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Education Master's and PhD degree programmes Accountancy and Controlling
Header image Accountancy and Controlling

Accountancy and Controlling

How can you ensure that shareholders and managers receive the right information? How do modern-day developments, such as IT and Corporate Social Responsibility, affect the provision of information?

The MSc Accountancy and Controlling emphasizes the importance of high-quality information. In today's world, such information is crucial for all kinds of decisions. For instance, shareholders have to decide whether to continue their investment in particular companies, and managers need to decide which strategy to follow for their company to remain successful. These and other decisions require relevant, reliable, and timely information. In your Master’s programme, you will learn how to design information systems that produce such information, and how to assess the quality of existing systems.

The emphasis will be on the future role of auditors and controllers in society. Therefore, much attention will be paid to the opportunities and threats which arise due to innovations in information technology. Similarly, the current trend of reporting about sustainability issues, and its implications for information systems, will receive ample attention. Of course, also more traditional topics, such as ways to detect fraud, will be discussed at length. Many graduates further specialise by obtaining a professional qualification and/or following an executive master programme.

Did you know you can also study management accounting and control in Groningen? Find out more about our MSc Business Administration - Management Accounting and Control .

Facts & Figures
Degree
MSc in Accountancy and Controlling
Course type
Master
Duration
12 months (60 ECTS)
Croho code
60643
Language of instruction
English
Start
February, September
Faculty
Economics and Business
Accreditation EQUIS
Why study this programme in Groningen?
  • The programme prepares you for a role as an auditor or controller in a dynamic world which faces major developments in IT and increasingly emphasises sustainability issues.
  • The Master's programme in Groningen is taught at an advanced level because the students attending this programme have specialised in Accounting in their previous studies.
  • Groningen is also the only place in the Netherlands where you can gain a second Master's degree in Accountancy, the Executive Master of Accountancy (EMA). ► https://www.rug.nl/feb/ema.
  • The programme has been internationally accredited by the AACSB and EQUIS, ensuring a high-quality education, which only 1% of universities reach worldwide.
Programme

The programme has two profiles to choose from: Accountancy and Controlling. The Accountancy profile focuses on the information needs of external stakeholders, such as shareholders. This focus comes back in courses on Auditing (10 EC in total) and Financial Accounting (10 EC). So much attention will be paid to a firm's external reporting and the investigation of the quality of information systems and external reports.

The Controlling profile emphasizes the information needs of managers and other internal stakeholders. This emphasis is realized in courses on Management Accounting / Management Control (15 EC) and Financial Management (5 EC). Therefore, the provision of information for decision making and control will be the main interest.

Both profiles include courses on Strategy (5 EC) and Accounting Information Systems (10 EC). The AIS courses are centered around current developments in IT. Current developments in Corporate Social Responsibility come back in several courses (including both profile-specific and shared courses). Both profiles are rounded off with a thesis (20 EC), for which students prepare themselves in a course on research methods (5 EC). You can choose between quantitative and qualitative research methods. The data collection for the thesis can be combined with an internship.

Periods
CoursesCourse Catalog >12
Accountancy: Auditing Theory (5 EC)
Accountancy: Data-driven Control (5 EC)
Accountancy: Financial Accounting Theory (5 EC)
Accountancy: IT in Control (5 EC)
Accountancy: Research in Accounting and Control (5 EC)
Accountancy: Strategic & Organizational Design (5 EC)
Controlling: Data-driven Control (5 EC)
Controlling: IT in Control (5 EC)
Controlling: Management Accounting Change (5 EC)
Controlling: Management Accounting Techniques (5 EC)
Controlling: Research in Accounting and Control (5 EC)
Controlling: Strategic & Organizational Design (5 EC)
Accountancy: Auditing Research (5 EC)
Accountancy: Corporate Reporting (5 EC)
Accountancy: Master's Thesis Accountancy (20 EC)
Controlling: Master's Thesis Controlling (20 EC)
Controlling: Research in Management Control (5 EC)
Controlling: Value-Based Management (5 EC)
Programme options
Double Degree Master Chinese Economy and Finance (Shanghai) (specialization)

Are you interested in an international career in or involving China?

Study in Shanghai after your FEB Master's programme in Groningen and gain first-hand knowledge and experience of China and the economy, finance and culture.

More information about this option

Master Internship (specialization)

Opportunity to gain work experience by doing an internship in the second semester of your study.

You will be rewarded 15 ECTS on top of your programme. Your thesis will be postponed to the third semester.

More information about this option

Study abroad

  • Study abroad is optional
Entry requirements

Transfer options

Transferring from...

