommended for all applicants and is required for those without a UK undergraduate degree
English language requirements Standard (see 'assessing your application')
Location  Houghton Street, London

For more information about tuition fees and entry requirements, see the fees and funding and assessing your application sections.

Programme structure and courses

You must successfully complete the equivalent of four full-unit courses to meet the requirements of the MSc Accounting and Finance programme. Results from each of the full-unit courses carry proportionate and equal weight in the final assessment of the degree. Compulsory core courses in accounting and finance provide the foundation for developing an understanding of a variety of topics, themes and core principles. You can then select from a combination of optional full and half unit courses in specific areas of accounting and finance to fit your interests and preferred specialisation. Options from outside the two Departments are also available.

(* denotes a half unit course)

Either
Corporate Finance and Asset Markets
Examines the fundamental concepts and tools underlying modern finance, both in the asset markets and the corporate finance side
Or
Asset Markets A*
Equips students with the fundamental concepts and tools underlying the assets markets side of modern finance
And
Corporate Finance A*
Covers a range of topics in corporate finance including capital budgeting techniques, capital structure decisions, dividend policy, decision to go public and mergers and acquisitions.
Or
Another approved course 

Courses to the value of two units from a range of options

A specified combination of the following courses, equalling one unit in total:
Topics in Financial Reporting* 
Enhances the student's ability to relate economic events to financial statements and disclosures.
Corporate Financial Disclosure and Investor Relations* 
Examines the lens of financial accounting and reporting by covering topics on the interaction of financial accounting and reporting with capital markets with a focus on corporate disclosure and communication strategies.
Accounting, Strategy and Control* 
Provides an advanced overview of current theoretical and practical developments in the area of organisational control.
Management Accounting for Decision Making*
Focuses on cost and other accounting and non-accounting information systems that aid managerial decision-making.

You can find the most up-to-date list of optional courses in the Programme Regulations section of the current School Calendar.

You must note however that while care has been taken to ensure that this information is up to date and correct, a change of circumstances since publication may cause the School to change, suspend or withdraw a course or programme of study, or change the fees that apply to it. The School will always notify the affected parties as early as practicably possible and propose any viable and relevant alternative options. Note that that the School will neither be liable for information that after publication becomes inaccurate or irrelevant, nor for changing, suspending or withdrawing a course or programme of study due to events outside of its control, which includes but is not limited to a lack of demand for a course or programme of study, industrial action, fire, flood or other environmental or physical damage to premises.

You must also note that places are limited on some courses and/or subject to specific entry requirements. The School cannot therefore guarantee you a place. Please note that changes to programmes and courses can sometimes occur after you have accepted your offer of a place. These changes are normally made in light of developments in the discipline or path-breaking research, or on the basis of student feedback. Changes can take the form of altered course content, teaching formats or assessment modes. Any such changes are intended to enhance the student learning experience. You should visit the School’s Calendar, or contact the relevant academic department, for information on the availability and/or content of courses and programmes of study. Certain substantive changes will be listed on the updated graduate course and programme information page.

Teaching and assessment

Contact hours and independent study

A short, focused, introductory course on accounting practices and techniques will be held at the beginning of the programme. Thereafter, you take examined courses up to a total of four full units. The average number of contact hours per week is 12 hours, which includes lectures and seminars. Hours vary according to courses and you can view indicative details in the Calendar within the Teaching section of each course guide.

You are also expected to complete independent study outside of class time. This varies depending on the programme, but requires you to manage the majority of your study time yourself, by engaging in activities such as reading, note-taking, thinking and research.

Teaching methods

Courses are taught in lecture and class or seminar format. Lectures introduce the core theoretical and technical concepts whilst their associated classes allow you to discuss and apply these concepts through exercises and in-depth study. Seminars allow for the focused study of key concepts in a more informal style and often involve presentations by students on selected course materials. Many teachers adopt a variety of teaching methods to deliver their courses, such as class exercises, team presentations, individual or group work, or case study discussions.

