Rationale and Objectives of the M.Sc. Program

Rationale of the Graduate Program

Since 1992 the government of Ethiopia has introduced a variety of reforms aimed at improving macroeconomic stability, accelerating economic growth and reducing poverty. In the implementation process of the market-driven agricultural development strategy, the government has committed itself to help the agriculture sector to use all opportunities in expanding industries. Such a move has enabled farmers and private investors as well as the agricultural and industrial sectors to supplement each other`s efforts and develop together in a coordinated manner. Following the introduction of the economic reform in the early 1990s, the private sector and the government enterprises have become very vibrant. The impact of these changes is seen in the forms of large and wider economic growth and development, outreach, competition, technological up-gradation, and diversification of various industries.

However, the private and the government organizations are facing constraints of different sorts. One of the constraints is lack of qualified manpower in the areas of accounting and finance that can facilitate the mobilization of domestic and international investment and promoting financial stability in general and that keep the financial activities of organizations in track. Many factors are dramatically changing the accounting and finance profession including globalization of capital markets, convergence in international financial reporting practices, technology-driven corporate disclosure and communication strategies. The changes in the business environment create the need for individuals wishing to pursue a senior management role to be aware of contemporary accounting and financial developments. Therefore, well-qualified manpower in the areas of accounting and finance, with balanced technical as well as economic knowledge are required urgently. Hence, this postgraduate program is designed to produce competent graduates for the ever-growing demand in the area of accounting and finance. The proposed program is believed to reduce the gap between training, research and business practice, and thus respond to current needs for professionally trained graduates in accounting and finance.

As part of the college’s requirement to launch a new postgraduate program, the college conducted a needs assessment survey that takes account of employers of public and private organizations, employees, alumni and staff members to see the relevance of the program and the potential demand for the program. The result of the survey shows that most of private and public organizations are interested to train their staffs in accounting and finance specialization as well. Moreover, taking into account the Five-Year Growth and Transformation Plan (GTP), and the government`s intention to transform the economic system in the years to come, the development of industrial and service organizations, the upcoming multinational companies, and development of stock markets and share companies in the country, it is necessary to have graduates who can critically think, review, analyze, and question all accounting and financial matters in both public and private organizations. Thus, this postgraduate program is designed to produce such critical thinkers and capable professionals in accounting and finance.

Objectives of the Program

The Accounting and Finance is a rigorous program and is both intellectually challenging and ambitious. It will provide students with a thorough understanding of accounting and finance profession which will enable them deal with contemporary and complex accounting and financial issues nationally as well as globally.

In this regard, the M.Sc. program in Accounting & Finance has the following specific objectives:

  • To produce graduates who will successfully apply accounting and financial management concepts, principles and applications in the analysis and resolution of strategic and operational problems; and serve the public best interest.
  • To produce graduates who will utilize technology in the accounting and financial management of their organizations to share access to information for the purpose of improving the quality of decision making on an enterprise-wide.
  • To produce graduates who will evaluate issues and innovations in accounting and financial management and their effects on managerial decision making.
  • To produce graduates who will evaluate the effects of international standards and international diversification on accounting and financial management decision making.
  • To take a strategic look at current issues in the financial world, providing students with a range of skills, including the ability to critically analyze financial data and weigh up issues, and relate to developments and shifts within the profession.
  • To Train graduates who will be capable of providing consultancy and expert services in the areas of Accounting, Auditing, Finance, and Taxation.
  • To produce graduates who will be capable of carrying out business researches in public and private organizations.

Desired Output

Graduates will possess specialized skills and knowledge in the areas of accounting and finance. Once trained in the program, graduates will be able to apply their skills to solve problems in organizational contexts.

To sum up, opening a graduate program in Accounting & Finance will have the following desirable results:

  • Provide graduates with an opportunity for advanced practical application of accounting and financial techniques in organizations and in the wider contexts in which these practices operate in a real-world setting.
  • Enable students to become competent and reflective practitioners in their chosen field, promote critical and develop an understanding of the risks and uncertainties characterizing the contemporary business environment.
  • Better conceptualization of Ethiopian accounting and financial environment from the perspective of global development.
  • Enhance the graduates’ competency in innovative action development research in partnership with private and public financial institutions, relevant research institutions, and other development agencies.
  • Prepare graduates to attain chief executive officer (CEO) positions in for-profit and non-profit organizations or to establish their own business.
  • Improve graduates’ competencies to integrate and synthesize the various business areas and to develop cross-functional approaches to organizational issues.

Graduate Profile

The graduate profile is the base for designing a curriculum that would lead to the realization of the desired output. In this regard, graduate students of the MS.c Degree program in Accounting and Finance will eventually take the core specialized courses in the areas of Accounting and Finance and are expected to assume broad-based functional and professional responsibilities in various sectors or institutions (private, governmental, for-profit, or not-for-profit/charities) where effective decisions, accountability and transparency are needed.

Qualified graduates of the program will support the activities performed by different government and non-governmental organizations including the National Bank of Ethiopia, Ministry of Finance and Economic Development, Federal and Regional General Auditor, financial institutions, manufacturing and service rendering organizations alike.

The graduates can assume positions in the areas of accounting (including cost management, tax administration, and auditing), finance and financial management, and management and shall exhibit personal, professional, and intellectual attributes to the highest level in their engagement. The program builds a strong foundation in the theory and practice of making financial decisions in an international environment, equipping students with the necessary skills to pursue job titles such as Financial Advisors, Financial Controllers and Financial Mangers among others.

Specifically, the graduates of MS.c Degree in Accounting and Finance will be able to perform the following activities:

  • Guide financial, investment, and other decisions of top-managers and local/ international stakeholders.
  • Perform advanced analysis of costs, taxes, systems, investments, and financial instruments & markets.
  • Plan, project, manage, and control funds & resources.
  • Generate ideas and design, execute, monitor, and evaluate projects, programs, and systems.
  • Prepare corporate plans and manage corporations, financial institutions, and other businesses.
  • Develop & implement business and financial strategies, Design systems, perform audits, conduct researches, etc.
  • Execute professional consultancy services and investment advices in financial institutions, real estates, and investment institutions.