This is the transcript for the video Accounting options

Dr Amanda White 0:00
Welcome everybody to Accounting Options at the UTS Business School. My name is Dr. Amanda White. I’m a senior lecturer and Deputy Head Education of the Accounting discipline group. I’m also a UTS business alumni with a major in accounting and also professional experience in accounting at PricewaterhouseCoopers. So i keep in touch with the industry and I’m really proud of what we have here at UTS in terms of accounting, and I’m going to tell you all about that.

So let’s talk about what is accounting. And a lot of students will know accounting has something to do with numbers and it’s something to do with money, but it is the language of business; all around the world, we speak the same language in terms of accounting. And it’s recording and interpreting business events to inform business decisions. So accounting helps people in business, make the decisions about research and development, marketing, innovation, moving into a new country, COVID related decisions, all of those decisions are made using accounting information. So it’s a critical underpinning of business, all around the world. And no matter which country you go to – Japan, the United States, Zimbabwe, the UK, the EU, we’re all speaking actually the same language of accounting; so it’s a very highly transferable skill.

Now accounting is not all about the numbers, numbers are important. But realistically, when it comes to mathematics, I use my phone as my calculator a lot of the time. And it’s not just good for mathematicians. And it’s not about sitting in an office crunching the numbers by yourself. Technology has transformed the role of accountants, where we manually used to do a lot of the number crunching most of that is now automated and so our role is to take that information and interpret it to provide businesses with direction and advice on how they can use this accounting information, combined with non-accounting information they might have from marketing or production, or a social media engagement, for example, to help them make the best business decisions to optimize their achievement of their goals. So it’s really problem solving. And quite often, we now see accountants described as business partners, because we are partnering with different types / parts of the business, to help them achieve their goals. So a lot of leaders really have that accounting background, because to be able to lead a company to be able to be a CEO or director of an organization you need to be on do you need to understand how the fundamentals of the business really work. So people say, Oh, look, I’m great at maths is accounting for me? I said, well, if you’re great at problem solving, and you love working with people, talking with people getting to understand their businesses, to be able to provide advice, then accounting is for you. Communication is the number one non-technical skill that our profession says that we need more of in accountants, that’s the number one thing they look for, is those communication, group work and interpersonal skills.

So accounting is always in demand. And people that say are AI and all of this robotics, etc. machine learning is going to take over the role of accounting. And if COVID-19 has taught us anything, there is a massive demand for accountants; when times are good financially to provide advice but also when businesses are struggling. So it’s useful across all areas of business. And there are accountants and all sorts of different job opportunities from really big companies like the Commonwealth Bank, EY, Macquarie Group, etc. Like you see there, right down to smaller businesses. And I don’t know how many people out there might follow Chebbo’s on, or Chebbo’s Burgers on Instagram, and on Tik Tok, if you have let me know in the chat. Ali Chebbani is actually one of our UTS Business graduates. He uses his business knowledge, his accounting knowledge he was in my class, to actually set up this massive, you know, well, massive for him, business empire that now includes partnerships with brands like KFC, and other institutions. So, accounting can be a role in a job like a big organization. You can be an accountant working for yourself, working part time, working flexible hours. I have a great colleague in Brisbane, and you know 20 years ago, she was a virtual accountant. She has run her accounting practice from all around the world, taking advantage of digital technology. Accountants also work within organizations. But we also have lots of students who study accounting and go to create their own businesses work in finance work in marketing. It is the ultimate pair for any of your business studies because no matter what business program or business role you end up in, someone’s gonna say, How much is this going to cost? How do I know if this is a benefit? Are we making money based on this particular program. So accounting is critical in all business applications. So students learn to think through problems, big problems, small problems, every business needs an accountant. And once you understand how the business works, and how the accounting works, you have such great insight into the entire organization.

We’re also accredited through our professional association, so CPA Australia, Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand, and the Chartered Institute of Management Accountants. So when you study accounting at UTS, which is the Accounting major plus an additional subject in law and ethics, then you are eligible once you finish your degree at UTS, to then be able to start the professional qualification programs for accountants. So it’s quite common, and most accountants within the industry all should have a professional qualification designation that is offered by one of these major bodies. That sends a signal that you are qualified to work as an accountant and to provide advice. These extra programs are usually 18 months to two years. And it’s not just an additional study program, but it’s also mentored work experience. But UTS helps set you up for the foundations to go into one of these programs through our accredited accounting programs.

