As part of its mission to become a world-class university, the United Arab Emirates University (UAEU) is expanding its graduate program offerings at both Masters and Doctoral levels. The accounting department is launching the first AACSB-accredited MPA program in the region to meet local demands for practitioners and managers alike. The Accounting Department has obtained (in 2012) the first AACSB-accounting accreditation in the GCC and MENA region, and the tenth worldwide outside North America.
As the professional accounting field is highly needed in the country, this program was considered to attract top businesses and companies from around the world. The MPA program caters for practicing accountants and managers who have chosen the professional path, and would like to further their education with a post-graduate degree in accounting. The degree will also be a natural route to a Doctorate of Business Administration (DBA).
Students whose first degree is not accounting, or with limited or no background on accounting and/or Business will have to successfully complete foundation courses before they are formally admitted to the program. However, those courses will not count towards the final credit hours of the program. For those students who have limited background in accounting (mainly business students), they will be asked to successfully complete two foundation courses, before they are admitted to the program. As for students with no relevant degree (mainly non-business students), they will be asked to take four courses. In addition, each applicant with no business background will be subject to an individual assessment on a case by case basis to make sure that the pool of students have the basic competencies and knowledge (mainly in economics and statistics) needed for the program.
Teaching will be through evening sessions. Each semester (Fall and Spring) will be divided into two quarters, two courses offered each quarter. This translates into students being able to do 8 courses every academic year, needing 3 semesters to complete the 12 courses required. Each course is equivalent to 3 credit hours which are equivalent to 48 contact hours (inclusive of class hours, compulsory group work, and supervised field projects).
The objectives of the MPA program include the following:
- Enable graduates to have a high level of functional and technical competence in accounting that surpasses market-offered competencies.
- Cover much wider areas of accounting than any of the professional accounting certifications that tend to be narrowly specialized.
- Develop personal and business competencies (technical and non-technical) of graduates and provide them with an excellent foundation for successful professional careers. These competencies are knowledge and professional skills essential to career success, such as research skills, analysis skills, judgment skills, critical thinking skills, communication skills, and group interaction skills.
- Enable graduates to apply best accounting theories to their own practices, which form the basis of a sound accounting profession in the region and internationally.
- Enable graduates to meet one of the criteria for enrollment in DBA programs.
- Enable accountants who are yet to obtain professional certifications to complete the required minimum credit hours of higher education study (for example the 150 credit hours required for the American CPA certification).
Admission to the MPA program will be based on the following criteria:
- A cumulative Grade Point Average (GPA) of 3.0 on a 4.0 scale or equivalent, in all undergraduate work.
- A Bachelor’s degree or its equivalent from an accredited university recognized by the UAE Ministry of Higher Education and Scientific Research.
- A score of at least 6.0 on the IELTS Academic exam or equivalent. This test score must be less than two years old at the time of application.
- Candidates will be required to have a formal interview in English.
- Candidates will be required to submit two recommendation letters.
- Candidates with no degree in Accounting but with a business background will be required to successfully complete two prerequisite foundation courses.
- Candidates with no degree in accounting and no business background will be required to successfully complete four prerequisite foundation courses. In addition, a case-by-case assessment will be made for each candidate.
A complete application package must include the following:
- Completed application form;
- The required non-refundable application fee stated on the form (AED 1000). This fee must be paid prior to consideration of the application;
- Two certified copies of official transcripts from all colleges or universities attended (the applicant must arrange for these to be sent directly to the Office of the Registrar and Dean of Enrollment); and
- An official copy of the applicant’s IELTS certificate or equivalent.
Final decisions concerning a student's acceptance into the program rest with the MPA Admissions Committee.
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