LSE is internationally recognised for its teaching and research and therefore employs a rich variety of teaching staff with a range of experience and status. Courses may be taught by individual members of faculty, such as lecturers, senior lecturers, readers, associate professors and professors. Many departments now also employ guest teachers and visiting members of staff, LSE teaching fellows and graduate teaching assistants who are usually doctoral research students and in the majority of cases, teach on undergraduate courses only. You can view indicative details for the teacher responsible for each course in the relevant course guide

Assessment

All taught courses are required to include formative coursework which is unassessed. It is designed to help prepare you for summative assessment which counts towards the course mark and to the degree award. All full-unit courses are assessed by three hour unseen examinations in the summer term. Half-units are assessed by two hour unseen examinations. Some of the half-unit optional courses also have group/individual project work as part of the assessment. An indication of the formative coursework and summative assessment for each course can be found in the relevant course guide.

Academic support

You will be assigned an academic adviser who will be available for guidance and advice on academic or personal concerns.

There are many opportunities to extend your learning outside the classroom and complement your academic studies at LSE. LSE LIFE is the School’s centre for academic, personal and professional development. Some of the services on offer include: guidance and hands-on practice of the key skills you will need to do well at LSE: effective reading, academic writing and critical thinking; workshops related to how to adapt to new or difficult situations, including development of skills for leadership, study/work/life balance and preparing for the world of work; and advice and practice on working in study groups and on cross-cultural communication and teamwork.

LSE is committed to enabling all students to achieve their full potential and the School’s Disability and Wellbeing Service provides a free, confidential service to all LSE students and is a first point of contact for all disabled students.

 

Careers

Students who successfully complete the MSc Accounting and Finance programme pursue careers across a wide range of sectors, in financial institutions, accounting firms, management consulting, industry, government and academia.

Companies who have employed recent graduates from this programme include Bain & Company, Bank of New York Mellon, Barclays Capital, BlackRock, Crédit Agricole, Crowe Horwath, General Electric, JP Morgan, Deloitte, Ernst & Young, PwC, KPMG, Proctor & Gamble, Merrill Lynch, Mondelez, EMI Music, Nordea Bank, Royal Dutch Shell, Schroders and Strategic Asset Partners LLP.

Further information on graduate destinations for this programme

Sophie Tao

MSc Accounting and Finance, 2012
Market Risk Analyst, Shell Trading

Sophie-Tao170x230

I am on my first rotation in the Oil Trading Market Risk team. My key responsibility is to manage the possibility of financial loss caused by market price movements. On a daily basis, I identify and investigate trading activity that can potentially create exposure to market risk and analyse the overall market risk that our global trading network is exposed to.

I cannot stress enough how much I have learned from the people I studied with. who all come from diverse backgrounds and possess different strengths. My way of thinking, habits and attitude towards life were tremendously shaped and influenced by my experiences both inside and outside of the classroom. These experiences, together with the knowledge and skills I acquired, are directly relevant and applicable to my current day-to-day work, the most significant of which is the ability to think and work independently.

Support for your career

Many leading organisations in the field give careers presentations at the School during the year, and LSE Careers has a wide range of resources available to assist students in their job search. Find out more about the support available to students through LSE Careers.

Student stories

Ahmed Saleh

MSc Accounting and Finance
Gaza, Palestine

Ahmed-Saleh170x230

With the MSc Accounting and Finance, I like the variety of courses on offer and the fact you can do a dissertation as part of the programme. This has really helped me discover my where my interests lie. The topics we discuss in our courses are relevant to what’s going on in the industry today. You know that you’re learning something that you will use in your daily work after graduation.

Before coming here, I didn’t really know what my options were for employment, but thanks to the Careers Service, I’ve now experienced a couple of different work environments, and have learned more about the fields I can specialise in.


Chelsey Ansell

MSc Accounting and Finance
Calgary, Canada

Chelsey-Ansell170x230

LSE has challenged me both mentally and socially. Attending lectures by well-known business professionals has enabled me to apply their advice to my own life and learn from their experiences. The opportunity to read articles written by LSE professors who helped shape accounting standards research and other topical subjects in finance, and the chance to then ask them questions in person, is what makes LSE a unique and stimulating place to study. Being in classes with some of the brightest minds from all over the world motivated and stimulated me and I have accomplished things that, nine months ago, I never knew were possible.

