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SOUTH AFRICAN QUALIFICATIONS AUTHORITY 
REGISTERED QUALIFICATION: 

Master of Accounting Sciences 
SAQA QUAL ID QUALIFICATION TITLE
90676  Master of Accounting Sciences 
ORIGINATOR
University of South Africa 
PRIMARY OR DELEGATED QUALITY ASSURANCE FUNCTIONARY NQF SUB-FRAMEWORK
CHE - Council on Higher Education  HEQSF - Higher Education Qualifications Sub-framework 
QUALIFICATION TYPE FIELD SUBFIELD
Master's Degree  Field 03 - Business, Commerce and Management Studies  Finance, Economics and Accounting 
ABET BAND MINIMUM CREDITS PRE-2009 NQF LEVEL NQF LEVEL QUAL CLASS
Undefined  180  Not Applicable  NQF Level 09  Regular-Provider-ELOAC 
REGISTRATION STATUS SAQA DECISION NUMBER REGISTRATION START DATE REGISTRATION END DATE
Reregistered  SAQA 06120/18  2018-07-01  2021-06-30 
LAST DATE FOR ENROLMENT LAST DATE FOR ACHIEVEMENT
2022-06-30   2025-06-30  

In all of the tables in this document, both the pre-2009 NQF Level and the NQF Level is shown. In the text (purpose statements, qualification rules, etc), any references to NQF Levels are to the pre-2009 levels unless specifically stated otherwise.  

This qualification does not replace any other qualification and is not replaced by any other qualification. 

PURPOSE AND RATIONALE OF THE QUALIFICATION 
Purpose:
The purpose of this qualification is to enable students to obtain integrated knowledge in the field of accounting sciences. It creates the opportunity for qualifying graduates to become specialists in a field of study of their choice from the disciplines of the accounting sciences.

Rationale:
The qualification provides Master of Accounting Science students with post-graduate level knowledge, specific skills and applied competence in the field of Auditing/Internal Auditing and/or Financial Accounting and/or Management Accounting and/or Taxation that prepare them to be lifelong learners, employable researchers, entrepreneurs and contributors to society and the business community.

It allows students to contribute to the knowledge of accounting sciences through a dissertation of limited scope. 

LEARNING ASSUMED TO BE IN PLACE AND RECOGNITION OF PRIOR LEARNING 
Learners who register for this qualification should be able to:
  • Conduct independent research in Accounting Sciences.
  • Document and communicate research findings coherently and logically.

    Recognition of Prior Learning (RPL):
    RPL can be used to grant access to learners who do not meet the minimum entry requirements.

    Access to the Qualification:
    A BCompt Hons (Management Accounting) Degree or any of the postgraduate diplomas offered by the School of Accounting Sciences, or their equivalent.

    International students need a relevant qualification evaluated by SAQA as equivalent to a BCompt Honours. 

  • RECOGNISE PREVIOUS LEARNING? 

    QUALIFICATION RULES 
    To obtain this qualification learners must:

    Pass four of the following tutored year modules (24 credits each):
  • Financial Accounting 4861.
  • Management Accounting 4861.
  • Management Accounting 4865.
  • Internal Auditing 4861.
  • Auditing 4864.
  • Auditing 4869.
  • Taxation 4861.
  • Financial Accounting 5961.
  • Management Accounting 5961.
  • Auditing 5961.
  • Taxation 5961.
  • Taxation 5962.

    Submit a Research proposal.
    Complete a research dissertation of limited scope. 

  • EXIT LEVEL OUTCOMES 
    1. Compile an acceptable research proposal that will enable the completion of a dissertation of limited scope conducted under supervision in a manner that is relevant to the discipline of accounting sciences.
    2. Compile an acceptable dissertation of limited scope at Master's level conducted under supervision, contributing to the knowledge in fields of Accounting Sciences.

    Critical Cross-Field Outcomes:
    All Critical Cross-Field Outcomes are developed in the dissertation, which leads up to the qualification.
  • The MCompt graduate can identify, analyse, formulate and serve needs of individuals and society creatively and responsibly with regard to auditing/internal auditing, financial and management accounting and taxation.
  • The MCompt graduate can work effectively with others as a member or leader of a team, group, organisation, community and contribute to the group output with special reference to accounting, auditing and taxation.
  • The MCompt graduate can manage and organise her or his activities and life responsibility effectively, including her or his postgraduate studies within the distance education context.
  • The MCompt graduate can collect, analyse, organise and critically evaluate information, as required, in the pursuit of the MCompt.
  • The MCompt graduate can communicate effectively using visual, mathematical and/or language skills in the modes of written presentation.
  • The MCompt graduate can demonstrate an understanding of the world as a set of related systems by recognising that problem-solving contexts do not exist in isolation and by acknowledging their responsibilities to those in the local and broader community. 

  • ASSOCIATED ASSESSMENT CRITERIA 
    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit level Outcome 1:
  • Demonstrate a broad and systematic knowledge base in Accounting Sciences.
  • Display a coherent and critical understanding of the research methodologies, techniques and technologies relevant to research in fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Demonstrate the ability to critique and evaluate current research.
  • Participate in scholarly debates in fields in Accounting Sciences.
  • Undertake a study (under supervision) of literature and current research in fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Relate theory to practice and vice versa and think epistemologically.
  • Demonstrate mastery of the application of research methods and techniques relevant to fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Demonstrate advanced information retrieval and processing skills.
  • Undertake a study of the literature and current research in fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Draw systematically on the theory, research methods and literature of fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Undertake a research project and write an acceptable research proposal under supervision which meets the technical and language requirements expected at this level and which demarcates the area of research, indicates the duration and planning schedule of the research and gives an indication of the type of research to be conducted and the literature consulted.

