Computer screen showing the Bloomberg Suite, a software available at the University of Portsmouth

Discover some of the careers you could pursue after studying accounting or finance.

Find out more about what you could do after you graduate from Dr Xing Huang, Senior Lecturer in Accounting and Financial Management.

What can I do with an accounting and finance degree?

A BA (Hons) Accounting with Finance degree prepares you for careers across the insurance, banking, finance and charity sectors. You’ll graduate with specific accounting knowledge as well as transferable skills you can use across industries. 

During your studies you’ll develop your communication, teamwork, critical analysis and numerical skills, and learn to persuade others by supporting your decisions with numbers. 

You’ll prepare for a career in financial accounting or management accounting as you study topics including financial management, economics, management accounting, and financial reporting.

The differences between financial and management accounting: 

  • Financial accounting is historic and involves recording how the business has done in the past. You will also prepare financial accounts.
  • Management accounting focuses on budgeting and dealing with accounts in the present, and includes topics like costing, pricing and market share.

Accreditation and exam exemptions

Our BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance degree is accredited by 3 key accounting bodies (ACCA, CIMA and ICAEW), so when you graduate you’ll have exemptions from a range of professional exams. 

Depending on the modules you choose you could earn the maximum number of exemptions for ACCA and CIMA exams. This means you’ll have less exams remaining if you choose to become chartered after you graduate. 

Having exam exemptions demonstrates your depth of knowledge. Some employers pay for your remaining exams so more exemptions will make you more appealing during your job search because you’ll need less exam funding during your career. 

Choosing your career

A degree in accounting and finance could lead to a range of jobs and career pathways. You might work in an accountancy firm, with an insurance company, in a bank, or somewhere else. 

You can focus on different subjects as you study to work towards your own goals. When you choose some of your modules after your first year, you could decide to focus on accredited modules to work towards becoming an accountant, choose to study finance modules which will prepare you to work in banking or investment, or decide to study analytics modules where you’ll explore data analysis.

You could become an:

  • Accountant
  • Actuary
  • Auditor
  • Finance analyst
  • Data analyst
  • Financial consultant
  • Investment broker
  • Stockbroker
  • Economist
  • Control analyst

Jobs you could do with an accounting and finance degree

Explore some of the roles you could go into after studying accounting and finance, and find out more about them below. 

Accountant

Accountants handle financial records for companies across all sectors, which means that you can work in an industry you care about. You could choose to work in sectors including insurance, banking, sports, entertainment, tax, charity, or something else. 

As an accountant your work can involve preparing financial statements, auditing accounts and preparing tax returns. You might also monitor the financial health of an organisation.

Chartered Accountant

Chartered accountants offer specialist accounting services. They are members of a professional accounting body such as the ACCA and must have passed specific exams set by their professional body. 

To become a chartered accountant you need to continue your studies after you graduate. Depending on the modules you choose during your degree, you could graduate with up to 9 ACCA exam exemptions so you’ll have less exams to compete after your degree. 

Tax Advisor

As a tax advisor you would work with individuals and companies to arrange and plan their tax situations. If you work with companies you will use your expertise in corporate tax, VAT, and international tax. If you work with individuals you will focus on topics such as National Insurance, estates and trusts. 

Management Accountant

Management accountants prepare and communicate financial data. You’ll interpret and analyse data and work with a specific company, and will advise companies based on this data. 

Public Finance Accountant 

You’ll specialise in working with organisations funded by public money. You could work with local councils, specific charitable trusts, or national bodies to advise on key financial decisions, monitor budgets and complete other tasks. 

Forensic Accountant

You’ll investigate cases of fraudulent use of money and explore where missing money has gone and options to recover it. Depending on the case you may also testify in court. 

Investment Banker

Investment bankers work with companies and governments and advise them on how to achieve financial goals and plans. You could specialise in corporate finance or other topics. 

Retail Banker

Provide advice and financial services to small businesses and individuals. You could work with people to set up current accounts and savings accounts, organise overdrafts, or arrange mortgages and loans.

What happens after you graduate? 

Whatever your career goals, choosing your degree can put you on the right path. 

Meet BA (Hons) Accounting and Finance graduate Michael
Hear from Finance Manager and University of Portsmouth graduate Michael Gray about his time at university and how his degree helped him to prepare for the workplace.

What next?