Assessing your application

We welcome applications from all suitable qualified prospective students and want to recruit students with the very best academic merit, potential and motivation, irrespective of their background.

We carefully consider each application on an individual basis, taking into account all the information presented on your application form, including your:

- academic achievement (including predicted and achieved grades)
- personal statement
- two academic references
- CV

See further information on supporting documents

You may also have to provide evidence of your English proficiency, although you do not need to provide this at the time of your application to LSE. See our English language requirements.

When to apply

Applications for this programme are considered on a rolling basis, meaning the programme will close once it becomes full. There is no fixed deadline by which you need to apply, however to be considered for any LSE funding opportunity, you must have submitted your application and all supporting documents by the funding deadline. See the fees and funding section for more details.

Minimum entry requirements for MSc Accounting and Finance

Upper second class honours degree (2:1) or equivalent in accounting and finance or a related subject. You are expected to have studied academic courses in financial reporting, management accounting, finance, economics and quantitative methods. Strong candidates who do not have the appropriate background in one or more of these areas may be required to take additional courses before being accepted.

Competition for places at the School is high. This means that even if you meet the minimum entry requirement, this does not guarantee you an offer of admission.

Given the high competition for places on this programme, applicants who indicate an interest in the MSc Accounting and Finance specifically as their first choice will maximise their prospect of admission to the programme. Equally, you should note the differentiated nature of the graduate programmes in the Department of Accounting, and are advised to identify your first choice accordingly. A transfer from another programme in the Department will not normally be permitted.

See international entry requirements 

GRE/GMAT requirement

All applicants without a UK undergraduate degree must submit GMAT test scores with their application. The overall GMAT score should normally be in excess of 650 points. Applicants with UK undergraduate degrees, particularly those whose quantitative skills are not demonstrated by their undergraduate studies, may be asked to submit GMAT scores.

Find out more about GRE/GMAT

Fees and funding

Every graduate student is charged a fee for their programme.

The fee covers registration and examination fees payable to the School, lectures, classes and individual supervision, lectures given at other colleges under intercollegiate arrangements and, under current arrangements, membership of the Students' Union. It does not cover living costs or travel or fieldwork.

Tuition fees 2017/18 for MSc Accounting and Finance

UK/EU students: £25,944
Overseas students: £26,448

Fee status

The amount of tuition fees you will need to pay, and any financial support you are eligible for, will depend on whether you are classified as a home (UK/EU) or overseas student, otherwise known as your fee status. LSE assesses your fee status based on guidelines provided by the Department of Education.

Further information

 

Fees and funding opportunities

 

Fee reductions and rewards

Students who completed undergraduate study at LSE and are beginning taught graduate study at the School are eligible for a fee reduction of around 10 per cent of the fee.

Currently there is also an early payment reward for self-financed students who pay their tuition fees by specific dates. 

Please refer to the Fees Office website for updates.

Scholarships and other funding

The School recognises that the cost of living in London may be higher than in your home town or country, and we provide over £11.5 million in scholarships each year to graduate students from the UK, EU and overseas.

This programme is eligible for needs-based awards from LSE, including the Graduate Support SchemeMaster's Awards, and Anniversary Scholarships

Selection for any funding opportunity is based on receipt of an application for a place – including all ancillary documents, before the funding deadline. 
Funding deadline for needs-based awards from LSE: 26 April 2017.

In addition to our needs-based awards, LSE also makes available scholarships for students from specific regions of the world and awards for students studying specific subject areas. 

Check the latest information about scholarship opportunities

Government tuition fee loans and external funding

A postgraduate loan is available from the UK government for eligible students studying for a first master’s programme, to help with fees and living costs. Some other governments and organisations also offer tuition fee loan schemes.

Find out more about tuition fee loans
Find out more about external funding opportunities

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