    Associated Assessment Criteria for Exit level Outcome 2:
  • Demonstrate a comprehensive and systematic knowledge base in fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Apply knowledge, theory and research methods creatively to complex practical, theoretical and epistemological problems.
  • Identify, conceptualise, design and implement research projects that address a complex problem in fields of Accounting Sciences.
  • Undertake a research project and write an acceptable dissertation under supervision which meets the technical and language requirements expected for a master's dissertation and demonstrate the contribution to the field of Accounting Sciences.

    Integrated Assessment:
    Assessment will integrate knowledge, skills and attitudes and applied competence.

    There is regular and continuous personal interaction between the supervisor and the student to review and evaluate progress on the dissertation. Working on the dissertation entails both summative and formative assessment, since the supervisor's continuous input in the writing stage is formative, while the final evaluation of the dissertation is summative. An acceptable research proposal is required before the candidate is allowed to proceed with the research. 

  • INTERNATIONAL COMPARABILITY 
    Unisa forms part of an internationally recognised accreditation system whereby university qualifications are evaluated against international comparators and accredited accordingly; for example, Unisa's qualifications are accredited in the International Handbook of Universities and in the Commonwealth Universities.

    The Master of in Accounting Sciences (MCompt) was further compared to the following international qualifications:

    New Zealand:
    Auckland University of Technology: Master of Professional Accounting (MPA):
    Duration: 2 years full time.
    Level: 9.

    Structure:
    The Master of Professional Accounting consists of:
  • Compulsory Papers: 14 core papers (210 points) as listed below:
    > Financial Accounting.
    > Management Accounting for Business.
    > Taxation in New Zealand.
    > Accounting Information Systems.
    > Auditing.
    > Advanced Financial Accounting.
    > Strategic Management Accounting.
    > Finance for Accountants.
    > Economics for Business.
    > Statistics for Business.
    > Business Law.
    > Law of Business Organisations.
    > Managing Organisations and People.
    > Research Methodology (not offered from 2012).
    > Issues in Professional Accounting Practice (new from 2012).
  • Additional Paper: one paper (30 points) from the elective papers listed below:
    > Contemporary Issues in International Accounting.
    > Advanced Topics in Accounting Information Systems.
    > Current Issues in Management Accounting.
    > International Financial Statement Analysis.
    > Accounting Codes of Practice (not offered from 2012).
    > Accounting Issues in Emerging Markets.

    United States of America:
    Northern Illinois University: Leadership Master of Accounting Science (LMAS):

    Financial Reporting and Assurance Track.

    The following must be completed:
  • Advanced Financial Reporting.
  • Advanced Issues in Taxation.
  • Financial Statement Auditing.
  • Accounting Research.
  • Seminar in Accounting.
  • Accountancy Capstone/Financial Statement Analysis and Business Valuation.
  • Seminar in Managerial Leadership.

    Managerial Accounting Systems Track

    The following must be completed:
  • Advanced Accounting Information Systems.
  • Managerial Accounting Information Systems.
  • Advanced Issues in Taxation.
  • Accounting Research.
  • Seminar in Accounting.
  • Accountancy Capstone/Financial Statement Analysis and Business Valuation.
  • Seminar in Managerial Leadership.

    Conclusion:
    The above mentioned qualifications compare favourably with the Master in Accounting Sciences (MCompt) in terms of duration and the course content. Leadership Master of Accounting Science (LMAS) leads to registration with the relevant Professional Bodies. 

  • ARTICULATION OPTIONS 
    This qualification articulates vertically with:
  • Doctor of Accounting Science. 

  • MODERATION OPTIONS 
    A panel of examiners comprising two external examiners or one external and one internal examiner (excluding the supervisor) is appointed to examine a Masters dissertation. 

    CRITERIA FOR THE REGISTRATION OF ASSESSORS 
    Assessors need to be in possession of a qualification at one level above the level of the qualification, i.e. at NQF Level 10. 

    NOTES 
    N/A 

    LEARNING PROGRAMMES RECORDED AGAINST THIS QUALIFICATION: 
     
    NONE 


    PROVIDERS CURRENTLY ACCREDITED TO OFFER THIS QUALIFICATION: 
    This information shows the current accreditations (i.e. those not past their accreditation end dates), and is the most complete record available to SAQA as of today. Some Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionaries have a lag in their recording systems for provider accreditation, in turn leading to a lag in notifying SAQA of all the providers that they have accredited to offer qualifications and unit standards, as well as any extensions to accreditation end dates. The relevant Primary or Delegated Quality Assurance Functionary should be notified if a record appears to be missing from here.
     
    1. University of South Africa 



    All qualifications and part qualifications submitted for public comment, or registered on the National Qualifications Framework, are public property. Thus, the only payment that can be made for them is for service and reproduction: it is illegal to sell this material for profit. If the material is reproduced or quoted, the South African Qualifications Authority (SAQA) should be acknowledged as the source.