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
All Universities of applied sciences

Via a pre-master with a maximum of 60 EC

More information:

Non-standard Pre-Master For students who acquired a HBO diploma in Business Economics, a HBO Finance & Control or a diploma HBO AC without the Overall Test (OAT). Standard Pre-Master For all other HBO diplomas, a standard Pre-Master is offered. For more information: https://www.rug.nl/feb/premaster

AccountancyAll Universities of applied sciences

Deficiency program with a maximum of 30 EC

More information:

For HBO Accountancy graduates (30 ECTS) The accelerated programme is available for students who acquired a HBO diploma in Accountancy. A necessary requirement to be admitted to the programme is that you have passed the Overall Exam. For more information: https://www.rug.nl/feb/premaster

Study programmeOrganizationTransition
International BusinessUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

You will need to complete a set of courses in the field of management accounting, financial accounting and finance. For more information, please contact the study advisors: https://www.rug.nl/feb/studyadvisors

Business AdministrationUniversity of Groningen

No additional requirements

More information:

For students who follow the profile Accountancy and Controlling, there are no additional requirements.

Business AdministrationUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

For students following the profiles Business and Management and Technology Management. You will need to complete a set of courses in the field of management accounting, financial accounting and finance. For more information, please contact the study advisors: https://www.rug.nl/feb/studyadvisors

Economics and Business EconomicsUniversity of Groningen

Additional requirements

More information:

You will need to complete a set of courses in the field of management accounting, financial accounting and finance. For more information, please contact the study advisors: https://www.rug.nl/feb/studyadvisors

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
previous education

To be eligible for admission to this Master, you need to hold an academic Bachelor's or Master's degree from a research university in the field of Business Economics or Business Administration with a specialisation in Accountancy & Controlling; the content of the programme has to meet specific requirements; for instance, it needs to include courses in Auditing and Accounting information systems (or Internal Control).

To assess whether your educational/academic background meets the specific programme requirements, we will consider the level and curriculum of your previous studies. For more information, please visit: https://www.rug.nl/feb/apply-msc.

other admission requirements

Not meeting the pre-education requirements for direct entry? Please read more about our pre-Master programmes .

Registration procedure

Students with a Dutch diploma can apply directly to Studielink. More information on the  steps to apply .

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024
EU/EEA students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024
non-EU/EEA students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024

Admission requirements

Specific requirementsMore information
certified competences

A GMAT/GRE test is required from all candidates who obtained their bachelor's degree from a university in a non-EU/EEA country. For specific scores and exemptions, please see https://www.rug.nl/feb/gmat-gre.

  • Both GMAT and GRE are now being offered by mba.com and ETS as an online option to take from home worldwide. Please check their websites for more information.
language test

IELTS Academic overall score 6.5 (Speaking 6, Writing 6.5); TOEFL internet-based overall score 90 (Speaking 20, Writing 24); Cambridge B2 First, C1 Advanced or C2 Proficiency (overall score 176, Speaking 169, Writing 176).

  • ETS is offering the TOEFL tests as an online option to take from home worldwide. Please check their website for more information.
previous education

To be eligible for admission to this Master, you need to hold an academic Bachelor's or Master's degree from a research university in the field of Business Economics or Business Administration with a specialisation in Accountancy & Controlling; the contents of the programme has to meet specific requirements; for instance, it needs to include courses in Auditing and Accounting information systems (or Internal Control).

To assess whether your educational/academic background meets the specific programme requirements, we will consider the level and curriculum of your previous studies. For more information, please visit: https://www.rug.nl/feb/apply-msc.

If you have any questions concerning admission to this programme, please contact our Admissions Office: https://www.rug.nl/admissions.

other admission requirements

Not meeting the pre-education requirements for direct entry? Please read more about our pre-Master programmes .

Registration procedure

Students have to apply via Studielink and the Online Application System (OAS) of the University of Groningen. After you apply for the programme of your choice, the Admissions Office will evaluate your educational background and assess your eligibility. Your application will be assessed on an individual basis. More information on how to apply.

Application deadlines

Type of studentDeadlineStart course
Dutch students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024
EU/EEA students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024
non-EU/EEA students15 October 202201 February 2023
01 May 202301 September 2023
15 October 202301 February 2024
Tuition fees
NationalityYearFeeProgramme form
EU/EEA2022-2023€ 2209full-time
non-EU/EEA2022-2023€ 16201full-time

Practical information for:

After your studies

Your Master's programme is a good basis for many positions in both the private and the public sectors, including the positions of auditor and controller (sometimes called management accountant). Also becoming a consultant in related areas is an option.