So why would you study accounting at UTS? We are top 100 in the world, ranked for accounting and finance, not only do we have a great location; though your location right now is wherever you are connecting to us from; but for those who are working out potentially working full time or part time and studying, we have a great central location. When I was making my choice, I had a cadetship at PricewaterhouseCoopers. And trying to figure out which university I wanted to go to, you know that I live out in the Blacktown LGA, I needed to find somewhere that was close to a train station easy to access and had lots of flexibility. So UTS provides that and we’re very flexible in terms of delivery model, and also class times. And UTS is Australia’s number one Young University. So we’re very young institution. 35 years young, I believe we are, but number one in our young universities.

So what are the sort of options you have in studying accounting? You might think, okay, well, I want to study a bit of accounting, but I don’t necessarily want to be an accountant. The accounting and practice sub-major might be for you. It’s four subjects that give you a real hands on feel for doing accounting in that small business context. If you think well actually, I want to move out of that small business context and perhaps pursue accounting as a career, the accounting major is a great start with eight subjects. And then we also have the extended major. So if you’re absolutely sure, yep, accounting is the path I want to go. You can do an extended major in accounting, as all part of the Bachelor of Business. We also have the Bachelor of Accounting, which is a separate degree program that’s a scholarship program for students who want to build their accounting career. It’s pretty much the same subjects as the Bachelor of Business; there’s a few little extra subjects that the students do, but they also have two paid internships, as well as their scholarship included in their degree. Now, it’s a separate application process for that. So you just search Bachelor of Accounting UTS on your search engine, and it will bring up all of the information. There’s an application form, as well as interview processes to select candidates, and it’s our industry partners, actually, that help us select our candidates for the Bachelor of Accounting program. But if you don’t get into the Bachelor of Accounting, lots of students who don’t get into that, (because there’s only 35 places) come into the Bachelor of Business and study an Accounting major, or the new extended accounting, extended major that’s coming in 2022.

So I mentioned the major, extended major, or the sub-major now what happens in each of those?

Well, in the Bachelor of Business, everybody starts with the same core eight subjects, as in the Bachelor of Accounting that makes sure that our accountants, understand marketing, understand economics, understand business, finance and statistics. So you get that broad base, and a lot of students will come into the Bachelor of Business not sure what major; they might think accounting, but the core gives everybody a chance to try out all of the different majors, and then make a decision. Now I mentioned the accounting major, you can do those eight subjects and combine that with a second major. Really popular is finance; also really popular is accounting with marketing, accounting with information technology. You could do two sub-majors, which are four subjects each; you might think I really like accounting, I want to do a bit of marketing and a bit of finance, you can do that with a sub-major, which is just four subjects, you can do a sub-major and electives. So if you think I’d like to do a, perhaps an exchange when we can travel again, then there’s opportunities there, or eight electives. We’ve also got the accounting major, which is the eight subjects in a major plus four other subjects, which could include an internship if you’re interested in doing that, with options of a sub-major and electives. Or if you do the accounting in practice sub-major, you might say, okay, I’m going to do marketing and then I’m going to do a sub-major in accounting, and then maybe a sub-major in something else, or some electives. So big thank you to Sara there as well, who said that, with the extended major, the accounting major, the sub-major, it’s all noted on your academic transcript, and people will be able to see what subjects are included as well.

So what do you learn in the Bachelor of Business in the Accounting major, all business students will do two subjects called Accounting and Accountability, and Accounting, Business and Society. And a great thing that is differentiating UTS in our accounting subjects compared to any other university is that we are giving away free textbooks for Accounting and Accountability and Accounting, Business, and Society. So these textbooks are what we call open education resources. We’ve written and collated two textbooks that you don’t need to buy, you get free access to them, you can read them online, or you can download them as a PDF and print them out yourself. So that’s one thing, there’s some reduction in textbook costs at UTS. And we’re leading the way in accounting through these open education resources. And then you’ve got the accounting major, which you look at all these subject names, you think what does all this mean? Really, we focus on a couple of different areas. The first one is management accounting, which is accounting for inside businesses. And how do we, as accountants, inside a business, help a business make decisions about what to buy, what to sell, what suppliers to use, how to build contracts for employees, to motivate them to do well and evaluate their performance. So that’s sort of the first area is management accounting. The second area is financial accounting. And financial accounting is really, how do I prepare accounting information for shareholders, for the government, for the public to see. So that’s financial accounting. We also have some law subjects to make sure that we know how to start a company and all the legal requirements for starting companies, as well as the tax requirements. So if you’re interested in tax, there’s a great taxation law subject that students will often do to help them go down that path of becoming a tax advisor. And then we have assurance, which is the subject I teach, which is auditing the financial statements for publicly listed companies, their financial statements must be checked to make sure that management are telling the truth. So we teach you all about how to do that. That’s a very popular career path. And then we have a capstone, which brings all of our accounting information together to say, how do we look at companies from the big picture? How do we give advice about analyzing businesses, so that investors can make good decisions. So even if you think I might be interested in marketing, but I really want, I’m a keen investor, then the accounting information or the accounting major can provide you with great information there.

