Accounting for managers

Management accounting is a dynamic discipline which interacts with many facets of the organisational environment in which it exists across nations, industrial settings and management functions.

It entails the application both of long -established techniques and of newly-emerging concepts. Consequently, the module covers areas such as job costing and process costing, cost-volume-profit relationships, capital investment decisions and budgetary control systems in the light of changes in modern day operational circumstances.

Throughout the module, students have the opportunity to explore emerging themes within the field of management accounting which are regarded as important for organisations seeking to evolve their management accounting systems.

The module pays particular attention to concerns and issues within an international setting.

The module endeavours to cover fundamental concepts and techniques of management accounting while also highlighting the diversity of approaches and practices which management accounting are viewed to encompass in different countries.

Topics covered

  • Management accounting and the business environment: An introduction to cost terms, concepts and classifications;
  • Job-costing systems & Process costing systems
  • Cost Allocation
  • Cost Volume Profit (CVP) Relationships Relevant Information for decision making
  • Activity Based Costing (ABC)
  • Pricing, target costing and customer profitability analysis
  • Motivation, budgets and variance analysis
  • Performance Measurement Systems & Strategic Management Accounting (SMA)
  • Quality and throughput concerns in managing costs & Accounting for Just-in-time systems
  • Management Control Systems.

Learning outcomes

If you complete the course successfully, you should be able to:

  • Understand the nature of management accounting concepts and conventions
  • Understand how accounting information is employed to guide decision making and resource allocation
  • Apply standard accounting techniques to assess and evaluate different outcomes
  • Critically evaluate the extent to which accounting information can support resource allocation and performance appraisal
  • Critically discuss and differentiate contemporary accounting issues
  • Critical thinking, analytical and synthesis skills (including the capacity to provide informed and detailed analysis of business events)
  • The ability to create, evaluate and assess a range of different outcomes and the ability to make rational choices and justify them (including the ability to make choices among a multitude of appropriate management accounting techniques)
  • Numeracy and quantitative skills (including: data analysis and interpretation)
  • Effective communication skills (including oral and written communication skills)
  • Time management skills (including planning and prioritisation skills)
  • Leadership and individual initiative skills
  • Digital and information literacy skills
  • Research skills

Assessment

This module is assessed by:

  • Coursework (30% weighting):
  • There is one item of coursework for this module which contributes to the final assessment mark forthis module:
  • Coursework: a written essay of a maximum of 2,000 or 2,500 words (deadline – weeks 9-12) The coursework is designed to check student progress, extend and reinforce concepts covered and also test individual performance.
  • Examination (70% weighting):
  • The final piece of assessment will be an unseen written examination of 2 hours’ duration.

Essential reading

The following is provided as part of the course materials after you register:

  • Bhimani, A., Hongren, C., Datar, S., & Rajan, M., Management and Cost Accounting, 6th edition, Pearson Education, 2015
  • Seal, W., Garrisson, R., Rohde, C., & Noreen, E., Management Accounting, McGraw Hill, 5th ed., 2015

Module author

Global MBA Specialism Convenor, Dr Androniki Triantafylli

Dr Androniki Triantafylli

BSc Accounting and Finance (Athens), MSc Accounting and Finance (LSE), PhD (Athens)

Dr Triantafylli worked for PricewaterhouseCoopers and the Ministry of Health prior to joining QMUL.

Her doctoral thesis devised a model of the use of Management Control Systems according to the Strategy in the context of Shipping Companies by using mixed methods research approaches.

Her current research interests concern the use of Management Control Systems as practices with application of a combination of quantitative and qualitative approaches, especially in the services sector.