Study Accounting Courses in Australia: A Complete Guide

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International students want to know their accounting course options for study in Australia.


Australia's top-notch universities attract global students, with accounting being a popular choice.


Many institutions offer specialised accounting courses, and six Australian universities ranked in the top 50 in the 2022 QS World University Rankings for Accounting and Finance, promising excellent education and global job prospects.



Three Qualification Levels:


There are different qualification levels to study accounting and finance in Australia. These are:


  1. VET (Vocational Education & Training) Study

  2. Undergraduate (Bachelor's) Study

  3. Postgraduate (Master's) Study



1. VET (Vocational Education & Training) Courses in Accounting


Pursuing VET courses in accounting and finance from an Australian University makes a student eligible to study undergraduate and postgraduate courses. 


Vocational Education and Training (VET) includes different accounting courses such as diplomas, certificate IV and advanced diplomas. These courses prepare students for the roles of supporting professional accountants. You can also find many other VET courses related to bookkeeping, financial services, banking services, and accounts administration. 


When selecting a VET qualification course in accounting, you should remember that it will not make you an accountant. As these are lower-level qualifications, they provide you entry to different paraprofessional roles only. To become an accountant, you must complete a bachelor's degree in accounting. 



Where To Study VET Courses In Accounting?


In Australia, many private colleges, TAFE institutes and universities with TAFE departments offer VET qualifications in accounting. The course you choose depends on your area of interest and qualification level. The main focus of VET courses is to provide you with practical and technical skills.



2. Undergraduate Courses in Accounting


In Australia, a bachelor in accounting program lasts three to five years. You can study accounting part-time or full-time, according to your preference and choice. You can also study accounting with other degrees, like a bachelor of commerce or a bachelor of business degree. 


These degrees help you gain additional knowledge in different business fields and provide a good option for those still deciding to commit to a full-time degree in accounting. 


Students have different reasons to pursue business and accounting studies. Not all who study accounting want to become an accountant. Some want to enhance or gain skills to enter three professional accounting bodies in Australia, such as CPA Australiathe Institute of Public Accountants and the Institute of Chartered Accountants.


Students can also study double degrees by combining study in accounting with humanities, business and law


Another option is a cooperative degree, which is quite competitive to enter and allows only a small number of students. It combines your studies with paid, related work experience. It gives you access to professional consultants who will counsel, advise and provide classes.


A cooperative degree prepares you to move from the classroom to the real-world workplace and make your career in an accounting or actuarial profession. It also mentors and trains students to improve their communication, creativity, leadership and ethical practice skills, preparing them for a bright accounting career. 


However, only a few universities and institutions in Australia offer cooperative degrees. Some Australian Universities that provide cooperative degrees are Macquarie University, CQ University in Australia and more. 



Where To Study Undergraduate Courses In Accounting?


To study undergraduate accounting courses, Australia offers some TAFE institutes, private colleges, universities and specialist providers. 


The universities offering undergraduate courses in accounting and finance are the University of New South Wales (11th in the world rankings), the University of Melbourne (14rd in the world rankings) and the University of Sydney (20th in the world rankings).


The job opportunities for graduate students are available under different titles in the accounting field. According to a report by Job Outlook, Australia witnesses 40 thousand of job openings in finance and accounting fields.



3. Postgraduate Courses in Accounting


Postgraduate study in Accounting and Finance targets students interested in accounts and finance. It includes elective courses, case studies, industry interface, core courses and research covering accounts and finance. 


The postgraduate in accounting degree helps students to complete coursework degrees, including graduate diplomas, graduate certificates and coursework masters degrees, to enhance their competencies. 


If you are a student with a non-accounting background but want to make a career in the accounting field, you can go with 'conversion' courses. These courses are available only for those students who have completed their bachelor's degrees in a field other than accounting. 


However, suppose you are a practising accountant looking to extend your knowledge base or learn new skills. In that case, there are also many postgraduate courses available. 


The best accounting courses designed for graduates allow them to gain accreditation as a Chartered Practising Accountant (CPA) and a Chartered Accountant (CA). 


Students can also study for postgraduate research degrees in accounting, including research doctorates and master's degrees. At the master's level, there are also many double degrees available, combining accounting with law and information systems and business & Management (MBA)



Where To Study Postgraduate Courses In Accounting


In Australia, postgraduate accounting courses are available at universities, private colleges and higher education providers. Some private colleges prepare students for the accounting profession. In contrast, industry bodies like Chartered Accountants in Australia and CPA Australia offer their qualifications. 


The course you choose depends on your qualifications and career aspirations. However, you should select courses accredited by professional associations and offer work experience opportunities. 


If you want to study for research degrees, look for universities and institutions that connect to the industry. A postgraduate in accounting and financing can develop a career in a wide range of sectors like the ITES industry, Stock tradingInsurance, FMCG, Market Research, Consultancy, IT and other corporates.


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