For those people who are keen on going into the extended major, then the extended major gives you choice to do any of these extra subjects. And if you want to be an accountant, be a CA or a CPA, this is a really great way to go. Because law and ethics for managers is something that you need to do as a subject to be able to progress into the CA and CPA programs. But then you can also do something like forensic accounting, which is fraud and financial crime, innovation and commercialization, which is about how do I start a business have an idea, and there’s also the opportunity there to do an internship. So get some practical experience so that you can go out as a graduate and say, yeah, I’ve had some practical experience as an accountant.

If you’re doing the sub major, then you do obviously the core accounting subjects and you can choose four from any of these subjects around business analytics, processes, understanding businesses and governance. So this is aimed at using accounting as a small business owner, really in the Accounting in Practice sub-major.

Some people might be here about the Bachelor of Accounting. This is our flagship Co- Op scholarship program, and it is hands down; according to employers; the best co-op Scholarship Program in the country. We have students apply from all over Australia and across the world, a lot of ex-pat students, Australian students studying in places like Singapore, Hong Kong, also apply for the Bachelor of Accounting. So it is our flagship program and we will get 1000’s of applications that we whittle down to 35 students coming into the intake, so it’s for high achieving students. On average, these students do have an ATAR above 90, whereas the Bachelor of Business, most recent selection rank was 86 for 2021.

So most students in this program will have a selection rank of 90 or above and they’re keen on taking a really strong focus in accounting. They want to be a chief financial officer, that type of role. So they have to do the Accounting major.

So in terms of tailoring the Bachelor of Accounting, they must do the accounting major, plus either a second major, two sub-majors or sub-major and electives. So again, lots of students in the Bachelor of Accounting partner with finance, with marketing, some even choose to go on exchange by doing a sub-major, and then they save their electives for their exchange experience. Here’s the typical structure for the Bachelor of Accounting students. You’ll notice here they have this fast track situation in January where they start their program early.

So the Bachelor of Accounting is really a four year program, that we squash into three years by them doing these extra summer courses, plus their internship. So when they’re doing an internship, they are working full time, and also studying two subjects at the same time.

There’s also a $51,500 scholarship. Now, the scholarship money comes from our partners. So every single semester they or every single fortnight they get their university scholarship; that scholarship is tax free; as well as their internships. And that scholarship funding comes from our industry partners.

So these are the places where you could do an internship with a Bachelor of Accounting places like Macquarie Bank, like the Woolworths Group, UTS, Coca Cola, one of the Bachelor of Accounting students from I think about 18 years ago, is Vice President of Finance and accounting at Coca Cola Amatil. So QBE insurance, Westpac, there’s a whole range of different industries, depending on whether you might want to be a management accountant, or a financial accountant or even a specialist audit, or tax advisor. So there’s lots of experience here that can be gained for the Bachelor of Accounting students. If you’re thinking Well, how do I get experience as a Bachelor of Business student, then there’s also options for internships in the Bachelor of Business.

But for Bachelor of accounting, people are interested in that program, you need to do more than listed as your first preference through UAC, you have to have an application form plus an extensive interview process.

So the Bachelor of Accounting is not eligible for the UTS Early Entry Program, it’s run through a separate set of information, just search Bachelor of Accounting UTS in your search engine, it will take you to all of the information. And we have two rounds of applications. So if you’re out there, and you’re in year 11 now and you’re keen on this particular area or this particular program, keep an eye out because applications for next year will open in May. For 2022 intake, we have a second round, open on; ah closing sorry, on the 15th of October. So you’ll have to make sure that you get your application form in that will require the school to complete some information as well on that application form.

