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The Accounting course helps students understand the responsibilities of the accountant and the impacts of their recommendations on the business and wider environment. It equips students with the necessary knowledge and skills to be able to assess the performance of all types of business organisations. You will learn about the main accounting records like ledgers, income statements and statements of financial position as well as accounting for sole traders, partnerships and limited companies.

Studying Accounting helps develop your knowledge and understanding of key concepts, principles and techniques that you can apply to real life scenarios, developing the ability to solve problems logically, analyse data methodically, make reasoned choices and communicate effectively. Obviously students do have to have good numerical skills but it is equally important that students have good written skills as many of the examination questions test the ability to analyse data but write up a report or essay style answer.

Qualifications & Assessments

Exam Board AQA
Level Level 3
Qualification A Level
Assessment Method 100% Non-Examined Work
Entry Requirements Entry Requirements

The following is a list of the areas students cover. This qualification is linear which means that students will sit both 3 hour exams at the end of the two year course so could be asked anything that is included in the syllabus. There is no assessed coursework.

  1. An introduction to the role of the accountant in business
  2. Types of business organisation
  3. The double entry model
  4. Verification of accounting records
  5. Accounting concepts used in the preparation of accounting records
  6. Preparation of financial statements of sole traders
  7. Limited company accounts
  8. Analysis and evaluation of financial information
  9. Budgeting
  10. Marginal costing
  11. Standard costing and variance analysis
  12. Absorption and activity based costing
  13. Capital investment appraisal
  14. Accounting for organisations with incomplete records
  15. Partnership accounts
  16. Accounting for limited companies
  17. Interpretation, analysis and communication of accounting information
  18. The impact of ethical considerations

Paper 1 Students are assessed on sections 1–8, 14–18 of the subject content

Paper 2 Students are assessed on sections 1–3, 8–13, 17–18 of the subject content

Students who wish to pursue a career as an Accountant can either opt to go to University to study Accounting and then gain a position as a trainee accountant or, alternatively, they could gain an apprenticeship and start the professional examinations straight away, becoming a fully qualified accountant without having the debt of a University degree. To become an accountant students do have to pass the accountancy examinations from one of the professional accountancy bodies e.g. Institute of Chartered Accountants England and Wales.

No other career offers the mobility that a Chartered Accountancy qualification does. For example, they can work within a business in the finance department (Management Accountant) or gain a position within an Accountancy firm (Financial Accountant). In time you can take on the role of a business advisor, who makes high-level strategic decisions, aimed at driving business, improving profit margins and increasing market share for their clients / employers. Many chartered accountants also use their expertise to form their own business.

There are also some great college/school leaver programmes offered by many of the major accountancy firms e.g. PwC, KPMG, EY, Deloitte, Grant Thornton, BDO.

Please note students wishing to study Accountancy at the top Universities often require GCSE Grade 6 in Maths and English Language.

Accounting has many close ties to firms and Universities. Every year we have speakers from KPMG, PWC, Grant Thornton and a local accountancy firm Clarke Nicklin, many are ex-students. As a department we are keen to improve student’s employability skills so enter the Chartered Institute of Accountants BASE competition. We also encourage students to gain work experience in an accounting firm – in previous years these have included PWC, KPMG, Allens and Clarke Nicklin.

There is also an optional trip to New York for students studying subjects within the business department. For more information about this trip please see the Trips and Travel page

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