Accounting (BSc (Hons))


Programme Description

The BSc Accounting is a distinctive broad business degree. It is unique in that it prepares students for a career in business and finance and for the pursuit of a professional accounting qualification, to further enhance career progression in business. Students have the opportunity to study a wide range of subjects including finance, law, management, economics, information systems, accounting, marketing, and statistics.

The programme is delivered by top-tier, friendly and supportive lecturers. Lecturers include experienced academics and professionals; who have worked in a variety of major accounting firms, financial institutions, and leading industrial companies. Some lecturers also teach at professional accounting level for the main professional accounting bodies. They have PhDs and are research active in UCC. Lecturers also consult for industry and publish regularly in international journals that are pertinent to industry and practice.

The programme boasts relatively small class sizes (approximately 70 students). This creates a student-friendly environment in which students benefit from high levels of guidance, support and peer networking, forming an excellent foundation for the development of life skills, critical thinking, problem-solving and teamwork.

The degree is designed to produce high-quality graduates equipped with skills to succeed in a variety of diverse roles while also offering a fast track to a career as a professional accountant. The programme maximises the exemptions from Professional Accounting body exams relative to other UCC undergraduate degrees (see Professional Accountancy Qualification below for more information).

The majority of graduates go on to qualify as Professional Accountants and subsequently go on to pursue successful careers in diverse roles in a range of sectors. Careers include finance managers, business analysts, advisory, investment managers, risk management, business owners, teaching, as well as professional accountants. Recruitment of UCC accounting graduates remains exceptionally high among leading firms nationally and internationally. 


Each year, students complete 12 modules amounting to 60 credits, except for the third year where students are on paid work placement for semester 2.

During the programme students study modules from finance, law, IT, management, economics, accounting, auditing, governance, marketing, statistics and tax subjects.

Year 1 

In year 1 students are given a thorough introduction to all business subjects which underpin the profession: finance, economics, IT, statistics, financial accounting and management accounting. 

  • AC1103 Financial Accounting Fundamentals
  • AC1104 Accounting for Partnerships and Companies
  • AC1107 Investment in Capital Assets
  • AC1108 Introduction to Valuation and Risk
  • AC1109 Management Accounting: Principles and Concepts
  • AC1115 Management Accounting: Cost & Control Systems
  • EC1202 Economic Reasoning for Business
  • EC1203 Macroeconomic Context and Business
  • IS1106 Introduction to Information Systems
  • IS1107 Information Systems for the Networked Enterprise
  • ST1023 Introduction to Business Statistics
  • ST2200 Methods of Business Statistics

Year 2 

In Year 2 students take a combination of compulsory and elective modules, allowing students to begin to specialise in fields that interest them. Compulsory modules further develop knowledge of financial accounting, management accounting and finance while also introducing students to law and taxation subjects.

* Compulsory modules (45 credits) include International Financial Reporting 1; Consolidated Financial Statements and Reporting; Placement Plan; Introduction to Taxation; Data Analysis, Business Reporting & Process Automation; Corporate Financial Management; Data Management and Fundamentals; Introduction to the Legal System and Introduction to Business Law.

* Elective modules (15 credits) are chosen from Business Microeconomics 1; Business Microeconomics 2; Systems Analysis and Systems Design: Systems Analysis and Systems Change: Introduction to Marketing: Principles of Management and Organization: People and Organisation: Data Analysis II: Introduction to Operations Research: Modelling and Systems for Decision Making.

Year 3 

In Year 3 students will study in UCC for Semester 1, then complete a 6-month paid work placement (see Work Placement information below). Students build on their accounting and business knowledge. There is a focus on group work and teamwork and other soft skills in preparation for placement.

* Compulsory modules: International Financial Reporting 2: Theory and Practice; Auditing; Multinational Finance; Cases in Corporate Finance; and Governance, Regulation and Control of Financial Organisations; Management Accounting: Data & Decision Making.

Year 4 

In Year 4 students will have a large selection of elective modules to study. Module selection will be guided by their placement experience.

* Compulsory modules (25 credits) include Advanced Financial Accounting; Management Accounting: Planning and Control; Taxation: Income Tax and VAT; Financial Information Analysis; Corporate Valuation.

* Elective Modules (35 credits) are selected from Economics, Information Systems, Accounting, Law, Marketing, and Management subjects.

Academic Programme Catalogue

See the Academic Programme Catalogue for the complete and up-to-date content for this course. Note that the modules for all courses are subject to change from year-to-year. For complete descriptions of individual modules, see the Book of Modules.

Why Choose This Course

The BSc Accounting is an excellent springboard for students with the ambition to succeed in business.

Breadth of subjects

  •  Students can study law, marketing, IT, economics, statistics, management, accounting, finance, tax and auditing.

Career preparation

  • Graduates are well supported and are professionally focused.
  • Work Experience on placement – paid work placement in 3rd year in leading Irish and International companies e.g. PWC, KPMG, EY Deloitte, Apple.
  • Post-placement 80% of students are offered a graduate contract with their respective placement organisation.
  • Students obtain the highest number of possible Professional Accounting body exemptions available from an undergraduate degree.

Quality of teaching

  • Experienced lecturers many of whom have extensive academic and industry experience.
  • Small class sizes – students receive exceptional guidance and build a strong professional network.
  • Success of past graduates in professional accounting exams.


  • The programme is highly regarded by leading employers, including the 'big 4' accountancy firms.
  • Exceptional employment record and prospects – graduates are well-rewarded and in high demand (see - National Skills Bulletin 2019 Page 86).