So if you want more information, don’t forget that you can download our UTS Business course guide as well – it has all of the information about the accounting major, as well as some of our other programs and other majors within UTS and the Bachelor of Accounting program

Now, does anybody have any questions they want to ask us about Accounting, you can type those into the Q&A. Or if you can’t figure out how to get the Q&A box open, you can just type them in the chat as well. We’ll be able to see those. I’ve been teaching here at UTS for almost 20 years, before that I was in industry at PriceWaterhouseCoopers for five years.

A great question coming in how does Accounting differ from Finance? So finance is about the discipline of how do we spend the money where do I get the money from to be able to fund a new expansion. But accounting is really the recording of all of the business transactions and then analyzing that information. So accounting and finance actually go quite closely together. And it’s our most popular combination. So probably close to 300 students, I think per year study accounting and finance together. And it is the most popular combination to get students into investment banking, managed funds, financial advice, as well as accounting. So accounting is slightly different in that we’re interested in how do all these transactions get recorded? How do we know that they’re accurate? Let’s collate all that information. In finance, finance focuses on using the information that accounting outputs to make decisions about where do I get the money from? What about investing and looking at that share market perspective? If you’re interested in futures, and you know, forward contracts, etc, that’s more of that finance side, whereas accounting is more of that fundamentals of decision making component.

There’s a question about forensic accounting. And this is a growing area, especially with increases in financial crime. So forensic accounting is a little bit different from auditing. In that we have a hunch that something is going wrong in the business, we know that perhaps somebody has flagged potential theft, unusual money movements. So forensic accounting is about looking at all of the accounting and non-accounting data, to be able to identify financial crime and fraud. And that is usually done when the business suspects something and they will bring in a forensic accountant or financial crime specialist. We have forensic accountants working in the Police force, as well as in private industry through companies like KPMG, etc. that also specialize in in forensics and financial crime. And they use a lot of data analysis techniques as well because there are millions or billions of transactions at companies. And so therefore, to be able to comb through all of that they use a lot of data and analysis techniques as well.

Now UTS asks whether we have an ACCA course. So UTS, because we are affiliated with Chartered Accountants Australia and New Zealand; our accreditation with Chartered Accountants Australia New Zealand also follows over to ACCA so we don’t offer the professional studies for ACCA. But if you do the Bachelor of Business majoring in Accounting, and the law subject, or you study the Bachelor of Accounting, then those students will be eligible to sit the ACCA professional qualification exam process as well. So CA and ACCA work together here in Australia, whereas in other countries ACCA works separately. But here in Australia, they work with Chartered Accountants, pardon me.

Make sure you stay connected with us at UTS, on Facebook and on Instagram. And the other thing as well, we don’t have the Instagram for UTS, but you can follow us on Instagram @UTSengage. If you want to follow me on Instagram, where I talk a lot about sort of business accounting study at UTS as hints and tips. I’ve also put my Instagram handle there in the chat @amandalovestoaudit.

Oh, I see one last question. If I wanted to go into banking; CBA, Macquarie etc, would either accounting or finance be good to get in. I understand internships and graduate programs are very helpful. If you want to go into banking, accounting and finance as a combination is your strongest chance in that particular industry. And most students who I know most of my alumni who are in that role, have done the accounting and finance component, especially for career advancement. It’s the strongest combination of the two. But otherwise, a lot of students do go into those types of programs with a finance background. But there’s lots of different roles. So if you wanted to go into lending and commercial management, then finance is probably the way you want to go. If you’re looking at more of the management of CBA as a business, into funds management analysis, then that accounting and finance combination is really strong. Macquarie is probably one of the hardest places to get a job in terms of investment banking. So the other thing to think about is grades. So they’re looking for really top grades because they’ve got the peak. They’ve got the their pick of the bunch at Macquarie as one of the top investment banks in the country. But to grade and also start from first year at thinking about developing your LinkedIn profile experience and internships.

One last question that we’re going to answer today is the accounting major recognized by CA and CPA, if you do the accounting major plus the law and ethics for managers subject, then we are CA and CPA accredited. And you will be able to start the CA and CPA programs.

So thank you very much everyone. And of course, if you have any questions, you can contact us directly through Business through any of our social media channels or the live chat platform for the end of, for the rest of Open Day today, and also on Tuesday. So thank you very much everyone for being here. And I will chat to you all very soon.