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Angled at the sharp enthusiast
Wong Yat-hei
update on Friday, September 23, 2011
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Master of Accounting
HKU SPACE and Curtin University, Australia

The accounting industry in Hong Kong is generally known for its high salaries, so it follows that many are interested in joining it. Those who do not have accounting undergraduate training but still want to work in the field can jump on the proverbial bandwagon provided via the HKU SPACE master of accounting programme.

The course, accredited by CPA Australia and the Institute of Chartered Accountants in Australia (ICAA), is a collaboration between HKU SPACE and Curtin University, and is designed for graduates working or seeking to work in a field that requires accounting knowledge.

“Students of the course will be able to gain both professional knowledge and a master’s degree. It is an attractive offer for those who want to be an accountant or brush up his or her résumé. The degree is awarded by Curtin University,” says Dr Olivia Lui Laiwah, the programme director.

“We begin with the fundamentals of accounting for students who are laymen in the discipline, which is uncommon for a master’s course. We equip students with a comprehensive knowledge and enhance their problem solving and analytical abilities in accounting and financial management.”

Teachers from Curtin University, as well as locals, make up the faculty. “There will be doctors in accounting and veteran practitioners teaching the course. We want to prepare students for a career in professional accounting,” Lui says.

The programme favours continuous assessment, including written examinations, as well as group and individual presentations.

Lui points out that most of the students are employed while studying and that they can be further divided into two main camps.

“There are students employed at officer grade who wish to brush up their résumés with a master’s degree and who are looking forward to becoming accountants. Then, there are students who are employed at management grade who wish to learn more about the operations in accounting to assist with the running of their businesses.”

One student, Chris Poon, a finance manager at an advertising agency, belongs to the first group. “I wanted to make my résumé more complete with a master’s degree. I also learned a lot, such as quantitative skills and the latest developments in accounting. I enjoy courses related to taxation and risk management. They are practical, and useful for my work. The workload of the course is reasonable and it has high recognition with accreditation by CPA Australia,” she says.

The programme also allows students to enrol at Curtin University in Australia, with all credits transferrable. The university has a main campus in Perth in Western Australia and another in Sydney.

The course takes 18 to 24 months to complete. Classes are on weekday evenings and at weekends. Applicants should hold a bachelor’s degree awarded by a recognised university. 

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