Skills and Careers Information

Over the course of the four-year programme students will learn how to prepare, understand, analyse and audit company financial statements. additionally, students will gain broad business skills as well as knowledge in the areas of finance, economics, information systems, law, management and marketing, and taxation. These skills are widely sought by employers in all areas of business.

Professional Accountancy Qualification

While BSc Accounting is a business degree, many students choose to pursue a Professional Accountancy qualification upon graduation because of the significant associated benefits. a Professional Accounting qualification training contract can open a wide range of different opportunities in a variety of sectors and geographical locations. the training contract provides them with insights into many different businesses/industries and the wide range of roles available within an accounting practice. This experience along with the technical knowledge and professional qualification can accelerate their career in their chosen field.

Post Professional Accounting Qualification Opportunities

  • Fast career progression – 45% of Chartered Accountants promoted in the last year.
  • The high first-time pass rate for BSc Accounting graduates in professional exams.
  • Internationally recognised qualification – Irish qualified accountants are in constant demand in Ireland and worldwide, even in recessions.
  • Broad career opportunities within financial services, industry, accountancy firms and the public sector.
  • The blend of education and work experience provided by a training contract produces professionals with an enhanced ability to analyse and interpret business problems. students pursuing accountancy qualifications will have a clear vision of their career path from day other career offers the same level of mobility within industries and geographies.

Professional Qualification Exemptions

BSc Accounting students gain the highest possible amount of exemptions from professional body exams available from an undergraduate degree.

No other UCC degree gives students as many exemptions.

For Professional Accounting body exemption details awarded to BSc Accounting graduates please see the links below and enter University College Cork when prompted.

Study Abroad

In year 3 of the programme students have to opportunity to go on a 6-month paid work placement with some of the world’s leading companies, organised by UCC Careers Service. Extensive preparation for placement commences at the start of year 2. During placement, students are supported by both academic and business mentors.

Students gain experience in high-quality professional environments in globally renowned firms including Deloitte, EY, KPMG, PWC, AIB, Apple, CITCO, Eli Lilly and FDC. As a result, students successfully apply and contextualise academic studies, develop professional skills, and explore career opportunities. Students also have the opportunity to secure their placement abroad for example in London, Luxembourg etc.

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Learning Outcomes

On successful completion of this programme, students should be able to:

  • Demonstrate written communication skills to a professional standard.

  • Work effectively in a team environment.

  • Demonstrate an ability to critique differences between theoretical financial concepts and the practical financial decisions made by firms.

  • Demonstrate an ability to perform appropriate tax calculations relevant to business.

  • Demonstrate an ability to conduct independent research to analyse firm performance.

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the importance of auditing principles, for example audit planning, audit testing, ethics, etc.

  • Apply appropriate calculative technique(s), models(s) or framework(s) to assist management in making business decisions.

  • Demonstrate an understanding of the regulatory frameworks applicable to accounting and how it impacts on organisations’ financial reporting.

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Additional Information

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Practicalities & Assessment

Expected lecture hours: 12 lecture hours per week. Lectures may be further supplemented by tutorials and computer lab time.


Written exams will take place at both the end of Semester 1 and Semester 2. Some modules will not have formal end-of-term written examinations. These modules use other types of assessment and may typically require students to complete tasks such as a project, essay, presentation or an in-class written test.

Full module information is detailed in the section below.

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Entry Requirements

Leaving Certificate Entry Requirements

At Least six subjects must be presented. Minimum grade H5 in two subjects and minimum grade O6/H7 in four other subjects. English and Irish are requirements for all programmes .

Applicants will need to meet the following minimum entry requirements:

EnglishIrishMathsOther Language
O6/H7 O6/H7 O6/H7 O6/H7

Note you do not need to have studied Accounting or Higher Level Maths at Leaving Certificate.

EU/EFTA/UK Qualifications

EU/EFTA/UK applicants presenting an equivalent school-leaving qualification should review the EU/EFTA/UK Applicants page for information on equivalent grades and how to prove their level of English.

Mature Students

To compete through the mature entry route, applicants must be 23 years of age on or before 1 January of the application year and apply online via the CAO by 1 February. The application should include a statement of interest. Leaving Certificate Maths (or equivalent) is recommended. Applicants may also be called for interview.

Further information on applying as a mature student is available on the Mature Applicants and Mature Student Entry support pages. 

Non-EU Candidates

Non-EU candidates are expected to have educational qualifications of a standard equivalent to Irish university primary degree level. In addition, where such candidates are non-native speakers of the English language they must satisfy the university of their competency in the English language. To verify if you meet the minimum academic requirements for this programme please visit our qualification comparison pages.

For more detailed entry requirement information please refer to the International website .

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Application Process

Non-EU Applications

For full details of the non-EU application procedure please visit our how to apply pages for international students. In UCC, we use the term programme and course interchangeably to describe what a person has registered to study in UCC and its constituent colleges, schools, and departments.

Not all courses are open to international/non-EU applicants, please check the fact file above.

For more information please contact the International Office.

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Work Placement Information

Work Placement Details 

Benefits of work placement include:

  • Practical experience in industry
  • Improved job opportunities
  • Experience in teamwork and development of interpersonal skills
  • Awareness of current developments in the sector

For furthur Information , visit UCC Work Placement Website

KPMG Scholarships

KPMG, Chartered Accountants, offer several bursaries annually to BSc Accounting students. Click on the links below to find out more.