Job prospects

Many auditors start their career at one of the Big Four auditing firms: KPMG, PwC, Deloitte and EY. Auditors examine a company's information systems and test the reliability of these systems by conducting random sample checks and data analyses. To become an auditor, you usually need an additional qualification as a Chartered Certified Accountant.

Controllers are employed by regular companies, where they prepare budgets and reports, make cost price calculations, assess investment proposals, and design performance measurement systems. Strategic decision-making, IT solutions, and risk management are also examples of subjects a controller deals with. As a controller, you may want to pursue a Chartered Management Accountant qualification (optional).

The ways of attaining these qualifications differ per country. In the Netherlands, after finishing the Accountancy profile, you can combine your job with the Executive Master of Accountancy (EMA). This programme lasts one and a half years and is combined with a three-year practical internship. On completion, you can use the title Executive Master and the Dutch qualification of 'registeraccountant'. Alternatively, and irrespective of the profile you completed, you can follow the Executive Master of Finance and Control (EMFC). This part-time programme lasts two years, and – after completion – allows you to use the title Executive Master in Finance & Control and the Dutch equivalent 'registercontroller'.

Job examples

  • Management accountant
  • Financial manager
  • Consultant in the domain of financial management / information systems
  • Auditor
  • Controller
Research

Linking education to research and career preparation

The master Accountancy and Controlling focuses on both practically-oriented and academic research. On the one hand, you will become familiar with the outcomes of research in the fields of audit quality, management control, information systems, financial reporting, and corporate governance. On the other hand, you will perform practically-oriented assignments as well as research assignments yourself, which will help you to develop your academic skills.

The team of lecturers is a mix of practitioners and active researchers. Their research projects – often in collaboration with external parties – are focusing on: integrated reporting, voluntary disclosure, Corporate Social Responsibility, risk management, the role of controllers, board composition and more.

Some examples are:

  • Yasemin Karaibrahimoglu, Vlad Porumb, and Dick de Waard investigate the impact of long-form auditor’s reports on investors and lenders
  • Martijn van der Steen investigates management control in the context of fighting missions of the Royal Dutch Air force
  • Nancy Kamp-Roelands and Dick de Waard investigate the possibilities of integrated reporting in SMEs
  • Reggy Hooghiemstra, Dennis Veltrop, and Floor Rink study the effects of multiple team membership on audit quality


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This degree is a great foundation to start working as an auditor

I started my journey at the Faculty of Economics and Business with the BSc Business Administration, which prepared me for my Master in Accountancy by learning all the aspects of businesses and financial institutions. The Master in Accountancy is a great foundation to start working as an auditor.

During my study, I learned the usage of IT and other new developments to the audit-profession. However, the programme consists of so much more than just the audit-part. I got to learn about different aspects a company faces and that helped me to better understand the business overall.

After my Master, I started a new job as an associate for PWC in Utrecht. Simultaneously I am following the Executive Master of Accountancy at the University of Groningen Business School (UBGS) to receive my official title as a registered accountant. (Koen Jansman | MSc Accountancy and Controlling, profile Accountancy)

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Become a certified accountant

The MSc Accountancy and Controlling prepares me in the best way for my future career as it pays much attention to new auditing and controlling techniques that are becoming increasingly important as an auditor or controller. I find that all lecturers are very enthusiastic about the topic they teach and are able to transfer their enthusiasm about the subject to the students.

Moreover, the university offers an exceptional programme which allows students to become a certified accountant. I will continue studying and start with the Executive Master of Accountancy at the University of Groningen Business School while working for a Big 4 accounting firm (PwC). The University of Groningen was the right choice for me.

Besides my studies, I became the treasurer of the board of one of the two study associations for Accountancy and Controlling. This has helped me a lot to enhance my social skills and this was a great opportunity for working together with other people and external parties. These two aspects are also really useful when wanting to become an auditor since you have to communicate a lot with other people and work together well with your colleagues in a team. (Angelique Keizer, MSc Accountancy and Controlling)


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Study associations

EBF

The Economics and Business Faculty association (EBF) is the faculty association for all students studying at the faculty of Economics and Business of the University of Groningen.
The EBF is your partner during your time in Groningen by organising events that support you with your studies and help you prepare for your future career.
https://www.ebfgroningen.nl/

Financial Study Association Groningen

FSG is the study association for financially interested students at the Faculty of Economics and Business.
FSG is founded in 2021 and is established from the merger between Risk and Pro Memorie.
https://fsgroningen.nl/
Read more
Study support

Studying means working independently and planning your studies yourself. But successful studying depends on many different factors, so it is understandable that you may need to consult an impartial expert to discuss your study progress and personal circumstances that influence your studies. The faculty's study advisors are available to help you. Obviously, everything discussed with the study advisor remains confidential.