Durham University
Programme and Module Handbook

Postgraduate Programme and Module Handbook 2011-2012 (archived)


Department: Business School (Business)


Type Tied Level 4 Credits 15 Availability Available in 2011/12 Module Cap
Tied to N1K017


  • None.


  • None.

Excluded Combination of Modules

  • None.


  • To develop students’ understanding of the financial tools of business management and their systems context.
  • To provide students with the ability to critically evaluate the information needs of management for control and for decision making.
  • To provide students with a critical understanding of the context of the use of management accounting information for control and an appreciation of the limitations of the information.


  • 1. Developments in Management Accounting and Control:
  • behavioural aspects of control: the performance measurement agenda;
  • use and limitations of management accounting information;
  • performance measurement;
  • dimensions of strategic management accounting.
  • 2. Corporate Reporting:
  • interpretation of financial statements;
  • international differences in reporting;
  • standardisation of international accounting and its impact;
  • wider aspects of corporate reporting: corporate responsibility;
  • corporate governance and the role of the auditor.

Learning Outcomes

Subject-specific Knowledge:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will:
  • have an advanced knowledge and critical understanding of the information needs of management for control and decision making;
  • have a critical appreciation of the context of the use of that information;
  • have explored and appreciated recent academic literature and its implications for current management practice;
  • have explored and evaluated the wider context of corporate reporting, including corporate responsibility and recent developments relevant to managers.
Subject-specific Skills:
  • Upon successful completion of the module, the students will:
  • be able to apply the concepts and practices of strategic management control and accounting in a realistic context;
  • be able to use the tools of financial analysis to make comparisons between organisations in the context of wider international issues and corporate governance developments.
Key Skills:
  • Written communication; planning, organising and time management; problem solving and analysis; using initiative; computer literacy.

Modes of Teaching, Learning and Assessment and how these contribute to the learning outcomes of the module

  • Learning outcomes will be met through a combination of lectures, groupwork, case studies and discussion, supported by guided reading. The written assignment will test students' understanding of relevant concepts and their ability to apply and interpret what they have learned to the analysis of a particular issue in depth.

Teaching Methods and Learning Hours

Activity Number Frequency Duration Total/Hours
Workshops (a combination of lectures, groupwork, case studies and discussion) 28
Preparation and Reading 122
Total 150

Summative Assessment

Component: Written Assignments Component Weighting: 100%
Element Length / duration Element Weighting Resit Opportunity
One or Two Written Assignments equivalent of 4,000 words maximum 100%

Formative Assessment:

Students will receive feedback on their contributions to class and group discussions.

Attendance at all activities marked with this symbol will be monitored. Students who fail to attend these activities, or to complete the summative or formative assessment specified above, will be subject to the procedures defined in the University's General Regulation V, and may be required to leave the University